Pay-per-click, social media ads, and content marketing are all great ways to get new visitors to your website. You've invested the resources and done the work, and your numbers are showing your success--but is it enough? Are you generating leads and closing sales? If you cannot connect your marketing efforts with real sales, you're missing an essential piece of the web marketing puzzle.
Beyond the Click
Now that you have web users viewing your ads and clicking your links, what's next? Are they following your calls-to-action and consuming more content? Requesting more information? If you cannot answer these questions with specific numbers, or if you are unable to trace a request for information all the way back to the initial click on an ad, it's time to take your analytics up a notch.
What to Follow
You might be asking yourself, "How can I quantify marketing performance?" The list is quite long, and how much you choose to monitor this performance may depend on the resources you have available. There are, however, a few key metrics that everyone should be watching:
- New vs. Returning Visitors. Most return visitors are more valuable than new arrivals as they are showing continued interest in your company, but new arrivals are an opportunity to create repeat visitors. Make sure that you're following each to be sure that content is tailored and effective.
- Exits and Bounces. Sometimes, taking a closer look at the people who are leaving your site can be more valuable than following the successes. Why are they leaving? Was the landing page ineffective, or was your original ad misleading? Are your page-load times too slow? Are they optimized for mobile visitors?
- Conversions. For every premium download, form completion, and sale, you must be able to see where that visitor came from and what they did before converting to a lead. This will show you where to double down, while helping you identify ineffective strategies that can be cut.
The Next Level
Once you are analyzing the basics, you can start to dig deeper and better understand the nuances of your visitors. You can look at how long people are spending on different pages to see what's grabbing attention and what's a flop. You can get an idea of the keywords and ideas that people want to see, and what's becoming irrelevant. This will help streamline your efforts while making each dollar go farther to improve marketing ROI.