It’s normal to have ebbs and flows when it comes to website traffic. Most analysts just assume those random dips and surges are results of typical human behavior. If a site once had high numbers and consistently has low traffic, though – well, that’s cause for concern. When traffic dips aren’t just a fluke, it’s time to analyze the problem and solve it. Here are the best ways to do that.
Use Analytics as a Guide
Most web marketers start with their analytics: Is there an obvious reason for the drop in traffic? Usually, the answer is fairly easy to spot with proper analysis.
Does the Source Code Match the Tracking Code?
Oftentimes, the problem is quite simple: It’s not the right data. Google Analytics matches its tracking code to the source code on the website. These two numbers should match exactly; otherwise, it’s the wrong site and the data is inaccurate.
Is All the Data Included?
The data provided by Google Analytics often doesn’t include the most recent information. Most marketers don’t include the current day when reviewing this data. This is especially important early in the morning when data for the rest of the day can’t possibly be reported yet.
Is There Enough Data?
New website owners usually won’t know the full scope of their traffic until they have several months of data to review. Data can fluctuate fairly widely from one month to the next, so it’s never a good idea to compare traffic from a short time period. For example, if data from January is compared to February, it may seem like February had a huge traffic dip. Once a full year’s worth of data is collected, however, it may be that February was just short of average and January was just over average, which would be within a normal range.
Marketers also note certain details about the traffic decline. Was it a sharp decline, as if something suddenly happened to make traffic drop all at once? Is it a steady decline, indicating a more subtle reason for the drop? Is it already going back up? There’s no single answer to any of these situations, but it helps narrow down the problem.
Work on the Content
Blog content is about quality, not quantity – though quantity is fairly important, too. A site with a lot of lackluster content may notice a decline in traffic because readers simply lose interest. They were hoping for something great but were disappointed by the quality. It happens to a lot of bloggers, and it’s easy to fix: simply publish better content, even if that means less content total.
Promote the Content
Good content is really only half the battle. If no one knows the content exists, traffic will never build back up. Great marketers consistently work to promote content through social media and other avenues. Every great site should have at least a few forms of social media accounts that are utilized heavily for promotion. It’s simply the best way to get the word out.
Everyone’s heard of SEO, and it’s not a new marketing tactic. Still, it’s arguably the best one when it comes to a web traffic. A website simply must be SEO optimized to rank high in Google search results. Other than social media, search engines are the best way to draw new readers to a site, so SEO is crucial.
Unfortunately, there’s no hard-and-fast reason for a site’s traffic to decline. It’s often just a matter of troubleshooting the problem one step at a time. Many site owners like to save themselves the trouble by trying all of the above strategies at once. The traffic usually comes back – this time, for good.
Get your website traffic moving in the right direction
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