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The Most Important Digital Marketing KPIs You Should Be Looking Into

posted on 20-3-16-Mon 13:26
What is Digital Marketing?
So Which Digital Marketing KPIs Should I Look Into?
Final Thoughts

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Digital marketing has taken the world by storm over the past couple of years. While traditional forms of marketing are still effective, digital marketing is proving to be the future since we are now living in the digital age. This is why companies need to measure their digital marketing KPIs to see how they’re performing in the digital space and take corrective action to meet their goals.

What is Digital Marketing?

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Digital marketing is simply the promotion of products and services online. In 2017, the world had up to 3.9 billion people using the internet. With this being more than half of the entire population, anyone who is not promoting their products and services online is effectively leaving money on the table. This is especially true now that the internet is becoming more and more accessible throughout the world.

Not having an online presence these days, especially in the advanced countries, is as good as being non-existent. Your potential customers are online at this moment. They are searching for ways to solve their problems and you might have the solution. If they don’t find you, they will go to your competitors, who are also online right now advertising their products and services.

Through digital marketing, you make your company more accessible to people online. You will not find many people flipping through the yellow pages or going to the mall to look for a shop that has what they need. They will most likely start by consulting Google and clicking on the first link that catches their eye. You want to be that link, which can’t happen if you aren’t doing digital marketing.

So Which Digital Marketing KPIs Should I Look Into?

There are plenty of digital KPIs to keep track of, but this article will only focus on the most important ones. These will be split into the following categories:

  • Search engine optimization KPIs
  •  Pay-Per-Click advertising KPIs
  •  Social media KPIs
  •  Content marketing KPIs
  • Email marketing KPIs

By monitoring the KPIs mentioned in these categories, whether in Google dashboard, Google console or Hootsuite, businesses can ensure that they are on the right track to growth and profitability.

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Search Engine Optimization KPIs

In this digital age, search engine optimization (SEO) should not be taken lightly. SEO is any activity that is aimed at making your website or blog more visible to search engines. One of the biggest reasons why SEO is so important is that 93% of people usually start their online experiences with search engines.

And when it comes to SEO, here are the KPIs that you should be looking out for to inform decisions made about your SEO strategy:

Organic Traffic

This is the number of people that are being referred to your website by search engines naturally. This is contrasted to the number of people that are being referred to your site through paid ads. These people entered a search term into a search engine and then clicked on the organic links that interested them in the search results.

Keyword Ranking

Ideally, for SEO to be effective, one has to make it to the first page of the search engine results pages (SERPs). Doing this requires selecting keywords that will get you ranked. The keyword ranking KPI is a measure that tells you how your site will rank for a specific keyword. The higher the keyword rank is, the more your website will be preferred by search engines when someone searches for that keyword.

Number of Leads

When someone visits your website through your SEO efforts and takes action, they become a lead. The more leads you capture, the more it shows that people are interested in the products or services that you are offering. Knowing how many visitors are becoming leads is crucial to measuring if your SEO efforts are starting to pay off.

Number of Conversions

After you have captured your leads, this is the next step in the process. You have a conversion when a lead becomes a customer. Basically, the more leads you get, the more conversions you will have. The more people you convert, the more revenue you will generate for your company.

Page Views

Page views is simply the number of times your website has been loaded or reloaded. While this is an important metric, it doesn’t tell you if people are engaging with your content. As long as the site was loaded or reloaded, it will count as a page view.

Page Load Time

The amount of time it takes your page to load is an important factor in SEO for two reasons. First of all, the longer your website takes to load, the more you lose visitors to a faster website. Secondly, it is an SEO ranking factor for many search engines – search engines like Google will favor fast-loading websites over slow ones.

Average Session Length

Average session length is a KPI that tells you how long the average person is spending on your website. The ideal session length is 2-3 minutes and anything greater than three minutes is considered good. This number is generated by taking the duration of all sessions and dividing them by the total sessions.

Pay-Per-Click Advertising

Anyone who visits your website through pay-per-click (PPC) ads is doing so inorganically since they are being influenced through ads. The ads can be placed in a number of places, from search engines to blog posts. As the advertiser, you will be charged a fee every time someone clicks on your ad – hence the name pay-per-click advertising.

