When it comes to maintaining your firm’s marketing strategy, there’s a certain amount of guess work involved. But, a great marketing strategy requires measurable goals. We need hard numbers to make informed decisions. So, the question is how do we arrive at these numbers?
At least 85 percent of Americans report doing research online before purchasing a product or service. The good news is that advisors are finally jumping aboard the Internet train. Still, many advisors wonder whether their online efforts are paying off.
Even if you’re job title doesn’t have the word “marketing” in it, you should track your website’s metrics, which will allow you to make evidence-based decisions. These metrics will allow you to work smarter — not harder — to improve your firm’s marketing efforts.
To take the guess work out of determining the effectiveness of your online presence, we’ve put together a cheat sheet of three of the most important metrics to track. These metrics can be collected using a free Google Analytics account. Some web providers have analytics tools built right into their platforms. Find out whether your website has this capability and put it to work for you:
1. Organic search traffic. Organic search results appear because of their relevance to the search terms. These are in contrast to paid-for (advertising) results, such as pay-per-click results. How much organic traffic should your website generate? That depends. If your site is less than a year old, it may receive as few as 100 views per month. Established sites can expect more than 1,000 hits each month from organic traffic.
Why you should care: Organic search traffic is, arguably, the most important source of web traffic. Organic search traffic is important because it means that users are searching for you with intent. A rise in this number indicates that your website contains information searchers find relevant.
How to use it: If you really want to get serious about increasing your organic traffic, start by improving your SEO. Once your site begins to rank higher on search engines, you’ll drive more traffic to your site.
2. Traffic origin. Do you know where your web visitors come from? Each visitor arrives at your website as a result of typing in your web address, clicking on a search engine result (organic or paid) or being directed to your site by another webpage (such as social media sites, Google Maps, blogs or industry sites).