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The Most Important Website Analytics to Keep Track of and Why

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Executive Summary

  • No matter what kind of site you’re running, you will want to have more visitors every month, as getting people to visit your site is the first step toward them making an action.
  • Measuring web traffic means understanding how many visitors you have coming to you, and knowing the web traffic sources means understanding where the people that end up on your website are coming from.
  • Optimize your site constantly for the purpose of increasing conversions.

Analytics and statistics are not often favorite subjects, and a lot of people avoid talking about them. Still, they can tell you a lot if you understand them and try to get them on your side.

This is especially important when running a website you want to be successful. These numbers revolving around your site can help you a lot and tell you how good or bad it’s performing. Also, these numbers can help you make reasonable steps to improve your site’s results and achieve the goals that you’ve set.

Having only the basic analytics of your website can give you great insights and help you beat your competition, who might not rely on analytics. All serious marketers pay attention to data and do regular analytics analyses to determine their next steps.

No matter how attractive, functional, or optimized your website might be, thus providing a great user experience, you won’t be able to understand how it’s performing unless you get into analytics and data. When you understand website analytics and measure the most important ones, you will be able to do whatever you want with your site and get the results you want, so let’s start.

The Number of Website Visitors


One of the most essential metrics that needs to be as high as possible on your site is web traffic. No matter what kind of site you’re running, you will want to have more visitors every month, as getting people to visit your site is the first step toward them making an action.

You can track this metric with Google Analytics, which is really simple. When you look at web traffic in general, it can indicate whether your site is growing, declining, or standing in one place.

Additionally, you can look at your web traffic in context with your other activities to see how they correlate. For example, when publishing new blog posts, you can see how your traffic behaves during that timeline and learn whether your blog is effective for bringing in more traffic.

On the other hand, if your traffic is decreasing steadily over time,  you need to try something new. If not, your site will likely end up without any traffic.

When looked at generally, web traffic cannot show that much. Still, it’s a good place to start and see the general health of your website. You can break down your website traffic into two categories to learn more about your site:

  1. Unique visits: This shows how good you are at attracting new potential customers. It's important to create a steady growth of unique visitors, because this is one of the clearest indicators that you are effective at your work.

  2. Repeated visitors: This number shows you how effective you are at retaining your visitors. If your results show you only have repeated visitors, then it means two things; you are good at retaining your visitors, but you are bad at finding new ones. This means you'll only have to work on finding new ways to attract new visitors.

Traffic is essential for a website to be successful; without it, you won’t be able to achieve anything. Still, even large amounts of traffic don’t guarantee you anything. It only means that you’re good at driving people to your site. You need to make sure you have the right people landing on your site. Analyzing your traffic source will help you make sure that the traffic will be effective for your site.

Web Traffic Sources


Measuring web traffic means understanding how many visitors you have coming to you, and knowing the web traffic sources means understanding where the people that end up on your website are coming from. You can get these website analytics through Google Analytics as well.

Not only is this tool reliable, but it’s very easy to use and it can break down traffic sources into different categories that can help you get a better understanding of how your website is operating and how you can improve your marketing efforts to get more meaningful website visitors.

Each and every source of brand new traffic will help you learn more about your website and also about the marketing strategies that you use to drive traffic. A lot of people are arguing about which type of traffic is the best, but the truth is that all of them can be good.

I think that it’s best to rely on several sources of traffic so that your site doesn’t become a ghost town when one fails. Work on improving all of them as much as you can, but focus on the one that works best for you at the moment and simply suites your type of business.

Organic Search


Although a lot of people think that SEO is not as important as it used to be, it actually still carries a lot of value. The fact that the rules have changed have made it a bit more difficult for a website to boost its SEO efforts.

There are no shortcuts now, but this doesn’t mean that SEO and organic traffic carry less importance. In fact, having a well-ranked website is one of the most reliable ways of getting constant traffic.

By having insight into your organic search traffic, you will be able to get a better picture of how your website ranks in searches. Only Google Chrome has around 40 thousand searches every second and this shows that search engines are still very important traffic sources.

Social Traffic

Social traffic shows you how many website visitors you get from social media channels. If you have low social traffic, then your activities on social networks are not effective. You need to engage people, share content, comment and create a strong presence.

This is when people will be interested in clicking on a piece of content you’ve shared and visiting your website. This is probably one of the best ways to get valuable traffic, as your social media presence can easily represent your website in an honest way.

This is when people will be interested in clicking on a piece of content you’ve shared and visiting your website. This is probably one of the best ways to get valuable traffic, as your social media presence can easily represent your website in an honest way.

Direct Traffic

Direct traffic are those people that directly search for your site using their browser. They simply type in your domain name and land on your homepage. Although people who don’t know about your site will never do this, the ones who have remembered you will.

This is why direct traffic is a metric that can show you how many loyal customers you have. It’s the regular visitors that type domain names and go directly to a site, not new visitors.

Referral Traffic


This metric will tell you how much traffic you drive from different websites. This includes people seeing your guest posts and testimonials, but you also may have simply been linked by other websites. If a lot of strong websites link to your site, you will rank better and get more referral traffic.

