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In June 2017, I attended the Digital Elite Camp conference in Tallinn.

The most exciting reason to attend this conference was its strong focus on website traffic and conversion rate optimization (CRO) — not only does it gather hundreds of data geeks from all around the world, it also features CRO masters such as Peep Laja, the founder of ConversionXL, Erin Weigel, the Principal Designer at Booking.com, and many more.

Anyway, I came back with lots of useful ideas and didn’t want to keep them under my hat. So, here are my five top key takeaways from the Elite Camp.

(But I’m warning you — I got a lot of insight out of this conference, so this post won’t be a short one. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯)

Here we go:

1) Purchases and registrations are not (always) the right metrics to focus on

Instead, what you should really focus on if you want to grow your business, is your North Star Metric (NSM).

Your business’s north star is the real value your customer gets from your product. The north star metric measures the key benefit you deliver to your customer with your product.

Let me explain:

Let’s say your product is a messaging app. Then your north star metric is how many messages a day your customers are sending through your app.

The fact that your customer user has downloaded your app and now has it on the device, is not the value the user gets from your product. The ability to send messages, on the other hand, is.

The higher your north star metric is, the better your product fit and your customers will keep coming back. And the more often they use your product, the more they will suggest it to their friends, family and other people they know.

Here are some more examples of north star metrics:

If you write a blog, your north star metric the total time people spend reading it — that shows the content is useful and relevant to your blog visitors. On Google Analytics, look for the ‘’Avg. Time on Page’’ metric.

If you run an ecommerce store, it can be repeat purchases. The fact that buyers are coming back and buy again means you’re selling the right products and people are happy with your service. On Google Analytics, keep an eye on the number of transactions and the total conversion value from your ‘’Returning Visitors’’.

If you offer a booking tool or service, then your north star metric is the total number of bookings made through your website. On Google Analytics, look for the ‘’Goal Completions’’ metric, which in this case will be bookings made.

So, again:

To find your north star metric, first find the key benefit your product delivers to your customer. Then find a metric that qualifies. Then, keep an eye on this metric and try to increase it month by month.

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