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Inverse Metrics 

Inverse metrics on a website are deemed more favorable when their values decrease.

For instance, if you notice an increase in the drop-off rate on your website’s cart page using analytics tools, and the heatmap analysis confirms the same, you might run a test to ‘reduce’ the drop-off. Ideally, you want the checkout rate to increase while the drop-off rate decreases.

In this example, the drop-off rate is the inverse metric you aim to decrease. A reduction in the drop-off rate can contribute to an increase in other crucial metrics, indicating that visitors are taking desired actions on your website and leading to an uplift in conversions for your business.

What are some inverse metrics?

Whether you want to improve conversions, introduce a new feature, or investigate navigation bottlenecks on your website, tracking inverse metrics is important to understand where visitors encounter problems and to find ways to reduce their values. Here are some inverse metrics you should watch out for: 

Page load time

The page load time is an inverse metric because the lower it is, the better the visitor experience on a website. Consequently, maintaining a low page load time helps control other inverse metrics, such as bounce rates.

Bounce rate

Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors leaving after viewing one page on a website. It is important to maintain a low bounce rate to encourage visitors to explore further and move down the conversion funnel on your website.

Refund rate

Refund rate represents the percentage of customers requesting refunds for products or services. A lower refund rate suggests customer satisfaction, good product quality, and effective marketing, all of which are positive indicators for a business.

Customer support tickets

A decrease in the number of customer support tickets indicates that visitors are experiencing fewer issues or challenges with the products or services offered by a business. This could indicate improved product quality, clearer instructions, intuitive features, or the proactive resolution of common customer pain points. 

Form abandonment rate

When visitors abandon web forms midway, it indicates that they found the form-filling process to be a hassle. You can monitor the field-level friction points through form analytics. A clear and intuitive form design encourages visitors to smoothly progress through the required fields.

Cart abandonment rate

A higher cart abandonment rate suggests that visitors are dropping off before completing their purchases, signaling friction in the conversion funnel. Do you want to learn effective methods for minimizing cart abandonment on your website? Download our eBook for valuable frameworks, tips, and real-world examples to guide you through the process.

Cost per acquisition

A lower Cost Per Acquisition (CPA) is desirable because it means a business is acquiring customers at a lower cost, improving profits and returns. Businesses can prioritize high-return channels to acquire new customers, nurture relationships with existing customers, and implement customer retention strategies to bring down CPA.

Businesses successfully reducing inverse metrics

Businesses actively strive to keep inverse metrics under check because a reduction in these values will indicate an improvement in visitor engagement and experience on their websites. Here are some brands that strategized to control inverse metrics and saw improvement in conversion metrics:

  • ReplaceDirect, a Dutch eCommerce site, revamped the second stage of the checkout process by adding an order overview showing the products, total costs, and delivery date. The layouts of the page and the form were changed for a cleaner look, and unnecessary fields were removed. It decreased the cart abandonment rate by 25% and increased sales by 12%.
  • MedaliaArt, an online art gallery, conducted a split URL test where they created two new versions of homepages with a holiday sale banner displayed at different locations – one at the top and another on the right. They wanted to track which variation could help reduce the bounce rate on the website. Variation 1, which showed the banner prominently at the top, was a winner, reducing the bounce rate by 21%.
  • POSist, an online restaurant management platform, wanted to increase the number of sign-ups for a demo of their platform. The team started with homepage improvements to figure out ways to reduce the drop-off on the website. They also reduced the loading time and enhanced the overall performance of their website to ensure faster loading on all devices and platforms. This optimization resulted in a 15.45% increase in visits to the contact page. Moreover, these changes addressed fundamental issues and laid the foundation for a couple of other tests that increased demo requests by 52%.

The lower the values of inverse metrics, the better the visitor experience. If you’re wondering where to start making changes to keep these metrics in check, VWO can help. With VWO, you can derive insights from visitor behavior, identify friction areas, run tests, and implement changes to control inverse metrics. 

In fact, VWO recently introduced two powerful metrics – time spent on page and bounce rate. These metrics reveal how visitors behave, enabling increased engagement and better conversions on a website. In experiments where the bounce rate serves as a metric, VWO views lower bounce rate conversions as a sign of improved performance. To explore all the features of VWO, sign up for a free trial