6 web analytics KPIs you could measure - a basic overview

One thing to remember : A KPI is a metric, but a metric is not always a KPI. When we use the term metric we are referring to a direct numerical measure that represents a piece of business data in the relationship of one or more dimensions. A KPI is simply a metric that is tied to a target. More often than not, a KPI represents how far a metric is above or below a pre-determined target. KPI’s are normally shown as a ratio of (actual : target) and are designed to instantly inform a user if they are on track with their plan, without the end user having to specifically focus on the metrics being represented.

So what are some of the web analytics KPIs you might want to measure?  There are literally hundreds of them to choose from, but we'll just briefly go through a few of the important ones.

1. Conversion rate

Perhaps the most obvious thing to measure, this is all about knowing your websites' goals and objectives. It forces you to ask why your website exists.  The conversion rate could be anything from sign up forms to whitepaper downloads.

2. Visits and unique visitors

Although it is less accurate than Unique Authenticated Visitor, Unique Visitor does not require a logon and so has much wider applicability than its counterpart. Note that Unique Authenticated Visitor should be used in place of Unique Visitor when it is possible to do so because of this reason.

3. Abandonment rate

Whenever you see high values for this metric, you immediately want to examine that page inside-out to see where your customers are leaving, so you can make improvements to your site.

4. Average order value

By itself the Average Order Value will not be the most productive KPI. Always seek context - for example compare it with conversion and revenue rates in mind; don't just take it as a raw number.

5. Customer loyalty

This type of KPI allows you to measure if people visit your site repeatedly.  Loyalty can also be a great way to understand effectiveness of campaign, and whether you are driving people back to your site again and again.

6. Search share

A key measure of success is how you are doing against your competition.  From measuring your share of search against your competitors, you can externally validate your success.

What web analytics KPIs do you measure?