This means that you will actually depend less on organic traffic from search engines. Additionally, if a lot of people are linking to you, it tells you that you are doing well at creating quality content and that others find it to be a valuable resource that can be relied on.

Email Traffic

A lot of businesses still use emails to reach out to their customers and in most cases they are B2B organizations. If you are also using email to get in touch with your prospects and try to engage potential customers, then you need to measure email traffic.

Depending on what goal you want to achieve with your email strategy, your email traffic can be higher or lower. If you are not creating personalized emails and trying to convince people to drop by to your site and perform actions then don’t expect a lot of traffic from this channel.

Paid Search

Many websites have paid campaigns that drive valuable traffic their way. If you are doing this as well, you can check how well this campaign is working for you and how many visitors you acquired as a result of it.

In most cases you get a tool that shows you all of the analytics that can help you track performance, but it’s also a good idea to check the metrics using an objective tool such as Google Analytics just to be sure.

Bounce Rate


This is a percentage of website visits where people view only a single page. Simply put, it tells you what percent of your visitors leave your site after looking at one page only. The math here is quite simple, you want this percentage to be as low as possible.

Why? If people look at multiple pages on your site, it means that they are spending more time there, which increases the chances of them finding something interesting and performing an action while staying on your website.

There are many factors that can lead to a very high bounce rate and you will need to determine which one it is and work on it to decrease this number. Some of the reasons that can contribute to high bounce rate include:

  • Irrelevant content

  • Bad website optimization

  • Low usability

  • Bad presentation

  • Poor website design

  • Slow page loading

These are just some of the potential reasons. A lot of people instantly assume that it has something to do with development and website design, but this doesn’t have to be the case. The nature of your site might also contribute to a high bounce rate.

For example, if you have a simple site where you drive traffic only so that people can get contact information on a single page, don’t be surprised that they don’t want to explore other pages. Simply put, if your site is not designed to offer a lot of different content and pages, you cannot expect people to stick around very long.

One of the worst reasons for high bounce rates is that the people that land on your site are misled to believe that it has something relevant for them. For example if you have a PPC campaign set up and you are driving a lot of traffic, but you have high bounce rates, then your campaign is falsely successful as it attracts people that see no relevance in your site.

This is something you must tend to instantly or you will just be wasting your money. The same thing applies when optimizing SEO for popular keywords that can drive a lot of searches to your site, but don’t have any correlation with your website’s content. This means that visitors will bounce away very quickly from your website.

Conversion Rates


This metric is somewhat general, but it’s one of the most important ones as it has the potential to show you how profitable your website is. It means a lot and even a small modification can change things drastically. It is shown in percentages and the number represents how many of your website’s visitors turn into customers.

If your conversion rate is 2 % and it goes to 4 % than it means that you were able to double the amount of visitors that turn into sales. Still, don’t think that only purchases count as conversions, as many people make that mistake only realize that they haven’t made nearly as many sales as the numbers suggest.

This is because conversions include other things including downloads, watching videos on your website, form submissions, email subscriptions, and so on. The number of total conversions per month can tell you a lot, but your conversion rates can help you determine how effective you are at encouraging your visitors to perform the actions you want them to.

This is why you need to find a good tool that can help you track your conversion rate over longer periods of time. Make sure that you first determine what your conversion goals are and then track them. Simply put, the higher your rate is, the better you are doing.

This is one of the first analytics you should be doing and always making an effort to improve it. Optimize your site constantly for the purpose of increasing conversions. Bear in mind that even small changes can make a huge difference and greatly affect your bottom line.

Call to Action Click-Through Rate


Call to action buttons are essential assets of all websites. Through them you can encourage and direct visitors to perform an action that can benefit them and you as well. They can be the first step your visitors make towards becoming loyal customers and engaging with your brand for a long time.

If you are having trouble encouraging people to click on your CTA buttons, then it’s important that you start making changes as soon as possible to fix the problem and try bring people closer to becoming your customers.

Call to action buttons are great for website A/B testing where you can test text, size, placement, and designs to see what makes people click on them. Still, it doesn’t mean that all of the actions visitors make on your website should be done through your CTA buttons, as you should have multiple channels through which people can engage with your business.

On the other hand, low call to action click-through rates could indicate different problems, such as a bad reputation, looking unprofessional, lack of trust, and so on. If you have a lot of traffic, but only a small amount of visitors are willing to click on your CTA buttons, then you should look at other analytics to find correlating problems.


These are some of the core metrics that you need to keep track of ,no matter what kind of website you are running. You can learn important things about how you are performing, where you need to fix things and how to organize your website in the future. Without analytics and real data, you will never be able to move forward and improve your numbers. This is why all serious businesses and marketers alike keep track of their website analytics.

Additionally, you should know that we are only scratching the surface here and there are many other analytics that could be relevant to your site’s performance and your overall bottom line. Learn more and explore additional possibilities and opportunities for your website through analytics.

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