Ryan McLean : Slightly Unconventional

What Metrics Should You Measure For Your Niche Website

I have been running websites for many years now. Only recently have I actually been having decent success in relation to the work I am putting it (which is almost nothing).

A big problem I have struggled with when growing online businesses is tracking the wrong metrics
– Visitors per day
– Email subscribers
– RSS subscribers
– Amount of blog comments

These metrics can all be defined as “vanity metrics”. They don’t actually deliver the results I want. If I have loads of visitors but no one is clicking on ads then I make no money.

Thus I wanted to write this post to ensure I am focused on the right metrics that will actually deliver the results I desire (more cash on the side).

I have broken down my websites and will be tracking the following metrics on a monthly basis.

Total Earnings – The total amount earned by the site in the month.

Pageviews – I am moving away from visitors as Adsense calculates things based on pageviews…so I may as well stick with that

RPM – Revenue per 1,000 impressions. This shows me that for every 1,000 impressions I make X dollars

CPC + CTR – Cost Per Click and Click Through Rate create the RPM. I will track these but only closely monitor if I think RPM is being negatively effected.

PPP – Pageviews per Page. This will track the average amount of pageviews each page receives

RPP – Revenue per page will show me how much each page is making per month on average.

Keeping The End Goal In Mind

If you recall this post my goal was to have each blog growing by investing the money back into new articles.

I am keeping this in mind because I want to know exactly what my expected ROI will be for each article written. I want to know how long it will take me to earn my money back and what my return on investment will be.

This will help me to find out how much I am willing to pay for each article and how soon I will recoup my money and be able to continue to grow the business.

Site #1 – ROI
This is my main earning site and at this stage if I was to commission a $25 article it would take me about 2-3 years to make my money back in full. This is the equivalent of a 30-50% return on investment. Much better than putting money in the bank.

Site #2 – ROI
This is a much newer niche site (the one starting to take off). So for Feb I have already doubled my Jan traffic, but income is currently half that of Jan.

At this stage if I was to commission at $25 article it would take me 36-40 years to recoup my money (and that’s based of Jan’s higher earnings). Obviously I won’t be putting any money into this site quite yet. It needs more time to see if it is worth investing into. Then if it does pick up I will probably start with cheaper articles ($10 a pop) so I can get a better return on investment.

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