Marketing is All About the Numbers (KPIs) You Must Track
Updated: Mar 16
When it comes to marketing, numbers don't lie. And if you want your small business to thrive, you need to be tracking the right key performance indicators (KPIs). If not, you're missing out on critical data that can help you improve your marketing campaigns and grow your business.
But first, you have to know what marketing KPIs to track. It can be tough to decide, especially if you're running a small business. After all, you don't want to overwhelm yourself with a mess of numbers and percentages. To help you out, we've compiled a list of top marketing KPIs that every small business should track. From general Business KPIs to social media, we've got you completely covered with all the essentials.
Digital Marketing KPIs to track
Marketing revenue attribution:
If you want to know if your marketing investment isn't being wasted, this one's for you.
Marketing revenue attribution is the process of assigning a portion of total marketing revenue to each marketing activity that contributed to that revenue. By understanding which marketing channels are most effective at driving revenue, you can adjust your marketing strategy to focus on the channels that work for you.
Customer acquisition cost
The total cost incurred to acquire a new customer, including advertising and marketing costs, sales commissions, and other related expenses.
Optimizing customer acquisition cost (CAC) is an important part of any business’s financial strategy. That's why you should be targeting your ideal customer instead of aimlessly putting your content out there.
Focusing on a target customer helps you cut down on acquisition costs. The goal is to minimize the CAC in order to maximize profits.
Customer lifetime value
Customer lifetime value (CLV) is a metric used to estimate the future monetary value of a customer relationship. You can find this value by multiplying the average customer revenue per purchase they make, by purchase frequency, and finally by is likely to remain with the business - in other words, customer lifespan.
Return on investment
Digital marketing return on investment (ROI) measures the effectiveness of your campaigns. It's also one of the most important key performance indicators you can track, because it can either tell you what's working for your campaign or what pain points are hurting it.
Digital marketing ROI is typically measured by calculating the cost associated with acquiring new customers versus the revenue generated from those customers through your marketing efforts. Understanding your ROI is crucial, especially if you're one to crunch numbers.
Traffic-to-lead ratio (new contact rate)
The number of website visitors who become leads, which is calculated as total website visitors divided by leads generated out of those visitors. Qualified leads are the best - they're hot hot hot!
A qualified lead has shown interest in your product or service and meets certain criteria that make them likely to convert into a customer. The criteria may include budget, company size, industry, and other key performance indicators. Criteria depend on what your company offers and who they offer it to.
The traffic-to-lead ratio is a business metric that measures the number of website visitors against the number of qualified leads generated from that traffic. This metric is used to measure the effectiveness of a company's marketing strategy, and to determine whether or not more marketing expenses are necessary to increase lead generation.
Lead-to-customer ratio (L2C)
This is the number of leads that turn into customers - calculated as total leads divided by customers generated from that leads list.
The lead-to-customer ratio (L2C) measures how often a company is converting leads into paying customers. It is calculated by dividing the total number of customers acquired in a given time period by the total number of leads generated from them.
If your L2C is not high enough for your business goals, it could be a number of deterrents that drive people away such as a lack of website content, pricing transparency, and even your sales team. Overall, you should be keeping track of this metric AT ALL TIMES to ensure you aren't missing out on vital sales.
Landing page conversion rates
The percentage of website visitors who complete a desired action on a landing page, such as submitting a form or making a purchase.
Landing page conversion rates are a measure of how successful a website's landing page is at converting visitors into customers. This is typically measured by calculating the percentage of visitors who take the desired action, such as submitting a form or making a purchase, after arriving on the landing page.
Improving conversion rates is an important goal for any business, as it can lead to increased revenue and profitability.
Mobile traffic, leads, and conversion rates
This is the number of website visitors coming from mobile devices, the number of leads generated from those visits, and the conversion rate for those leads respectively.
Mobile traffic has increased over the past few years, so it's crucial to allocate some of your SEO efforts toward optimizing for mobile devices.
