Top 5 most used KPIs for lead generation

Lead generation KPIAs you know, getting someone in the door is often the most difficult part of any business. And the truth of the matter is, once you get them in the door, you can’t always be sure whether they’re actually a potential customer, or if they just wandered in by accident.

That’s where effective and efficient lead generation comes in!

You know the drill: identify the people who have shown interest in your product or service (or a complimentary product or service that could make them open to yours), pinpoint the best way to engage with them, bring them into your sales funnel, and start a discussion with them.

If your lead generation has been on par and you’ve spent your energy on the right leads and reached them effectively, your sales should increase accordingly.

But how do you know if your lead generation is working? With a kick-ass lead generation dashboard that helps you keep track of your progress!

And what are the five most used key performance indicators (KPI) for lead generation that should be included in your KPI dashboard? We analyzed all of the executive dashboards created in DashThis to figure out what most marketers were tracking, and we found the following are the top KPIs implemented.


1- New account signups

Obviously, this is the most relevant KPI, since every new account signup is by definition, a highly qualified visitor. A big part of the job is already done by the time someone is willing to actively test your product.


2- Conversion rate (# conversion / # visits)

In terms of lead generation, a conversion can be anything from a free trial signup, a subscription to your newsletter, a video view, or a download of your sales or marketing documentation. In your executive dashboard, all of these should ideally be grouped together as one KPI, so that you can determine your conversion rate clearly.


3- Qualified visits ratio (#qualified visits / # visits)

As we mentioned, not all visitors are equally interesting to you from a business standpoint. It’s important, therefore, to filter out the qualified visits from the mass of unqualified visits (ie. those who just wandered onto your site accidentally). A qualified visit can range from a visitor who arrived from your PPC campaign, someone who watches your video, someone who browses your products or services, etc. Basically, anyone who takes an action that indicates a sincere interest in what you have to offer.


4- Search traffic ratio (#visits from search / #visits)

Similar to the previous KPI (in which you filter the qualified visits from the total visits), you also want to filter where your incoming traffic is coming from. Search traffic ratio shows you your visits coming from search (as opposed to other methods of traffic generation, such as ads). With this KPI, you might want to qualify your search visits by defining relevant keywords, in order to see which ones are driving the most traffic (and the most qualified traffic at that).


5- Site abandonment by qualified visits (#qualified visits who didn’t convert / # visits)

You know your conversion rate by now, but how many qualified visits did you lose while you were converting those other ones? Losing valuable visits means losing business, and nobody wants that, right? This KPI will show you how many of your qualified visitors abandoned your site. By fine-tuning your strategy and your content accordingly, this number should be going down over time.


Tell us: what are the KPIs you use to track lead generation in your executive dashboard?

And now, are you ready to create a great dashboard chock-full of these, and more, lead generation KPIs?

Automate digital reporting

With beginnings in traditional print media, Nathalie has been in digital communications management, PR, & content marketing for 8 years. She is now in charge of communications, PR & content marketing at DashThis, where she spends her time sharing her expertise in dashboard reporting.

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Category: Digital Marketing and KPIs, Key Performance Indicators (KPI), Marketing Dashboards 4 comments »

  • Damion Rutherfors

    Glad to see others talking about KPI’s!.

    I’m not sure my answer will apply directly to your service, but these are the ones I track. There are 4 of them.

    First, Marketing $ Used. If you know the amount of money needed to generate your actionable item, and you your goals of how many actionable items you need each period, you know the amount of money you need to invest to hit your goals. If you do not invest the money, you will not hit your goal (unless other things in the business process change).

    Second – # actions. As you mentioned in your first point.

    Third, ADA (average dollar per action). This KPI tells me, on average, how much revenue we make for each actionable item that occurs (for my company, it’s lead generation). For example, if I generate 100 actionable items, and generate $100,000 in revenue from those items, then my ADA would be $100,000 / 100, or $1000. This is a good “50,000 foot view” number to look at. If the number increases, I know we’re becoming more efficient with what we have to work with. If it drops, it tells me we’re losing efficiency, revenue, and profit – and I need to dig in deeper to find out why.

    The final KPI I track is marketing %. What percentage of my revenue went to my marketing budget. If, using the above example, I spent $10,000 to generate the results, then my Marketing % would be $10,000 in marketing / $100,000 revenue, or 10%. This is a CRUCIAL number to track. In many cases, all other parts/costs in your business remain consistent. Direct costs for a sale are typically similar. Fixed costs to run the business are typically similar. However, your marketing % can vary drastically based on the results you get from your investment. Every percentage you save/lose in your marketing percentage, goes directly onto your bottom line.

    Hope this helps add to the conversation!

  • admin

    Hi Damion,

    This is very interesting. But would you put these KPIs into “lead generation” category? If so, why? I intent to write another post about e-commerce KPIs and those are the kind I think would fit into that category.

    Anyway, this is not a big deal as the objective here is to get the best you can get out of Web analytics, no matter into what category any KPI fits ;-)

    Thanks for stopping by! :-)

  • Damion Rutherford

    Thanks for the feedback!

    As I mentioned, it might not match up exactly! I think after looking around more, this is KPI’s from a website analytic s view, correct? I originally found the post from a Google alert.

    For my reasoning, there’s more to track than just the “action’. All actionable items are not created equally. For example, you may have a campaign that’s bringing traffic and leads and such, but that’s as far as the process goes. Nothing comes from the lead, no sales, no revenue, etc. That’s the purpose, IMHO, for the other KPI’s that put a value on what you get from the lead.

    For example, let’s say I generated 10,000 website visitors, and 300 of them filed out a form requesting an estimate for services. OK great – I can tell my conversion rate is 3%. That’s what I call the “bucket theory” to stat tracking. By digging down into different sources, I might find traffic from search converts at 1%, and traffic from social media accounts converts at 20%. Obviously, I want to see if I can squeeze more out of the social accounts, and make changes to what is offered to the search traffic to bump that conversion.

    Now, going further, if I track the ADA of each action, I might find that, on average, I generate $100 from every actionable item (form submission using the example above). Again, its the average. The “bucket theory”.

    By digging into my data, I might find a source that generates leads but nothing ever comes out of them. From here I can find out reasons and make adjustments. Perhaps I have an affiliate program that pays for “leads”, and I have affiliates using shady tactics to get people to fill out the lead form, when their intention truly isn’t to get the service being offered.

    SO, summing all of that up, I like KPI’s that track each department in the business machine by themselves. I also like to have some “mix” KPi’s, typically, that take some data from the next department in the process and match it to the data in the current department. This helps me tell if that departments directly-tracked results are providing value into the next step of the business process.

    Hope that made sense!

  • Stephane

    It sure makes a lot of sense! It obvious you’re not a rookie in Web analytics ;)

    Thanks for sharing :)


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