With that said, here are the most important PPC KPIs to keep an eye out for:

Click-Through Rate

Click-through rate (CTR) is the number of people, expressed as a percentage, who have clicked on your ad after viewing it. The higher the click-through rate, the more that ad is considered to be a success. That is because you want people to be clicking on an ad after it makes an impression. That means they are likely to be converted into customers.

Ad Impressions

This is simply the number of people that have seen your ad – it counts as long as the ad displays. The amount of clicks the ad has generated doesn’t count when calculating it. Another name for this KPI is simply “ad view.”

Return on Investment

Keep in mind that with PPC campaigns, you pay the ad publisher every time someone clicks on your ad. However, simply clicking on your ad does not mean that the ad is paying off. If the person clicks on the link and purchases the product or service you are selling, you have made revenue. If not, you have made a loss. This is essentially your return on investment or ROI.

Cost Per Click

Cost Per Click or CPC is the amount of money you are paying the ad publisher every time someone clicks on your ad. The publisher doesn’t care about how many people have purchased what you’re advertising or the number of impressions you've generated. As long as someone clicked on the ad, you will have to pay.

Cost Per Acquisition

Cost per acquisition is how much you have spent to acquire each customer through your PPC campaign. To calculate this, you need to look at how much you spent on converting customers. Then you need to divide that by the total number of conversions.

Conversion Rate

The conversion rate is the number of people that have become paying customers after clicking on your PPC ad. You calculate this figure by taking the total number of conversions and dividing them by the total number of clicks. Then you multiply that by 100 to get your conversion rate. In order to make revenue, you need to make sure that your conversion rate is high.

Quality Score

Quality Score or QS is how Google “knows” the relevancy of your ad. It is a combination of many factors, including the keywords you’ve used and the click-through rate. By “looking” at all the factors, Google assigns your ad a score from 1 to 10, with one being the worst and 10 being the best. Furthermore, if you have a good QS (between 7 and 10), you will pay less for your PPC campaigns when using Google Ads.

Social Media KPIs

With 3.5 billion people on social media worldwide, your digital marketing efforts cannot skip social media. Whether it is Facebook , Twitter , Instagram , YouTube or TikTok , you need to make sure you provide your users with content that engages and converts. However, this doesn’t mean you should join every social media platform on the planet – stick to the ones where your customers are.

And when it comes to social media, here are the most important KPIs to keep an eye on:


One of the ways that businesses promote their website or products and services is by posting links in their social media content. This KPI measures how many people are actually clicking the links they post. If a lot of your followers are clicking on the links you post, it means they find your offers interesting.


When it comes to social media, the more your post is popular, the more visible it will become when people are conducting searches. The more visible it is, the more people will gravitate towards it. And one of the ways social media platforms judge the popularity of a post is by looking at the number of likes it has generated.


While a like is good, a share is even better. When people are sharing your content, it tells these social media platforms that people are actually recommending your content to others. It is a good indicator that you are actually posting content that people find relevant, meaning your post becomes even more visible.


When people are commenting on your post, it means that there is a conversation to be had. Whether the comments are good or bad, all that matters is that people are going out of their way to engage with your post through comments. If you want to generate more comments be sure to respond to comments to keep the conversation going – after all, you can’t be on social media without being social.

Active Followers/Subscribers

Having a large number of followers on social media is impressive, whether one is looking at their Twitter analytics or YouTube analytics. But how many of those followers are active (have interacted with your posts in the last 30 days)? This is a KPI businesses and brands need to track, as it can inform them about a lot of things, from their social media strategy to their budget on ad spend.

Profile Visits

If your social media profile is getting visits, then it means that people are interested in you. While some of them will be competitors spying on you, others will be people that are generally interested. This KPI can definitely help you find ways of turning those page views into leads.


A mention is another important KPI that tells these social media platforms that people are talking about you or want to have a conversation with you. As you have already figured out, the algorithms of these platforms love this because it signals relevancy. And people will talk about you when you are relevant, even if you are not around.

Content Marketing KPIs

In digital marketing circles, the secret is out: content is king! Just think about it: content marketing increases lead generation three times when compared to any paid ads on search engines. It is no wonder the content marketing is getting more investment from 70% of marketers. And by tracking the right content marketing KPIs, you can make decisions that can increase the impact and return on investment of your content strategy.