Anyone that visits a website through a mobile device, such as a smartphone or tablet, qualifies as mobile traffic. Google Analytics can show you exactly how many people are coming to your website on what device, so take advantage and start using it if you haven't already!
Mobile leads are people who have clicked on a phone number or link in a text message or email that leads them to a website. When someone clicks on one of these links, their phone will automatically open up the website that's been linked to. To track specific things like this, you can easily set up a campaign link through Google's URL Campaign Builder.
Finally, conversion rates are the percentage of people who complete the desired action on a website, such as signing up for a newsletter or making a purchase. This rate can be determined by tracking how many people visit a website and then taking into account how many of those people complete the desired action.
Social Media KPIs
Are your social media efforts working for your business? What social media channels work best for your business?
The number of people who like or follow a particular page on social media. This is probably the least important metric to worry about on this list, and here's why.
Social media followers look good to those peeking from outside, but it doesn't equate to who's actually seeing your content and interacting with it. In addition, followers don't equal sales.
Focusing all your efforts on getting new followers can be detrimental to your social media efforts. Organically gaining new followers is much more beneficial than buying followers (no one should ever do this) or following random accounts hoping they'll follow back without knowing who you are.
The total number of times a post was seen, regardless of whether or not it was clicked on. This metric can give you a great gauge of how many people your posts are reaching, what times are best to post, and what content your audience favors.
Great, people saw your post. Now what?
It's the amount of interaction that a post receives, typically expressed as a percentage of the total reach (impressions).
Social media engagement can be the difference in your profile growing or remaining stagnant. It applies to engagement from your followers AND with your followers.
This includes responding to or liking comments, responding to DM's, posting interactive stories, sharing relevant content that will interest your followers, or even sharing content from other pages to give yourself more reach.
Mentions are a key performance indicator (KPI) for social media that measure the number of times a brand or account is mentioned on various social media platforms.
This gives you insight into how many people are talking about your brand and what kind of sentiment is being expressed. Smaller businesses typically won't see many mentions throughout different channels, but that doesn't mean it's not beneficial for your brand on social media.
It also helps you to understand what types of social media posts your audience wants to share and which platforms they're most active on. Keeping track of mentions can inform your social media strategy and help you determine if you should focus your efforts on certain social channels.
PPC ads are a great way to gain short-term website traffic and sales if you're not patient enough to wait for an SEO campaign to gain traction.
ROAS (Return on Ad Spend)
Return on ad spend (ROAS) for PPC is a metric used to measure your search marketing ROI. It is calculated by dividing the total revenue earned from the paid campaign by the amount spent on that campaign.
The higher the ROAS, the better your return on investment and the more value your advertising has brought in. Understanding ROAS can help you identify which campaigns are performing best and how you can make improvements to maximize your marketing budget.
CPC (Cost Per Click)
In Google Ads, you can set your own max CPC for each keyword or ad group – this is the most you are willing to pay for a single click on your ad.
You then bid against competitors who also want their ads to appear alongside relevant search terms, with the highest bidder getting top placement. Your average bid will depend on a variety of factors, including how competitive the keyword you're trying to bid on is – the more competitive, the higher the bids go.
CPC can help you budget for your campaigns and track how much you are spending on each click, allowing you to optimize your bids for maximum visibility and conversions.
CTR (Clickthrough Rate)
CTR is a huge indicator of whether or not your ad headline is working.
3-5% is considered a good CTR for Google Ads. It's easy to be discouraged by numbers that low if you're looking at it at the surface level, but you also have to remember that you're not the only website showing up in search results, and how often people make searches for what you're advertising for. In an ideal world, your website would be clicked on every time. But we live in a highly competitive digital world, so the ball can't always roll your way.
Also, keep in mind the number of impressions you get compared to clicks. You may have a CTR of 1% but you can have 5 clicks compared to 50 impressions. On the other hand, you can have 100 clicks compared to 10,000 impressions! Which one sounds better to you?
