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5 Critical Website-Traffic Metrics You Should Know Website traffic is one of the most important metrics of an online marketing campaign, but to fully understand it, you need to break it down into several sub-metrics.

By Ross Jenkins Edited by Amanda Breen

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Website traffic is one of the most important metrics of an online marketing campaign, but to fully understand it, you need to break it down into several sub-metrics. This is how you really scale your online growth.

When you know where your most valuable traffic originates from, you can increase those efforts, and when you know what your lowest performing traffic source, is you can pull back those efforts.

The name of the game is revenue. If your website traffic isn't converting into revenue, it's essentially worthless. Many digital-marketing agencies will use sheer traffic volume as a measure of success, but visits alone mean nothing.

Related: How to Make Your Small-Business Website Really, Really Effective

There are five very important website traffic metrics that you need to understand to run successful a marketing campaign for your business online. Let's dive into them below.

1. Total unique visitors

The number of unique visitors that each campaign delivers is a good starting point to determine whether or not it's successful and worth continuing. A unique visit is counted one time only. So if a consumer clicks on a Facebook ad and hits your website, that initial visit counts, and if he or she returns an hour later, that visit isn't counted.

You might be running a content-marketing campaign, and a blog post drives 500 visits to your website. After digging, you discover that 300 of those visits were the same person. Suddenly you have 200 uniques, which is a major difference.

This is also a metric to study over time. If a traffic source continues to drop in terms of unique visitors, it signals that it might be drying up and becoming less effective at introducing new people to your business.

2. Bounce rate

Your bounce rate calculates how many visitors leave your website without clicking over to another page or performing any other action, such as submitting a form or completing another conversion goal.

A high bounce rate is a good indication that they are not finding what they are looking for when they land on your website. This could be due to an offer that overpromises and leads the visitor to a website that underdelivers. It could also indicate that the visitor felt the website's user experience was poor or the navigation was too confusing.

If you have a high bounce rate, you might want to install a heat-map tool on your website to see where your visitors are clicking and how far they are scrolling. This can help you find the disconnect and fix it.

Related: 5 Tactics to Drive Website Traffic That Aren't SEO

3. Referral traffic sources

This bit of information is highly valuable and can help you take your sales to the next level. When you can identify all of the traffic sources, you can then reverse engineer to uncover which one is the most valuable in terms of revenue generated and cost per visit.

If one traffic source is bringing you sales at a $15 conversion cost, but another one is delivering the same traffic value at $8 per conversion, wouldn't it make sense to scale the lower cost referral source?

There are several different referral sources you will want to track and dive into, including organic traffic from Google, referral visits from embedded links on other websites and social media. If you are running multiple campaigns, you might also want to utilize Google's UTM parameters to help you analyze all of your data in Google Analytics.

4. CPV and RPV

These two are very important, as they help you understand how profitable every marketing campaign is, allowing you to properly budget and plan for growth. They are cost-per-visitor (CPV) and revenue-per-visitor (RPV).

Let's imagine you ran a Facebook ads campaign and were able to track 100 sales with a value of $10,000. During this time, the Facebook campaign generated 1,000 visitors to your site. This means that your RPV for your Facebook campaign last month was $10 ($10,000 / 1,000 = $10).

CPV is determined by dividing the total dollar amount spent in a particular channel by the number of visitors it drove. You should know these numbers for every traffic source you use.

Related: Five Reasons Why Your Business Must Have Its Own Website

5. Page views and AVD (average visitor duration)

This is useful information to track and analyze within your Google Analytics account. You want to look at how many pages a visitor views when he or she is on your website, how long he or she remains on your website each visit and what he or she ultimately does. Do users leave without completing an action? Do they submit a form? Make a purchase?

When you reverse engineer all of the most valuable actions (the ones that result in revenue being generated), you can learn things that help you make better optimization decisions.

You might discover that the majority of your conversions occur after a user has interacted with a specific piece of content on your website. In that situation, you might want to drive traffic directly to that content asset via paid traffic campaigns.

If you learn that the majority of conversions occur after a visitor has been on your website for a minimum of three minutes, then you might want to work on enhancing your content and creating more long-form style articles to increase your average visit duration.

Ross Jenkins

Founder & CEO of DigitalME

Ross Jenkins is the founder and CEO of DigitalME, a data-driven digital agency focused on growth.

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