Hundreds of domain names are registered weekly in Zimbabwe. Many website designers are busy creating a website for businesses from varied industries with different sizes. But are these websites relevant to the businesses? How can you tell? Did you get what you wanted from the investment in the website?
But are these websites relevant to the businesses they are created to represent? How can you tell whether your website is useful or not? Did you get what you wanted from the investment in the website?
In this short article, I am going to show you what to do to determine website success or failure. You cannot make your website and forget about for one year and expect it to be a useful business tool for you! You need to periodically measure it and make the necessary changes for the desired outcome to be realised.
It’s not your fault that this may be happening to you. This comes about because of two reasons mostly:
- Website owners do not have a full plan for the website they are getting built. So they leave all in the hands of the knowledgeable guy the designer! That person doesn’t know your business and he will do the quickest thing to get paid.
- Website designers do not know much about online business as they do the code and technical staff. Most of them would be able to create anything you ask them to but are not able to coach you well in implementing your business goals online.
So what must you do to get the ship in the right direction?
Stop guessing, start measuring
Many website owners know that it’s good for business to have a website. They go ahead and get one done and published. After the launch of the website, there is very little done to measure how the website is adding value to the business.
This maybe because they do not have a clear picture how the website should add value to the business. Here are some common goals that websites must achieve for businesses:
- Lead generation
- Improve in-store sales
- Online sales
- Create online client communities
- give needed information and details by current and potential clients
When it’s clear what the goals of the website are, the next thing is to check whether the goals are being met or not.
Instead of guessing, it’s important to know the real trends and statistics around your website. Do you know how many visitors come to your website monthly? Do you know what your visitors will be looking for when they come to your website?
You may be surprised that most of your visitors are coming to your website looking for something you do now offer.
Preparing to Measure Website Relevance
Below are some of the steps to measuring the usefulness of your website.
Get real statistics
Some website owners know that their website has 10000 hits monthly. But what is a website hit? Is it an important number after all? The following are important statistics that each website owner need to know about:
- The number of visits.
- The number of visitors.
- The number of visitors using desktops or mobile devices to access the website.
- The number of people coming from Search Engines, Social Networks, other website and directly. Sadly most people spent much time on social media business pages but can’t tell what the outcomes are.
- The number of return visitors.
- The percentage of male and female visitors.
This information is very useful in the efforts to improve continuously the website. Every good website is improved on periodically. Use of good tools is very important to get good results. I recommend Google Analytics.
Determine your KPI
There are so many numbers that you can get concerning your website. Determine which number are important to your goals. Gathering information about foreign visitors to a website will not be beneficial to a local restaurant which does not offer online orders service.
It’s important to know what you need to track on your website.