Here are the most important content marketing KPIs that you can consider tracking if you aren’t already:

Unique Page Visits

This KPI is similar to page views, only that it provides you with a little more information. For a page view to count, a page just needs to be loaded or reloaded. It doesn’t matter if this is from the same person (IP address) refreshing the page or revisiting it to re-read the content. Unique visits will only count each unique IP address as a view when the page loads or is refreshed.

Content Effectiveness

This KPI tells you how effective the content you are publishing is causing people to take action. These actions include everything from subscribing to an email newsletter to making a purchase. Moreover, it tells you which content marketing channels are delivering the most resulta, allowing you to focus your efforts on them rather than continually investing in duds.


Just like social media, when people are sharing your content, it is an indicator that your content is relevant. If your content is regularly being shared, Google and other search engines will award it points, which can increase its ranking on the SERPs. If you are creating shareable posts, coupled with a SEO strategy, you can see great ROI.


Engagement in digital marketing means that people are liking, sharing and/or commenting on your content. This is a good KPI to measure, as it has the power to tell you what content your audience is happy with. It is also a great way to know what you are doing wrong so you can re-focus your efforts on improving the content.

Inbound Links

Another thing that tells search engines that you are popular is how many websites have inbound links that take them to your website. To search engines, this means that your website is providing enough relevant content for other websites to consider it a credible source. This means your website will be awarded points.

Time on Page

This metric tells you how long people are staying on any of your pages. Is the length they are staying on the page enough for them to go through the entire content? Is it enough for them to fill a form? Needless to say, the longer people are staying on your pages, the more it means they find what is on it to be worth their time.


How many people are interested in hearing more from you? That is why many businesses and brands always encourage their audience to subscribe to an email newsletter. When you have a lot of subscribers, it means you have many potential leads that you can convert to customers. This is where you need to unleash your email marketing powers in full force.

Email Marketing KPIs

Many people have exaggerated the death of email marketing – it is alive and well. In 2018, the number of email users reached 3.8 billion globally. This figure is expected to reach 4.4 billion by 2023. This is despite the fact that there are a plethora of chat apps that people can choose from. It seems email is becoming more and more important in people’s daily lives.

Here are the most crucial email marketing KPIs that you need to pay attention to:

Open Rate

If you want to know how effective your email campaign is at reaching your intended audience, the open rate is a good indication. This is the ratio of people who have subscribed to your email list, clicked on your email campaign and opened an email. By looking at this ratio, you can tell whether you are sending people content they find relevant in your emails.

Click Rate

Within your emails, you might embed hyperlinks in text and images or just post naked links. The click rate, which is also known as the click-through rate, is the ratio of people who have subscribed to your mailing list and clicked on one of the links contained therein. It is a good way to set realistic targets on the number of people you expect to click on your links.

Unsubscribe Rate

Not every one that subscribes to your mailing list will remain a subscriber. Others will unsubscribe, and the unsubscribe rate is the ratio of people that decided to opt-out. If your unsubscribe rate is below 1% then you are well within industry standards. Anything above that means that you need to look into it before the situation gets worse.

Conversion Rate

When you send people an email as a business, you usually want them to take action to become customers. Well, the conversion rate, in this case, is the ratio of your subscribers who take said desired action. It could be purchasing the product or service you are promoting or making a booking for a massage appointment.

Bounce Rate

Not all the emails you have collected in your mailing list will work. Some people can enter fakes emails and others might make a mistake when typing their email address. In any case, the bounce rate is the ratio of emails that didn’t get delivered because they were returned by the recipient's mail servers.

Spam complaints

Users have the right to complain about the emails they are getting from you if they become too spammy. Many email clients have the option for users to complain by clicking the “report spam” button, meaning you get a spam complaint. So, basically, scam complaints is the ratio of subscribers from your mailing list who have reported your emails as spam. Once they do this, you enter their blocklist list, meaning they will no longer receive any emails from you.


When one of your subscribers receives an email from you that they think is relevant, they will share it with others. This is an important KPI to track because it represents the number of people that are actually endorsing your business or brand and referring it to others. And referrals from other users regarding your product and service are trusted by others since this is the modern type of word of mouth.

Final Thoughts

If you are looking into digital marketing KPIs, it means you have some strategic goals that you want to achieve through it. These KPIs will keep you on track, ensuring that you are moving towards your goals rather away from them. If you couple these KPIs with the right business intelligence software or KPI dashboard, there is no telling just what useful insights you get from monitoring them.