This article was first published on The Huffington Post Blog
In an earlier blog, we covered the importance of Google Analytics as it relates to your website. Google Analytics holds the power to strengthen your marketing strategy in a number of ways, chief among them helping businesses determine the effectiveness of their websites.
“Is my website working?” is a question you should ask yourself every month, if not more frequently than that. The accessibility of web analytics makes it easier than ever to measure website performance. If your website is reeling, it might be time to take out the scalpel and start making changes that help it function properly.
Of course, words like “reeling” and “successful” are relative. Google might bemoan a day in which it receives fewer than 100 billion visits, while your business might celebrate a month in which it receives 1,000. Only once your benchmarks are firmly established can you sufficiently determine whether your website is meeting your goals. Creating these benchmarks depends on a number of factors:
1) What is the primary purpose of your website? At the end of the day, there are two types of websites: content and e-commerce. Content marketing sites (i.e. blogs, publications) are much more dependent on traffic because there’s a direct relationship between hits and ad revenue. E-commerce websites are dependent on conversions, whereas page hits are of significantly less importance.
2) How old is your website? Or rather, how new is it? Just like it takes time for a new brick and mortar stores to get off the ground, it takes time for new websites to build momentum in the digital marketplace. Use Google Analytics to measure your progress. Set reasonable benchmarks to gauge your progress, i.e. 10 percent more visitors in February than in January. But remember that comparing one month to another isn’t always apples to apples. For example, if you ran a sale in March, you should expect a drop-off in April.
3) Do people know about your website? Investing in SEO, paid search and other marketing strategies is the best way to improve your visibility and gain site traffic. If you’re investing a significant amount of money in these tactics, your expectations should be higher than if you aren’t. You also must take into account your brand awareness. Consumers are more than likely to visit (or purchase from) a website that has name recognition.
4) Boots on the ground: Sometimes, the best way to get insights about your website is to throw technology aside and simply ask your customers. Real life interactions can reveal pluses and pain points about your website that algorithms and analytics may not be able to recognize. If you can afford it, focus group testing can be extremely helpful. But most of the time, simply asking your customers a question or two will do the trick.
Are you in need of a website overhaul? Let the digital marketing experts at Rebuild Nation build you a website that earns instant credibility among your customers and meets your specific business goals. Give us a call at 855-725-3628.