Inside this article
Managing a successful eCommerce business is a complex task that involves multiple actions. However, as the business expands and the time to delegate comes, you’ll notice that you may easily start to lose perspective of different aspects of your online store.
This is when it helps to know the most important eCommerce KPIs to track. Take a look at the most relevant KPIs that make an impact on achieving your business goals.
Overview of eCommerce KPIs
|Average order value (AOV)||Average order value = Revenue / Number of orders|
|Conversion rate (CR)||Conversion rate = (Number of visitors / Number of conversions) x 100|
|Shopping cart abandonment rate||Cart abandonment rate = 1 – (Transactions / Shopping carts) x 100|
|Customer lifetime value (CLV)||Customer lifetime value = (Profits of customers in a period of time X average period of time buyers are customers) – the acquisition cost|
|Customer acquisition cost (CAC)||Customer acquisition cost = Cost spent on acquiring customers / Nº of new customers|
|Churn rate||Churn rate = (Lost customers in a time period / Customers in the same time period) x 100|
|Repeat purchase rate (RPR)||Repeat purchase rate = Purchases from repeat customers / Total number of sales|
|Purchase frequency||Purchase frequency = Number of orders / Number of one-time customers|
|Time between purchases||Time between purchases = Purchase frequency / time period|
|Inventory turnover||Inventory turnover = Net sales / Average inventory|
|Revenue per visitor||Revenue per visitor = Net profits / number of visitors|
|Average session on the website||Average session length = Total duration of sessions / Total number of sessions|
|Pageviews per session||Pageviews/session = Number of page views / Total number of visits|
|Cost per conversion (CPC)||Cost per conversion = Cost spent on acquiring customers / Nº of new customers|
|Pay-per-click (PPC)||Pay per click cost = Total cost of ads / Number of clicked ads|
|Bounce rate||Bounce rate = Total number of one-page visits / Total number of entries to a website|
|ROAS||Return on ad spend = (revenue from ads / cost of ads) x 100|
|Email list growth rate||Email list growth rate = [(New subscribers – Number of unsubscriptions) / Subscribers] x 100|
|Email bounce rate||Email bounce rate = (Number of bounced emails / Number of emails sent) x 100|
|Email open rate||Email open rate = (Number of opened emails / Number of successfully sent emails) x 100|
|Click-through rate (CTR)||Click-through rate = Number of clicks / Number of impressions|
|Email CTR||Email click-through rate = (Number of clicks / Number of opened emails) x 100|
|Email conversion rate||Email conversion rate = (Number of email conversions / Number of emails sent) x 100|
|Social media engagement||-|
|Net Promoter Score (NPS)||-|
|Customer Service Email/Call Count||-|
|First response time||-|
|Average Complaint Resolution Time||Avg. Resolution time = (Number of CS requests – Number of unresolved requests) / Number of requests|
What is an eCommerce KPI?
An eCommerce KPI is a metric that has an impact on the profits, management or performance of an online store.
These eCommerce KPIs are indicators that can determine the success of the business, monitoring business growth, sales, and your customer support goals.
Ideally, your eCommerce KPIs should be selected depending on your business goals.
Why are eCommerce KPIs important?
Measuring the most important eCommerce KPIs provides you with updated and relevant information about revenue, marketing or customer experience, among other things. Unless these eCommerce KPIs are tracked, you’ll need to rely on non-reliable data to make decisions.
Most importantly, they help you understand which strategies work, and which don’t, providing insights to rectify problems. Overall, using key performance indicators will help you achieve your business goals and increase your conversion rate.
ECommerce KPIs to track sales
The most commonly measured eCommerce KPIs for conversion and sales are:
1. Average Order Value (AOV)
Average order value (AOV) or “average market basket” provides information on how much customers spend per order, on average. The AOV KPI gives a clearer view of your revenue per customer and can help you make decisions, such as the minimum threshold to apply for free shipping.
Average order value = Revenue / Number of orders
2. Conversion Rate (CR)
The conversion rate (CR) is a KPI that pinpoints the rate at which people are making a specific action that is perceived by your business as a conversion. Generally, when we talk about online stores, the conversion rate represents purchases.
Conversion rate = (Number of visitors / Number of conversions) x 100
By measuring your conversion rate, you'll be able to see what percentage of users arriving at the checkout end up making a purchase, or what percentage of the emails you send to your customers are actually opened.
