This is one of the most common myths we hear from our clients. The belief is that because a business only receives good, positive feedback from their website visitors, everything is fine. Well, that may be true… but do you have any hard data to support that belief?
What data you might ask? Well, when did you last look at your Google Analytics? Do you know how long visitors remain on your website and how many pages they view? Do your pages have a high or a low bounce rate? What about your conversion rates — the proportion of visitors who made an enquiry through your website?
These are all vital pieces of information that will inform you whether or not your website is in fact performing well. As a business owner, if you ignore data that is freely available about your business, you are likely losing good customers.
On top of that, how many customers have given you feedback, and how genuine is it? Your best customers and friends aren’t likely to be very critical of your website, and many Internet users simply don’t care enough to leave feedback at all (or don’t know how much better your site could actually be). So relying on this feedback is usually not helpful at all.
Here are three statistics that you really do need to investigate in Google Analytics, which will easily allow you to measure your website’s performance:
- Bounce rate: This is the percentage of your website visitors who only looks at a single page before leaving. This gives you an indication of visitor engagement and how interesting they find your content, or how easy it is to navigate around your site. A few visitors may have landed on your website by accident, but in general, the higher your bounce rate the less engaged visitors are with your website. If you can find some pages with a particularly high bounce rate, it might be time to fine-tune them or even start over.
- Average visit duration: This is the total time all visitors spent on your website, divided by the total number of visits (in seconds). The shorter the average visit duration, the less time people spend on your website. As with the bounce rate, this may indicate that users can’t find what they’re looking for, or don’t find your content useful.
- Pages per visit: This is another strong indicator of how interesting your content is to visitors. You want visitors to spend a time of time on your site, looking at various pages. If your visitors are only looking at one or two pages on average, it probably means they’re not interested in finding out more about you. Including links to related content on each page is an easy way to help visitors find their way to more content.
As a business owner you want people to land on your website and stay around investigating your content. People who hop off after a few seconds do not convert into customers. So relying only on positive feedback can be very misleading – you want hard facts to clearly assess the success of your website.