What metrics should you include in your eCommerce performance report?

What metrics should you include in your eCommerce performance report?

Published on 2023-01-23 by Gemma Nickerson

When you are busy managing your website, it’s important to track your overall performance, so that you understand the impact of your activity. eCommerce metrics are a big part of this.

eCommerce metrics are quantifiable measurements that help you learn about your site e.g. what do customers like to order the most of? Or, what is my average order value?

What are the most important eCommerce metrics? 

eCommerce metrics is important data and analytics that help gauge overall business success. A performance report should ideally be split into sections - this will help your teams when finding information quickly and comparing previous reports. 

We recommend your report has the following 3 key sections and includes these metrics within each section.

Acquisition section.

Traffic by channel, advertising spend and new vs returning customers.

Traffic by Channel: Assessing how people have got to your website can help you decide which marketing channels are most effective.

The most common traffic sources are:

  • Organic search - website visitors who landed on your website after clicking from search results (these will likely be people who are unaware of who you are)

  • Paid search - visitors who find your brand through an advert, typically adverts are configured to be ‘pay-per-click’ and can show as text ads, display ads or even video ads

  • Direct - website visitors who landed on your website after typing it directly into the search bar (these are people who already know who you are)

  • Social - website visitors who landed on your site after clicking through from a social media platform

  • Email - website visitors who have come through to your website after clicking through from one of your email newsletters or campaigns 

New Vs Returning Customers: This refers to the amount of new customers you are gaining compared to your returning customers (who are customers who have previously bought from you and returned). 

If using Google Analytics, you can find this particular info within the ‘Audience  > Behaviour’ report group. You can use this report to understand data on each user type; specifically the differences in behavior when it comes to number of transactions, revenue and site interaction.

Behaviour section.

Bounce rate, basket abandonment, time spent on site, pages per session and checkout completion rate.

Bounce Rate: This is an important metric that every retailer should pay close attention to. It tells you when a consumer has come onto your website, not taken any action and then left. It can sometimes indicate potential issues with campaign landing pages - why have the pages not grabbed attention? 

However not all bounce rates should be worried about, some are to be expected/normal. The average bounce rate for eCommerce sites is between 20% and 45% (via customediallabs.com). Basket Abandonment: Basket abandonment is the behavior of customers adding products to their basket but then failing to complete their checkout. 87.4% of all UK eCommerce baskets were abandoned during 2021. While some basket abandonment will always happen, it can pinpoint issues with your checkout process if it's consistently happening and must be looked at in more detail. 

Trading section.

Revenue, Average Order Value (AOV), transactions, conversion rate, net profit, campaign activity and voucher code usage. 

Conversion Rate: While we are not rating these metrics in any order (they are all essential) - it goes without saying, that eCommerce conversion rate is by far the most important metric to track and monitor. Your conversion rate metric is the number of people who made a purchase, compared with the total number of people who accessed your website.

The formula looks like this:

CVR = (# of purchases / # of sessions) x 100 (gives you the %)

Your conversion rate should remain consistent and steady or increase over time. If you see big drops, particularly in comparison to the same period in the previous year, then it could indicate some issues with your website that need investigating. 

If you would like to know what a good conversion rate is, please see Unbounces Conversion Benchmark Report 2021 which found that the average eCommerce conversion rate is 5.2%. 

AOV: Average order value tells you the average transaction amount that customers are spending at your store. It can be worked out simply by the following calculation:

AOV = Total Revenue / Total Number of Orders

Your AOV is a great metric to track because it allows you to gauge revenue and make realistic objectives for new customers. For example if you know your average order value is £50, and you want to achieve £10,000 orders a month - then you know you need 200 orders/month to achieve this. AOV is also different for different customer groups, such as new customers spending less than existing/returning customers. 

Reviewing your eCommerce performance is important because it helps you to learn how your site is being used and where optimisations can be made. Reviewing statistics alongside your own platform reporting and Google Analytics further enhances this and can help you drill down further into behaviours. 

For more useful information on best practice for your eCommerce performance reporting - please download our whitepaper here which includes the best KPIs to include, how to streamline your reports and case studies.