How do I know if my marketing is working? We get this question every week. How do I know if my agency is adding value and helping us? Another common question.
The answer is buried in your data, but it’s available if you’re tracking the right metrics. Right now, you could be looking at hundreds of numbers to know if your marketing is working, if your team is effective or if your agency is adding real value.
But instead of wading through all these numbers as we do for our clients, let’s boil it down to the 10 most important metrics you should be looking at every month. These 10 numbers will tell you in 10 minutes if your marketing is working or not.
Here we go.
The number one metric I like to look at is the number of people visiting your website – not new visitors or new sessions but total sessions or total visitors. I don’t care if it’s a new person or someone who has been back 10 times over the past week.
By measuring the total number of visitors, you’ll get an idea of how many people are stopping by your website and how many should be converting into leads.
If every month you’re able to get more people to visit your website, you’ll likely be able to drive more leads and more sales opportunities every month.
Don’t be deterred by people telling you website visitors is a vanity metric that doesn’t matter. This is a very valuable early buyer journey metric and one that is an early indicator of how many leads you should expect from your digital marketing.
At the highest level, you want to know how many people your website is converting from visitors into leads or new contacts. Typically, this number should be around 1% of total visitors.
If you work on this conversion rate every month, you’ll not only be driving more visitors but also exponentially driving more leads.
Here’s some quick math to illustrate my point. In December, you had 5,000 people visit the site and 1% turned into leads. That’s 50 new leads in December. In January, you had 5,500 people visit the site but improved the site-wide conversion rate to 1.5%. Now you have 82 leads, a 64% increase in leads by simply improving two related numbers.
Once you start looking at website visitors, the best way to improve this number is to drill down on the sources for website visitors. These are usually limited to visitors from:
Knowing which tactics are driving the most visitors and working to optimize sources that are underperforming is one of the best ways to get more visitors to your site every month.
Once you know what source is sending the most visitors to your site, you’ll want to look at what source is producing the most leads and the best leads. Again, this is something you want to look at every month.
More importantly, you want to optimize each of these sources for leads just like you optimize each of these sources for visitors. Visitors and leads are closely connected, and as you saw in the math example above, these two metrics need to be monitored together.
While you’re watching the sources for all your leads, roll these up and track all leads generated month over month. Let’s clarify what a lead is, because this is almost always a topic of conversation.
A marketing-qualified lead (MQL) is generally a new contact that matches your ideal client profile (ICP). As long as you’re not offering iPads, free trips or Amazon gift cards, anyone who fills out a form on your website and isn’t trying to sell you something or get a job should be considered a new lead or MQL.
MQLs are great, but sales opportunities are better. While MQLs are people who convert on your website, sales opportunities are people who ask to speak with you. After you talk with them, you can qualify them as a legitimate sales opportunity for your company.
You definitely should be tracking this every month and working hard to make sure you get more of these.
This is a little more advanced than the other metrics we’ve been talking about, but pipeline value is an important metric when it comes to revenue generation.
To calculate pipeline value, take each of your deals and the projected value of those deals and add them up for the current month. The more deals in your pipeline and the larger the value of those deals, the higher your pipeline value will increase.
Of course, you shouldn’t be putting any value into your pipeline until your deal has progressed far enough into your sales process for you to have started to clearly understand what the prospect will purchase from you.
Again, this number should be increasing every month.
You should also be looking at the total number of new customers closed each month. Your marketing metrics need to produce actual customer numbers and customer revenue. If you generate 10,000 leads but none turn into customers, your marketing is a failure.
The number of new customers closed each month should also be increasing as the rest of your metrics go up and to the right.
In addition to the new customer numbers, you should also be looking at new revenue from new customers each month. This revenue number from new customers is more important than the number of new customers.
If you need $1 million in new revenue each month, whether you close 10 new customers for $100,000 each or one new customer for $1 million, it’s important to know this metric.
Finally, revenue generation and company top-line growth come from new and existing customers. Too often CEOs and revenue leaders look for new business instead of looking equally at their current customers.
You should be actively working to expand revenue from the people who already know, like and trust you. This means proactively marketing to your customers and making sure they are aware of everything you do, sell and offer them.
Track revenue from current customers every month to keep an eye on retention, share of wallet and new revenue from this important group of people.
These 10 revenue-related metrics are a great starting point to create a revenue scorecard for your business. Monitoring these numbers and working to make sure they’re improving every month is one of the best ways to share visibility across your team and focus everyone on the most important revenue-related metrics.