Surfing Holmes Blog - Solving the Mysteries of Online Success

Learn What Your Websites Visitors’ True Interests Are… Making Sense of Your Sites Traffic

Print Friendly and PDF

There is a large array of different ways that people may come to your website, including from search engines, directly to your site’s URL, through social media networks, links, referrals, or paid advertisements. The intent of visitors from each different source all have different reasons for coming to your site initially. Let’s take a look at the behavior of people coming to your website so that you can understand your incoming site’s traffic better.

Search engine
When a search engine directs people to you, they will generally be looking for some specific information or answers. Since search engines are built to help people look for information or to answer their questions, the majority of search engine traffic your sites receives is in direct relation to the users initial search query. People in general trust search engine results, so if you’re at the top positions of search engine listings, it can drastically boost the amount of incoming traffic you receive, and thus your sales and revenues.

Direct traffic occurs when people type your website URL (e.g. – directly into the address bar of their Internet browser. This is a good thing because it means that they were specifically looking for your website. Generally this traffic generally consists of past visitors- people who liked your website the first time and committed it to their memory or bookmarked it. Now when they visit it again, they are searching for specific information or possibly looking to retrieve new data. This is why it is important that you consistently add fresh content to your website on a regular basis. Repeat visitors also may leave comments or interact directly with your blog to provide you valuable insight to your business such as give you praise for something you did great, concern about a way to improve your order of business or an array of other useful information as well.

Social media
People coming from social media generally are browsing quite quickly from one place to the next. Many times they can be interested to see what their friends are looking at or merely to be entertained. If a friend does provide a positive recommendation about a site or company though, this can build more confidence in the visitor before they enter the site. With a higher trust level also usually results in higher conversion rates as well. Visitors interested merely in browsing for entertainment generally don’t stay for a long time, because once they are simply browsing the Internet to be entertained and jump quickly from one place to the next. This type of action is generally seen on websites like stumbleupon where visitors quickly go from one website to another based on others recommendations. The good thing about this type of traffic though is that can help your content go viral. Social media website visitors are the most likely candidates to share the information they find useful with the people they connect with in their social circles.

This type of traffic is similar social media traffic, but the difference is that while in social media, your friend tells you about a website, in referral, a link from another website will be directing visitors to your site. This type of traffic can be of high quality if the visitor trusts the source where they initially found the link to your site and therefore be highly engaged when being directed to your site. Also in contrast if the visitor is on a page that they don’t highly respect and then get taken to your website and do not find what they are looking for right away it is likely this will result in high bounce rates and your visitor will leave your site quickly. By having links going into your site from highly relevant and trusted sources will result in more valuable traffic coming into your site.

Paid advertisements
There are many different places in which paid advertisements can be shown on the Internet and each represents its own unique type of visitors. Search ads are ones that are shown on within search engine results and these types of visitors are often very similar to search engine traffic, because often times a visitors doesn’t realize they are clicking on an advertisement.

Paid ads can also be shown within other locations such as display networks where advertisements can appear potentially on website you visit on the Internet. These ads usually are in animated or image form and tend to be less trusted, because of how obtrusive pop-up ads constantly used to appear pre 2006. There are many people who don’t like visiting these display advertisement links and therefore never click on these types of ads. People who do come to your website through these ads are generally the ones who do not object to clicking on advertisements, and your message directly appeals to what is of interest to them. Similarly to search engine traffic, most paid advertisement traffic that you receive will quickly leave your site if they do not find what they are looking for in a very timely fashion. Make certain your ads are tied very closely in tune to what information you provide on the entry page of the website, in which the visitor is directed after clicking on your ads link.

Which method is the right fit for you and your website? Well if you want new visitors, you should focus on search engine traffic. If you want blog interaction, or email sign up, then referral traffic would be the best. If you have a video or photo blog, then social media traffic could be your best bet. So decide on the type of visitors you want, and act accordingly. If you need assistance figuring out the type of traffic that would be your best fit, feel free to leave a comment or give us a call directly and we can collaborate with you to find the best fit for your needs.