Join David Booth for an in-depth discussion in this video Knowing your business objectives and key performance indicators (KPIs), part of Learning Adobe Reports and Analytics.
I've been very lucky to be in the business of designing and deploying data and analytics solutions for over a decade. And never once in my life have I heard a business tell me that what they really want to accomplish this fiscal year, is to have a lower bounce rate. As an industry, we've had a hard time connecting web data with true business objectives. And while we analysts have been speaking in the language of page views and unique visitors and click-through rates, the real business needs haven't changed. Our stakeholders still need to do things like grow revenues, improve profits, attract more customers, control costs, and all the other things that help a business thrive.
It's very hard to judge the success or failure of your business objectives by counting whether or not your hits have gone up this month. So before you start looking at any of the data or the reports in Adobe Analytics, you're going to want to invest some time in understanding the business objectives that you want to accomplish. And then, understand what key performance indicators, or KPIs, will help you measure the success or failure of what you're doing. Let's take an example. Say you manage the support website for your company. And you have as a business objective to help people get to the right information as quickly as possible.
If you can help a visitor land on your website, find what they need to solve their problem, and then leave, well you've done a fantastic job. So what are some of the things we could measure on the site to help us see how we're doing against this business objective? Well, first, we could look at the average visit depth or the average number of pages that are being viewed during a visit. In our case, we would want this to be low. That means that it doesn't take too many clicks for the average visitor to find what they're looking for. We might also take a look at the average time spent during the visit.
Again, we'd want this to be low, meaning that people have found what they needed quickly. Another metric we might look at would be content velocity. In short, content velocity is a metric that helps us understand which pages lead to how many more page views. For example, if page A has a high content velocity while page B scores low, we know that people who hit page A are going to have to click a lot more to eventually get what they're looking for. Using this as a KPI can even help us create a list of the pages we need to work on that are confusing users or forcing them to click and click and click to find what they need.
And there may be a host of additional things that you're doing that are specific to your website. Maybe you're using a survey tool that asks a simple question like, have you found what you're looking for? You can track this, and you can add a KPI like the ratio of yes to no answers that you get on that survey. Or, you may be tracking a conversion event. Like a support ticket being successfully closed. In that case, you could add KPI's like clicks to completion. Or even track the completion rate. While each of these KPI's can be tracked with an analytics tool, and many don't even need advanced configuration, it's important to know that not even one of those KPI's by themselves would be enough to judge the success or failure of your business goal.
But, if you take a handful of these metrics all together, you'll have a good overview of how well you're doing at getting visitors to the right information quickly and efficiently. And remember that you'll also be able to use the reports and features of Adobe Analytics to do deeper analysis and find opportunities for optimization and answers to questions. For example, over and above these KPI's, you could dive into some path reports to understand how your users are navigating through certain pages, and in what order. This can help you find problem areas that you can improve upon, to continually optimize the experience for your users.
Of course, you'll have many business objectives, but mapping them to the KPI's and metrics that you'll use to judge success will be an essential component to actually using your data effectively. And, always remember, nobody needs another automated trend graph of bounce rate trending over time in their inbox.
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