As marketers, we know marketing strategies require testing and constant tweaking to deliver the best results. Analytics tools, dashboards and marketing software can help you measure your clients’ digital marketing efforts on a wide range of key performance indicators (KPIs). These various metrics show successes, shortcomings and how a business’s marketing efforts impact its goals. Yet 87% of marketers consider data their business’s most underused asset. Are you one of them?
Reviewing data and monitoring KPIs can create a data-driven approach to your marketing services. This allows you to make strategic decisions and changes regarding your client’s campaigns. Gone are the days of just throwing spaghetti at the wall and seeing what sticks. According to Google, two out of three marketers agree that data-based decisions are more effective than gut instincts.
With so much data available, though, it can be easy to get lost in a sea of numbers. To build a marketing agency, you need to focus your time and resources on the data that shows growth, positively impacts your client goals and proves your value. Keep reading for insight into which KPIs you should be monitoring and how this data can help you and your clients grow.
Which KPIs Matter?
Determining which KPIs to watch, of course, depends on your goals. You can set goals with your clients as well as set internal goals with your team.
For example, when it comes to marketing, some of the most important metrics are a business’s ROI and customer acquisition. Clients want to know that your agency is delivering value and growing their business.
However, while knowing how much revenue is being generated is important, it’s also important to know what marketing channels are performing well and which ones need attention. For example, organic search might be showing a high ROI for a particular client, proving that their investment in your SEO services was a good idea. Reviewing and understanding a range of key performance indicators and data can help you focus your efforts and provide better recommendations to your clients when it comes to their marketing budgets. To make it easier, we have broken down 15 must-monitor KPIs into three categories:
- Traffic and visitors
- Sales and revenue
- Users and customer data
Traffic & Visitor Data
- Number of unique visitors: This is the number of unduplicated (only counted once) visitors to a website.
- Organic traffic: Organic traffic is the amount of unpaid traffic that comes to a website through search engines. To build a marketing agency that offers SEO services, this is an important KPI to monitor. If organic traffic is low or not showing growth over time, your client’s website is not being found in search results which means you need to audit and reassess the current SEO strategy.
- Time spent on website or page: By measuring this KPI, you can see how long visitors are staying on a website. This KPI plays into your content and video marketing strategies. Are visitors staying on the page long enough to read the article or watch the video? If not, figure out why. A higher time spent on a website proves that the content that is featured is resonating with the audience.
- Bounce rate: This percentage represents the visitors who navigate away from a website after viewing only one page. Research found that 47% of website visitors abandon their journeys after viewing just one page on a website. This KPI can depend on various factors, including the website design and user experience. According to Google, the probability of bounce increases 32% as page load time goes from one second to three seconds.
- Navigation path or behavior flow: Where do people go once they land on a website? What pages are showing the most drop-off? A successful navigation path should end with a user taking some sort of action. This KPI can help you understand the journey visitors are taking on a website and understand which pages are engaging them and which ones are losing them.
- Click-through rate (CTR): The click-through rate is a percentage that represents the views of a link or call to action (CTA) that result in a click. For example, if 100 people view a CTA button and five people click on it, the click-through rate is 5%.
One thing to remember is that CTR will vary across marketing channels and industries.
- For instance, when it comes to email marketing, Mailchimp reports the average CTR across emails from all industries is 2.62%.
- WordStream reports the average click-through rate on Facebook ads across all industries is 0.89%.
Of course, your client’s industry benchmarks may be higher or lower than these averages but researching industry averages can help you establish baseline goals for your client’s marketing campaigns.
Sales and Revenue Data
- Conversion rate: A conversion refers to the completion of any desired action you want a user to take, such as clicking a button, filling out a form or making a purchase. Conversion rate is the number of conversions (clicks, form submissions, purchases or other desired action) divided by the total number of visitors.
To build an online business, the conversion rate is a significant KPI to measure. Understanding what percentage of users are taking action enables you to gauge the success of a site or campaign and identify areas for improvement.
- Number of leads generated: The number of leads gained in a specified time period.
- Cost per lead (CPL): The average cost of gaining a new sales lead. You can use this metric to determine how much your client is spending per lead generated by specific marketing channels. For example, it’s estimated that the average cost per lead from organic search is $31 versus $619 from traditional marketing (TV, radio and print advertising).
- Lead-to-customer ratio: The percentage of leads that turn into a customer during a given time period. This metric can help you determine how many leads are needed to meet your client’s customer acquisition goals.
- Return on investment (ROI): How much money your client makes as a result of their marketing efforts. This is probably the most powerful KPI to measure when starting to build a marketing agency. A positive ROI proves your agency’s value to your clients and will make them want to continue working with you.
User and Customer Data
- Core Web Vitals: Web Vitals were established by Google to help businesses quantify the user experience of their websites. Core Web Vitals are quality signals that Google finds essential to delivering a great user experience and currently focus on three areas of a website – loading, interactivity and visual stability. These vitals show you what changes need to be made to your client’s websites to enhance the user experience. You can use Google’s PageSpeed Insights to analyze the content of your client’s web pages and implement its suggestions to make those pages faster.
Since Google wants to deliver the best experience to users in search results, Core Web Vitals are also considered ranking factors and can positively impact your client’s SEO efforts.
- Customer acquisition cost(CAC): This is the amount of money it takes to convert a potential lead into a customer and is measured by dividing the dollars spent on customer acquisition by the number of customers gained during that time period. This metric can help you make budgetary recommendations for your clients to make the most out of their marketing dollars.
- Customer lifetime value (CLV): The total amount a customer spends over the length of their relationship with a brand. This is a helpful metric to compare to your client’s customer acquisition cost (CAC). A business’s CAC should never be higher than its CLV.
- Customer retention rate: Customer retention rate measures the number of customers a company retains over a given period of time. The probability of selling to an existing customer is between 60-70% compared to 5-20% for a new customer. Plus, it’s cheaper to retain existing customers than acquire new ones. A higher customer retention rate can positively impact a brand’s online presence and engagement.
Analyze and Monitor Data Regularly
These are just some of the many data points available to businesses that can help them grow. While these KPIs are essential to an overall marketing strategy, you need to work with each client to determine their goals and what metrics can help you get there.
With goals and KPIs in place, you have to monitor them with analytics tools on a regular basis so you can compare results with goals and make adjustments as needed. The most common tool for tracking KPIs is Google Analytics. When set up with goals and tracking data, Google Analytics can collect data on website performance, behavior flow, conversions and more. Plus, Google Analytics integrates seamlessly with other Google services, including Google Ads (paid advertising) and Google Search Console (search analytics).
Many of the KPIs mentioned above are specific to your client’s website and marketing, but each marketing channel can also provide specific data. For example, Facebook, Instagram and other social media platforms offer their own analytics and insights to show businesses traffic, clicks and engagement.