Key metrics used for analyzing Web and Social traffic for your online business.

For any online business it is important to know the overall performance of its product or service offering. There needs to be a thorough analysis in measuring the performance at each step of customer lifecycle from awareness, consideration, purchase and Advocacy/loyalty. Let us break down the measurement techniques for each of these channels and the insights which you can derive based on these key performance indicators a.k.a KPI.

Web performance: Based on the industry you are in, when it comes to web measurement it is important to understand the below three questions. We will break down the measurement framework into these three categories

The below questions will further help us understand about our visitors:

  • How is the content of your page performing?
  • From where are visitors/users coming to your site/page
  • What actions are users taking on your page

The below table provides key metrics which can be tracked to measure your web performance.

Visits – This metric tells about the traffic coming to your site over a period. You can further analyse this metric by looking at a weekly or monthly performance to understand if the visit to your site has stagnated, increased or decreased. Based on this one can think of running an Advertising campaign or see how to target newer markets.

Pageviews: This metric provides insight on how many times a page has been viewed over a period. More the pageviews better is your service or product offering perceived by the users.

Unique visitors: This metric gives you the count of users or visitors who have visited your page. This again is based on IP address of the user. Look at it at a daily, weekly, monthly or year on year perspective to understand the increase or decrease of audience to your site. This metric can also be classified into external and internal visitors.

 Return visits: This metric provides insight on the magnetism or attractiveness of your website, as users/visitors love to come back to your page. It’s time to refresh or update your content when you feel this metric has drastically gown down.

 Average page views per visit: Technically speaking this metric tells you how many pages a user access in a visit. This metric is an indicator of good connectivity between your pages, interesting content, easy navigation on your site and a great marketing effort to target right audiences.

Bounce rate: This is the only metric which if lesser the better. It’s time to look at your target audience or revamp your content if you have a higher number for this metric. Again, depends on the business you are in, if your website is a question and answer kind of page – a user who lands on your page will close the site the moment he finds his answer.

Average time on page: As this metric is calculated based on time spent between two pages. The higher the number better the stickiness with your website or better the user engagement with your site. There is no way any analytics tool can track the time spent on your last page. This metric is influence by pages/session and bounce rate.

Views on video and other key metrics: Embedding a video in your site is a great way to engage your audience. Video Views, play rate, completion rate, impressions are few key metrics which you can track for your video metrics. A good play rate is an indication of users watching your video or clicking the play button. There can also be a call to action button which can be embedded at the end of the video.

Cart addition: Customers may add the product to the cart, sometimes for future purchase or for immediate purchase. This is an important metric as this is just one step closer to your revenue generation or purchase cycle. This metric can further be broken down to check how many of these items are in cart for more than a week or month – for a user/user. These set of users can then be re-targeted, notified or may be sent some discount offers.

Downloads: This metric will provide insight on your customers who are still at consideration stage but really like your product/service offering. They are in the process of discovering more about your product/service and are potential customers to convert. It’s worth pushing new content or Thought leadership articles at regular intervals to make sure your prospect doesn’t lose interest in what he is reading/downloading

Unqualified leads from form: The cost-effective way of generating lead is by using a call to action (CTA) form or a contact form. For effective use, these leads need to be plugged into a CRM system which can further be nurtured (with the sales team) based on what stage of opportunity (identify, qualified, won, loss) has the unqualified lead moved into.

Analysing traffic sources:

To analyse from where the users are coming to your site, we need to look at the traffic sources or referral source report (provided by the web analytics tools). We can use this to analyse which is the most effective channel and how we can optimize it.  Predominantly we have four traffic sources namely:

Direct traffic: Users coming to your page either by bookmarking or typing in the URL of your page.

Referral traffic: Visitors visiting your site from other website (where you have placed you URL as a link)

Search engine traffic: As the name suggest, this is the traffic coming from search engines (google, bing etc)

Campaign traffic: This type of traffic comes via campaigns wherein you have placed links with tracking parameter. The tracking parameter separates the campaign traffic from the normal traffic

The below points need to be considered when you are trying to analyse your referral sources:

  • Which is the most effective channel/source used to visit your website
  • How effective is your paid campaign – what traffic is coming through paid search and what is the contribution from organic search
  • Which channel is the most effective when it comes to conversion on your page
  • If there are any bounces from your site from a referrer source, we can take a call if we would like to place our link on this page or not
  • Why is the traffic from organic search going down for the past few months?
  • Is it worth to invest in paid search or paid social – which is the ideal channel for your business

Customers have different intent as they move through different stages of customer life cycle. According to a prominent blog on e-commerce KPIs, the below picture will help you understand the various measurement stages of customer within an online business.

