6 web-metrics-even-the-experts-forget-to-measure

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6 web-metrics-even-the-experts-forget-to-measure

  1. 1. The 6 Web MetricsEven the ExpertsForget to Measure
  2. 2. 1From Complex to ComfortableThe web analytics world today is very complex. There is a range of tools on the market, fromfree and easy-to-use solutions to analytics suites costing hundreds of thousands of dollars ayear. The abundance of different metrics and measurements makes it difficult for theaverage web analytics user to know where to start.However, there are still a few key metrics that are common to all. A small number of theseshould be measured daily by every website manager, online marketer and internet businessowner. After incorporating these quick checks into your regular work routines, they will soonbecome second nature.In descending order of importance, these are the metrics you want and need to be following.Website Traffic: How much of it is real?One of the most important things to understand before starting any serious analysisis what percentage of your website traffic is actually “real.” The majority of visits onany given website last less than 10 seconds. The reason for this could be robots,spiders, or people who have landed on your site, accidentally clicking on a link or anad to your page.These fake visitors skew your data tremendously, often making a good pagelook like it is underperforming while hiding problems affecting first-timevisitors that genuinely bounced. More importantly, you could be paying money forthis fake traffic if it comes through a PPC or banner campaign. Therefore, alwaysremember to check the traffic sources if you see a sudden spike in these fake visits.You will want to set a strategy to increase the percentage of “real” visits based onwhat you’re learning. It’s the “real” people that convert and buy your product at theend of the day.Search Keywords: What were your visitors searching forbefore they found you?If you check your traffic sources report, you will be able to see what people typed intothe search engine before they arrived at your site. Try to look at the top 100 resultsinstead of the top 10 or 20 which are shown by default.Question to ask yourself: What percentage of these results are terms thatreflect your company or product name, and what percentage are more generic?If visitors are searching for your “brand” (your company or product name), then theyhave already come about 60% through the consideration phase of buying from you.65
  3. 3. 2What you want to do is get more “unbranded” searches to your site. This is how youattract new customers.For example, if 90 out of the 100 results are a variation on your company name andonly 10 of them are from searches for exactly what you sell, then you need to dosome work. Start by putting more content on your website in order to:a) Help people, who do not know your brand, to understand that you are right forthem, and b) Get your site indexed by the search engine for more of thoseunbranded searches.Traffic Sources: What is your mix?This is probably the simplest report to look at, and the least utilized. Look at thereport in your web analytics tool that shows you the overview of your traffic sources.What you will see is a pie chart that will tell you how many people:came to your site from searchcame from other sitestyped your website URL directly into their browser (or had it bookmarked)The ideal distribution should look like equal slices, so if your pie chart looks likeanything other than the Mercedes logo, you have a problem. You want yoursources to be evenly balanced so you will not be dependent on any one “type”of traffic to merit your overall success. For example, the pie chart belowrepresents a website with really awful SEO.The site is getting almost no traffic from search, therefore if a month goes by with noonline campaigns, or referral traffic dries up, there is no online “footfall” to keep thesite growing naturally.For companies that rely heavily on social media, referral traffic from Facebook mightdominate the pie. When Facebook changes their Edgerank algorithm, less people82,653 people visited this site0.59% Search Traffic35.66% Referral Traffic57.39% Direct Traffic6.36% Campaigns4
  4. 4. 3see your wall posts, traffic would dive and sales would plummet. Given the buzzsurrounding social media, this is the most volatile of all traffic types.The last type, direct traffic, generally tells you how hard your marketing department isworking to drive people directly to your site through brand recognition, URLrecognition, or other direct response campaigns. Its also a great indication of thespillover effect from email marketing, direct mail or banner ads.Entry Pages: Are they doing their job?Whether it is your homepage, a landing page, or a product page direct from a searchresult, the first page a customer sees when he enters your site is his point of entry.To say these pages are critical to a website’s success would be an understatement,as first impressions stand for everything on the Internet. Therefore, you will wantto see conversion rates going up and bounce rates going down on these pagesspecifically.What to check: The first thing to do when analyzing point of entry pages is tofocus on your