It basically measures the ratio of the chances of achieving a goal to the number of times that goal has been met. This is why the conversion rate is also frequenlty used to measure the success behind a specific marketing campaign.
3. Shopping Cart Abandonment Rate (CAR)
The cart abandonment rate (CAR) is one of the most frequently tracked KPIs in eCommerce. This measures how many visitors add products to the shopping cart but don’t finalize the purchase. This can be due to the fact that there are frictions in the checkout process or some other factors interfering with the sale.
Cart abandonment rate = 1 – (Transactions / Shopping carts) x 100
4. Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)
The customer lifetime value is an important eCommerce KPI if your online store is focused on customer loyalty and retention.
Basically, by tracking this KPI, you’ll know how much every customer is worth to your business —in dollars.
Customer lifetime value = (Profits of customers in a period of time X average period of time buyers are customers) – the acquisition cost
5. Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)
The customer acquisition cost is one of the most important KPIs in eCommerce when it comes to measuring many of the resources you are spending on gaining customers.
Customer acquisition cost = Cost spent on acquiring customers / Nº of new customers
However, it’s important to keep in mind that while the cost of customer acquisition is important, if your online store is focused on building a solid audience of buyers, you’ll need to focus more resources on customer retention.
6. Churn Rate
The churn rate is an especially important eCommerce KPI if you are an online store that offers products that should be recurrently purchased. By tracking your churn rate, you’ll know at what pace your customers are canceling the subscription to your product or service.
Churn rate = (Lost customers in a time period / Customers in the same time period) x 100
7. Repeat Purchase Rate (RPR)
The repeat purchase rate —or repurchase rate— is a great eCommerce metric if you sell a variety of products that can be purchased frequently.
The repurchase rate can also be used as an objective representation of customer loyalty and a way to obtain data for the optimization of your sales and marketing decisions.
Repeat purchase rate = Purchases from repeat customers / Total number of sales
8. Purchase Frequency
The purchase frequency, similar to the repurchase rate, measures how many orders a customer makes in a specific time period.
While the repurchase rate is a percentage, tracking the purchase frequency provides an average number of orders during a specific period.
Purchase frequency = Number of orders / Number of one-time customers
9. Time Between Purchases
If you are ready to measure your purchase frequency, another eCommerce KPI to track (since you have the information needed) is the time between purchases.
This metric can help you understand how much time passes between each purchase. For instance, once you start tracking this KPI, you can find out if there are any purchasing patterns that can be used to create more efficient marketing campaigns, based on real behavior.
Time between purchases = Purchase frequency / time period
Depending on the nature of your products —for instance, if you sell commodities such as food products, or if you sell items that are less frequently bought— the time period can be one month (in the case of a grocery store) or one year (in the case of a clothing store).
10. Inventory Turnover
Inventory turnover is an important KPI and financial ratio that eCommerce businesses need to take into account to maximize their warehouse resources and production levels.
Inventory turnover will provide a clear view on your stock levels and sales performance.
Inventory turnover = Net sales / Average inventory
One thing to consider before calculating your inventory turnover is that the inventory you include in this formula needs to have its regular retail price. Otherwise, this metric will cloud other eCommerce KPI benchmarks, such as ROAS (return on ad spend) and other marketing-related KPIs.
Plus, your inventory turnover results would be dependent on product discounts and special offers, such as Christmas or Black Friday campaigns.
11. Revenue Per Visitor
This is one of the most important eCommerce KPIs if your online store is rapidly growing or your audience has changed because of a new marketing or branding strategy, or because of product launches.
By calculating the revenue per visitor, you’ll get to know the value behind each visitor, not just a single customer (like in the repurchase rate).
Revenue per visitor = Net profits / number of visitors
Depending on the online store and what you want to measure, this metric can be calculated for a month, a year, or for a specific event. For instance, you can calculate the revenue per visitor in a product launch or for a marketing campaign.
Different from the conversion rate (where you compare visitors vs. conversions), you’ll obtain a certain amount of money per visitor in Revenue Per Visitor. With the conversion rate, you’ll get a percentage that represents how many of these visitors convert, but not the profits they bring.
ECommerce KPIs to measure marketing actions
The most commonly used eCommerce KPIs in marketing are:
12. Website Traffic
Your website traffic refers to the total number of people who visit your online eCommerce store. This may not be particularly relevant to an online store, but it can come in handy if you want to carry out a specific marketing campaign or if you want to track conversions from your website.
