Entrepreneurs - Beware of Vanity Metrics

This is the curse of vanity metrics, numbers which look good on paper but aren't action oriented: website hits, message volume, or "billions and billions served." They look great in a press release, but what do they accomplish?

I used to run into this a ton when our web analytics also tracked hits. When we switched to using Google Analytics some of our clients really wanted the old numbers back because they were so much larger.

I had to explain to many of them that there were effectively meaningless and that the new numbers were much better - some of them didn't like that and demanded the old numbers back.

I actually had one former client (who will remain nameless) who demanded that I not filter out the local search engine requests as well - as removing them caused their traffic to drop off sharply. Talk about useless metrics - even more useless when they're incorrect.