Top 5 e-Commerce KPIs for Your Tableau Dashboard

Tableau provides crucial business intelligence and analytics that help business owners to really understand their own organizations and their performance in the market. But what about e-Commerce specifically? Well, Tableau can help here too.

With these top 5 e-Commerce key performance indicators, business owners can gain a rich understanding of how their website is performing and how it can be optimized.

1. User behavior

Understanding what users are doing on a website is not a KPI in and of itself, but it does lead to some crucial insights that business owners can leverage when assessing their KPIs. In particular, these indicators are user conversion rates, lifetime values and cart abandonment.

Conversion rates are a business owner's bread and butter. If users are visiting an e-Commerce store but not purchasing anything, this is a bad situation and is an indicator that the website is not performing as it should be. 

Lifetime values are crucial. If e-Commerce stores can nurture a good relationship with their customers, this provides them with a steady stream of qualified leads who are already connected with what the website offers. Analyze repeat-purchasers and work to develop the long-term value of each customer.

Cart abandonment does happen, but it needs to be kept to a minimum. If customers repeatedly select products and then do not purchase them, this could imply that the e-Commerce store is not set up correctly.

2. Cost against profit

Measuring cost against profit will help business owners decide how their e-Commerce store is fueling ongoing growth and supporting liquidity in their businesses. For example, a business might be selling lots of products on a regular basis, but if these products are costing too much to source, produce and deliver, this may be hampering profit.

Subtract the value of cost of goods sold (COGS) from sales to arrive at a figure for the gross profit margin. Factor values such as staff salary into the COGS to get a better idea of what kind of profit the business is making. If the gross profit is not enough to drive growth and development within the business, owners may need to reconsider their pricing schemes or make the process more streamlined and efficient.

3. SEO performance

An e-Commerce store needs to be found by potential customers. While word of mouth and social media play a huge role in this, a store page still needs to be performing well on search engines.

Check to see where the audience is coming from. Research which keywords are ideal for bringing search traffic to the e-Commerce store. Target these keywords in web content to make sure that the page is ranking highly on search engine results pages.

If the page is ranking highly on results pages but this is not translating to clicks and traffic, reconfigure metadata so that customers can see at a glance what kind of things the business is offering. A high-performing web page will achieve a good flow of potential customers from search engine results and will convert these visitors into customers.

4. Average value per order

Much of the success of an e-Commerce store is down to upselling and order optimization. Basically, if the store is offering the right add-on and supplemental products to its customers when they make a purchase, or offering the right package deals to clients, the store owner will be able to maximize the value of each order.

If the business is not providing this, its customers may still make a purchase, but the business will be missing out on valuable additional revenue.

Keep an eye on average value per order. Cross-reference this with details of the items that customers purchased, and try to identify what kind of add-on sales they may benefit from. These add-ons could be in the form of products that typically go well together, or business owners may decide to offer an ongoing support subscription to assist and guide customers after purchase.

5. Web traffic

Conversion rates and other KPIs relating to user behavior are certainly important, but website traffic itself is another valuable KPI. This is because the amount of traffic a website is getting proves its value as a piece of digital real estate.

E-Commerce store owners need to track their website traffic, covering such KPIs as the source of the referral — whether from social media, email marketing campaigns, or off-site advertisements — as well as the time that each user spends on the store page. Tableau can also help business owners understand whether users are unique visitors or repeat visitors, which is another KPI that demonstrates how users are engaging with the e-Commerce store.

Getting the Best from Your KPIs

Establish parameters for success
What does success mean in terms of each of these KPIs? The store owner must decide on the values that they want to achieve for each KPI, as well as how much improvement they want to make in each area. Then they will be able to recognize when they have achieved their aims.

• Establish the timescale in which to meet these parameters
Improvement is an ongoing process, but it still needs mile markers along the way so e-Commerce store owners can measure their progress. Set these markers, be flexible where required, but try to keep within established boundaries.

• Set a budget for developing KPIs
An element of investment is required before store owners can start to see real returns, but this investment should not be allowed to run unchecked. Plan the budget carefully and measure progress versus net spend.

Deploy tools to gather data directly from your e-Commerce store
Data can be unwieldy and intimidating, but there are plenty of tools available to make life easier. Our plugin, for example, helps business owners to import data to Tableau directly from their Shopify e-Commerce store.

E-Commerce store owners need knowledge and understanding if they are to grow their businesses and move to the forefront of their market. This knowledge is impossible to gather without tracking the right KPIs. These top 5 KPIs for e-Commerce stores should give business owners a foundation of insight into the performance of their store, but there is much more to discover from delving deeper into Tableau.