Ecommerce Metrics to Track in Your Store

Ecommerce metrics are your window into the inner workings of your online business. They can tell you what’s working well, what needs tweaking, and what needs scrapping altogether and can give you ideas for the future.

Modern technology has made this information more diverse, precise and accurate than ever and nowhere is this truer than in the world of digital marketing. In days gone by, you might have been able to make a rough estimate of how many people might travel past your billboard by the side of the motorway or read your advert in a magazine, but you would have no way of knowing any more detail than that.

Choosing the right metrics to track is a big part of success

But times have changed. Now Ecommerce managers have the ability to not only find out how many people have seen their ads but also gain an idea of how well they’ve worked and the specific impacts they’ve had on their business.

By following key Ecommerce metrics, you can learn pretty much everything you need to know to unlock your Ecommerce business’s full potential. Here, we will outline some of the most critical Ecommerce metrics and show you how to track them.

Choosing which Ecommerce metrics to track

There is so much data out there that choosing the right metrics to follow can be a daunting prospect. The key is to only focus on what counts.

By zeroing in on one aspect of customer behaviour, such as shopping cart behaviour or return visits, that can be affected by your own SEO or CRO efforts, and you can optimise your Ecommerce store practically brick by brick.
There’s a lot of data you can track, but you really need to focus on what counts.

In Ecommerce there are so many digital marketing tools you use that happens “outside” of your website:

  • Google Ads
  • Display Ads
  • Newsletters
  • Social profiles
  • Link building
  • Digital PR

To name but a few.

The first thing you need to do is gather a list of all of the metrics, both inside and outside, that apply to your business. The next thing you need to do is decide which ones are most relevant to your unique business and your own set of goals.

An example. Say you run a business that sells high-quality and long-lasting furniture. A business like that wouldn’t necessarily expect a lot of return customers as their whole selling point is based around long-life products that might never need replacing, so measuring this metric would be of little use. Instead, measuring metrics such as how often customers are coming to the site or newsletter sign-ups is much more useful as a business like this relies on a steady flow of new customers to keep running.

For a fast-fashion business, on the other hand, return customers mean everything.

What we can say with certainty is that you need to look past the surface to get the most out of Ecommerce metrics.

Analysing follower counts and likes on social media can be satisfying, but it is not a barometer of business performance or future growth. In 2022 it doesn’t mean a lot, especially with organic reach dropping a lot.

Key Ecommerce metrics to track

  1. Conversion rate
  2. Average order value
  3. Customer lifetime value
  4. Customer retention rate
  5. Customer acquisition cost
  6. Abandoned cart rate
  7. Website traffic
  8. Bounce rate
  9. Email marketing metrics
  10. Reviews

The key Ecommerce metrics to track are different for every unique business. Nevertheless, some Ecommerce metrics apply to nearly every business.

1. Conversion rate

This is the percentage of visitors that visit your site that go on to become paying customers. It’s very likely that you will already have a rough estimate of this figure but we can’t stress how important this Ecommerce metric is as it is a key indicator of business growth and is closely linked to so many other metrics.

When you’re struggling with conversions, that’s a really good signal to start with conversion rate optimisation.

2. Average order value

This is the measure of how much a customer normally spends when shopping at your store. This metric is easy to calculate and can tell you a lot about your customer’s interaction with your Ecommerce site and ways it could be improved.

For example, if you find that order values are consistently low then this could indicate that your site could benefit from an enhanced suggestion feature that shows customers other relevant products that they might also be interested in.

3. Customer lifetime value

This is a step from the average order value and calculates the revenue a customer will bring to your business over the course of your relationship. Looking at the bigger picture like this helps you to establish long term goals for growth and can help you devise strategies how to ensure the type of customer loyalty that inspires further spending.

4. Customer retention rate

Customers’ loyalty is essential for many Ecommerce businesses. Return customers have a higher trust value which means they will independently seek out your products, meaning you have to spend less on marketing to bring in new customers.

Moreover, it’s highly likely that loyal customers will tell their friends about your business which is great news for you. If your customer retention rate is low then it is a major indicator that either your products or customer experience strategy are dragging you down.

