There are so many metrics to focus on when it comes to judging how well your website is working for your business. The world of search engine optimization and responsive design shares so much with the complexities of everyday life. Every decision is based on a multitude of information and options. To focus on only one can devalue both the stats and the outcome of your online marketing situation. For our Kamloops BC and worldwide SEO clients, SilverServers focuses on boiling down the many different pieces of information into a focused piece of advice. The actions needed vary from business to business and even from week to week. Picking a singular metric to make your decisions on can lead down the road to failure.
For example, let's pick the most referenced piece of information you can gather about your website: Visitors. How many visitors have been to your site in the last month? Is that information easy to gather and understand? On the surface it seems pretty straightforward. But what is a visitor exactly? What denotes a quality visit? While quantity is nice, a quality visitor or two could possibly pay for your entire marketing plan if they convert into a customer. In our experience, quality visits are worth much more than mass amounts of generalized traffic. Seeing a large visitor number means almost nothing to whether or not your online marketing strategies are being successful.
Let's start first by examining the accuracy of your stats. Whether you use Google Analytics or another website statistic provider, are you sure that your numbers are clean and accurate? Google Analytics is often spammed by many sources (nefarious or otherwise) that need to be cleaned out properly before any real info can be discerned. Did your company install a new website monitoring service and they didn't filter its source from your Analytics? Perhaps you were getting development done on your website by a design contractor and their many work-related visits are lumped in with your real potential customers. Maybe you've recently upgraded your site to include an SSL certificate and the information wasn't carried forward properly in Analytics. These are just some examples of the many ways the visitor number that you see could be inaccurate.
The next step in understanding your visitors is to look at the quality metrics available for them. So your website had 1000 visits last month, and you know your stats are accurate. How many of them were actual potential customers? A Google surfer looking for a simple answer to a question might find it on your site and then leave immediately. An article you posted might be shared on social media and have some clicks, but all from friends of the poster who aren't actually interested in your services. Are they a valuable visit? Not really.
Purely looking at visitors as a valuable metric also ignores the reality of everyday life. If your business is seasonal, visitors are likely to drop when your services are not in demand. If your product is only available locally, your total search pool is much smaller and very finite. There is no real way for any website to continually grow in real, quality visitors in spite of their environment. Eventually, most every website has a cap on how many visitors are going to search for and find it in pertinent results. Expecting a set pool of visitors to provide a continual increase just doesn't make sense. It then becomes much more important to focus on how to turn these visitors into customers.
There are many ways that stagnant visitor bases can be increased. Expanding your website's content into phrases that are not normally associated with your product or service (but are still related!) can bring more people. Pushing your website on social media platforms can bring an influx of traffic. Even if your website doubles its traffic every month for a year, you still need those visitors to buy something. If you purely use visitors as a main metric to judge your website's effectiveness and quality, you're missing the point.
Of course visitors are important. Growing your audience is a required part of building your online brand. What you do with that visitor info is the secret to a successful online marketing campaign. Your website could have all the visitors in the world, but if no one is buying your product your website still isn't working to its potential. Instead of focusing on why you have 30 less visitors than last month, spend some time reviewing why the visitors you do get aren't (or are!) purchasing your product. It's a bit like watching a river full of fish but not noticing the holes in your net. The amount of fish in the water doesn't really matter if you aren't catching any.
If you need help turning your visitors into conversions, or getting your site to rank higher in Google organically, contact SilverServers today!