Bounce Rates and Google Analytics

Bounce Rates and Google Analytics

The classic cabaret song tells us that money makes the world go around. Yet the Beatles say “All You Need Is Love”. Which is it?

I say it’s a little bit of both. Here’s why….

Even though it’s vitally important that we focus on the numbers, and analyse them to make good decisions, it’s also incredibly important that we focus on our customers, and listen to them to make better decisions.

I have a belief in business – It is simply that the numbers tell the whole story. However, without a little heart it’s impossible to interpret those numbers correctly. Numbers alone are important, but not everything. We must look at the numbers, and think about them from a customer’s point of view. So let’s do that.

Imagine you’re running a pay per click advertising campaign in the search engines. In any given day you receive 100 click throughs that costs you (in this imaginary world) $100. You’re paying $1 per click. There’s the money, but the fact is real people are making those clicks. There’s the heart. So they come through to your website, they look at what you have to offer. The very first thing they see is what’s above the fold; that’s that section of your website that they see before they begin scrolling down.

www-questionInstantly, within seconds, they decide, “Is this company seeking to serve me or to serve themselves?”

If you’re doing a good job and you’ve listened to your numbers as well as listened to your customers everything that your customer sees when they first land on your website is about them. It’s all about the WIIFM “What’s in it for me?”. That’s the radio station that your customer listens to.

So you’ve spent $100 and you’ve got yourself one hundred visitors. Now what?

Well, the money that you’ve spent on your website in getting it designed, and having the content and the sales copy written, and the images prepared will determine how your customer responds to your website. Simply put, if you take the cheap route so will your customer. They will click in, they will click out. It’s called bounce rate. Check your statistics; It’s a very important number.

Let’s assume however you’ve done a reasonable job, and most of these customers click through further into your website and they spend a little time….

When it comes to Google Analytics and understanding time, time on site is one of the most important metrics you can understand – especially if you’re paying for your traffic! It’s a good investment to say, “for every 100 people I have come to my website if that’s going to cost me $100 I’d like them at least to spend a minute or three viewing my material.” Would you agree with me on that? I hope you do.

Because again, if you’re writing about yourself or you’re taking the cheap end route you will discover this through this metric. People won’t like your content. They won’t stick around. It’s wasted money. This is the debate, money versus heart.

prgoogleLook at it from Google’s point of view. They want just one thing, to serve their customers. I know you say you want to do the same, to serve yours. But when it comes to search engine marketing and in this example, pay per click advertising, you should be looking to serve Google’s customers, not yours. You need to convert their customers to become yours. That’s the key. The less money you spend in trying to achieve this goal, the more it will cost you.

Lastly in this very brief example I want to talk about goals and Google Analytics. You’ve spent money to get people to your website. Let’s say half of them stick around long enough to read the content. Then what? What is the goal for your website? Is it to have them purchase something? Is it to have them contact you? Is it perhaps to have them subscribe to your free report or your weekly newsletter?

Whatever it is you can set up goals in Google Analytics that will allow you to track your conversions. If you have your AdSense pay-per-click advertisements integrated with Google Analytics you can track exactly your dollars spent versus dollars returned by using goals, and assigning a money value to your goals. This allows you to track the numbers.

However, let me finish off by saying this. Most importantly the only way you can increase and improve your numbers is with a little bit of heart, by listening to your customers, and asking them what it is what they want and then giving it to them.

All you need is love… perhaps. But money really does make the world go round, doesn’t it?