Lots of online marketers pay close attention to their traffic statistics. Even if they don’t bother watching other metrics, business owners and executives want to know how many people are coming to their websites on a weekly and monthly basis. That makes sense – having more web visitors is usually better than fewer. However, don’t place too much focus on visits and impressions. As straightforward and illustrative as those numbers can be, the quality of your website traffic is just as important. In fact, it might be even more important, since bringing the wrong prospects to your website is just going to frustrate them and slowly put you out of business. To understand why website visitor quality is such a critical issue, let’s look at a few of the indicators you should be able to find in your analytics package…
Where are your visitors coming from? Are they arriving your website through search engine queries, ads, social referrals, or email marketing? Which keywords or offers are they responding to? Knowing your traffic sources can give you insight into the mindset your web visitors have, and give you clues about their level of interest and commitment.
Time on Website
Are your website visitors hanging around checking out content, or clicking away almost instantly? Too many fast exits might be a sign that the visitors you’re bringing in and the marketing messages you’re offering them aren’t very well aligned. When your website isn’t compelling to the people who are seen it, you’re going to have a hard time generating conversions.
Which pages are your website visitors going to, and which links are they following? Again, by studying these patterns, you can figure out important things about your audience. When you study the flow of traffic on your website, you learn important details like which offers are attracting the most interest, how important price is to your buyers, and what questions they need answered before they can make buying decisions.
Most marketers don’t pay enough attention to return visit statistics. The majority of your buyers aren’t going to make a purchase or offer up their email address the first time they come in contact with you. So, by studying return visit statistics, you can make some educated assumptions about how motivated they are to keep studying solutions and take the next step.
Of course, marketers pay attention to conversions in the same way they look at traffic statistics. In fact, one could argue conversions are the only analytics that really matter in the end. But, you don’t just want to see whether you’re making sales or generating leads; you also want to notice the percentages, whether they are increasing or decreasing, and how strong those conversions ultimately end up being (in other words, whether customers are placing big orders at high margins, or whether your leads are ultimately turning into new accounts).
A lot of marketers take it as a given that the men and women visiting their websites are good prospects who are likely to buy. It’s important to check your analytics and make sure that’s the case. Otherwise, you could be spending too much time, money, and effort bringing in visitors who aren’t ultimately going to buy anything from you.