As the famous management guru Peter Drucker stated “What gets measured gets done.” Now why we are quite capable of measuring results and still not doing anything about them… measurement is the first step. The chances are if we’re not measuring then we’re not improving or at least not improving at the rate we could be.
By first knowing where you are this will help move you towards your website’s goals. It’s like deciding you want to go to New York but not knowing what city or country you’re in at the moment… this makes travel very difficult. In a similar way by setting goals and knowing your current position you can plan out step-by-step how you’re going to grow your website.
What do you measure?
There are a whole ton of things you can measure for your online business. However some people get so tied up in measuring everything they can that they forget why they’re really measuring… to get results. I believe you’re much better off to start by measuring a few key things and then building on it from there.
Not to mention that starting with only a few Key Performance Indicators make you much more likely to follow through and actually use them. So I break down the things you should measure into three simple categories:
- Traffic – How many visitors do you have and where are they coming from?
- Conversion – How many new subscribers do you have? How many sales?
- Client Amazement – What client feedback are you receiving? How many refunds are being requested?
These should give you a good overall picture of your website that you can add to as you feel is necessary.
How do you measure?
Probably the best (and free) tool for measuring your website statistics is Google Analytics. Just sign up for a free account and you’ll be able to track your website visitors, where they come from and even how many are converting into subscribers and sales. It also gives you a wealth of other data that you can use to make improvements.
You’ll also want to know your sales figures and gather client feedback through surveys and other means. The idea here is not to overwhelm yourself with lots to do but create some nice simple systems so you have all this information easily available. After all it’s no good having it if you’re not going to look at it.
I use what I call a Web Business Dashboard to keep track of my key figures. Every Friday I have one of my outsourcers go and find out the necessary figures and add them to a spreadsheet. Then I look at the spreadsheet first thing on Monday morning as I plan my week. All it takes is a quick glance to see how each website is doing and whether anything needs further action.
What you do next
I suggest you create your own Web Business Dashboard so you can easily see what’s going on with your website. Then make an appointment with yourself at a particular time each week to review it. It’s definitely worth it and you should feel some excitement as you watch your website’s performance improve as well.
If you’d like some help setting up your Web Business Dashboard and turning your website into a lean, mean sales machine then drop me an email and let’s chat.