13. Referral Sources
Just as important —or possibly even more important— as knowing your website traffic is knowing where it comes from. This can help you optimize actions that may give you more losses than profits, and increase the marketing budget for elements that are more profitable for your business, whether this is paid ads, social media channels, organic content, etc.
14. Average Session on the Website
Another source of valuable information may be the amount of time a visitor spends on your site. For instance, if you see that the average session is just a couple of seconds (a.k.a. high bounce rate), you may realize that you have a problem with the loading speed or that your website has other usability issues.
To calculate it, follow this formula:
Average session length = Total duration of sessions / Total number of sessions
15. Pageviews Per Session
Another relevant eCommerce KPI is the number of pages viewed by a visitor in each session.
This metric will help you understand not only the relevance of your webpages, but also the efficiency of the purchasing process.
For instance, if a customer needs to click many times to get to the product catalog or add products to their shopping cart, this is a possible point to improve to reduce frictions in the checkout process.
Generally speaking, online stores with a higher pageview/session rate will achieve less purchases.
Pageviews/session = Number of page views / Total number of visits
16. Cost Per Conversion (CPC)
The cost per conversion is one of the most important KPIs in eCommerce when it comes to measuring how many resources you are spending on to gain customers.
Cost per conversion = Cost spent on acquiring customers / Nº of new customers
However, it’s important to keep in mind that while the cost per conversion is important, if your online store is focused on building a solid audience of buyers, you’ll need to invest more resources on customer retention than in customer acquisition.
17. Pay-Per-Click (PPC)
This is an important eCommerce marketing KPI to consider if you are working with ads under a PPC model, such as Google Ads and ad campaigns on other platforms.
By knowing how much you are paying for each visit, you’ll be able to know how much you are spending in the first stage of the conversion funnel.
Pay per click cost = Total cost of ads / Number of clicked ads
18. Average Position
Related to your marketing opportunities through online searches is the average position.
By measuring this KPI, you’ll be able to know how high or low your web pages appear —promoted or not— in the SERP (search engine results page). Ideally, you would want to rank in the highest positions to increase the chances of gaining new customers and boosting your repurchase rate.
19. Bounce Rate
As mentioned before, the bounce rate gives a clear view on possible web-related problems such as a slow loading speed, a non-responsive website, or a poor UX (customer experience, such as their ability to navigate your website).
By knowing your bounce rate, you can figure out if there’s an issue on your website that is holding you back from selling.
Bounce rate = Total number of one-page visits / Total number of entries to a website
This eCommerce KPI is used to measure the profits obtained from a promoted marketing campaign.
ROAS, or “return on ad spend”, reflects the revenue earned for every euro/dollar spent on a campaign.
It can be applied to an entire marketing strategy or to a specific marketing action, which is why it is so often chosen to be tracked.
ROAS is calculating by applying this formula:
Return on ad spend = (revenue from ads / cost of ads) x 100
21. Email List Growth Rate
This is another important eCommerce KPI that is relevant for all online stores who carry out email marketing strategies and need this information.
Email list growth rate = [(New subscribers – Number of unsubscriptions) / Subscribers] x 100
Use the power of email marketing and the open rate of emails to cross-sell products and share discounts, offers, and other information relevant to your audience.
22. Email Bounce Rate
Now, related to email marketing actions, there are many other eCommerce KPIs to track.
For instance, it’s important to measure your email bounce rate to make sure you are sending emails to existing and correct addresses.
Otherwise, you will be losing resources that could be spent somewhere else. Find out which email addresses should be deleted from your database to minimize your email bounce rate.
Email bounce rate = (Number of bounced emails / Number of emails sent) x 100
23. Email Open Rate
The open rate for emails is one of the highest when it comes to communicating with your customers. To create successful email campaigns, it’s important to create a catchy subject line and to include relevant information in the body.
Email open rate = (Number of opened emails / Number of successfully sent emails) x 100
24. Click-through Rate
The click-through rate —or CTR— is a metric that can help you uncover the success behind your titles and meta descriptions, whether it be ads or organic posts.
A low CTR could mean that the keywords you are using aren’t right for your business or sector, or that the copy needs some tweaking.
Click-through rate = Number of clicks / Number of impressions
25. Email CTR
This marketing KPI can be used if you carry out email marketing campaigns that include a link to one of your webpages. For instance, to products in a promotion or to items that you plan to upsell or cross-sell. When your CTR is low, consider placing the links in banners that are more attractive (in terms of aesthetics and marketing).