Measuring Social media KPIs and its effectiveness.

Social media plays a pivotal role in developing the brand awareness of your product or service. This is the medium through which you can reach a specific targeted set of audiences. The best part is that the engagement with your brand can be tracked within the social media platforms and which can be further analysed to draw insights or make business decisions.

We can divide the entire gamut of social media metrics into

  • Awareness
  • Engagement
  • Conversion

Awareness: At the surface you find these generic metrics comprising of likes (including reactions), mentions, shares, comments, retweets etc. All these metrics would help you measure the brand awareness of your product or service. The insight which can be derived by the increase of decrease of these metrics would mean the need to optimize your social media content or may be to run a social media campaign.

Three key metrics which can be derived from the existing KPIs are:

Follower growth rate: This metrics tells about the increase in number of followers compared to previous time. The more the followers the more the prominent is your brand presence/value among your followers. If you are looking at a month on month follower growth rate, you can use the following calculation – (This month’s followers – previous month’s followers) divided by previous month followers *100

Audience growth rate: As per hootsuite this is the speed at which you gain followers on social media.

So instead of asking how many followers you gain you need to ask how fast have you gained those followers.

This is how you calculate the Audience growth rate:

AGR = Total new followers gained over a reporting period divided by total audience across the social media platforms multiplied by 100

Post reach or Impression: This metrics would provide you the insight on how many users have seen your post/content. This metric is dependent on when your audiences are online.

Social share of voice: This metric is dependent on the number of mentions. It gives a count of number of times your brand was mentioned across the social media platform. There are lot of social media analytics tools which can help you provide this kind of data.

This is how you calculate the Share of voice metric:

 Share of voice: Count of mentions of your brand divided by total count of the industry mentions multiply by 100.

Industry mentions can be the sum of counts of all your competitors brand along with your brand

Engagement metric:

These are the metric which help us understand the performance of our content or post. This is where we would come to know whether a post or content has really been liked by the audience or not. It would also tell about any kind of positive or negative sentiment created by your content.

Engagement rate: This metric would provide an insight on what percent of your followers have interacted with your brand. Interaction would be captured based on likes, comments and shares. Higher the engagement rate better the content resonating with your audience/followers

This is how you calculate the Engagement rate metrics:

ER: Sum of like, shares and comments divided by total followers multiplied by 100

Amplification rate:

This metric was coined by the digital evangelist Avinash kaushik.This metric would give you an insight on your post amplification, which would translate into the number of times the post has been shared.

This is how you calculate the amplification rate:

AR: Number of times your post was shared (retweet, repined etc) divided by total number of followers multiped by 100.

Virality rate:

The rate at which your post is shared or becomes viral in the social media channels. This metric takes into consideration that “Share” has more weightage than likes.

This is how it is calculated:

VR: Total count of shares for a post divided by total number of impressions multiplied by 100

Conversion metric:

This is where the real value (monetary) of your post will be measured or calculated. There may be campaigns on social media which are run for awareness purpose but it is imortant to understand that in the longer run we need to look at the return on investment or the value the campaign has generated.  We can also relate this to the web, as to what percent of users have come from social media and have taken some actions on your site (like downloads, contact form clicked or register for a webinar)

Link clicks: Number of times the link on your post has been clicked which has brought the traffic to one of your websites or a call to action link. This metrics can also be looked at in terms of percentage of impression/post reach for which the link was clicked.

 % conversion on link clicks: Total link clicks divided by total impression multiplied by 100

CPC or cost per click on social media: The amount you pay per individual click for your sponsored social media posts.

CPC: Total ad spend divided by Total clicks multiplied by 100

In any of the social media platform (twitter, linkedIn, facebook) which ever advertisement platform you choose, make sure you track this number on regular intervals.

CPM or cost per Thousand impression: As the name suggest, this is the amount you pay per 1000 impression. Whenever someone views your ad the ad server counts the number of times your ad gets loaded on the page. This metric is usually used when the objective of you campaign is awareness generation.

CPM: Total Ad Spend divided by Total measured ad impression multiplied by 1000

All the social media channel has their own way of reporting the performance and it is always important to compare your data with the benchmark to know how you perform against the industry.

In case you don’t have external benchmark available or can’t compare the data with external benchmark it will be advisable to create your own internal benchmark.

Happy analyzing!!!

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