The fourth step towards achieving your online goals is evaluation and fine-tuning.
Know what you are evaluating. Many people calculate the ‘number of hits’ when evaluating websites. Website hits are the number of requests made to a website/server. Any image, object or type of file accessed is counted as a hit. Rather than calculating hits to your website focus on the ‘number of visits’. A visit is made-up of a number of hits. It is calculated based on number of times your web-page was viewed over a browser.
Let’s say one of your product pages has 50 images and 10 different files and objects, and 50 visitors clicked on that page everyday for the next 30 days. If you calculated hits over these 30 days it would come to 90,000 hits – which sounds a lot. However, the actual number of visitors who viewed your product page was only 1500. If the conversion rate from your website is 10%, you should have generated around 150 sales or sales enquiries.
Also evaluate the average time spent on the site. If you have statistics from your old site, check if the average time spent has been increased or decreased. Generally speaking, the higher the time spent by a user on a site equates with their level of satisfaction with the website and its content.
Drill down and analyse what pages were visited by the users and know their entry and exit pages. If you have ‘call to action’ pages, evaluate visits versus enquiries and sales generated.
With an e-commerce website, for example, if the number of visits and time spent by users has increased yet it hasn’t generated the appropriate level of sales, determine what the top exit pages are on the site and work out what it is that is preventing potential customers from buying. It may be that product or price details are unclear or there is too much or too little information which is acting as a barrier to consumer sales.
Depending upon your goals and e-strategy you should be evaluating each aspect of your website and discussing relevant feedback with your website developer so as to fine-tune your website.
So, put your logic hat on, gather your site statistics and undertake some statistical evaluation of the traffic to your website. Last but not least, prepare a list of tasks to help you fine-tune your website.
Please feel free to contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org if you require any help with evaluating and fine-tuning your website,