Email click-through rate = (Number of clicks / Number of opened emails) x 100
The email click-through rate can also help you understand your conversion rate from email marketing strategies. In other words, by knowing how many people clicked on the link from the email, it will be easier to know how many of these clicks converted into sales.
26. Email Conversion Rate
The email conversion rate is the ultimate indicator of a successful email marketing strategy since, at the end of the day, the purpose of these emails is to boost sales.
Calculate your email conversion rate by following this formula:
Email conversion rate = (Number of email conversions / Number of emails sent) x 100
27. Social Media Engagement
If your online store is B2C and your audience is comfortable using social media platforms, it’s important to build a brand presence on all the channels that they use to communicate or find brands. This will help grow your sales and strengthen customer relations.
The engagement on social media can be measured by the number of likes, comments, and followers, messages, shares, and many other factors that can be extracted from the analytics section of each social media platform.
28. Texting Subscribers
Another way to reach customers is through SMS campaigns. For this, you’ll obviously need customers’ phone numbers and their permission to receive marketing offers through this channel.
Keeping track of how many of your customers are comfortable with this marketing technique and measuring the results it brings to your eCommerce benchmarks, it’s important to adapt your message according to conversions and continue using SMS as a marketing element or switch to other types of marketing campaigns if it is proving unsuccessful.
29. Product Affinity
Product affinity is an often-forgotten KPI that online stores can use to implement more efficient upselling and cross-selling campaigns. By knowing which products are frequently bought together, you’ll be able to create marketing campaigns to increase the repurchase rate at first, but to potentially grow the AOV, too.
ECommerce KPIs to measure customer service
The most commonly measured eCommerce KPIs for customer service are:
30. Net Promoter Score (NPS)
The net promoter score is one of the most important eCommerce KPIs in relation to customer satisfaction.
To measure your NPS, online stores ask customers how likely they are to recommend the brand.
When this question is followed by a scale of number from 1 to 10, the study and reflection on the NPS will be easier since the company will have a clear view of the quantitative results of the survey.
When all these grades are added and divided by the number of respondents, you’ll also have the CSAT Score (customer satisfaction score).
31. Customer Service Email/Call Count
If you offer customer support via email, phone, or chat, there are many other metrics that you should also consider.
For instance, you can start by measuring the number of communications received in your customer support team over a period of time (i.e. week, month, or year).
32. First Response Time
Another key factor for good customer service is a first-response time as low as possible. You can measure the average first-response time by adding all the first-response times (in minutes or hours) and dividing it by the number of responses.
Applied to every customer support agent, this KPI can also provide an overview of the efficiency of every employee.
33. Average Complaint Resolution Time
Related to the first response time but aimed at a longer process is the average complaint resolution time.
Providing answers and solutions that are fast and satisfactory to the customer is an essential practice for the long-term success of an online store that’s focused on its buyers.
To know how long it takes for your customer support team to solve, on average, calculate using the following formula:
Avg. Resolution time = (Number of CS requests – Number of unresolved requests) / Number of requests
34. Return Rate (RR)
A high refund (or return rate) is often a reflection of an underlying issue in the way you market or ship your products. In other words, you aren’t fulfilling customer expectations and either the products are arriving in poor conditions or the items arriving to customers aren’t what they expected when they made the purchase.
Find out how often products are getting returned and the value of these returns as an added benefit of using Outvio. This post-checkout platform creates a hub for all the post-checkout operations of an online store, automating and optimizing eCommerce activities and providing updated information automatically.
35. Hit Rate
Products with a high volume of returns have a high hit rate. This metric considers the total number of sales of a product and compares it with the customer service communications this product triggered.
To calculate it, follow this formula:
Hit rate= Number of sales / Number of customers that asked about this product
Product and brand reviews are great for various reasons: They serve as social proof for new customers, they can boost your SEO, and they can provide useful feedback for the business and its products.
Checking the number of reviews your brand and products get and the quality of feedback you receive is an essential KPI to track as part of your eCommerce branding strategy.
After revisiting some of the most important eCommerce KPIs and potentially discovering new ones, tracking these sales, marketing, and customer service KPIs will help you find out possible weaknesses and opportunities of your online store.
Business goals often require taking a holistic approach and getting a complete overview of the company, its processes, and results in order to make informed decisions and grow a business that is more efficient and profitable in the long run.