Website performance can be defined differently basing on specific business and purposes. There would be many criteria and performance indicators but the top thing you must keep in mind to stay on track is profound understanding about own website. The insight helps you know what you should focus on among millions of factors. After that, you need to strictly track those elements to constantly optimize. It is what we call “efficiency”.
For example: Privacy is the preeminent criteria of e-commerce websites but just considered as necessary factor with blogs. As regard website performance, you may hear of website speed, website security, conversion rate, bounce rate, etc. Among them, website speed is the most concern when talking about website performance. However, we will not dig deep into website speed in terms of developer jobs. It is not about choosing website hosting for good speed, java script, CMS version, caching, etc. If you want to read more about speed elevation in terms of coding, you can refer to the following blog post: Why your website loading speed is frustratingly slow. The blog is for online marketers with tips and general guideline to define your strategy and execution plan which will be tailored for your own business.
STEP 1: DEFINE YOUR BUSINESS GOAL
Starting with the goal of your website to define key indicators which you should keep an eye on. You are running a blog post, an e-commerce website, a branding website or a news site. Answer the question with a vision if you have defined for yourself. For instance: If you start with a blog post but may convert it into a place to sell goods, the goal will be different from a mere sharing blog. You need to apply SMART criteria when defining goal:
Specific: What do you want to achieve in your area of focus?
Measurable: Why is this goal important to you?
Attainable: What steps will you take to achieve it?
Relevant: How do you know that
Timely: By when do you want to achieve this goal?
STEP 2: DETERMINE WEBSITE KEY INDICATORS
After you find out specific goals for business, you will align them with website indicators to track then optimize.
If you want to have keep visitors in site for a long time, key indicators can be bounce rate, pages/session and speed as well. If you want to increase conversion rate, a set of pages will be involved to optimize user experience, content, etc. Similarly, when you know business goals, you can list down and prioritize key indicators.
STEP 3: SET UP TRACKING SYSTEM
Tracking system is available for all website with Google Analytics, but the problem is that Google Analytics provides you with too many data. Some of them are unnecessary but some others are not been set up yet. It is the reason why you have to answer two above questions to arrange your own measurement system.
STEP 4: MONITOR AND OPTIMIZE
Keep under observation the indicators you have determined and tracked through the time. Tracking is only meaningful when you know how to optimize and improve website performance. Coming back to your thinking flow in step 2, then you will know how to improve it. AB Testing is an effective method which can give you a hand.
Sharing is only four steps but they are the most fundamental one. Just need to acquire those knowledge, you can define issue and solution by yourself.