Each vehicle has its own sensors and indicators. Based on them, drivers can monitor the car’s condition and act in time to correct the deteriorating units. Similarly, eCommerce stores have their own set of metrics.
Business owners and marketers should timely monitor them as this directly affects the company’s future. For example, the numbers show you when it’s time to optimize your eCommerce site’s speed or focus on reworking navigation.
In this article, we will reveal the ten most important metrics and how to improve them.
Ten Metrics Online Store Owners Should Track
1. Website Traffic
Let’s start with the most obvious indicator of online store success. I’m talking about site traffic. In other words, it is the total number of visits to the site for a specific time. Marketers can track the growth or decline of traffic over the week, month, or year.
It is the simplest and most “eloquent” indicator. If there are few visitors in the online store or the traffic is steadily decreasing, you need to pay attention to other metrics. However, each store has its own tendencies, depending on its size, season, and assortment.
Why Do You Need to Measure Traffic?
Obviously, to keep track of how the number of visitors changes depending on specific actions. For example, how the launch of a new ad campaign affected traffic.
Companies can use it to compare data with competitors’ figures. To do this, you can choose a couple of online stores with a similar assortment and stage of development.
How Do You Measure Site Traffic?
Using Google Analytics systems or tools such as SEMRush, SimilarWeb, and so on. There you can find out how visitors come to you, which channels bring more traffic, dynamics, and many others.
How to Improve Website Traffic
- Conduct promotions and contests;
- Engage in contextual advertising;
- Use targeted ads;
- Nurture the company’s communities on social media;
ModCloth’s Instagram page says shoppers can post their photos in ModCloth outfits and tag them with the hashtag #mymodcloth. It creates a sense of community, belonging to people united by love for the brand.
Screenshot taken on Instagram
- Collaborate with influencers;
- Monitor SEO promotion;
- Organize email newsletters.
2. Conversion Rate
Conversion rate indicates how many users performed a useful action to the total number of website visitors or impressions over the same period. It is a signal of your store’s efficiency and profitability.
If you want more users to perform the desired action, such as filling out some forms or subscribing to your services, you need to optimize the conversion rate.
To Boost the Conversion of the Site, You Need to:
- Segment the audience and offer products that will be most suitable for a specific group;
- Use methods of returning visitors to the site and upsell/cross-sell tools;
- Provide smooth site navigation;
- Modify feedback and chatbots;
- Apply interactive elements (buttons, widgets);
- Motivate the visitor to continue the conversation through promotions and subscriptions.
Vans offers to subscribe to the newsletter and get an additional discount on its website. The specialists will send their promotions by mail, and the client will find out about the good offers in time;
Screenshot taken on the official Vans website
- Optimize your site for mobile devices.
3. Bounce Rate
The bounce rate reflects the proportion of visitors who came to a page and exited without taking any action. Marketers measure the bounce rate to see how many people left the site right after clicking on the link.
It gives an idea of whether they should pay attention to the website performance, product descriptions, design, loading speed, or remove annoying pop-ups.
A high bounce rate percentage can be inconvenient, but it doesn’t always indicate problems with the site. Sometimes a client visits a page to find out information (phone number, email) and continue interaction with the store outside the site.
Also, the bounce rate displays at which stages of the sales funnel the visitor stopped. The bounce rate calculation is as follows:
Google Analytics provides a conversion funnel report and shows where the store loses most customers. You can then leverage this information to tweak the site.
How to Reduce the Bounce Rate on the Site?
- Speed up your site;
- Reduce pop-ups or show them after the user has spent some time on the page;
- Improve navigation and mobile-friendliness;
- Update the design, check the readability of the texts;
- Add internal site search;
- Drive customers back to the funnel with a 404 page.
In the screenshot, you can see an example of such a page from the Estée Lauder website. They not only say that such a page doesn’t exist but also offer something from their products. If you scroll down, you will see that there are Discover and Best Sellers buttons, as well as a product line to add to your cart.
Screenshot taken on the official Estée Lauder website
4. Customer Acquisition Cost
Customer acquisition cost (CAC) is the amount you pay to get a new customer. To correctly assess the effectiveness of different marketing channels, experts estimate the CAC for each of them.
