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How to set attainable online marketing goals
Trevor Hatfield1/12/15 12:18 PM2 min read

How to Set Attainable Online Marketing Goals (SMART Goals)


It's a new year with new goals! At Inturact, we take a cue from our HubSpot colleagues and make "SMART" goals for ourselves. I know, acrostics are so... elementary school? But, this one is a good reminder of what's really important in actionable goal setting. So what does SMART stand for?

S-SmartSPECIFIC: Visits, Leads, or Customers
Do you want to increase traffic, nurture traffic into leas or convert leads into customers?

M-SmartMEASURABLE: Provide a Number
Decide on an exact number to measure and increase

A-SmartATTAINABLE: Understand Benchmarks
Research your past analytics to make sure the goal is realistic with your resources

R-SmartREALISTIC: Relates Back to Overall End Goal
Make sure that each goal relates back to the overall end goal

T-SmartTIMEBOUND: Include a Time Frame
Pick a date that is realistic to reach your goal

When setting goals for your business, the first two steps are relatively easy. A specific and measurable goal might be to increase your website following from 131 unique views per month to 10,000. You can make it "Timebound" by putting a deadline on it of, say, 12 months. But, is that goal attainable or realistic?

Well, that's the tricky bit.

The success of reaching your goal of increasing unique visits from 131 to 10,000 depends on many factors:

  • Competitive advantage
  • Product-market fit
  • Your ability to get your name out there quickly
  • The time and talent you allot to online marketing efforts
  • Your Industry

I'm sure there are many more variables, including blind dumb luck. The fact is, unless your company is featured in Oprah's magazine or is in the handbag of Angelina Jolie on the red carpet, you'll have to bring your expectations in line with what's realistically attainable.

How to Determine Whether Your Marketing Goals Are Attainable

Let's focus on the most common online marketing goals:

Increasing visitors to your website
Increasing conversion of visitors into leads
Increasing conversion of leads into customers

You're not the first person to set these goals, and neither are we. Fact is, there's a formula for what you can expect to achieve based on your current numbers. Not a math whiz? No worries - Hubspot has us covered.

SMARTer Together: Your SMART Marketing Goals CheatSheet

We created a SMART Goals Spreadsheet with Hubspot that allows you to list your most important online marketing goal for the year, and then check to make sure it's attainable by plugging your numbers into their formula. See your potential for increasing traffic, leads, and customer conversions using your numbers with non-industry-specific averages. Of course, these numbers assume you're following inbound marketing best practices.


1. What does SMART stand for?

SMART stands for: Specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound.

2. What are the most common online marketing goals?

The most common online marketing goals are:

  • Increasing visitors to your website
  • Increasing conversion of visitors into leads
  • Increasing conversion of leads into customers.

SMART Marketing Goals Worksheet Download

If you're not sure how to get from your numbers to your potential numbers - Give Us a Call


Trevor Hatfield

Trevor Hatfield is the founder of Inturact and strives to create highly tuned marketing machines for their clients websites, products, and apps. While also constantly keeping up with technology and building a team of multifaceted and dedicated professionals.