Marketers and advertisers stretch creativity to the limits, trying hard to capture the attention of an audience and convert large parties of interest into customers. Trying is essential, but it is not enough to make rational and measurable progress. Therefore, KPIs or key performance indicators are adopted, expressing whether endeavors are realized by practical actions.
The early days of the web offered a minimum number of KPIs. For instance, the number of visitors on a page or how many times an ebook was downloaded helped marketers gain a sense of the worth of content, but advertisers of today enjoy added cues, analyzing the efficiency of waged campaigns.
Content Marketing: Five Essential Key Performance Indicators
Imagine a local storeowner, enjoying the commerce of neighborhood consumers. To gain a better sense of the potential of expansion, the owner would want to differentiate neighborhood commerce from consumers living farther away. Distant and unique visitors rather than the same regular commerce will indicate whether the store’s popularity is growing. Unique digital visits calculate how many different parties landed on a web page within a particular period (usually 30 days).
How many unique visitors does a brand host? Investors and hopes of expansion beckon the question.
A car enthusiast starts a blog, lending mechanical insight to readers. After some time, the mechanic realizes a number of people seek answers to winter-related car issues; the decision to engineer an ebook seems lucrative. Spending more time analyzing digital metrics, the mechanic realizes a majority of his readers live in Pennsylvania. Rather than a general mechanical guide, the author decides to tailor the information to better address the needs of a car operating in the northeastern hemisphere of America, with a specialized section on winterizing one’s car.
The greater attention to geographic detail gained the attention of those living in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Ohio. Additionally, those using review sites like Yodle.com are alerted to the geographic precision.
Ted operates a one-man graphic design business, with hundreds of samples displayed on his web site, figuring the colorful displays will help sell his services. However, Ted’s metric analysis indicates that over one-quarter of his site’s visitors use mobile phones to peruse the site. After checking his site with his own mobile phone, Ted realizes most of his graphics are getting modified and ‘cut out’ of the screen. It’s likely making a poor impression on otherwise interested parties.
Ted’s ability to review his KPIs and realize the disparity of what’s seen on a laptop and a smart phone screen will help his business make more sales.
A number of owners, obsessed with search engine result pages, build links in the hopes of raising their pages’ ranks. It’s a wise investment; research has shown a large majority of users click on results featured on the first page. However, great search rank only facilitates exposure; it does nothing to engender a sale. Analyzing bounce rate metrics, a web owner can view whether pages are satisfying a user’s query; does the page fulfill a consumer’s expectations? If it does not, the page will reflect a high bounce rate, meaning browsers do not spend a lot of time on the page, whether due to poor navigation, design, content, etc.
Page views are an oft-overlooked KPI, but very important, especially for ecommerce and news sites. Once a consumer lands on a domain’s property, how interested do they remain? For example, a browser, wanting to learn about the US government strike, may click on a article, and after reading, continue to read another one on a separate domain page. The amount of time the browser spends on a site sends good and bad signals to search engines. Web masters, with high amounts of page views, can enjoy the satisfaction of knowing their site’s navigation is user intuitive and hosts a number of pages of interest.
Online marketing is much like the segmented enterprise of an entire and robust marketing campaign. Brands need to analyze a number of metrics and traces of consumer behavior. Key performance indicators are weighted differently per brand; however, don’t lean too heavily on one element. Analyze a variety of indicators to devise a clearer holistic picture of consumer behavior.
Eric Bryant is a marketing maven of many years. When he has the time, he enjoys writing about what works for him by posting on a variety of blog sites.