What Engagement Metrics Should You Track for Your Live Online Events?

October 5, 2022

Hosting live online events for your online learning program or community? Chances are you’d like to get a sense of how those events are performing. 

Whether it’s to tweak your current event programming, schedule, or speakers, collecting data on event performance can provide you with essential signals to make pivotal changes to your events. 

But what data exactly should you collect? We dig into a variety of different engagement metrics you can track below. 

Which Metrics Should You Track? 

Number of registered guests: This represents the number of people interested in attending your event. An event with high registration and low turnout could mean that the event topic or speaker was really interesting, but the schedule wasn’t great or the event reminders weren’t sufficient. 

Number of attendees: Tracking attendance is essential to understand whether your event was of interest to your members and whether the event itself was accessible. It’s especially instructive when compared to registration or RSVP numbers. 

Number of on-time: For members to attend an event on time, a lot of your event management efforts need to have gone right. The topic needs to be interesting, the timing needs to work, attendees need to have the event saved on their calendar and get reminded in the right places ahead of the event. If you host an event with a high number of on-time attendees, it means you did everything possible to overcome barriers to attendance. Good for you! 

Number of late participants: Tracking late participants is important because it can signal how accessible your event really was. Maybe members wanted to attend, but couldn’t find the right Zoom link at join time. Or maybe they were doing deep work and didn’t get a reminder to join. Even if your event topic is great, these small things can affect your participant numbers as well as the attendee experience overall. 

Attendance duration: Understanding how long participants stay in your events can give you clues into which point exactly their attention may be waning. Are many participants dropping off around the same time? Do they tend to drop off in alignment with a group activity? Or when a specific speaker takes the reins? These are all clues you can learn from.  

Qualitative feedback: The numbers tell one story, but getting juicy qualitative feedback about your events is one of the best tools to help you iterate and improve on your live online event offerings. The best way to collect this feedback is by sending surveys right after your event while event details are still fresh in participants’ minds. 

Speaking of data, learn how you can leverage data to find course-market fit here.

How can you collect all this data?

Spreadsheets: You can track all of the data above in a spreadsheet. Copy and paste registrants, manually take attendance and manually send out feedback forms to add to your spreadsheet. The upside? You can structure it any way you want! The downside? This can be pretty time consuming and susceptible to human error. 

Zoom reports: You can access attendance data straight from Zoom. The upside? It’ll include when members joined and left an event. The downside? You’ll often need to manually match ‘Sarah’s iphone’ with the right email after the fact. Not to mention that you’ll still need to send out feedback surveys on your own if you'd like to collect qualitative data as well. 

Virtually: Virtually lets you automate the collection of all the data points mentioned above for all of your live online events. What’s more, after an event ends, you can see all your event analytics (registration, attendance and feedback) right on Virtually or easily export it to your tool of choice. Access your 7-day free trial here

Read Next: 3 Big Picture Insights You Can Learn from Attendance Data

Laura Marks

Laura Marks is Head of Customer Experience at Virtually