Analytics is about measuring what’s most critical to your accounting firm so you can track performance and gauge return on marketing investment. But knowing what to measure, and how to do it, can be daunting.
Take Google Analytics, for example. On the surface, it can seem to provide insight into what’s happening with your digital marketing activity.
Out of the box, however, it doesn’t give a full, clear picture of how your website is performing in terms of return on investment and lead generation.
It offers a vast, almost overwhelming array of information and options. Getting under the skin of Google Analytics takes time and to make the most of it requires in-depth knowledge.
What you measure can also depend on the stage of your business. For example, a startup might focus on getting traction in search engines to start driving traffic to the website, before switching to concentrate on conversions. After all, if nobody’s visiting, you can’t convert.
Established firms, on the other hand, might find themselves with a healthy volume of traffic but want to focus on getting more of them, and more of the right visitors, converted.
Or they might have launched a new service that needs measuring to gain traction in search engine results and so begin generating enquiries.
Whatever you’re looking to do, you need to understand what good metrics look like and how you can track them.
What makes for a good metric
In essence, it’s a number that will drive the change you’re looking for.
You can track multiple metrics but they all need to contribute to that aim of measuring change.
For starters, a good metric should be comparative – you should be able to compare it to a different time period, client group, or traffic source. That will give you an understanding of which direction things are moving in. Being able to tell if you’ve had an increase in conversions since last month from a specific traffic source, for example, is more meaningful than just ‘2% conversion’.
A good metric should also be understandable. Keep things simple. Making metrics too complicated won’t help you or others – you need to be able to explain it quickly and clearly and others need to be able to understand.
A good metric should also drive change – in the way you run your marketing, in the behaviour of prospects on your site, in your own behaviour based on what the metric is telling you. For example, you might decide to do more social media advertising because the stats show it generates X more leads than other advertising, or spend less on paid media and put more effort in to SEO because organic traffic converts more of the right types of clients.
Evaluate your metrics
To understand if your metrics are really helping you to measure performance ask yourself the following questions:
Are your metrics helping you to:
- confidently enact change in your marketing?
- make clear decisions on your marketing?
- provide context for marketing activity?
- know what’s worked and what hasn’t?
If the answer is no, you need to rethink the metrics you’re using and start building metrics that do.
Measure what matters
At PracticeWeb, measuring digital marketing performance is critical. We know firms want to see return on investment from their marketing so we measure four key metrics that make us best able to report on the performance of our clients’ marketing activity.
We’ve also built these metrics into our web platform so our clients understand the performance and return on investment of their marketing without having to wait for us to report to them.
That information is presented in a handy dashboard which means clients don’t have to have an in-depth knowledge of Google Analytics. It’s all presented intuitively and is easy to understand at a glance.
Equally, the option is there to dive deep into the metrics to inform more sophisticated decision making about marketing.
Our four core metrics
Having a prospect get in touch directly from a contact form shows a clear desire for a commercial conversation so tracking your contact form lead generation conversion rate is a must.
Web form downloads
If you’re looking to measure the performance of specific campaigns you should track these separately through their own contact forms. Setting up a campaign page with its own form means you can track the performance of that campaign and compare it with others.
Furthermore, clients can also see where the traffic has come from for each campaign and conversion.
This is tracked when a prospect clicks on the info@, hello@ or other individual email addresses on your site.
Tap to call
This is the tracking of someone tapping on your phone number to call you or your firm – another critical metric for determining if your website is generating enquiries.
These metrics are useful by themselves but where they really come into their own is in comparison with other metrics.
For example, if you’ve had 10 leads generated in the month, you can drill down to where those leads have come from: social media, organic traffic, paid media, email campaigns, or direct traffic.
You can see for each of those 10 leads not only where the traffic came from but how they got in contact. For example, three may have come from the contact form, two from tapping to call you directly and five from emailing you from the contact email on your accounting firm’s website.
Being able to know what’s working and what’s not is critical to your marketing activity and optimising your marketing budget.
Having these four critical metrics setup in your analytics means you now have ways of measuring performance that are comparative, easy to understand and, most importantly, that can be used to drive change in your marketing activity.
If you want to know more about how to setup these types of conversions in your Analytics account or want to see an example of our marketing analytics dashboard, get in touch.
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