What Numbers are Important for your Website?

What numbers are important for you in your business? Are you even a numbers person? I used to not be a numbers person. I have two degrees in the humanities and I liked to live in the realm of ideas. But of course, ideas alone don’t make money.

So over the years I’ve become more and more of a numbers person. And it is exciting. That’s what surprised me. I love to brag about how we helped one client raise their online revenue more than 35% in one year. I love to brag about the client whose site we redesigned had a 900% increase in traffic from Google as a result of our work and training. I love to brag about the school that initially balked at our price tag until I pointed out that three new students would pay for the site in the first year and they’d have eight more years of those students. And none of that would have been possible if I hadn’t become more of a numbers person.

Just this morning I had a conversation with a potential customer about numbers. I asked “how will you know this is successful a year from now?” He started off with “I’ll measure the number of visitors . . .” but before he could go any further, I politely interrupted and explained that measuring isn’t a measure of success. As this is a brand new endeavor, we talked about setting a number – any reasonable number – as that will then inform many of the other decisions he makes about building and marketing his site. Once that number is established, whether it turns out to be way low, way high or spot on, it is something to work towards.

What numbers are you watching on your web site? Here are some things that might be useful:

  • Number of visitors
  • Number of new visitors
  • Most popular pages,
  • Bounce rate of individual pages
  • Number of sales
  • Average price of sales
  • Incoming key phrase searches
  • Onsite key phrase searches
  • Number of newsletter signups
  • Number of contact forms filled out
  • Time on site
  • Time on page

You can measure just about anything online. Pick carefully what you’re watching and then watch those numbers consistently. Stay alert for trends – annually, monthly, daily, hourly or even for trends regarding how frequently you email your list and the response rate on your site.

The key is to be (or become) a numbers person!


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