How to Cater to All Your Retail Website Traffic Sources
Business website owners tend to pay an awful lot of attention to how their visitors behave once they arrive at their site. They spend hours tweaking button graphics, changing layouts, changing copy, all to see how it alters the way people interact with their site. And while all of this is great very few people actually pay all that much attention to the sources of that traffic, or the fact that the path they took to the site may also be a big indicator of what they are looking for from the site.
And the Survey Says …
There have been dozens of surveys and studies launched to determine which traffic sources result in the best conversion rates. And most of them come up with a different answer every time. There are those who say that paid search is still the best way to gain traffic that will convert well and not all of those people work for Google. There are those that now say that social media traffic is the most valuable and then of course there are the traditionalists who say that there is still no better bet than a visitor who has been directed to your site by direct organic search only.
The simple fact is most small business websites are going to pull their visitors in from a number of different sources. Social media use is still growing and many companies are starting to see some good and measurable results from their social media efforts but it still takes quite a bit of work and a pinch of luck to get a successful social media campaign going. PPC is only getting more expensive and many small businesses find themselves priced right out of all the decent keywords from the get go but they may catch one or two making it worth their while to make an investment in a PPC campaign, at least as an experiment.
Direct search is certainly great but again it takes a while to build measurable results. However your visitors get to you though its worth looking at to help determine what they might be looking for and then try to optimize your site accordingly:
For Your Paid Traffic Browsers
If someone has clicked through on a PPC ad they are usually looking for something very, very specific. That means if they clicked on a PPC ad for say, your pink stuffed bunny rabbits that’s what they want to see. Not your blue stuffed monkeys, not your whole cuddly animal collection and certainly not your homepage where they are probably going to have to wade through at least two or three navigations before they find what they came looking for. And 9 out of 10 of them won’t. Instead they will hit the back button and click on another link for the same thing. So when it comes to PPC traffic the golden rule is give ’em exactly what they asked for, every time, by ensuring that the link they click takes them exactly where they want to go.
For Organic Search
Organic searchers are very much like PPC click-thrus, usually they were Googling for something specific and something in that 160 character meta description of yours caught their eye. So again, better give them what they are looking for. And that means ensuring that the right pages rank for the right terms and keywords. This is a bit of a science – albeit a rather inexact one – and may mean editing both your external links and your on page SEO but the more often you can take organic searchers directly to right place the more likely they are to become conversions, not just browsers.
If someone is typing you URL in directly, then chances are they have visited your site before. That does not mean they are a guaranteed conversion although there are ways you can improve the odds. This can be achieved mainly by showing them what they looked at before and offering those items and others they might like, something akin to what Amazon has been doing for years, but now there is software clever enough (and affordable enough) that the little guys can play psychic in the same way too.
There is No Magic Formula
These are just a few examples of traffic types there are many more (email, social media, word of mouth referral, pure accident) The key is (sorry to say) that you have to keep testing, changing and adapting your website in order to keep that conversion rate going. Monitoring your traffic sources – and conversions – via Google Analytics – is a great place to start.Koehler Home Decor is a wholesaler of home decor accessories and unique gifts. Source quality wholesale merchandise at KoehlerHomeDecor.com and find tips for promoting your business on our blog.