Let’s say you have 3,000 articles from over the years. And you’re ready to get serious about your site being a key business asset instead of a garage full of old stuff that’s hard to find.
A good audit process requires we make some decisions around:
- How do you value a page?
- How do you determine whether or not to keep it?
- What do we do with pages that have value, but we decide not to keep because it would be a higher value activity to move or remove?
In the reality, we only have the data we have. Depending on where you are in your business, you may not have the most sophisticated analytics tracking in place. To boot, there is a very real tradeoff for personal brands of trust vs data privacy of your audience.
Whatever isn’t readily available just needs to be replaced by proxies, but even then, we have to make some decisions depending on the way your online business is set up.
Valuing webpages when you sell exclusively through email
A lot of you do this. You launch a new course, group coaching, book one at a time (synchronously) via email. This means you have to compare apples and oranges (a July launch vs a Dec one).
Unless you really have it together re analytics (and I’m not going to try to convince you to do this here), there is a gap between the sales value of those subscriptions and where the subscribers came from (source / medium, landing page, sign up page, previous sessions).
You could see similar subscription rates for 10 pages, but one of those pages could be worth 3x more than the others combined.
Ball parking page value from subscriber value
If you look at your annual sales from email launches, you can do a rough calculation to get your per email value:
Annual revenue from email launches / # of email addresses
If you have 1000 subscribers, and have sold $50,000 in courses, each subscriber would be worth $50/year. Depending on a whole bunch of things, subscriber value can range from $0.50 to about $150 per year.
Page value considering only “new” subscribers
A better calculation for getting per email subscriber value to your site would be to look at sales that came from new subscribers. Stale data around long time subscribers will skew your attributions.
But if you know that the 300 subscribers you gained resulted in $20,000 on sold courses, then our value of a new subscriber is $66 (expect new subscriber value to decay over time) or about double the value of an old subscriber (typically even higher).
Pro tip: Because you know when someone signed up, and you know when they purchased, even having done very little to set up good tracking, you can do a postmortem and get a summary with some sales data CSV exports and email subscriber data CSV exports.
Once we have a dollar value for a new subscriber, we can attach that amount to a goal in Google Analytics. Once that’s been running for a hundred or so goal completions, we can start to see:
- comparative value of landing pages filtered by those who subscribed,
- comparative value of traffic sources
- comparative value of sign up pages (if different from landing pages)
I have to say again that aggregating this way is only good for rough estimates when you aren’t ready to spend a few grand on more developed approach to analytics tracking.
If you are going to keep things simple, keep things simple.
If you sell through Kajabi, a WordPress form with Stripe integration, email links to Moonclerk, then attribution will always be a mess until you have some advanced tracking and standardization.
If you predominantly sell through email, set up your one click integration with Google Analytics and your email provider so at least those events fire in GA and you have the option to slice and dice later.
Valuing webpages when you sell through your site
In the above, we got a per new subscriber annual value. That is one way to we can roughly calculate the aggregate value of a traffic source, landing page or sign up page.
“Page value” metric
If you have an e-commerce site with GA e-commerce enabled in Google Analytics, you can get a “page value” score. This requires your checkout to track order value as a parameter. Easy to set up plugins exist to do this for Shopify, WordPress, SquareSpace, but its also not terribly hard for a dev resource to do for you manually – (maybe a couple hundred dollars with testing).
With “page value,” GA calculates the role a given page played during the user’s session before making a transaction.
(Revenue + Total Goal Value ) / # of Unique Pageviews for Given Page
If you load 3 pages and buy something for $100, the value of each loaded page is calculated at $33 for that session.
In aggregate, you get to see the value contribution of that page for all conversions. This is great for seeing how converting traffic typically flows in a given session, and for identifying outliers you weren’t expecting.
Finding your highest value pages
To use Philip Morgan as an example (again, sorry Philip!), I found this page on a concept he calls, “the fear,” about 18 months ago through a link shared as part of a question to Jonathan stark on a group coaching call.
That page resonated with me so deeply as a mega generalist marketer/designer/developer knowing I needed to specialize but being paralyzed by what I thought I’d be giving up at the time, that it very clearly precipitated me signing up for daily emails, purchasing a book, and then, months later, an 18 month program.
GA’s page value metric would calculate the page value at about $25 for my session. If you tracked purchases and modeled attribution based primarily on that first interaction, you would value that page much higher.
There’s no right answer to how we value pages, because value changes with context. And to an extent, it’s subjective. You might not care about sales on old products because you’re only focused on what’s new.
Or you might be looking to improve systems and funnels around older products in a way that takes the pressure off whatever new thing you’re working.
Your target outcome dictates how you should value pages.