Far too many online marketers fail to report the most meaningful metrics that help their businesses to measure growth. They typically only measure traffic, leads, keywords and general metrics easily identifiable with Google Analytics.
Rather than providing your CEO with metrics that they can look at themselves in a matter of seconds why not give them something that gives them a true indication of how the marketing is working? Check out these four online sales metrics that you should implement into your marketing reports to get high fives all around.
Client and Lead Acquisition Channels
Each time someone inquires about your products or services or becomes a customer you are getting valuable data on which marketing channels are working for you. Categorize your leads and new clients into separate channels that can include online advertisement, social media, website referral or Google search. Take it a step further by identifying which ad, social media channel (or social media message), website referral or keyword search your prospects and clients found you with.
Understanding where your acquisition channels are and where they come from each month will help you separate specific marketing initiatives into specific categories. This info will help you to make better marketing decisions in the future and decide where to focus the bulk of your efforts. For example, realizing that the bulk of your leads come from search engines and the majority of clients from email marketing campaigns can help you to focus more of your efforts in those two areas.
Lead to Conversion Ratio
The natural progression of understanding how many leads you get each month compared to the amount of new clients you converted is also a valuable metric. This knowledge can identify problems and solutions in your sales funnel that you can change quickly to constantly improve your process.
Often times a company will invest more in their lead generation process when it is their sales process that needs the most work. Before you look at putting more money towards bringing in new leads consider dissecting the reasons why your current leads are not converting and get better at working with what you already have.
Average Client Spend
Understanding how much your clients spend on your services is an important metric that can help you determine how you stack up against your competitors. If your conversion rates (#2) are the same month-to-month but your overall revenue has dropped this could be a sign that your clients are spending less each month or only utilizing you for cheaper alternatives.
Behind every revenue fluctuation lies an answer and investigating why your customers spending habits have changed – for better or for worse – is important to improving your products and services. Perhaps you have new competition, your sales process has changed, a new marketing campaign has kicked in or died or consumer habits are changing. Look at your sales process, your competitors and the market as a whole to find answers as to why average client spend might be changing. Understanding if client spend is going up is just as important as understanding why it may be going down.
Providing metrics on the lifespan of your clients gives an indication of how your clients value your products and services and/or support. If you see that prospects are converting into customers but are sticking around for less time than average you may be able to spot problems with your products/services and support team.
If you spot changes with your client lifespan you can often look to your customer service department and determine if any changes there may be affecting your bottom line. There should be consistency between your sales team and customer service team so that customers can be retained for as long as possible.
Putting these Metrics to Action
Generating leads and developing a sales process is vital to every business. However, understanding why things are working – or not working –allows your business to react quickly and efficiently. Metrics take the guesswork out of problems and help identify solutions; use the four online metrics discussed above to make your CEO happy so that when he asks about problems you can tell him you are already working on the solution.