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Digital commerce is fast outpacing the traditional brick-and-mortar way of doing business. Even online sales seem to be catching up with in-store sales. According to Big Commerce, e-store sales grew by 23% in 2017.

With this in mind, a lot of SMBs have been taking their businesses online – creating websites, joining social media networks, marketing on online forums, using email marketing, adopting automation tools, and so on.

But, there is one major problem. Although a large majority of the businesses that have gone digital are reporting positive growth, many aren’t measuring their progress. As long as revenue keeps coming in, very few bother to track where their sales are coming from, let alone the satisfaction levels of their buyers.

This is a huge mistake that can be cause the downfall of your online business. If you don’t measure your progress, you can’t know what you’re doing right and what you’re doing wrong. You need to track your metrics so that you can weed out any mistakes while simultaneously investing more in areas that are contributing to your success.

Below, we discuss the top 17 metrics you need to start tracking right away!

1. Total Website Visits

Tracking the total number of your website visitors might seem pointless, but it is in fact the only way to determine the effectiveness of your traffic generation campaigns. This number should grow steadily. If you notice a sharp increase or an unexplained trough in your monthly visits, that would be a sign that something changed. At that point, it helps to review your campaign.

2. Traffic By Individual Channels

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In digital marketing, there are four main traffic sources in digital marketing – direct traffic (people who type your brand name directly in browsers), organic traffic (those arriving via search engines), referral traffic (those coming via links on other websites), and social media traffic (those coming off social media networks). It is important to know which of these four are contributing most to your traffic generation campaign as well as those consuming your budget with nothing to show for it. You can also use customer segmentation to further nail down on traffic within each channel.

3. Ratio Of New Versus Returning Traffic

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Keeping track of your new versus returning traffic is one of the best ways to determine whether or not your existing website or blog is wowing your visitors. If you see more return traffic compared to new traffic, the implication could be that your recent traffic generation tactics aren’t working or that your content is simply amazing. If you’re getting more new visitors with very few return customers, the most likely reason is that your website isn’t “sticky” enough to earn return visitors.

4. Time Spent On Your Site

The average time spent on a website is an accurate indicator of whether a visitor enjoyed their time on the website. Ideally, you want visitors spending at least a few minutes on your site. If they’re only staying for a couple of seconds before clicking away, it could be a sign that your content is poor or that visitors find it difficult to locate resources on your website.

5. Interactions Per Visit

In addition to tracking the amount of time visitors spend on your site, it also helps to track what they spend their time doing on the site. Which pages do they visit? How many pages in total do they visit before leaving? Which links do they click on? Do they fill out any forms? Tracking these metrics will help you improve your site so you can ultimately improve your conversions.

6. Bounce Rate

The goal of a business website is to help you generate leads and later convert them into customers. But, that can only happen if visitors take action on your website. Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who come and leave without taking any action. A high bounce rate is usually an indication of two things: poor targeting and a weak landing page.

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7. Exit Rate

Almost Similar To bounce rate, exit rate applies to situations where visitors drop out of the sales funnel midway through the conversion process. If your exit rate is extremely high, you need to immediately review your conversion funnel to locate and optimize drop-off points.

8. Total Conversions

This is the total number of anonymous visitors who become digital records in your CRM database either by making a purchase or performing a high-value task on your site such as filling out a form or downloading an ebook. It is considered the ultimate metric for the finance department – a barometer for success.

9. Click-through Rate

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A click-through occurs when a site visitor clicks on a link to visit a target page on your site (usually known as a landing page). Click-through rate (CTR), therefore, refers to the average frequency at which target customers click on those links or ads. CTR is most valuable when running a PPC or email marketing campaign.

10. Cost Per Conversion (CPC)

Sometimes referred to as Cost Per Click, Cost Per Conversion refers to the average amount you spend to make visitors download an ebook, fill out a form, or perform any other high-value task that might eventually lead to a purchase. Put simply, it refers to the average amount you have to spend to bring a visitor into your sales funnel. It is calculated by dividing your total marketing spent by the total amount of people that enter the sales funnel over that campaign period.

11. Lead To Close Ratio

To help you determine the effectiveness of your conversion funnel, you also need to measure the rate at which you’re closing your leads. How many of the leads are going all the way to reach the target goal? For instance, if the goal is to make a purchase, what percentage of your leads eventually makes a purchase?

12. Cost Per Acquisition (Cpa)

The main difference between CPC and CPA is that CPA is all about revenue. While CPC is concerned with any discernible action, Cost Per Acquisition is all about what it takes to get the customer to open their wallet. It tells you how much you have to spend to get a paying customer.

13. Return On Investment (Roi)

This is usually the final, and perhaps most important metric for any marketing campaign as it tells you in black and white whether or not your marketing efforts are bearing fruit. Among other things, the ROI should be a positive figure. If you’re getting a negative ROI, you’re losing money instead of making money. Also, the figure should be as high as possible. To calculate your ROI, divide all the money spent on the campaign by all the money generated by during the campaign.

14. Email Open Rate

As the name suggests, this is the rate at which your contacts open your emails. It is important because without opening the email, the recipient can’t perform any other action such as reading the email or clicking on links. One thing you could do to boost your open rates is to optimize your email content for the latest smartphones and other mobile devices. Why? Because a majority of digital consumers read their emails on their phones!

15. Shopping Cart Abandonment Rate

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If you own an e-commerce store, abandonment rate refers to the frequency at which shoppers begin the purchase process but never get to check-out. As shown above, often, it results from a complicated check-out process and previously undisclosed fees such as shipping costs.

16. Engagement Rate

Applied mostly in social media and content marketing, engagement rate refers to the total number of people who view or interact with your posts in one way or the other. As such, it is the sum of the number of views, shares, likes, comments, upvotes, etc. generated by a content piece.

17. Customer Lifetime Value (Ltv)

Customer Lifetime Value (LTV) is the average dollar amount you can expect to make from every customer throughout your relationship. To determine your LTV, you first need to find out the average lifetime of your customers. Then, divide the total amount spent by all your customers over that period by the total number of customers. If you can put a figure on this, it becomes a lot easier to project and plan for your growth.

That’s it! 17 metrics that can help you track your growth. Make an effort to keep track of each of these metrics at all times. You’ll be grateful once the benefits kick in.