Every business owner wants to grow their organization, no matter its current size. The trouble often lies in measuring progress. You might be running successful marketing campaigns that are populating lots of numbers on reporting dashboards, but you aren’t sure what they mean or where to focus.
The key to growth is choosing marketing metrics that reflect your business goals. When you have just a handful of numbers to track, measuring your progress, hitting your benchmarks, and finding success are easy.
There are five metrics that we believe are especially helpful for small businesses. We’ll discuss what they are and how to track each in this blog:
Client Lifetime Value
Client lifetime value (or CLV) measures the total revenue a client brings to your business throughout their partnership with you. It’s a key metric for small businesses because it gives you a barometer for measuring customer loyalty.
In any service industry, long-term relationships are what build a business. The CLV of each client will show you not only how many clients have stayed with you year over year, but also what type of revenue they bring you each year. This helps you estimate how many new clients you need to earn and keep to reach your future financial goals.
In addition to helping you draw a roadmap to your goals, CLV also helps you identify areas of opportunity. For example, while making your calculations, you might notice you’ve had a client for five years and never offered them your latest service. Clients who know and trust you are more likely to purchase from you, so this should be the first audience you tap for new business.
There are a few ways to calculate CLV, but we find the easiest is to average your total revenue and number of clients. Simply divide your total revenue for a period of time (month, quarter, year, etc.) and divide it by the number of clients you had in that time period. This will show you how much each client is worth.
Your web traffic tells you how many people are finding your website or are interested in your business. It’s also a good way to measure how many people are coming in contact with your landing pages and lead generators, even if they aren’t engaging.
People will find your website from a variety of sources, such as:
- Social media
- Paid advertising
- Email marketing
- Organic search
It’s important to keep tabs on which sources are bringing the most traffic to your website so you know where to invest your marketing dollars. For example, you might notice most people enter your website through your paid ads. This is a good indication the ads are working in your favor and might be the deciding factor on if you continue using them.
Keeping tabs on these channels can also help you identify what tactics are working and evaluate if you can apply them elsewhere. Perhaps you’re seeing lots of traffic from your social media posts. You can try using those same images in your paid ads or emails to hopefully increase engagement and bring more people to your website.
Most web builders and some content management systems offer some type of analytic features where you can see how many views your site is getting. One of the best places to track web traffic, however, is Google Analytics. It shows you detailed breakdowns of who is visiting your website, when, and from where. This information can help you create a much more targeted marketing campaign to boost your traffic.
A conversion is considered “any meaningful action” on your website. It might be that someone downloaded your lead generator, scheduled a call with a sales rep, or signed up for a webinar. No matter the action, the number of lead conversions on your website is a great indicator of your target audience’s level of interest in your business.
This metric goes hand in hand with web traffic because together they create a picture of the total user experience on your website. If your traffic is high, but conversions are low, then you likely have a problem somewhere in the early stages of the customer journey. Some things that can cause this include:
- Web design that’s difficult to navigate
- Confusing messaging
- Flow of the site doesn’t bring people to the landing pages they need
(Hint: You can use A/B testing to find the problem and create an effective solution.)
Lead conversions are measured as a percentage of people who click out of the total people who visited your page. For example, if 100 people view your lead generator and 5 people download it, your conversion rate is 5%.
We recommend using Google Analytics to track conversions too. You can set up your Analytics to track certain actions and report the conversions on that page. This is an easy way to not only see how well you’re converting visitors, but also track extra information such as how long they were on your page and what page they came from.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a big part of bringing organic traffic to your website. It helps you rank higher in the search engine results pages (SERPs) so more people see your link and have the opportunity to visit your site.
There are tons of resources on the best way to leverage SEO in your business, but many of them are very technical and aimed at enterprise-level businesses. As a small business owner, you don’t have to be an expert in SEO to support organic traffic. You can focus solely on the two core aspects, instead:
- Keywords – find a target keyword relevant to your business or page topic and include it naturally throughout the copy on the web page.
- Page formatting – use headings and subheadings to organize the information on your page, add alt text to photos, and include a meta description for the page.
As you start making those changes, you probably won’t see results right away. When it comes to SEO, it typically takes about 4-6 months before your rankings start to improve. This is because it takes time for Google to find, index, and rank your page after you make adjustments.
Once some time has passed, however, there are a couple of ways you can view your progress.
- Perform a Google search. This is the free way to monitor your SEO rankings. Search for the target keyword on your web page or piece of content and sift through the results until you find your link. You can do this periodically to see if your listing is moving up as it gains traction.
- Use an SEO tool. Tools like Semrush, Moz, and Ahrefs are all great platforms to give you comprehensive information about your site’s SEO health. It can show you what keywords a page is ranking for, where it appears in SERPs, and if there have been any changes in the last month. (You can also research your competitors with an SEO tool.)
The final marketing metric that’s critical for a business of any size is qualified leads. These are leads that match your ideal client profile — a.k.a. your target audience. It’s the people who are most likely to turn into customers because you’re offering a solution for their unique problem.
Tracking how many qualified leads come through your marketing channels helps you determine if you’re reaching the right people in the right place at the right time. It also helps you invest more strategically in your marketing campaigns.
For example, if one lead generator consistently produces qualified leads and another one doesn’t, you could replace the poor performing asset with the proven one.
Finding the best avenues to attract qualified leads is critical to streamlining your marketing and sales processes. If you can get qualified leads to come to you, then that’s less time and resources you have to spend finding them, determining their fit, and encouraging them to take the next steps with your business.
Measure Your Growth
If you’re ready to grow your business, these metrics will keep you on track. Creating the campaigns to generate this data, however, is a bit trickier. That’s where having a knowledgeable marketing partner can help.
At Hughes Integrated, we not only create targeted marketing campaigns for our clients, we also help you track your metrics. Throughout our partnerships, we host regular touch base calls that review active campaigns and the progress clients have made toward their goals.
Schedule your free consultation with us today to see how we can help you measure growth in your business.