What you measure matters!

Measuring the behaviour of your website users will lead to more profits. It is that important.

We have all heard that “what gets measured, gets managed”. In our physical operations their is often only financial data available. With digital tools we can now track customer behaviour, this is a powerful tool to tell us if we are becoming more or less appealing to more users. Today we will look at the three top metrics that can be your guide to staying on the right track to more profits.

Websites and mobile apps offer a range of benefits to your business. But the often overlooked advantage is the data they create. Data that allows you to KNOW what customers are responding positively to, rather than GUESS.

For a while I have followed the commentary of Aunash Kaushik, Google’s Digital Marketing Evangelist (his real title). He is considered one of the world’s leading lights on what data leads to better business decisions for increased profits. And why not, he sits on top of the world’s biggest data capturing monolith. He should have a better perspective than most!

BOUNCE RATE: The number one metric to focus on is Bounce Rate. Bounce Rate is the percentage of single visits that leave your website from the landing page without going any further. The bounce rate indicates that the page the user has landed on, from an ad, email or another website link, is not relevant or not what they expected. This means the page has not clearly delivered on the expectation the user had for what they might find. And if you have paid for the user to take that link then this is clearly a bad situation.

If every link is a promise of what a user might find, then clearly the promise has not been met; not a good start in building a new relationship. It is rare to get a bounce rate below 20%, but a good goal is to achieve around 35%. Anything over 50% is something to actively work on reducing. To improve bounce rate review the ‘promise’ you make in your advertising and ensure that promise is clearly met with the first impressions of the landing page. Typically this means the call to action on the landing page must align with the promise of the link that got the user there. You might also find the traffic you are acquiring is low or no value and should be reviewed.

LOYALTY: The number of times the user visits within the given period. For a typical retailer it might be per month, for a service it might be visits within a week if the user is nearing an actual purchase. Loyal users are often past customers, or new ones planning to purchase. And any returning purchaser is more likely to be an advocate so the more of these you have, the better. If loyalty is low you may need to look at more content, connecting with other similar communities and making more regular updates to your online products.

RECENCY: This shows how quickly users are returning to your site between sessions. As this number builds we see users are more inclined to purchase or make enquiries and you find your website will convert far more strongly. To find Recency go to Behaviours in your Audience reports in Google Analytics and you can review New Vs Returning users, the Frequency & the Recency of users. All of which imply the Engagement you have with users and therefore the likelihood of them becoming a customer and in turn repeating purchases.

So go look at these measures for your website and monitor them weekly and monthly and in a few weeks you will be sure to start to see an improvement in the quality of traffic and likelihood of sales will rise.

Mark Jones is Principal of Your Digital Solution, a Brisbane-based digital strategy agency. Mark contributes to various media outlets as a contributor on business strategy, marketing and technology. This article first appeared in the following group of newspapers in Mark’s weekly column:
Daily Mercury – Mackay, The Morning Bulletin – Rockhampton, The Observer – Gladstone, NewsMail – Bundaberg, Fraser Coast Chronicle, The Gympie Times, Sunshine Coast Daily, The Queensland Times, Warwick Daily News, The Northern Star – Northern Rivers, Daily Examiner – NSW North Coast, The Chronicle – Toowoomba.

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