Shoot for the stars! But don't be disappointed if you don't reach them. And if you're really that determined, make sure to set clear, realistic goals for your campaign that ensure the highest ROI possible.
Don't expect a ton of leads from your website if you aren't investing the money to get them. The key phrase in this section is realistic!
Website KPIs to Track
This one should be pretty straightforward. Typically you can see how many individual visitors you get, and how long on average they're on it. You can also see where you're getting your traffic from so you know where to allocate more of your marketing budget toward. It's important to know how much traffic your website is getting because it can give you an idea of how well your website is performing on a month-to-month basis.
If your traffic is increasing, it means that you are doing something right and people are interested in what you have to offer. If your traffic is decreasing, you need to figure out the root of the problem. Start by figuring out where most of your traffic was coming from before the drop and if it's still coming from that source.
In the case that your traffic is increasing, it's a good idea to look at where people are spending the most time on your site and where your traffic is coming from. If it's from organic traffic, you may want to capitalize on that fact and focus more on your SEO efforts. If it's from social media or email, double down on those channels.
Most popular pages
Just like we mentioned above, your most popular pages are the ones people are on most frequently. It could be your homepage or a specific service that you offer. Either way, it's a good idea to take advantage of this fact and make these pages even more valuable to visitors.
Search Engine Rankings
How many visitors are you getting from search engines like Google? If you answered little to none, it may be time to look over your digital marketing strategy. It may not apply to everyone, but SEO is often the heart of omnichannel marketing for a lot of companies.
If you plan to grow your business for the long haul, then SEO is one of the best marketing channels to go through. It's going to give you lots of organic website traffic, but only if you're patient.
A campaign can take as many as 9 months to gain traction, even more than a year, but with a proper SEO strategy, you can gain organic traffic that will turn your website into a valid lead source.
Bounce rate is a metric used to track how many visitors leave a website without taking any action. This metric is used to help determine how good of a first impression your website makes. A lot of things can play into bounce rate. Just a few:
Page loading speed
A high bounce rate could indicate that a website is not providing what its visitors are looking for right away, which may require you to analyze the layout of your website and the content on your landing pages. On the other hand, a low bounce rate could suggest that a website is providing what its visitors want and are finding it engaging.
Email marketing KPIs
Having an email marketing strategy is essential for businesses of all sizes. With email, you can easily reach a large audience in an efficient and cost-effective manner.
It also offers the ability to personalize messages and target specific audiences, which helps build relationships with customers. Email marketing campaigns are highly trackable, giving you valuable insight into who is opening your emails, clicking on links, and taking action. Using that information, you can keep your leads hot and ready to buy at the right time.
The percentage of email recipients who open an email message. The overall average open rate for all industries is just below 30%, believe it or not. So don't be discouraged if less than half of your recipients open your marketing email - it's normal.
Typically, an eye-catching subject line can be the difference between someone opening your email and scrolling past it. It's the first and only impression you can make in a wall of emails that your recipients undoubtedly receive almost daily.
The number of email recipients who click a link in a message divided by the number of email recipients who received the message. Like open rates, there are different CTRs for each industry, but a good average for general campaigns is just above 1%.
Great, people clicked on my campaign! Now what? That means these people have shown some type of interest in what you have to offer. It's time to double down and build a drip campaign to lead them down your sales funnel and build a new relationship.
Some companies use email marketing to introduce new products, keep subscribers up to date on the latest news, or let them know there's a new blog post up on a website. Regardless, email marketing is a great tool to generate traffic to your website.
The number of people who respond to an email message. Responses to email campaigns are more common for small businesses, especially if they're trying to grow customer relationships or start a conversation with a new subscriber.
It's not only beneficial but crucial, to interact with your customers, especially if you're a newer business trying to gain brand awareness.
If you made it this far past the seemingly neverending list, we're proud of you. And if you're a business owner, how many of these key performance indicators are you REALLY tracking? If not all of them, we suggest you start now so you know where to find new opportunities and strategize future business goals.