Which marketing KPIs are the most important to track?
This is the question we set out to answer several months ago when we began reaching out to hundreds (and hundreds) of marketers to find out their answers.
It’s one of the biggest challenges that marketers face today.
On the one hand, it has never been easier to collect and analyze data from a wide array of free and paid tools.
On the other hand, with so much data now at our fingertips, it is easy to get overwhelmed, stuck in analysis paralysis, or wind up tracking the wrong metrics.
We set out to create a comprehensive guide featuring insights from hundreds of marketers on the most important marketing KPIs they’re tracking. However, we didn’t want to focus on general marketing KPIs, but rather dive deeper into the KPIs that are most important to track across eight functional areas in marketing, including:
Output KPIs measure the overall performance of a company or specific function, i.e. revenue, opportunities, lead, website traffic, etc., while Outcome KPIs focus on measuring the impact of tasks and projects led by individuals teams, i.e. number of meetings booked, phone calls made, blog posts published, etc.
Editor’s note: Having a hard time tracking your marketing KPIs? With Databox, you can automate performance alerts and make adjustments when they matter most.
The 20 B2B Marketing KPIs Every Business Should Track
Measuring the marketing performance of your B2B company doesn’t have to be a complicated process. It boils down to understanding a few key concepts, such as Customer Lifetime Value, Customer Acquisition Cost, and Lead Quality.
“Customer lifetime value is a crucial KPI for B2B marketing,” says Jacob Landis-Eigsti. “You need to know the lifetime value of a customer, so you can decide how much you’re able to spend to acquire a customer. For a personal injury lawyer, acquiring a customer for $175 is incredible. For a coffee shop, it’s a disaster. You should track customer lifetime value so you can see how much you’re able to spend to acquire new customers. But you also want to actively work to improve this number. You can do this by increasing referrals, reducing churn, and adding more repeat business.”
In addition to LTV, here are 19 more KPIs to keep a close eye on if you work in B2B marketing.
*Editor’s note: Do you know how happy your customers are with your product or service? Grab our Customer Success dashboard to see how many customers you’ve helped, support messages have been sent, and happiness percentage.
The 19 Content Marketing KPIs Every Marketing Team Should Track
With content marketing, it is very easy to fall into the trap of only measuring vanity metrics. These are metrics that may look great in a report (i.e. up and to the right) and are easy to get from Google Analytics and social media platforms, but they don’t tell the full story.
In fact, actionable metrics that tied back to revenue, lead quality, and customer retention can be notoriously difficult to measure.
Andy Crestodina, of Orbit Media, said, “The more visible the metric, the less important it is to the bottom line. And the less visible/easy to find, the more important it is.”
Let’s take the example of content attribution. If you are only looking at last-click attribution, which is the default in Google Analytics, and you have a longer sales cycle, you are missing out on all the things that influenced their path of the path.
Jennifer Lux of LyntonWeb says, “If you build a multi-touch attribution model that measures what percent of customers visited blogs or read offers along their path to purchase, you’ll have a better understanding of how content marketing effects the bottom line. This closed-loop, custom reporting not only measures the return on your content budget but should yield more informed, educated, and successful clients long-term.”
In fact, almost 50% of the marketers we surveyed prefer to use a multi-touch attribution model.
With all that in mind, what content marketing metrics should you be tracking? We analyzed the top KPIs, including:
PRO TIP: How Are Users Engaging on My Site? Which Content Drives the Most Online Activity?
If you want to discover how visitors engage with your website, and which content drives the most engagement and conversions, there are several on-page events and metrics you can track from Google Analytics that will get you started:
Sessions and % new sessions. How much traffic does your website receive on a daily or monthly basis?
Sessions by channel. Which channels are driving the most traffic to your website?
Average session duration. How long do visitors spend on your website on average?
Pageviews and pageviews by page. Which pages on your website are viewed the most?
Average time on page. What is the average time users spend on a specific webpage?
Now you can benefit from the experience of our Google Analytics experts, who have put together a plug-and-play Databox template showing the most important KPIs for monitoring visitor engagement on your website. It’s simple to implement and start using as a standalone dashboard or in marketing reports, and best of all, it’s free!
You can easily set it up in just a few clicks – no coding required.
To set up the dashboard, follow these 3 simple steps:
Step 1: Get the template
Step 2: Connect your Google Analytics account with Databox.
The 49 SEO KPIs That 100+ SEO Pros Say You Should Track
For the majority of companies, the north star for your SEO strategy is revenue.
“It’s easy to get caught up in all the various metrics that are important to SEO,” says Chas Cooper of Rising Star Reviews. “But at the end of the day for most companies, it’s all about generating revenue.”
In fact, the marketers we surveyed cited more than 49 different SEO KPIs, which we’ll share in more detail below.
This included everything from goals completed and conversion rates to link velocity, bounce rate, and backlinks.
For example, “Bounce rate indicates the user-friendliness of your content,” says The Advisor Coach’s James Pollard.
“If people are bouncing from a high-traffic page, there’s no point applying additional marketing strategies to that page,” adds Ashok Sharma of Wealth Words. “Focus instead on improving the overall page structure and satisfying user intent.”
“It’s not enough to show up on page one of the SERPs,” says Chris Steele of Knowmad Digital Marketing. “You have to give users a reason to click on the link to your page. If you aren’t actively tracking CTR and trying to improve it, you’re missing the point of SEO entirely.”
