We start every website-based blog with the same introduction because it always bears repeating; websites are the gateway of your business. While the benefits of a website are well-documented (especially on our blogs!), the next step in realizing the full value of your website is through understanding metrics. Analyzing these five key website metrics gives your business the necessary information to make changes and maximize the value of your site.
This metric is the most basic of the five. Understanding the amount of views your page receives on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis allows you to identify trends in activity. While this may not tell the whole story about your overall site traffic, it does provide important context around a historical viewer count, allowing you to dig deeper and potentially analyze the reasons why your site traffic is growing or shrinking. This is also a foundational piece of information needed to track the efficiency of your overall SEO strategy.
- Viewer Location
A good analytics tool should provide geolocational information for those who access your site. If your business is domestic or international, understanding where your site visitors are from can help in developing different targeting strategies.
- Average Session Time
This metric provides information about the average time a user spends on your site. As users spend more time on your site, the likelihood of that visitor taking an action on your site, whether it be something like a purchase or completed contact form. If your average session time sits between two and three minutes, this is a great sign that users are actively engaged when coming to your site.
- Bounce Rate
Bounce rate represents a percentage of visitors that navigate away from your site after visiting a single page. Ideally, users would visit multiple pages on your site during their session as they browse the different product offerings, informational blurbs, or other website content you feature. This is a sign of good user engagement and typically results in a longer session time as mentioned in point three. You ideally want as low of a bounce rate as possible for your site, with 40% and below being the ideal percentage.
- Unique Viewers/Return Viewers
These metrics are listed together because they often go hand in hand, yet they each tell a unique story about your website viewers. A high number of returning visitors may suggest that they are captivated by something on your site or are looking for more information about your business, while unique visitors can represent the width of your outreach potential for the site. This is a commonly used metric when tracking the statistics of an advertising campaign.
There are a variety of tools you can use to track these metrics including Google Analytics, Clicky, and more. Web hosts like WordPress, Wix, and Squarespace also offer a basic set of out-of-the-box analytics that can provide valuable insights into the efficacy of your site. If you are not tracking any of these metrics closely, it may be time to consider a site rebuild. Information is power, so don’t run your website without it!