5 key performance indicators you should be tracking now

Some of the small businesses that we have written marketing plans for have trouble connecting the dots between their efforts and any resulting sales. To get to the ROIs they must look at the KPIs. ROI is Return on Investment and KPI is Key Performance Indicators.

If you don’t measure it, you can’t improve it.

Here are five KPIs that you can measure right now to start to see trends and discover what’s working and what’s not. No longer will this old aphorism apply to your business: “I know half of my marketing works — I just don’t which half!”

Note: all of these KPIs can be measured using Google Analytics or Google Search Console — two tools that are free to use.  Google Analytics is the best way to get metrics about your website visitors whereas Search Console is a bit more technical, being the tool programmers typically have used to ensure the site is functioning properly. Now it gives marketers authoritative insight into what Google sees about your brand on THEIR website.

1. Web traffic via Google Analytics

Web traffic is the place to begin measuring. You need to look at all the people who have visited your site in a given time period.

Next look at web traffic through a number of different lenses. First view it by channel, so that you can see if the traffic came directly or came via your SEO efforts (search engine optimization), paid advertising, social media or from other websites referring to you.

Which channel was primary? Where can you put the most effort to get the most traffic to your site? Then view the data by audience: Where are visitors coming from, geographically? Was it on their mobile device or laptop? Finally, look at visitor behavior while on the site: What pages are they entering on? What pages are they leaving on? How long do they spend on certain pages?

2. Conversions via Google Analytics

Next, you will want to look at conversions. This needs to be customized data. A converting customer might be someone filling out a request for a quick quote, or it might be someone making a purchase from your online store or just signing up for a newsletter. You can use Goals in Google Analytics to measure such specific conversions. And then get granular from there.  For instance: what channel brought the most conversions this month? This year?

3. Bounce rate via Google Analytics

You’ll want to take a close look at the bounce rate of your site. Bounce rate is where a site visitor did not consume any more pages of the site than the one he/she landed upon. Which channel produces the most bounces? Which webpages result in high bounces? Now you can see if you are inadvertently spending time and money on bringing in uninterested visitors.

4. Rankings via Search Console

Use the other tool called Search Console to determine which keyword phrases are bringing visitors to your website. Are they the ones you expected? Are your average rankings on Google on page one? Are there keyword opportunities you are missing?

5. Backlinks via Search Console

Use Search Console to discover links to your site. That way you’ll know which websites are referring their visitors to your content. Are you regularly creating content that others are linking to? Are you link-worthy?

Looking at these indicators regularly will give valuable insight into how your marketing efforts are impacting sales. KPIs will show you where you are successful. And more importantly, they will show you where you might be doing better. With this, you can take steps, often very simple ones, to improve. 

Laurie Macomber is owner of Fort Collins-based Blue Skies Marketing. Reach her at 970-689-3000.

Some of the small businesses that we have written marketing plans for have trouble connecting the dots between their efforts and any resulting sales. To get to the ROIs they must look at the KPIs. ROI is Return on Investment and KPI is Key Performance Indicators.

If you don’t measure it, you can’t improve it.

Here are five KPIs that you can measure right now to start to see trends and discover what’s working and what’s not. No longer will this old aphorism apply to your business: “I know half of my marketing works — I just don’t which half!”

Note: all of these KPIs can be measured using Google Analytics or Google Search Console — two tools that are free to use.  Google Analytics is the best way to get metrics about your website visitors whereas Search Console is a bit more technical, being the tool programmers typically have used to ensure the site is functioning properly. Now it gives marketers authoritative insight into what Google sees about your brand on THEIR website.

1. Web traffic via Google Analytics

Web traffic is the place to begin measuring. You need to look at all the people who have visited your site in a given time period.

Next look at web traffic through a number of different lenses. First view it by channel, so that you can see if the traffic came directly or came…