Running a successful ecommerce business can be more difficult than it sounds. From inventory allocation, weekly product uploads, SEO optimization, social media, content creation and creative direction, there are many varying components to the daily maintenance of a site.
For budding business owners and shopkeepers, one fundamental element of a healthy store is “the numbers”. Go beyond revenue and monthly sales to fully understand the analytics that support growth and can help lead you to higher targets. We’ve summarized some significant KPIs and data points to consider. While this list is certainly not comprehensive, consider it a starting off point to the world of ecommerce analytics.
Quite simply, traffic is the number of times people have viewed your site, and how many pages they viewed. There are many tools used to track this metric, but an industry standard is Google Analytics. Google Analytics will allow you to effectively sort and segment your traffic by acquisition channel and allow you to gain valuable demographic information that can help target your future advertising campaigns, or even future product offerings. Most full-featured ecommerce platforms, like Shopify, will also provide high level traffic data.
Monitoring traffic will allow you to be informed about when, how and where your customers are engaging with your store. To better segment your data, consider using UTMs when linking from external sites (like social media or referral traffic) to categorize your incoming users.
AOV: Average Order Value
Average order value is the revenue generated divided by the number of orders within the time period. This number is significant for a number of reasons, but ultimately can help lend insight on the amount your customers feel comfortable spending. Depending on your margins and average price point, this is also a good number to review when considering promotions like free shipping and sales.
Your conversion rate is the number of people who visit your site compared to the number of people who convert, or make a purchase on your site. Calculating this number can help identify drop off points from your conversion funnel and understand the strength of your messaging and product. Depending on the store size, conversion rates can healthily range from 3% and up.
Understanding the value of a return customer is essential. You can track the ratio of repeat purchasers by taking the % of return customer purchases against the % of new customers within a given time period. Email marketing is a low-cost, organic method to engage with an existing consumer base.
[(# total customers at the end of a time period) – (# new customers within that time period)] / (# total customers at the start of the time period)
CPA: Cost Per Acquisition
Cost of acquisition is instrumental in understanding your marketing budget and the amount you can spend to maintain profit for each customer. By using the total amount spent on marketing against the # of customers for a defined time period you can determine amount spent per customer.
LTV: Lifetime Value
The lifetime value of a customer is total amount of revenue you can expect to make from one consumer over a lifetime. For an ecommerce business, this is ideally accounting for loyalty and repeat customers. Using your calculated AOV, you can multiply that by the number of repeat sales, by the average retention time of a customer. If you really want to understand the significance of LTV on the long term health of a b2c business, I recommend the widely acclaimed Starbucks infographic from KissMetrics.
ROI: Return On Investment
When you start investing in a marketing budget to build your audience and strengthen your conversion rate, it’s important to be able to track and analyze which opportunities are bringing in the most business for your store. Some channels might be stronger than others, so using UTMs in all ads and tracking each campaign separately will be key in determining value.
[($Revenue – $ Spent on Marketing)/$ Spent on Marketing] x 100
Cart Abandonment Rate
Understanding the number of potential customers adding products to cart and then not completing checkout is an easy opportunity to increase conversion rate. Using email marketing and abandoned cart messaging can capture a customer who was *so close* to completing their purchase.
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