There is a lot of focus in our industry about website traffic. Sometimes a campaign is judged on just this one thing. Considering the campaign typically has little to do with inventory, pricing or the handling of the lead, it can be at its most basic level, the best way to determine its success.
If you prefer to take your analysis one step further, here are a few metrics to review and why they matter.
Bounce Rate: A site visitor is like the bouncing of a ball. Did they find what they were looking for or did they just “bounce?” Sometimes bounce percentages can be a false negative. For instance if someone is only looking for a dealer’s phone number from the landing page then bounces, it can appear that they did not find what they were looking for when in fact they did. It was a positive visit but registered as a bounce. Typically Google sees a high bounce as the result of a poor landing page, poor or misleading optimization or a misleading ad. If Google’s goal is an improved user experience and your website does not promote that, Google will devalue your site in SERP and/or charge you more to buy traffic.
Time on Site: Tied closely to the bounce rate, the amount of time a visitor spends on the site gives you an indication about the quality of the content or inventory. Things that negatively affect this are a lack of original pictures, no prices, and a lack of custom quality descriptions. A good rule of thumb is about 10 pictures and 200 words.
Pages Per Visit: This is simply the number of pages people visit during a session. In nerd speak this is the one “ring” to rule them all. If you can increase this your bounce will decrease and your time on site will increase. So how do we do it? You have to, along with pictures and content, create a funnel. You want to land visitors on a page that’s designed to move them through the site. To do that you have to start with the end and work your way backwards.
While traffic as a standalone is an important metric, make sure it’s quality by watching your bounce rate, time on site and most importantly pages per visit.
This is part of an ongoing series of insights by Gayle Rogers, Digital Director at Strong, about refining the Internet strategy at your dealership.
John Paul Strong
John Paul Strong combines his two decades of automotive marketing experience with a team of more than 140 professionals as owner and CEO of Strong Automotive.