image of tausif akram By: Amby
8 Jul 2014

Analytics Analysis: Traffic Sources Overview

From a marketing perspective, the Traffic Sources section of a website analytics report is critical. Even as a summary, that little pie chart tells you which marketing efforts are paying off the most.

In a nutshell, traffic reporting can be broken down into each section. Assuming you want to increase your numbers overall, you have to analyze what each section “means” for your marketing campaign.

Search Traffic

Naturally, these are the visitors who probably didn’t know about your brand but they were looking for your product or service and found you in search engine results based on a specific search phrase. You can’t do anything about the #1 insight being “unknown” but you can determine which keywords are bringing you the most traffic.

If you do it right, you can track conversions to determine which keywords are bringing you the most qualified (or valuable) traffic.

Referral Traffic

Here you can see which backlinks are paying out for you. For affiliate marketers, this source of traffic is probably going to be the highest. These visitors probably did not know about your website before seeing it linked on another website… and it’s always good to see who is sending you the most customers. Perhaps a thank you is in order?

Direct Traffic

For some reason, internet marketers tend to overlook or ignore this section. However, it is especially valuable (and usually the highest source of traffic) for smaller businesses that focus on a local audience, or for industry leaders within a very specific niche.

The reason behind this is simple. These visitors already know about your brand. They may have seen your website address in a brochure, flyer, or on a TV commercial. Or, they could have just guessed at it.

In any case, direct traffic is a good thing because it signifies that people are seeking you out directly!

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