Seeking growth as a company in the modern age requires you to have a website and digital presence. Once you’ve designed a website that’s sleek, stylish, and appealing to your target audience, it’s important to identify if the design and content on the website is having the intended effect. To measure this, you can look at the traffic that the website is bringing in.
Traffic involves the total number of users who enter your website from other destinations. For instance, a user can reach your website by inputting the URL into a search bar, searching for an item you sell on search engines like Google, or clicking a link on another website that leads back to your own site. When considering the traffic that reaches your website, you should focus on all sources of traffic before segmenting each source and searching for improvements that can be made.
Improving the amount of traffic that enters your website will help your business grow and make it easier for you to identify how to bring quality traffic to your site. If you use Google Analytics to measure your website’s performance, traffic is an essential aspect of this tool that’s displayed in a variety of different reports. The following offers a comprehensive look at website traffic and how Google Analytics allows site owners to view their traffic.
Where Can I Find My Traffic Reports?
Google Analytics is a web analytics tool from Google that’s free to use and helps site owners analyze the performance of their website and the traffic that reaches their website. While some businesses will overlook web analytics because of the time investment that’s required, analyzing site performance and traffic is essential if you want to improve weak spots in your website and appeal to a larger audience.
Regardless of the type of business you run, your website will invariably be the main hub where your digital traffic goes. Whenever you perform marketing with social media ads or search ads, any user who clicks on these ads will be taken back to your website. Along with making sure that your website is well-designed and aesthetically appealing, it’s also highly recommended that you analyze where traffic is coming from.
Let’s say that you’re currently running two marketing campaigns with one focused on search ads and the other focused on social media ads. If barely any traffic to your website is coming from the search ads, it’s possible that the ad is poorly done or that it isn’t being displayed to your target audience. Whatever the reason, Google Analytics should help you analyze site traffic, find new clients, and further develop your website.
Once you download Google Analytics, you can find traffic reports with just a few clicks of a button. First, you should navigate to “Behavior”, after which you should click “Site Content”. From here, select “All Pages”. This particular report will show you which pages of your website are getting the most traffic and where this traffic is coming from.
You can also specifically look at organic traffic reports, which can be reached by navigating to the “Acquisition” tab in Google Analytics. From here, select “All Traffic” before clicking the “Channels” button. You’ll then be able to view an extensive list of the various channels that are bringing traffic to your website.
What Types of Website Traffic are There?
There are many types of traffic that can reach your website, all of which are tracked by Google Analytics. The main types of traffic you should analyze include:
- Organic traffic
- Direct traffic
- Paid traffic
- Social traffic
Organic traffic involves any traffic that enters your website from organic search results, which means that the search results come from people who search for related terms that are associated with your company. For instance, a user may reach a furniture store website by searching for the best recliner. Gaining high amounts of organic traffic is beneficial if you’re able to keep these users engaged with your website once they enter. Check the bounce rates of organic traffic to determine if your efforts are producing results.
Direct traffic involves visitors who intend to visit your website and already know what your business or brand is. Many direct traffic users will enter your website by typing the site URL into their browser. Having strong direct traffic numbers shows that users are interested in your business as opposed to the product or service you offer. Keep in mind that a high percentage of direct traffic should be repeat visitors.
Paid traffic only reaches your website from your paid advertising campaigns, which can include everything from social media ads to display ads on search engines like Google. Paid traffic should be monitored constantly to make sure that your ads are effective at bringing users to your website. A few of the metrics you should analyze include page/session, average session duration, and bounce rate. These metrics will help you determine if your paid advertising ROI is high enough.
Social traffic involves all traffic that reach your website from social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Keep in mind that traffic from social media websites can be organic or paid. All of your social media traffic is displayed underneath the Social Traffic area in Google Analytics. Once you enter the Google Analytics “Traffic” panel, you can view metrics for each social media website. You can use this data to improve your marketing efforts.
Which Reports Indicate How Traffic Arrived at a Website
There are several different reports you can use to determine how traffic arrived to your website. Understanding how users reach your website is important if you want to make sure that your marketing campaigns are as effective as they should be. If most of your traffic is coming from organic search results, there’s a good chance that your paid advertising isn’t performing well. The website traffic reports available in Google Analytics will give you all of the information you need to bolster your marketing.
When you’re using Google Analytics, the various reports that will provide you with information about website traffic include the All Traffic, Demographics, Geo, and Behavior reports. If you want to find out more about traffic analytics and how to use this data to optimize your website, the Google Tag Manager vs. Google Analytics guide should provide you with the info you’re looking for.
This report describes all types of traffic sources that enter your website and is available from the left-side navigation bar in Google Analytics. From here, you’ll be able to view a listing that displays the most active sources of traffic.
This report describes user information based on traffic sources. The demographic content you receive from Google Analytics will help you understand who your audience is and which ones are being engaged by your website.
Geo reports provide users with location-based information that centers around traffic sources. You’ll be provided with details about your primary audience’s geographic location and language. This report can be viewed by language or by a specific city, state, or country.
Let’s say that your business offers international shipping. If you want to grow your company but find that most of your traffic is coming from the U.S., this data indicates that you need to take a different approach to building interest among users in other countries.
Behavior reports display user information based on their actions and behavior while on your website. Even though this report can be dense, it offers an extensive amount of useful information. Along with displaying the number of people who enter your website, this report will also show you what path users took on your website, how they navigated your pages, and which pages these users were on when they left your website.
If users remain on a few pages of your website for a lengthy period of time but leave before buying anything, it’s possible that the checkout process isn’t as simple and easy to understand as it should be. The information you gain from the behavior report should allow you to fine-tune your site pages in a manner that helps you gain more traffic.
Becoming well-versed in Google Analytics is highly important if you want to identify areas of your website that need improvement. The metrics provided by Google Analytics can also give you the insight you need to determine if your marketing campaigns are performing properly or if changes need to be made to your advertising techniques.
When looking specifically at site traffic, knowing how people reach your website should make it easier for you to bring your main audience to your site. While Google Analytics provides users with a comprehensive amount of reports and data to sift through, reading this data should be simple and straightforward once you learn how to use this tool.