With so much data, and tools to monitor it, business owners can easily become confused by which data to measure and how to measure it.
It’s imperative to identify which metrics have the most influence on business growth, and the “big three” for digital marketers are traffic, conversions and revenue.
Traffic metrics are important for both SEO and PPC:
- Unique visitors per week and month may be more important than page views.
- The most effective traffic sources and keywords that brought you visitors to your website will enable you to adjust your strategy as you go.
- Don’t forget to monitor your traffic from mobile!
- Measuring how many people clicked on your ads will increase your quality score and lower your ad costs.
Whether you want to gather information on site visitors or convert site visits into sales, monitoring your conversion metrics can make or break a digital campaign:
- Costs Per Lead (CPL) metric helps you understand the conversion ratios in relation to the costs of a particular campaign
- The Bounce Rates tells you how many people leave the site, and how quickly, without converting, providing insights into message relevance.
- The average page view per visit data tells you how visitors navigate your site and which content interests them.
- Your rate of return visitors helps you understand sustained interest and how to entice return visitors who are not yet paying customers.
Revenue metrics signal where you can make adjustments and improve content for increased engagement, conversion:
- The Return On Investment (ROI) helps you identify which areas of your marketing campaign drive sales and revenue and which should be altered or cut.
- The Cost to Acquire a Customer metric (CAC) is calculated by dividing the total of your marketing and advertising costs in a particular time period by how any new paying customers were generated during that same period.
How To Analyse Your Metrics
For analysing your website traffic and certain social media metrics, Google Analytics is still the top choice. But there are a range of tools and services to help you with SEO and social media metrics.
SEO Metric Analysis Tools
Tools for managing SEO help you with keyword analysis, link building and removal, content ideas, rankings and the technical side of SEO.
Keyword suggestion tool Ubersuggest taps into a variety of services to create a detailed list of keywords. And it’s free. Term Explorer’s freemium service claims to have the biggest data set of any keyword research tool. It also offers competitiveness data and expanded keyword lists. The paid version of SEMrush lets you see keyword rankings from your competitors, the landing page associated with each keyword and the keyword value (for PPC campaigns). Google offers its own keyword planning tool in its analytics suite.
Ranking tools help you track the effectiveness of your online campaigns, which will help you streamline what works and increase your ROI. Access these insights using the Google Search Console by clicking the “search traffic” then “search analytics” tab.
Staying relevant with new content, and enhancing your existing content, is an essential part of SEO. Start by using the Yoast WordPress Plugin to be sure your content is SEO friendly. For idea generation, track trending topics on social networks and use sites like Buzzsumo to see what activity and influencers are gathering around a given topic and to track the top social content in your niche. Social Mention combines search and analytics. Just type in a keyword and see stats on user-generated content from more than 100 platforms, including sentiment.
Link building tools help you optimise your content. The Moz SEO Toolbar and Majestic Backlink Analyzer extensions are freemium services that analyse your site and let you tap into a wealth of SEO information.
Social Media Metric Analysis Tools
Social media analytics help guide your marketing strategy. Once you’ve defined a social strategy, objectives and KPIs, social analytics tools let you determine how social media effect your conversion rates and overall business goals.
Don’t waste your time on vanity metrics like numbers of likes and views. Rather, focus on the impact of your brand across social channels. You can gather a lot of information about your audience and content directly from Facebook and Twitter analytics. Other tools can provide deeper insights about your fans and influencers, and help you with post creation, curation and scheduling.
Hootsuite is a freemium social media dashboard that helps you with search, aggregation, scheduling, and engagement analytics. Edgar sorts your content into categories and automatically serves up fresh content from your library week after week. By connecting Simply Measured to Google Analytics you can access information about the behaviour of visitors to your site who come from social channels. And Oktopost actually tracks conversions to identify the channels and messages driving action on your site.
But regardless of which tools you use, remember that interpreting your data is even more important than gathering it. Focus on the big three and your digital campaigns will definitely pay off.
What are your favourite tools and metrics? Let us know in the comments section below.
About the Guest Author: Gareth Bull is a freelance SEO consultant who focusses on conversion rate optimisation and data marketing.