So, what are all of the SEO metrics that marketers are looking at? These metrics include:
1. Organic traffic
2. Organic traffic by visitor location
3. Mobile organic traffic
4. Number of unique pages that drive organic traffic
Editor’s note: If you need to track multiple SEO metrics across multiple tools, use Databox to consolidate all of your metrics into a central dashboard. The free SEO Overview dashboard below is a great example, showing key metrics from four different SEO tools.
The 22 Email Marketing KPIs Every Team Should Track
At its simplest, email marketing boils down to three things:
Was your email delivered to its intended recipients?
How many people opened it?
Did people take your desired action?
This starts with your open and click-through rates.
Jonathan Aufray of Growth Hackers says, “The priority is to get your emails opened. Once they’re opened, you can work on other metrics such as CTR or reply rate.”
Mallory Fetchu of SmartBug Media adds, “Your CTR is the gateway to conversions–the more people clicking, the better chance you have of getting that person to take the desired action.”
While the marketers we surveyed cited 22 different email marketing metrics to look at. All of them boiled down to deliverability, open rates, and conversions.
*Editor’s note: Get a clearer picture of the activity happening on your website when subscribers leave their inbox with our Email Traffic Overview dashboard. You’ll be able to see which campaigns generate the most traffic, which subscribers clicked through, and much more:
The 24 Social Media KPIs Every Marketer Should Track
Many marketers question the effectiveness of social media these days.
As Adzerk’s Chris Shuptrine says: “You can’t only measure one social media metric to get a real sense of how your social media marketing effort is shaping up.”
Social media marketing is nuanced, and your success depends on your company’s specific goals, and you execute on your strategy.
In fact, from the marketers we surveyed, many still found Facebook to be the most effective for driving website traffic.
When it came to measuring new leads from social media, it was a first-place tie between Facebook and Linkedin.
As you can see, companies are still seeing results from social media marketing. However, with added skepticism, it is more important than ever to track and analyze your social media strategy to see if it’s worth the investment.
Here are the 24 social media metrics that matter the most.
Engagement-to-reach ratio (for Facebook and Instagram)
What marketing has the highest ROI on average – – – SEO, content marketing, brand marketing, etc?
For many brands, the channel with the best return on investment is influencer marketing.
According to our survey, nearly 56% of marketers we surveyed said that influencer marketing was highly effective for their businesses.
Just like social media and SEO, the metrics that marketers are using to measure their influencer marketing campaigns varies based on their goals.
There are plenty of missteps that brands can make, especially at the start, such as overvaluing an influencer’s follower count.
Hotel Jules‘ Will Hatton says, “It doesn’t matter how many followers or likes a person has if nobody engages with the post. 0.1% of a million followers is 1000 engagements, whereas 10% of 10,00 followers is the same.”
Influencer marketing goals can range from brand awareness and traffic to new email signups, leads, and sales.
Here are the top ten metrics that marketers are evaluating, including:
*Editor’s note: If you are working with Instagram influencers, grab our Instagram Business Post Performance dashboard and see how well your influencer collaborations are impacting your KPIs:
11 Brand Marketing KPIs Worth Tracking
Can you place a tangible number on brand awareness and adoption?
This is a question that marketers have been struggling with for decades.
Kameron Jenkins of Botify says, “Some brands spend years finding their north star metric, but that’s just it – it’s their north star metric, not everyone’s. My advice for anyone looking to better measure brand marketing is twofold: 1) Give your brand goals more granularity – brand awareness as one goal, brand sentiment as another, etc. and then pick goals to match. It’ll be a lot easier! 2) Don’t rule out qualitative! Send out surveys, talk to your customers, talk to non-customers in your target audience. Are they aware of your brand? Do they know what you do? How does your brand make them feel? Use that feedback to improve, then repeat.”
In fact, it turns out how marketers are measuring brand marketing in one or more of these three ways:
How customers spend
What they say
How they behave
And, these are the specific metrics that marketers are tracking on a regular basis.
13 Product Marketing KPIs Every Team Should Be Tracking
Brand market share, product usage, new feature adoption, revenue, net promoter score, customer sentiment – – – what’s the most important metric for product marketers to track?
This is an ongoing debate among product marketers.
Some believe that revenue is the ultimate north star.
Matcha‘s Shauna Ward says, “The most important KPI every product marketing team should track is revenue because ultimately, product marketing is responsible for the commercial success of the product.”
Others think measuring customer sentiment is the most important.
“Tracking customer sentiment is highly important to understand how to improve a product or service and make it appealing for consumers to buy,” says Amy Hernandez of electriqmarketing.com. “This is especially important in an age where customers voice their opinions all over the internet via social media and online reviews for thousands to see. Because of this visibility, it is best to put your best foot forward and be in the know of how people are feeling.”
We took a closer look and examined the top 13 metrics that product marketers are tracking, including:
*Editor’s note: Struggling to understand how many sales you’re getting per product? Break down your site’s revenue with our Google Analytics Product Revenue dashboard. It shows the performance of each product alongside key financial metrics like average order value and revenue by device.
From content marketing, social media, and SEO to brand marketing and product marketing, these are the top KPIs that marketers are using.
As you can see, there’s a lot of overlap among channels. For example, with revenue and lead generation being north stars for marketing as a whole, it is no surprise that KPIs such as revenue, MQLs, SQLs, conversion rate, and more appear across multiple channels.
If you need a quick and easy way to track your marketing KPIs, we suggest to create custom KPI Scorecards for high-level metrics and have a complete picture of how the business is performing.
About the author
Jessica Malnik Jessica Malnik is a content strategist and copywriter for SaaS and productized service businesses. Her writing has appeared on The Next Web, Social Media Examiner, SEMRush, CMX, Help Scout, Convince & Convert, and many other sites.
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