When a financial service firm invests time and effort into developing a new website, it’s important to develop the site as both a lead generation tool and an informational resource. There are certain metrics to consider to help track whether your site is performing its sales and conversion functions, including visitor engagement, goal completion, and conversion rate.
A key internet metric for a financial service provider to rely on is visitor engagement. Visitor engagement is a metric that refers to how much time and what pages a viewed per visit. These metrics can be a good indicator of how much the content is valued by your visitors. Monitoring visitor engagement is a site’s responsibility to understand what ‘works’ with how their information is conveyed.
The good news is that user engagement is very easy to track:
Bounce rate, pages per visit, and on-page time
All of these metrics are freely available through Google Analytics. Bounce rate indicates how many visitors don’t navigate past the page they came into your site on. If it’s more than 70%, the site might need to revamp the landing page. However, you should also remember to take this metric with a grain of salt. If your bounce rate is high, dig a little deeper to find out why. Is the bounce rate high for only blog posts? That could be expected as visitors visit your site and either find or don't find an answer to their specific question. Bounce rates can also be high for your contact page. If people are only looking for a phone number or email address, they may not stick around your site. If the bounce rate is high for your homepage, you have a major issue.
That being said, the average pages per visit should be as high as possible, proving that the information is of value to the reader and engaging them to continue within your financial service’s client-based information. On-page time and pages-per-visit should also be as high as possible. If it is below 30 seconds on average for on-page-time and lower that 1.5 pages per visit, you may want to think about retooling your site to increase functionality or speak to an onlie conversion expert.
The good news is that Google Analytics will give you a lot of very in-depth data about exactly what pages are causing these metrics to perform poorly. Play around with the tools under the 'content' tab within your Google Analytics panel to see what pages perform the worst. Start with reworking these pages and see how your metrics improve.
Financial service providers should have a set goal for the website to perform; and the success of reaching these goals is another important metric. Whatever the goal is, make sure you design your website around that goal and have ways to monitor the level of your site’s success. Again, Google Analytics, which is a free tool, can monitor and track your specific goal success.
Another metric for financial service institutions to consider is conversion rate. Think of a conversion as when a visitor to your site completes a call-to-action, whether that is a newsletter signup, a phone call, or a mailing list addition.
To see how well your conversion is, you need to track exactly how many call-to-action completions you get per visitor. If you’re seeking newsletter signups, this is an easy metric to track. It’s simply a measurement of signups per month compared against unique visitors per month. If you are trying to match phone calls to website visitors, it can become more convoluted. An effective method to track this is to set up individual call-forwarding phone numbers for each blog that your company runs. You can also coach your receptionist to ask every cold caller to your main office-line where they heard about you or found you.
Once you have learned the basics of conversion rates, you can graduate to what they call AB or split testing. This is essentially a method of diverting equal amounts of traffic to different landing pages that have different calls-to-action. The better performing call-to-action would be considered to have a better conversion rate. When split testing, make sure that your html is set up correctly and that you obtain enough visitors to each version to produce a statistically significant result. You also need to carefully track what one difference is made between each version in order to accurately identify what factors affect conversion rates.
The main takeaway is to track and consistently improve your web presence by continually checking and tweaking the contributing factors to your key metrics. Visitor presence, goal completion and conversion rate will help guarantee your investment in your website enjoys a healthy return.