By Kayla Murphy, PR & Integrated Media Manager
Your page views are up. Your bounce rate is down. These and several other notifications might be alerting you of your website’s performance, but do you know what each update represents? Let’s review. Below is a list of terms, their definition and their relevance to your organization’s sales and marketing success.
Definition: Total count of every visitor to your website, including repeat visitors
Relevance to your organization: Increased visitors indicates people are visiting your website and returning back to it.
Definition: Sequence of pages viewed by a visitor to your site during one session (e.g., Home, About Us, Contact Us)
Relevance to your organization: This can give you insight into the user’s logic flow while looking at your content – what are they most likely to look at first, from there, etc. It also tells you which pages are causing you to lose visitors (or where the visitor feels they have been satiated with the information they are looking for). It can help to generate Calls-To-Action (CTAs) that help with user flow, encouraging users to convert in relevant, logical places.
Definition: Percentage of users who leave your site from the page (focus on specific page bounce rates as opposed to overall site bounce rate)
Relevance to your organization: When the bounce rate is high, it typically means that users don’t find what they are looking for. This can mean that they arrive at your page through other sites or search engines and expect certain content that is not being delivered. It could also mean that your content is confusing or difficult to digest. It may point to usability issues within your site design or architecture. (Read more about readability and usability here.)
“Goals” / Conversion Rate
Definition: Rate of visitors to your site who complete a desired action on your website such as submitting a contact form or scheduling an appointment. You or your web team will need to set these up within your Google Analytics account.
Relevance to your organization: Completed contact forms and requests for appointments are direct, hot leads for your sales team.
Entrances / Landing Pages
Definition: Page in which a visitor first arrives on your website (e.g., Home page, About Us page)
Relevance to your organization: This information will be helpful when evaluating the performance of link-building/backlinks, Pay-Per-Click (PPC, SEM), Display Ads, and organic SEO. Coupled with Bounce Rate statistics, you can see how effective these landing pages are.
Definition: The amount of pages viewed during a session
Relevance to your organization: Insight into the level of interest of your website visitors
Definition: Number of times a page on your website is accessed
Relevance to your organization: Insight into the level of interest in a specific content area on your website (Please note: this may also include page refreshes and bot views)
Definition: Total length of time spent on your website by a visitor
Relevance to your organization: Insight into the level of engagement of your website visitors
Definition: Place where a visitor gains access to your website (e.g., search engine, website, social media platform, app)
Relevance to your organization: Insight into where your visitors are coming from and where it might be beneficial to increase or decrease media spend, adjust keywords, etc.
Definition: Total count of each individual visitor to your website
Relevance to your organization: Increased unique visitors indicates more people are learning about your organization. This means that your organic strategies and/or paid campaigns are improving performance.
A low conversion rate may indicate a necessary change in content or design. It could mean there is a necessity for more calls-to-action, or more relevant calls-to-action. Inversely, a conversion rate that is unusually high could indicate unclear or untargeted forms (e.g., career inquiries on your marketing contact form), unanswered key questions (utilizing the contact form to ask), unqualified submissions of your contact form, or requests for an appointment as a result of misrepresented or missing/difficult to find content. However, if your conversion forms are clear and well put together, this can also simply show high performance on your site.A multitude of website analytics terms exist, as do variations of each, but these are a core list that stand to benefit any senior living organization’s website manager. Of the terms provided, the most important are the conversion rate, source and bounce rate.
Source tells where the bulk of your online visitors are coming from in order to best strategize your digital marketing efforts. You’ll be able to figure out the difference in how users from various sources behave, and cater to their needs. You can also adjust marketing spend, or focus for weak or strong sources, and coupled with other metrics, you can get a good idea of which sources are delivering more relevant marketing leads.
The bounce rate is important because a high bounce rate will alert you to content changes that need to be made. Maybe users are clicking to arrive at a page called “Affordability” expecting to see pricing or specials. When they don’t see the content they expect, they will leave your site in frustration. The bounce rate can also show you what adjustments can be made to landing pages (e.g., sending SEM users to a more relevant landing page or adjusting content flow to increase conversions), and can also indicate the need for a change in design and/or site architecture – where seniors or their adult children may not know how to navigate to pages that are relevant to them.
It is important to get clarification from your digital team if you have any questions. Some metrics work together to indicate trouble areas or high performance. There are many factors that can affect the numbers, and a decrease in a metric that may otherwise be measured successfully by an increase, could be a good thing. For example, if unique visitors decrease, but pages per session and session duration increases, it could mean an improved SEM campaign that is better targeting appropriate users.
To learn more about analyzing your continuing care retirement community’s website metrics reports visit: