What metrics to measure in web analytics

DSM Digital School of Marketing - metrics

When you first view your Google Analytics dashboard, you might feel overwhelmed by all the statistics, metrics and parameters. Don’t be! There are a few key statistics that every digital marketer should know and – depending on your industry, marketing objectives and tactics – you will need to analyse some additional statistics. When you start to feel more comfortable with Google Analytics you can explore more complex statistics that will help you understand online user behavioural trends.

User behavioural trends


This refers to the number of unique sessions initiated by a reader. This statistic counts every time someone visits your site. If a visitor is inactive on your site for 30 minutes or more it is counted as extra visits but not as an additional visitor. It is important to understand the difference between clicks and visits:

  • Clicks (in a Google Ads report) are the number of times your advertisement was clicked on by visitors.

Page views

The number of pages that were viewed during these visits. Page views are tracked by Google Analytics. If a visitor selects ‘reload’ after reaching a page this will be counted as an additional page vuew. If a user navigates to an alternate page and then returns to the original page this is counted as a page view as well.

Unique page views

This statistic aggregates page views by the same user during the same session. Unique page views are therefore the number of sessions during which that page was viewed one or more times by the same visitor.


This statistic refers to the average number of pages viewed during each visit.

Bounce rate

The bounce rate is the percentage of visits in which the person leaves your site within seconds of arriving.

Average time on site

This statistic refers to the average length of time that people stay on your site.

Percentage of new visits

The percentage of new visits is the percentage of people visiting your site for the first time.

Top content

This is a list of pages that are ranked by the amount of traffic they get. These are the key pages that you want to use to direct visitors to other pages on your site as they get the most traffic. Use strong calls to action so that visitors are encouraged to download a document, buy something, complete a form or sign up for something.

The only way to know for certain how efficient your website is at transforming visitors into customers is through analysing website metrics. There is no denying that the data analytics is now on the increase. As a matter of fact, over 70 million websites are now making use of analytics tools. Google Analytics is at the top of the list with it being used by 40% of users.

Minus website metrics, your digital marketing strategy for your website becomes more of a guessing game. This can lead you to waste time as well as money on tactics which just aren’t working. However, with the correct website metrics, it is possible for you to determine what’s working and what isn’t. You can then use this data to adjust and adapt your digital marketing strategy.

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