5. Customer acquisition cost

While we’re on the subject, another key Ecommerce metric to follow is your customer acquisition cost. This is the amount you spend on marketing and other things that are designed to bring new customers to your business measured against the amount of new customers that are actually gained and the amount they spend.

If you find that you have a relatively high CAC or that it starts to grow then this is a major sign that either your marketing strategy or your customer experience needs shaking up.

6. Abandoned cart rate

This Ecommerce key metric measures how often customers are putting products into their shopping cart and then leaving the site without actually buying anything. There are many reasons for this that are out of your control but most likely it is due to one or a number of things that are.

Abandoned carts, the most painful part of a client – customer relationship in Ecommerce

These could be obvious things like not being able to find your call to action buttons or long loading or potentially not so obvious things such as an aversion to having to register an account before signing up or an unexpected postage cost that only became apparent at the final hurdle.

If you find that you have a high abandonment rate then it is really important that you analyse this metric closely to find where the blockage is occurring. Once fixed, it will provide a boost to your revenues without having to go down the customer acquisition process again.

7. Website traffic

This is quite a broad term that applies to a number of metrics. Basically, it applies to everything from how people are arriving at your site to how they are traversing it once landed. This is the best way to measure how well your social media campaigns, third party ads, SEO strategy and other marketing strategies are performing.

This Ecommerce metric also enables you to step into the customer’s shoes and see how they are interacting with the front-end of your site. This can highlight areas where UX can be improved which will provide an enhanced customer experience and bump up your conversion rates.

Your Ecommerce SEO agency should keep you on track with this.

8. Bounce rate

This key Ecommerce metric measures the number of people that land on your site and leave without visiting more than one page. It’s important to realise that this number is never going to be zero, but if it seems disproportionately high, then it is a clear sign that your landing pages need an upgrade. A strong landing page is crucial in grabbing customers’ attention and creating an excellent first impression, so it’s essential that they’re visually stimulating, informative and easy to navigate.

9. Email marketing metrics

This metric only applies if you are running relevant campaigns. However, email campaigns remain one of the best ways to communicate with your customer base, so no Ecommerce manager should rule it out entirely. There are a variety of email marketing metrics you could follow. The number of sign-ups or subscriptions are an obvious one, but you can go even deeper than this by looking at the email click-through rate or even the amount of times your emails have been opened. Doing this can inform your strategy moving forward and save you a lot of effort further down the line.

10. Reviews

Reviews are your best friend when it comes to measuring customer feedback, and they are equally invaluable as a key Ecommerce metric. Reviews act as a holistic measure of your site’s overall experience and also work as a powerful marketing tool.

You can calculate your average score based on the stars given in the reviews, but we would highly recommend taking the time to read as many of them as possible as each one has the potential to highlight an area that could be improved.

Monitoring Ecommerce metrics to improve

Monitoring all of these key Ecommerce metrics is great but it means very little if you don’t take steps to act on this information.

We’ve outlined how some of the data gathered can be used to take action in the steps above but let’s look at a more detailed example:

Imagine you’re running an Ecommerce business and have recently started analysing all of the metrics above. Your analysis of your website traffic reveals that a lot of your virtual footfall is coming via organic search terms. This is brilliant as it means that your SEO is doing the job.

However, your analysis of the bounce rate also reveals that a lot of customers are leaving your site before moving past the first page. Further analysis also reveals that your customer retention rate is poor and that your cart abandonment level is also worryingly high. These are all strong indicators that your UX is in need of improvement. This idea is reinforced by several online reviews left by recent customers. So, using the information available to you, you redesign some key aspects of your website.

The same analytics improve, and you also notice that your average order value has crept up. These are key indicators that the improvements you’ve made have been a success and your business is now in a good position for further growth.

Notice how using all these Ecommerce key metrics in tandem highlighted both positives and negatives about your site. This clearly demonstrates how much analysing Ecommerce metrics can teach you about your customers and your business in a constructive way that enables your business to reach its full potential.

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