10 Important Website Traffic Metrics to Track

How much money are you spending on your website? You must have a data-driven spending plan to help you prioritize and justify your efforts to make your websites successful. With web traffic metrics you get to understand how visitors engage with your website and how best to spend your money to improve these interactions for better revenues.

I was talking to a friend of mine who recently started a website for their small business. As the conversation moved along they asked a question I found interesting:

โ€œHow do I know my website is performing?โ€

I told them the best way to do that is by tracking the activity on their website. They had tried using Google Analytics but werenโ€™t sure exactly what to track. Tools like Google Analytics have different web metrics that show you how good or bad your website is performing.

In this article, Iโ€™ll explain to you, just as I did to my friend, what web metrics is and the most valuable web metrics to evaluate your website’s performance.

Definition of Web Metrics

There are many definitions out there on what web metrics is. Check out some of the best definitions I found while researching for this article.

According to IGI Global web metrics pertains to โ€œthe measures by which to assess a personโ€™s web information seeking behavior or to assess and monitor activity on a Website. Examples of commonly used web metrics include page views, page transitions, and session times.โ€

Another definition by B2B Whiteboard is โ€œWeb metrics is the measurement, collection, analysis, and reporting of internet data for purposes of understanding and optimizing web usage.โ€

Lastly, web metrics is the generic term used for quantifiable measurements made in regards to a website and the visitors it receives.

By using web metrics you can measure your website visitors behavior, activity and how this impacts your business site performance. Simply put with website metrics you can learn how users engage with your website, whether your marketing efforts are effective or not and detect any problems such as site outages.

From all the hard data you gather through web metrics you can better strategize on how to achieve your website’s goals.

So which are the most important metrics to track on your website?

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10 Web Traffic Metrics You Should Keep Your Eyes On

1: Traffic and Traffic Source

In the website business traffic is king. Everything else i.e engagement or conversions comes only after youโ€™ve got traffic. So it is important to know the number of visitors your site has per day, week, month or yearly.

High web traffic numbers are welcome. However, your traffic needs to be able to help you achieve your business goals. That means the wrong traffic is useless since you canโ€™t convert such traffic.

When you know your traffic numbers you need to go further and look at the source of this traffic. The key sources of traffic include:

  • Direct visitors: These already know about your company and come to your business website by typing your URL directly into their browser. A repeat customer may be a direct visitor.
  • Search visitors: These traffic finds you when they search, usually on Google, for something you offer.
  • Referral visitors: Anyone who clicks on your link on another website, social media page, etc and comes to your website is termed as referral traffic.

Once you know your traffic numbers, and the source of that traffic, that information can help you do a lot for your website. If for example, you find most of your traffic is from social media you can be more active on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

Having all your traffic come from search engines should concern you. Googleโ€™s algorithm changes could wipe out your traffic. Itโ€™s advisable you diversify traffic sources.

If you find youโ€™ve zero traffic or numbers are going down you can look at options to increase your traffic. A good way to boost your traffic would be to pay for a traffic plan form Web Traffic Geeks. Once you do that Web Traffic Geeks can deliver thousands of visitors to your site in hours.

2: Location

With a website, it is possible to sell your product anywhere in the world. So it would be nice to know where all your customers are flowing in from. With Google Analyticsโ€™ location feature you can do just that. Once you get this information you can allocate a bigger budget to market your product in areas where users have the most interest.

3: The Rate of Return Visitors (RVR)

It is crucial that you know the number of people coming back to your website often. This is because:

  • Return visitors have a high chance of being converted into paying customers.
  • Returning visitors can influence and attract new customers to your business.
  • When your website attracts and retains a high percentage of its visitors it shows your marketing efforts are paying and you’re developing a high-value brand.
  • Itโ€™s far cheaper to retain a customer than acquire a new one.

There are different factors that determine the rate of returning visitors. For example industry or type of website. However, a good RVR would be between 25-50%.

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4: New Visitors

Having new visitors, those who have reached your website for the first time, is what every website owner enjoys seeing. The new visitors are a sign that your website is visible and potential customers can find you easily.

You need to put a number on your new visitors. It is only by doing so that that you can tell if what youโ€™re spending money on to bring traffic is working. For example, if you pay for a Facebook ad and receive 200,000 new visitors you should consider doing more social media advertisement.

When you look at the number of new visitors you also want to compare it with the rate of returning customers. According to the Harvard Business Review, โ€œIt costs at least five times more to acquire a new customer than retain an existing one.โ€

These numbers should help you find a balance between how much to spend on new and returning visitors.

5: Time Spent on Your Website

You definitely want people to spend more time on your website. When they spend more time on site the probability of them making a purchase goes up. There are various factors that influence how much time a visitor will spend on your website.