failures. If the page converts 3% of traffic, start by looking at the other97%. Focus on what they did on the page, what images they looked at or clicked on,what text they read, and how far down they scrolled. You are ideally trying to findbehaviors that indicate a customer was interested in what the page had to offer, butleft for an obvious reason.For example, if a customer repeatedly clicked on an image or special offer badgetrying to get information on a specific product or offer, and then leaves in frustrationwhen they realize the image is not a link. By then checking how many other visitorshad the same problem, you can easily find which problems to fix first, and which willhave the biggest impact on site performance. Mouse click and mouse moveheatmaps are the obvious first tool for this, and should never be overlookedwhen trying to analyze a single page in a sales process or conversion funnel.Initially, look for those parts of the page that have the highest concentration ofactivity, and those with the lowest. You then need to ensure any relevant call toaction buttons and converting links sit squarely in areas of high activity, and let thelow activity areas be used for large images and blank space.On a positive note, this is where youll see the biggest ROI from your activities. Whenyou consider raising a page’s conversion rate from 15% to 20%, this only requiresfinding an additional five customers who wanted to convert out of a possible 85visitors. You are raising your total online revenue by a third!Web Form Stats: Are they performing?Love them or hate them, web forms play the most important role for any e-commercewebsite. They are your online cashier. Any customer that gets to a lead generation32
  5. 5. 4form, shopping cart, or payment page essentially has to overcome one final hurdlefor you to achieve your business goals. They have to successfully fill out an onlineform.That is why it can be so frustrating to discover after several weeks or even monthsthat you have had a small bug or confusing question all along that has been turningaway thousands of potential customers. Checking the performance of your onlineforms is quick and easy to do, and should be a daily ritual for any e-commercemanager. If you notice the performance dropping by anything greater than 10% on agiven day, spend a couple of minutes seeing if you can find a reason for this. It mightjust be an anomaly, or a natural dip in performance, but its always worth the check.Sales Goals: Are you meeting them?Any analytics tool worth its salt will be able to tell you whether or not you are meetingyour ecommerce goals. That said, you will be amazed how many times this essentialmetric is not even measured. Take half a day out of your schedule to make sure thisfeature is turned on, implemented properly, and tracking correctly. You will neverregret it, and it saves endless time and heartache in understanding what on yourwebsite is working the hardest to achieve success and which strategies either needto be shut down or overhauled.If you can’t integrate this directly with your ecommerce platform, then set an event orgoal in your web analytics tool of choice to measure every time someone clicks onthe final confirmation button of your payment page. There are more elegant solutionsto tracking conversions, but if you do not have the time or budget to set them up, thiswill do nicely. You absolutely have to be tracking this metric, and reviewing itregularly.Many platforms will even allow you to set an e-mail alert with information such as thenumber of sales in the last 24 hours. Having these arrive to your inbox every morningfor a cursory glance is the best way to keep your finger on the pulse of your website,so to speak.Make It a HabitGetting into the habit of checking these six metrics on a daily basis will not take any time atall. Within a week or two youll be able to recall your website’s key success metrics off thetop of your head, and evaluate the performance of anything from email marketing campaignsto site redesigns at a moment’s notice.These business specific benchmarks will tell you what direction your company is going in,how fast your online business is growing, and exactly what you need to improve to help getthere.1
  6. 6. 5About ClickTaleClickTale is the leader in Customer Experience Analytics, the next advance in web analytics,optimizing usability and maximizing conversion rates of any website. Its patented CustomerExperience Visualization™ technology allows ebusinesses to see their customers’ true-to-life onlineexperience at all levels of detail, from aggregated views to playable videos of users’ browsingsessions. Unlike traditional analytics platforms that assess page-to-page navigation, ClickTale revealsthe customer experience inside the page. ClickTale, an enterprise-class SaaS solution, is fast todeploy and provides immediate ROI. Serving over 80,000 customers worldwide including Fortune 500ebusinesses, ClickTale is the fastest growing company in its space.www.clicktale.comUS 1-800-807-2117UK 0800-048-8871© 2012Questions?Tell us what you needLike what you read?Visit our content libraryWant to get started?Demo tailored to your site’s needsContact Us Learn More Request a Demo@Next steps…

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