It’s often the small details that define success over failure – and it’s the same when it comes to your website. Statistics and website metrics may not be the most glamorous subjects, but you shouldn’t underestimate their importance.
Using data from your website enables you to see what’s working or not working on your site and identify areas you can improve.
If you’ve ever jumped into Google Analytics, you’ll know there are countless metrics you could be tracking. However, there are 5 key metrics you should keep an eye on that can provide you with some quick insights to improve your website performance.
- Website traffic – one of the easiest metrics to track, you can quickly see how many visitors you’re attracting to your site and what the visitor trends look like over time. Ideally, you’ll be seeing incremental increases over time and the occasional spike that aligns with any campaigns you’re running. If your website visitors are decreasing over time, it’s time to consider how to attract consistent web traffic to your site.
- Website traffic sources – google analytics will break down your traffic sources into four main categories; Organic Search (search engine traffic), Referral (traffic from other websites eg realestate.com.au), Direct (people typing your website directly into their browsers) and Social (traffic from social media). Ideally, your traffic will be coming from a variety of these sources to reduce the risk of visitor number drying up, so if one or more sources is not delivering, you may want to consider how you can attract more traffic from those sources.
- Bounce rate – this metric tells you how many visitors are leaving your website as soon as they arrive. The lower this percentage is, the more visitors are finding your website relevant, interesting and easy to use. If your bounce rate is high, try to identify why. Are visitors finding exactly what they expect when they arrive on a page? Is it easy to find other information once they arrive on your site? It’s rumoured that a high bounce rate can negatively impact SEO, so if you can make some changes to improve the customer experience, it will also benefit your SEO.
- Top-performing pages – if you look at the behaviour section of google analytics, you’ll be able to see which pages (and content) your visitors find the most interesting. These insights are invaluable in terms of identifying what you should be including in your content strategy. When you know which content your audience consumes the most, you can produce more of it!
- Conversion rates – your conversion rate is easy to calculate by looking at the total number of unique visitors divided by total conversions over a set period of time. Even more importantly, take a look at conversion rates by the four traffic sources mentioned above. As an example, if your goal is to grow your database with downloadable content (aka lead magnets) and you’re seeing a higher conversion rate of downloadable content from social traffic, then the logical conclusion is to focus on promoting your lead magnets on social when your database needs a boost.
If you haven’t been tracking your website metrics, google analytics can seem intimidating. However, when you know which metrics to focus on, you can take an informed approach to improve website performance.
You don’t need to be buried in google analytics every day to draw valuable insights from your website data. A monthly review of how your website visitors are engaging with your site is enough to enable you to be proactive and make small changes that can have a big impact!
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