7 Most Important Website Metrics to Track
October 13. 2021
Website owners need to have a way of telling when their site is doing well, and when it’s time to do some tweaking. Obviously, there need to be certain measurable parameters that can be used to evaluate the performance of websites. New website designers sometimes struggle to determine which performance metrics they should be looking at, and which information is just needless noise. Thankfully, in this article, we will be covering the 7 most important website metrics to track.
User engagement is important
Over the years we’ve seen new design trends emerge, seemingly from out of nowhere, and then disappear just as fast. However, some of them do stick around, and a few even become the new industry standard. Recently the new buzzword has become user engagement. We use key performance indicators to measure user engagement and how well a website is doing. You’ll obviously see overlap with common-practice website metrics, but you should dive deeper and go beyond just user engagement. Understand that there are other metrics that aren’t directly related to engagement but can still give you important information.
Without further ado, here is our list of 7 most important website metrics to track:
Page load speed
It goes without saying that smartphones have taken over the internet. You need to optimize your website’s pages so they are mobile-friendly and load faster. If your page takes more than 2 seconds to load, users might become frustrated and leave. Honestly, it’s heartbreaking to lose visitors to something as trivial as website load times. Another reason you should try to increase load speeds is that they can influence your search engine ranking. Google will punish slow websites with bad karma and drop their overall rank.
Number of (unique) visitors
Depending on the type of business you do, both new and returning visitors can be an important metric to track. User growth can also be used to gauge how well your marketing campaign is performing. To increase the number of visitors on your pages, you first need to build a website full of interesting content.
Bounces refer to users who find your website and then leave before clicking on anything or visiting other pages. Although it is possible that someone can accidentally stumble onto your website, realistically that’s rarely the case. It’s much more likely that the user was turned away or confused by a specific feature. Perhaps your website is lacking a clear call to action button, and visitors are unsure how to proceed. Obviously, you need to decrease the bounce rate for your website and stop losing visitors. Thankfully, we have a detailed guide to help you retain visitors.
Business owners are happy when they get website visitors, and they don’t feel the need to second guess the numbers. However, knowing where the online traffic is coming from can tell you a lot about what you need to do next. Website analytics tools can provide a wealth of information, and besides just telling you where users are coming from, they can also be used to guide website maintenance. Once you know where people are coming from, you can tweak your marketing strategy and rework your website’s bottlenecks.
This metric is rather self-explanatory; it tells us how much time a user spent on our website. Unfortunately, just session duration alone isn’t the most reliable or most important website metric to track. This especially rings true for websites that aren’t based on interactions, where you could gain misleading information. For example, websites featuring long videos where users aren’t clicking for prolonged periods of time will consider the session closed. Usually, the best course of action is to combine session duration with other user-focused metrics like pageviews.
When it comes to making changes to a website and tracking its performance, most companies will expect immediate results. Sadly, certain techniques that aren’t flashy and immediate can sometimes get overlooked. One of those is keyword building. It takes time to research keywords and weave them into the pages of your website. Keep in mind that most users will find your website if you rank highly for the keywords they searched. Although it’s slow to give results, keyword building is a worthwhile pursuit.
Pages per visit
All of the content on your website should link to other internal pages. Always try to guide the user from one page to another. The more pages they visit, the more opportunities you’ll have to interact with them. Any website developer should approach building a website like they are constructing a strong network of interlinked pages.
If a user wishes to interact with your website you need to make it easy for them to find more of your content. Ensure that navigation is intuitive and seamless, and you’ll get an increased number of pages per visit.
Making use of this information
Knowing which the most important website metrics to track are is nice, but where do you go from here? Luckily, there are free tools available, such as Google Analytics – which can really do wonders for any business. However, we find that looking at large amounts of raw data usually ends up confusing most business owners.
Knowing what to look for and how to proceed with the information you’ve gained from the metrics you have chosen to track takes experience and a deep understanding of how websites work. If you feel that you aren’t up to the task, you can always ask for help from professionals like WPFullCare who can offer you personalized care. Resolve any problems your website has and achieve better numbers across the board and focus on doing what you do best – running your business.
The bottom line
Now that you have a functional understanding of the 7 most important website metrics to track, you will be able to maximize your online presence. Make sure that your website is in prime condition. You’ll need it to do the heavy lifting for your company by helping you attract more customers and achieve sales.