Digital marketing continues to evolve rapidly, and the tools and strategies B2B businesses use to attract clients have evolved along with it. However, one thing remains the same: understanding your marketing KPIs is key to creating strategies that will differentiate your organization from your competition, generate leads and sales, and drive your business’ growth.
All marketing is fundamentally goal-oriented in nature. Successful businesses understand that the best marketing activities can all be linked to broader objectives. When understood and acted on correctly, your KPIs are fundamental to understanding the link between your marketing strategy and business goals.
Knowing which metrics are the most important (as well as what they mean and how to improve them) can help your marketing drive business growth in both the short and long term. To help get you started, here are the five most important KPIs for B2B marketing, as well as how to use insights from your KPIs to create a marketing system that delivers consistent results.
1. Website Traffic
The number of visitors your website receives is a critical metric in evaluating essential to any B2B marketing strategy. Most strategies and tactics, including online advertising and search marketing programs, aim to drive traffic to your company’s site; knowing how many visitors you get is vital in evaluating the success or failure of these approaches.
That said, simply knowing how many visitors you get isn’t enough; businesses also need to know where they came from. Attribution (knowing where and how a customer found their way to your site) is a critical part of understanding your website traffic data. Google Analytics provides most of the tools you need to capture, analyze, and fully understand your website’s traffic data.
2. Conversion Rate(s)
No matter the business, industry, or marketing strategy, conversion rates are essential performance metrics for businesses to stay on top of. More than any other data, conversion allows marketers to see what percentage of their generated traffic delivers tangible value for their business.
Most B2B businesses think of conversion as the percentage of total visitors who turn into paying customers. However, the concept can also be applied to any interaction a visitor has with your marketing takes on your site. For example, savvy marketers could track the number of newsletter signups generated by a landing page, follows on social media, and other actions that support your business goals. Tools like Google Analytics 4’s event-driven data model make it easy to apply conversion principles to nearly any aspect of your marketing, giving you access to further insight into your marketing’s performance. Conversion rate optimization programs are ideal for understanding and optimizing every customer interaction with your marketing, ultimately turning them into measurable results and business performance.
3. Marketing Qualified Leads
Marketing Qualified Leads are visitors who’ve shown interest in your business’s products by taking an action based on your marketing, like filling out a form, downloading collateral, or signing up for a mailing list.
Although the criteria will vary from business to business, it’s essential to keep MQLs separate from SQLs (Sales Qualified Leads) for several reasons. Practically speaking, MQLs are generally less likely to convert right away, likely needing more exposure to marketing material before they can be handed off to the sales team. Segregating MQLs also allows marketing professionals to evaluate the overall quality of the leads generated by your marketing, allowing you to refine your strategy further to attract high-quality leads over time.
4. Cost Per Lead (Per Channel)
If leads are the primary objective for your marketing, knowing how much each lead costs is critical to evaluating your marketing performance. By tracking your Cost Per Lead across each of your marketing channels individually, you can assess how (cost) effectively each strategy delivers potential customers to your team.
Google Ads and Analytics 4 offer some of the best tools for measuring Cost Per Lead. If the data reveals large disparities between different marketing channels, it can tell you which strategies and tactics are the most successful in generating cost-effective leads. The best marketers make data-driven decisions about the digital marketing strategies they invest time and resources into.
5. Marketing Return on Investment (ROI)
Ultimately, most B2B businesses will evaluate their marketing in terms of return on investment (ROI), and rightfully so. The most successful marketing strategies clearly show the value they provide in real-world sales and revenue.
There are many different ways to calculate marketing ROI; the most suitable method for your business will depend on your objectives, and the data you have available on your marketing performance. Generally speaking, the more data you can incorporate into your ROI calculations, the better. While quick and simple methods are good at providing a high-level overview of your performance, they often lack the necessary detail to evaluate individual components of your digital marketing mix. Calculating ROI for each unique strategy or using a combination of different calculation methods can provide more actionable data you can use to improve your performance over time.
The most effective path to consistent digital marketing performance is through data-driven insight. Continually evaluating your marketing’s KPIs is an essential way for businesses to measure success and tie marketing efforts into their bottom line.
Measuring KPIs is one thing; improving them over time is a challenge unto itself. While most business owners today understand the importance of marketing KPIs, making actionable improvements requires a specialized skillset. With the complexity of modern digital marketing, it can be tough to know where to begin improving your performance.
With twenty years’ experience in digital marketing, Atrium Digital has helped its clients achieve sustained digital marketing success in a wide variety of fields and industries. Our unique approach allows us to engineer systems, build platforms, and optimize routines to deliver consistent results, allowing organizations to experience sustained growth through digital marketing.
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