Why Calculate the Customer Acquisition Cost?
The customer acquisition cost helps build a promotion model and track which channel brings the most customers. Based on this information, you can choose which options to refuse or invest in more.
Thus, you can optimize costs and get the most out of your advertising campaigns. It is essential and directly affects the fate of the business and your income.
Let’s say you use email marketing, targeted social media ads, and outdoor ads to attract customers. Last month, you gained 48 new customers. Twenty signed up from the mailing list, 23 from social networks, and five people saw your advertisement on the street.
Serving a selling email newsletter costs you $ 2,000. The budget for targeted advertising is $ 3,120, and outdoor advertising costs you $ 6,800.
The figures show that the most effective channel is the newsletter because it brings more clients to you for less money. But outdoor advertising is unreasonably expensive. So, it is probably worth reducing your costs.
How to Calculate CAC?
Tips to Decrease Customer Acquisition Cost:
- Work on the conversion. Run A/B tests, set up lead generation, deal with abandoned carts. Gradually, you will identify and focus on which methods work for you.
- Build loyalty. Improve the product, be open to dialogue, increase the level of brand perception.
- Automate. CRM implementation will help you be closer to users, know more about them, and build better communication.
5. Cart Abandonment Rate
This metric is an indicator of how many customers didn’t complete the purchase and left a product in the cart. There are two types of sessions for analyzing shopping behavior on eCommerce sites:
- When a customer left the product in the cart;
- When a buyer abandoned the order during the checkout process, e.g., at the stage of payment or delivery.
Most systems, including Google Analytics, consider both of them as abandoned carts.
Retailers identify possible tendencies of refusals based on the user behavior in an online store. For example, if the percentage of abandoned purchases at the checkout stage is too high, it indicates problems with the interface.
As a result, they can reduce steps to place an order or the number of fields. Besides, they can compare the behavior of new customers and buyers who come back to the store.
Reasons for Abandoned Carts and What You Can Improve:
- Substantial additional costs (for example, delivery);
- The need to create an account (no guest checkout);
This problem exists with the online store Bottega Veneta. You can’t order there without wasting time creating an account. And this means that you need to leave the email address, come up with a password, go through verification, which can stop the user.
Screenshot taken on the official Bottega Veneta website
- A lengthy process of filling in fields and verification;
- The total cost of the order is unclear;
- Errors or bugs on the site;
- Refusal to fill in the credit card details on the site (lack of secureness indicators);
- Extensive delivery period;
- Unsuitable return conditions;
- No preferred payment method;
- The system declined the credit card.
To deal with abandoned carts, most shops send follow-up emails. Have a look at the screenshot below. The Jennifer Miller Jewelry store invites a client to get back to the site, creating a sense of urgency and scarcity that the item will disappear in a short period.
Screenshot taken from the newsletter from Jennifer Miller Jewelry official website
6. Average Order Value
The average order value is the average purchase price of customers. Store owners use it to estimate how much customers spend in their store per acquisition.
The higher this indicator is, the more revenue the online store will receive. If a customer is willing to make big purchases, this means you have attractive prices and good sales staff.
How to Calculate the Average Check?
A Few Ideas to Increase Your Average Check:
- Cross-selling based on recommendations. Many online stores have a pop-up next to their product descriptions offering related products.It works like this: store owners provide sections titled “You may also like” or “Complete the look”. This is how this solution looks on the Gucci website.
Screenshot taken on the official Gucci website
- Complementary items. Suggest the buyer order two things together at a lower cost. For example, the price of a smartphone and a case for it is $ 570, and together it is $ 20 cheaper.
Such an offer will not only increase the average check in the online store but also help to sell a less popular product with a saleable product.
- Free shipping. Shoppers are responsive to incentives, and free shipping is a nice bonus. Some online stores offer free merchandise upon reaching a certain amount.
7. ROMI (Return on Marketing Investment)
This ratio shows how much the marketing investment pays off. Let’s illustrate it with an example. If the investment in marketing was $ 100, and the profit was $ 200, then the ROMI = 100%. That is, every invested dollar brought another dollar.
If the payback rate is less than 100%, then the project isn’t successful. It happens when it comes to a new business or experiment.
