ROI Benchmarking: You Can Improve What You Can Measure

“If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.” -Peter Drucker

To defend the ROI of your digital marketing strategy, the carrot on the stick waved by marketers used to be a simple choice of either being able to lead or being left out of the social media bandwagon. That argument still holds true today. However, as your strategy matures and begins to delineate between clicks and conversions, benchmarking metrics become necessary tools of the trade…and for good measure.

Benchmarking allows you to visualize and share your current success stories in actual data and numbers. These KPIs (key performance indicators) justify whether you’re on the right track and helps you highlight future capabilities through time to edge out past campaigns by you and the competition. By auditing your current approaches, you identify best practices and areas for improvement.

Website and Traffic Metrics

Popular goals of website-related marketing, for example, is increasing the conversion rate and traffic to your landing pages using Google Analytics. In addition to overall traffic, monitor the number of visits to multiple page categories such as your homepage, pricing page, blog, landing pages, etc. Use those figures to evaluate which parts of your website have the highest engagement and conversion rate and apply the best practices to other pages as well.

By using Google Analytics, you can view your: 

⦁ Pages per visit. Measures whether your site navigation is set up in a logical order and to see if visitors are likely to keep returming to your content

⦁ Returning versus new visitors. Measures your blog’s and landing pages’ content engagement

⦁ Average time on page. Evaluates your content’s relevance and rewards your site with better ranking on Google searches

⦁ Monthly website traffic. Checks how SEO-optimized your content and ads are

⦁ Visits per channel. Determines effectiveness of your inbound traffic channels

⦁ Website conversion rate. Demonstrates your landing page’s effectiveness from its Call To Action, value proposition, images and overall content; keep it fresh every month

⦁ Click-through rate. Shows how effectively your site’s call-to-actions attract people’s attention and make them click for more information.

Make sure to include your Google site ref codes for every important web page so you can track the activities for each. Benchmark against your own site content, taking into consideration their value to your customers, how they are designed and located on your site, and how clear your content and call-to-action tactics are at each page.

Lead Generation (Inbound Marketing)

Your lead generation (or inbound marketing) channels’ ultimate measure for success is its cost-effectiveness at customer acquisition. These channels may include your free trial or online retail sign-up pages, discount redemption site, or an exclusive free download page.

Mostly database-driven, use your sales or CRM management software to get the latest data and filter the following according to your requirements:

⦁ Monthly New Leads / Prospects. Indicates the number of new leads acquired in the past month and the effectiveness of your lead-gen campaign for that period

⦁ Qualified Leads Per Month. Demonstrates if your contents are rightfully targetting decision-makers at each stage of the buying cycle to convert them from marketing qualified leads (MQL) to sales qualified leads (SQL)

⦁ Cost Per Lead Generated. Shows the cost of acquiring a new prospect, letting you evaluate whether your marketing activities pay off the effort, time, and resources spent to attract new leads

⦁ Cost Per Conversion. While an advertising campaign can generate hundreds of leads for you, often only under 2% of them turn to a client within a two-month time gap (as it takes time for leads to convert)

⦁ Retention Time (Repeat Purchases). Helps you to evaluate whether your customer support and user experience help to build and maintain customer loyalty

Here’s a quick formula:

Retention Rate = ((CE-CN)/CS)) X 100

CE = number of customers at end of period

CN = number of new customers acquired during period

CS = number of clients at start of period

⦁ Churn (Attrition) Rate. Alternatively, this metric shows the percentage of customers no longer buying your products or services. To keep churn rate low, prevent incidents that would make clients leave, such as slow customer service or poorly designed products.

⦁ Net Promoter Score. Measurable on a ten-point scale by conducting customer surveys and interviews on: how likely is a client to recommend your product or service to a friend?

According to Net Promoter Network, there are three levels of customer advocacy:

1. Promoters (score 9-10) are loyal enthusiasts who praise your company to others and drive your sales

2. Passives (score 7-8) are satisfied but unenthusiastic customers who leave when they see a better offer.

3. Detractors (score 0-6) are unhappy customers who spread negative information about your company and can damage your brand image.

To calculate the Net Promoter Score, subtract the percentage of Detractors from the percentage of Promoters.

There Is No ‘Cheap, Fast, Good’ Strategy

There is no one-size-fits-all solution to justifying the ROI effectiveness of your digital marketing strategy. Always approach your strategy with a sense of realism and long-term engagement.

Digital marketing metrics can easily show you what you need to improve on as a product or service, but it does not fix the problem itself. In the end, you can’t go wrong with the following best practices:

1. Create highly targeted marketing campaigns.

2. Provide help materials and guides for the right person at the right time.

3. Improve the user experience of your service or product, site navigation included.

4. Regularly evaluate your content offerings for each stage of the sales cycle or funnel.

5. Make your unique value proposition and Call To Action more compelling.

6. Monitor different marketing channels separately so you can focus your energy and resources on amplifying these channels’ reach.

7. Provide the best customer care you can think of online.

8. Offer benefits and information that your customers didn’t even expect to receive.

9. Take advantage of social media listening tools that let you eavesdrop on how you can improve your offering.

10. Get positively engaged in online conversations and turn them into conversions.


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