Want to Measure Website Success? Think Beyond Search Engine Rankings

When you invest in a high quality website you expect results. The combination of great design, strategic copy and a compelling user experience can and should make a measurable difference in your business. The question is, how do you measure it?

One of the first things our clients say when we start exploring their business goals is that they want to rank well in search. That’s a worthy goal, but it’s far from the only indicator of a successful website.

Measuring success is important not only to calculate the return on your website investment but to learn where you can improve. Measurement highlights problem areas as well as areas of success. You should set goals for your website and these should be tied to your overall business goals. Let’s look at some of the other ways you can measure success.

8 Metrics to Measure Your Website’s Performance

1. See Where Your Visitors are Coming From

We don’t want to discount search engine ranking entirely. Undoubtedly, a strong SEO strategy will affect your search engine performance which, in turn, brings you traffic. So, take a look at what percentage of your visitors come through search engines and which ones. In addition, look at direct traffic, social media clicks, and any other sources. You might discover unexpected ways in which your site attracts qualified leads.

2. Look at Your Bounce Rate

No matter how many visitors find your site, you need enough of them stay and complete the buyer’s journey. Look at how many of them bounce. Bounce rate shows you how many people leave after viewing only one page. As you tweak your website strategy, you should see that rate decrease.

3. Watch Your Click-through Rates

A successful website walks a visitor through a journey, in a logical progression from awareness to purchase. You can follow along by looking at click-throughs. This analysis will give you insight into the text, placement and usability of your CTAs. Sometimes a small change significantly boosts the click-through rate.

4. Measure Form Fills

You can and should measure all kinds of conversions but one particularly valuable type of conversion to watch is a form fill. When someone fills out a form, say for more information, an appointment, or a consultation, they express a clear interest in your brand. Plus, you capture their information, which teaches you more about your target audience and builds your contact list for email marketing.

5. Measure Downloads of Gated Content

Gated content is another indicator of strong interest in your brand, as well as an opportunity to begin nurturing a lead. When someone expresses enough interest to give you their information, they are a valuable visitor. By exchanging their information for a valuable piece of content, you’re likely headed for a sale.

6. Track Cart Abandonments

When a user puts a product in their shopping cart only to abandon it, this may feel like a “fail.” It’s actually a valuable learning opportunity. If a visitor finds your site, likes your product, and takes steps toward a purchase, many parts of your website are working well. A marketing automation strategy can allow you to remarket to cart abandoners and potentially still earn their business.

7. Evaluate Blog Interaction

Look at how people get to your blog, what they read, and how they interact. Visitors who leave comments demonstrate a reaction to your messagewhether positive or negative. You can also enable them to share your blog content easily through social media, which further spreads your brand message and tells you how invested your customers are in your brand. Measure how often they comment or share.

8. Ask Customers Where They Heard About You

The most analog of all measures is simply to ask people how they heard about you. It’s rare that a customer today would call you on the phone or walk into your brick-and-mortar business without first visiting your website. Train your customer service and sales team to make this question standard protocol. If possible, engage customers in a conversation to get specifics about what compelled them to take the next step.

How you measure website success will reflect your business goals. That means, your ideal success metrics will vary from another business, even your competitor. A great digital marketing agency will help you to develop meaningful measurements and track them over time. Together, you will likely find improvement in your search engine ranking for important keywords, along with many other possible measurements.

If you want to learn how Bayshore Solutions can help you set meaningful website goals and execute a strategy to achieve them, contact us to chat about taking your digital presence to new heights.