The disadvantage of ROMI calculations is that this indicator only demonstrates the current state and can lead to project rejection. And if you count ROMI for a reporting period (e.g., a year) and not for a separate project, you won’t know which of all marketing projects worked best.
How to Improve ROMI
Browse the tips on this infographic to learn about the ways how to make the most of your return on marketing investment.
8. Customer Lifetime Value
CLTV (Customer Lifetime Value) means the money you earn from a customer for the entire time you work with them. In eCommerce, it is vital to ensure that the cost of acquiring a customer doesn’t exceed the income from the whole cycle of interaction with him.
What Customer Lifetime Value Gives
- Identifying the most loyal customers. Customers with the highest CLTV ratios indicate high loyalty. Most often, these are the buyers with the highest average check. But it can also be customers who spend less on orders but shop more often.
- Optimization of work on retention. If your CAC is higher than CLTV, you need to focus on finding more effective acquisition channels. Madison Reed Hair Color uses its clients’ content to fill its Instagram page and create social proof.
Screenshot taken on the official Madison Reed Hair Color Instagram account
- Understanding behavioral factors. You will customize communication with the client and understand what exactly pushes them to buy.
How to Increase CLTV?
- Email newsletters. The client regularly sees your letters in the inbox and remembers your brand. When they need something, they will turn to you because you will stay in their memory.Personalize your communication and make marketing offers that will interest a specific customer.
- Loyalty programs. Praise those who have been your clients for a long time and constantly maintain their loyalty. Launch a premium program offering bonuses to loyal customers. You will see that their number will soon increase.
Tommy Hilfiger offers to join the “elite club” to receive various goodies for providing an email address.
Screenshot taken on the official Tommy Hilfiger website
- Work with retention. Be attentive to your customers after they make a purchase: offer help and maintain a support team to answer any questions.
- Upselling and cross-selling are products that accompany a purchase. For example, you can offer care products or matching bags if a user has purchased a pair of shoes.
9. Click-Through Rate
Click-Through Rate (CTR) indicates the ratio of ad clicks to impressions, meaning how many times people clicked on the link or banner compared to the number of times they saw it. Let’s take a look at the examples:
Visitors saw a contextual ad 300 times a day and clicked on it 15 times. The CTR will be 15/300 * 100% = 5%.
Or 600 people viewed the site, and 20 of them clicked on the banner. CTR = 20/600 * 100% = 3.3%.
Major Recommendations to Increase Clickability:
- Choose relevant queries and use keywords in the headline and the ad text. Opt for 2-3 complex phrases so that the user’s request matches your ad and leads to the right page.
- Don’t forget your call to action. Encourage the user to visit the page by adding a CTA at the end of each ad. This tactic will increase the CTR of your ads by 10-30%.
For example, the M&M’S newsletter contains a call to action that accompanies an advertisement for a 25% discount on online store products.
Screenshot taken from the newsletter from the official M&M’S website
- Experiment, peep from competitors but don’t copy. Make A/B testing of different ideas. The CTR indicator will tell you whether the changes are correct or wrong.
10. Cost Per Click
CPC, or Cost Per Click, is money that the advertiser pays to Google or any other search engine when a person clicks on the ad. With this metric, marketers can determine the future strategy of their advertising campaigns.
Typically, experts set the CPC at the auction. It is a vivid metric for determining the financial success of your advertising campaigns and the baseline cost per campaign.
For example, an advertiser spent $ 1,256.80 paying for 314 clicks to their site in the last 30 days. Therefore, the average CPC for this period would be $ 4.
Strategies to Reduce СPC
- Add long-tail keywords. For such keywords, you can get fewer results in the SERP. They clearly reflect the user’s request and have fewer results that will compete with you. It means you can appear for the most relevant queries and lower your ad expenses.
- Find keywords with comparatively low bids. Such keywords will have a lower CPC. Also, if there are many similar requests in your industry, the cost per click on keywords will be higher.Thus, don’t use highly competitive words if you want to lower your CPC. Besides, adjust your bids manually to have more control over your CPC.
To Sum Up
Here are ten crucial online store metrics. You can continue the list with other indicators of your store’s success. As you can see, they don’t exist separately from each other. Instead, they serve to show how your business develops and what you should improve.