Itโ€™s been found visitors who access your website using a mobile phone will spend less time than users on a desktop.

Digital Marketing blog StoneTemple says:

โ€œMobile drives more traffic worldwide, but desktop users spend more time on site. This is because many users prefer to use their phones to get specific information and leave time-consuming research to personal computers. The average person spends 4 minutes on a website when using their mobile compared to 8 minutes when on a desktop.โ€

How easy or hard it is to navigate your website will also determine how long individuals browsing your site stays.

6: Bounce Rate

This is the rate at which visitors come to your site and leave within seconds of getting there. A bounce can happen due to some of these scenarios:

  • An internet user clicks on the back button to โ€˜backoutโ€™ of the website.
  • The individual closes their browser
  • They move to another website by typing a new URL
  • They immediately click on an external link on your website.

You donโ€™t want to have a high bounce rate. A high bounce rate could mean:

  1. Most of the traffic coming to your website might be the wrong traffic.
  2. The information you offer doesnโ€™t solve the visitor’s problem.
  3. Your website has poor design, content takes too long to load or navigation is difficult putting off the visitors.
  4. In e-commerce sites your check out process is complicated and surprise costs could be driving away traffic.

Whatever the reason for your high bounce rate you need to find it and fix it. If you donโ€™t you will continue losing potential clients.

7: Conversion Rate

โ€œYour conversion rate represents the percentage of website visitors who take action on an offer you present to them.โ€

Crazy Egg

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So, youโ€™ve got traffic coming to your website. Visitors are spending a good amount of time there and a majority return. But are they buying your product or service? This is information you need to track to determine if youโ€™re getting a return on investment from your marketing efforts.

The other metrics we have talked about play a big part in what your website conversion rate will be. For example, if you have a high bounce rate your conversion rate may not be good. High traffic numbers may mean a high conversion rate but that may not always be the case. Issues like a difficult payment method, a weak call to action, and slow page load speeds can stand in the way of people buying your products.

According to Larry Kim, founder of WordStream, “the average conversion rate for most business that advertise on Google Ads is 2-5% but you should aim for a higher conversion rate, say above 10%. On Facebook, the average conversion across all industries is 9.21 percent.โ€

When you look at your conversion rate, work backward. Look at the other metrics to see actions that are causing you to have high or low sales and improve on them. Because as Brandon Weaver says  โ€œA good conversion rate is one thatโ€™s higher than it is now.โ€

When looking at your conversion rate, be sure to separate your conversion rate based on Traffic source.

Let’s take a hypothetical example:

  • Search engine traffic: Conversion rate 4%
  • Referral traffic: Conversion rate 10%
  • Direct traffic: Conversion rate 12%
  • Social media traffic: Conversion 2%

If your website has such statistics your most valuable traffic source would be direct traffic while social media would be the least valuable.

Direct traffic that converts would probably be your loyal and repeat customers so you want to keep them happy. In the above case, I wouldnโ€™t spend too much time chasing social media traffic.

8: Top Pages

When you look at this metric youโ€™ll know which pages on your website get the most traffic.

There are two ways to know your most viewed pages.

You can use Google Analytics. In the behavior section youโ€™ll get a breakdown of how many visitors came to each page.

Another way to know how your website pages are performing is to look at social media sharing. The more shares a page gets the more popular it is. Once you identify your best page you will have an idea of what your visitors want and your next move should be to produce more of what they like.

9: Exit Pages

What pages are people leaving your website from?

Youโ€™ll figure this out by looking at this web metric which will show you the last page a visitor accesses before leaving your website. Naturally, you would like web traffic to leave after they have heeded your call to action.

So a high number of exits on the payment confirms page or newsletter signup pages is good.

If browsers are leaving before getting to these steps you are losing potential clients and need to find ways to keep them from leaving before they convert. A good first step would be to refresh content on those pages.

10: Top Internal Search Keywords

When on your website people might use the search option to look for something they want to buy. This web metric will let you know the keywords used in those searches and also reveal what potential customers expect to find on your website.

If you find that you donโ€™t offer content on the most searched keywords check to see that you are getting the right type of traffic or create content for what is being searched for if it is in line with your product.

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There are other web metrics that you can use to get insight into how your website is performing. The ten I talked about are in my opinion the most important ones. Constantly checking on these web metrics will put you in a better position to improve your website so that interactions with visitors are amazing and lead to more sales. It will also give you an edge over competitors who arenโ€™t bothered about their web numbers.

If you donโ€™t have any web traffic yet, let Web Traffic Geeks help you drive traffic to your website. We have lots of experience in driving traffic to websites. Weโ€™ll send you real people looking to buy products or services you offer. If your able to convert our traffic you will definately be smiling all the way to the bank!