Know where you started to improve your performance

I’m 6ft 2”. I’m pretty sure I’ve always been this tall, but my mother tells me different, and the lines on her kitchen wall seem to back her theory. I don’t know when I became this height or how long it took me to reach, but what I do know is that old ladies in super markets love me, especially when they are after the pickles on the top shelf (this declaration does have a point).

If you don’t have any concept of where you started, you have no idea of how far you have come. As a business owner or manager, you probably know where you want to take your business, and hopefully have a few ideas about how you are going to get it there. But if you don’t know where you are starting from, how do you expect to know where you are going in the future?

Your website statistics should be your best friend. They offer an incredible amount of insight into your business and your customers. And most importantly they can help you visualise and quantify how successful your on and offline promotions have been, allowing you to make informed decisions on where to put your marketing budget in the future.

By keeping an eye on visitors coming from search engines, finding you for non branded keywords, you can put a dollar value on your SEO. Compare this with direct traffic and people searching for your brand name while you are running an offline promotion and you will be able to see which is the most cost effective way to attract new visitors to your site.

Ok, this is a very simplistic view of looking at your return on investment, but we have barely scratched the surface of how much business knowledge you can gain from your website statistics. Your stats can show you how people find your site, how different user groups interact with your site, and where the holes in your sales funnel are.

You don’t have to be a genius mathematician, but you do need to pay close attention to your website performance if you want to make it work harder for you.

Image credit jakeandlindsay on Flickr