We seek here to identify the vanity metrics and the actionable metrics for online retailers.


Vanity metrics:

  • Social media followers/Likes, etc: While these indicate that people like seeing updates/information from the business, it doesn’t necessarily indicate that anyone is willing to spend money. With the reach of organic being cut drastically by social media giants, the significance of social media traction is bound to be even lower soon.
  • Page-views/Time on site: This indicates site quality but doesn’t necessarily mean that any business will happen

  • Total number of visitors: Many visitors to a site dont purchase anything and this number can be artificially driven up by ads

  • Number of app installs/likes, etc: A lot of people install an app and don’t use it often

  • Add to carts: Unless the final conversion happens most of the time, this number loses meaning


Actionable metrics:

  • Users who purchase regularly/Repeat visitors: A lot of the revenues made by online retailers come from these users

  • Conversion rates, Bounce/Dropoff rates: This number is many times indicative of any blocks happening in the buying process

  • Direct/Organic search traffic: This is quite often high intent traffic and indicates the brand’s pull.
  • Customer acquisition cost, Customer lifetime value: These metrics are so critical that the retailer’s viability itself is judged on the basis of these


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