Management guru Peter Drucker famously said, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.” The same is true for digital advertising. Yet, for many years, marketers have failed to measure key metrics. Stuck in the “get more clicks” mindset, they forgot about the post-click stage of advertising campaigns—where the conversion actually happens.
In this article, we’ll look at five post-click metrics you need to track to properly evaluate and optimize the success of your advertising campaigns:
- Page traffic
- Bounce rate
- Conversion rate
- Cost per conversion
- Return on ad spend
The first and most obvious digital advertising metric is page traffic, which measures the number of visitors a landing page attracts within a specific time frame.
The average click-through rate across Google Ads is 3.17% for search and 0.46% for display, according to WordStream. For Facebook Ads, it’s 0.90%. That means that 3.17% of people who see your paid search ad and 0.90% of people who see your paid social ad click through to your landing page, becoming page traffic.
While page traffic is directly related to how many clicks an ad gets, it’s also vitally important in the post-click stage. The thing is, without traffic to your landing page, you won’t see any conversions. People can only evaluate your offer once it’s presented to them.
To maximize your page traffic, try the following:
- Refine your targeting criteria. The more granular and specific your targeting, the more likely you are to resonate with your audience—if you personalize your messaging, that is.
- Optimize your ad copy. A/b testing different ad copy will reveal which copy performs best, increasing your click-through rate.
- Offer social proof. Evoking trust by highlighting testimonials and reviews is known to boost ad clicks.
On the flip side, an overemphasis on page traffic can result in a high volume of traffic that ultimately doesn’t convert. If you haven’t optimized your landing page for conversions and don’t provide a relevant post-click experience, visitors may bounce before they take your desired action.
Bounce rate shows the percentage of visitors who left your landing page without converting.
Unlike the other metrics in this list, bounce rate gives a peek at your visitor’s experience. Low bounce rates generally convey a positive user experience, whereas high bounce rates indicate a problem exists.
Common causes of high bounce rates include slow page-load speeds, distracting elements, like navigation links, and forms with too many fields. A mismatch between the expectations you set up in your ads and the reality delivered by your post-click landing pages could also be to blame.
You can benchmark your bounce rates against industry averages. According to SimilarWeb’s analysis of the top 100 sites worldwide, “You should expect your website’s bounce rate to be anywhere between 26% to 70%, with an average between 45% and 65%.” These averages change greatly depending on the location, device, and traffic source.
Alternatively, you can compare your own landing page bounce rates. Landing pages that generate conversions will have much lower bounce rates because a conversion inherently requires visiting a second page. Analyze those successful pages compared with the unsuccessful ones to find a potential culprit for the latter’s erratic performance.
Optimizing your bounce rate will require a focus on user experience, which includes:
- Making your website faster. Google has stated that websites should load within 3 seconds, so make sure your landing pages load quickly.
- Reducing any FUDs. You can lower any fears, uncertainties, and doubts your visitors have by using security badges, testimonials, FAQs, and social proof.
- Improving your conversion flow. Reduce the number of required fields while putting at least part of the form above the fold and using distinct, straightforward CTAs.
One of the most critical post-click metrics to observe is your conversion rate—the percentage of visitors who complete a desired goal.
We can segment this metric into two groups:
- Macro-conversions, which are associated with revenue—for example, a product purchase.
- Micro-conversions, which aren’t associated with revenue—for example, an email signup.
The latter leads to the former, so even if your conversions don’t have revenue associated with them, they are still relevant.
The average conversion rate in Google Ads is 4.40% for search and 0.57% for display. Facebook Ads perform better at 9.21%.
But here’s the thing: These are average conversion rates. They take everyone into account, including high-performers, average performers, and underperformers. If you use these numbers to benchmark your performance, you’ll have much lower standards.
Marketers who leverage Post-Click Automation, for example, see much higher conversion rates. They not only implement landing page design best practices, but also automatically optimize the post-click experience based on machine learning insights to maximize their performance. As a result, they earn average conversion rates ranging from 10% to 20%.
In an ad campaign, a high-converting landing page implies a well-defined link between the visitor’s needs and the offer’s relevance. It also indicates a good user experience, characterized by fast loading times and a clear visual hierarchy.
To boost your post-click landing page conversion rates, try the following:
- Follow conversion-centered design best practices. With the right inclusion and organization of elements, post-click experiences can inspire visitors to act.
- Maximize alignment between ads and pages. Your ad creates expectations that must be realized through your post-click experience. Use message-match to align your ads and pages.
- Make a compelling offer. Adjust your offer to make it relevant to the audience’s immediate needs.
Or, discover why your ads don’t convert.
Cost per conversion
The cost per conversion is the average amount you spend to generate a conversion from your ad campaigns.
You calculate this post-click metric by dividing the total cost of conversions by the total number of conversions. For example, if an ad campaign has generated 2 conversions, one with a cost of $2 and one with a cost of $3, the average cost per conversion would be $2.50 ($5/2).
The average cost per conversion, according to WordStream, is $56.11 on Google Ads’ search network and $90.80 on its display network. However, this number varies widely across industries and companies. Therefore, it’s better to benchmark your cost per conversion against your past performance.
Unlike pre-click metrics, like cost per click (CPC), cost per conversion emphasizes what matters most: generating conversions. Because a conversion is more closely related to your end goal of earning revenue, it’s a better choice of metric to optimize.
To optimize your cost per conversion, implement the tips already discussed. Increasing your clicks and conversions without increasing your ad spend will ultimately reduce your cost per conversion.
Return on ad spend
Return on ad spend (ROAS) is a metric that measures the profit generated from an ad campaign. You can measure ROAS as a specific monetary unit (e.g., $5) or a ratio (5:1).
To calculate your ROAS, divide your total campaign revenue by your total campaign cost. You can also measure your program ROAS by dividing the total revenue generated by all of your ad campaigns within a specific time period by the total costs of those same campaigns.
Keep in mind that the ROAS of a campaign promoting an expensive product may be lower than one promoting a cheaper one; the same is true of high-profit products versus their low-profit counterparts.
Like cost per conversion, it doesn’t make sense to compare your ROAS against industry benchmarks. Your costs and revenue are unique to you. That said, the industry generally accepts a benchmark ratio of 4:1.
You can improve your ROAS by focusing on its two foundational aspects: costs and revenue. On the costs side, you can concentrate your efforts on improving your Google Quality Score or Facebook Relevance Score, which will dramatically lower your ad costs. On the revenue side, you can offer upsells/cross-sells and choose to promote offers with profit margins that justify the ad costs.
Measure your post-click metrics effectively
When measuring your ad campaigns, it’s essential that you go beyond the pre-click stage, where your focus is on getting clicks and driving traffic, to the post-click stage, where you concentrate on conversions and profit. Only then can you maximize your success. These five post-click metrics will help you shift your target and manage your ad campaigns in a way that delivers optimal results.
We want to offer you a complimentary analysis of your ad campaigns. We will review your campaigns to analyze your post-click health, compare your site against industry and competitive benchmarks, and identify the most comprehensive opportunities to increase your ROAS. Our team will share insights on how to increase your conversion rates, in addition to a comprehensive competitive analysis. Request your analysis here.