Monday, February 27, 2012

An Explanation of Macro, Micro, Value, and Action Metrics

One of the first things you need to do for any analytics program is define your key performance indicators (KPIs). KPIs should be objectives and results, sometimes referred to as OKRs ( The simple idea is to define what and where positive results happen on your site. Objectives help keep your eye on the ball and results help tell you if you got a touchdown. Measuring KPIs can typically be classified into four silos: macro, micro, value, and action metrics. These are defined as follows:

Macro metrics
Macro metrics look at a large subset of information. In the realm of SEO metrics, examples might include the total number of inbound links to a page, average keyword position for a group of keywords, or total number of visitors from search. These analytics are often useful when meeting with upper management, when responding to marketing requests, and for understanding general ROI values.

Micro metrics
These metrics examine the smaller parts of a macro metric. For example, if you were looking at the total number of links to a page, the micro metric would look at what domains are linking to that page. Often, these analytics are great for understanding where certain SEO or SEM elements need to be tweaked. Macro metrics often drive the micro metrics that are examined.

Action metrics
Action metrics capture a user’s input or response (for example, clicking deeper into your website or interacting with 3D demos). Testing out different ad copies to see which one results in the most clicks is an example of an action metric, measuring when the user takes action. Action metrics are an excellent way to measure the usability and experience of your site.

Value metrics
Value metrics are tied directly to revenue or other goals that are considered the core driving forces of your website. These metrics might include clicking on web banners that create revenue for you, purchasing from an ecommerce engine, or subscribing to your newsletter. Value metrics may be a subgroup of action metrics. Value metrics are also the touchdowns. These are your goals and conversions.

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