Oftentimes, we mistakenly equate successes in inbound marketing solely with increases in website traffic. But this leaves out key considerations we’d be remiss to ignore. Here are four core metrics you can use to better assess if your inbound strategy is doing the work it should.
How We Missed the Mark on Inbound Strategy
For most, their ideas about inbound strategy offer an overly simplified version of what’s actually happening. It becomes a simplistic, standard equation: More traffic will equal more sales. But that’s not always the case. There are many instances of the wrong traffic not doing diddly squat for conversions and sales, even if that traffic is ginormous. The reality is this: sales isn’t always a guarantee of increased traffic.
Metrics to Check Regularly
This isn’t to say that we should ignore traffic completely. It should still very much be on our radar. But so should other things as well, especially if we want a fuller picture of our entire inbound strategy.
First, and most obvious, we want to be looking at our organic traffic. This is the traffic that comes from SERPs. Good marks here are indicative of a few things: 1) your SEO is working and people are finding your content online, 2) your online brand is being discovered by people who may not have heard of you before, and 3) you can’t rely solely on organic traffic to tell how well your inbound strategy is doing. This third point is important, if you haven’t guessed already. Organic traffic doesn’t tell you if your searchers were qualified (i.e. they acted on your content), what they were searching for, or if they stayed on your site for long. But tracking traffic still comes highly recommended. Google Analytics is a great tool to use to freely and easily analyze your organic traffic.
Second, we want to track keyword rankings. Checking out keyword rankings gives us even more perspective on our organic traffic and how they’re working together. If you rank high on SERPs for certain keywords, that lets you know that search engines and site visitors are finding your content useful for these terms. You can also use rankings to gauge what content your intended audience is actively searching for—and implement your findings into your own strategy. There are great SEO tools out there that offer amazing keyword insights you can then act on.
Third, we should be assessing what percentage of visitors are converting i.e. the percentage of people who sign up for a mailing list, fill out a contact form, donate to a campaign, or download something. Looking at this percentage lets you know how qualified your searchers are in terms of taking action or buying a product. However, even this metric doesn’t directly correlate to sales as it doesn’t focus just on sales but all conversions. You’ll want to optimize landing pages and CTAs accordingly to see what works for your audience. CRMs like HubSpot provide comparisons between contact/conversion rate data and traffic.
Finally, we need to be checking on the content touchpoints that led to sales or attributed revenue. This metric provides insight into what content piece or pieces resulted in a sale. However, it’s good to come at this metric with a grain of salt as well. While it does indicate content revenue sources, it doesn’t account for everything equally or in totality. For instance, it can’t tell you if there was a “content funnel” that led to the bump in revenue or if multiple content pieces shared responsibility toward a final sale.
Improve Your Inbound Strategy
Want even more out of your inbound strategy? Uptick Marketing has the people, tools, and resources to give you a better picture of your current strategy and improve upon it. Contact us today to see how we can help your ROI.