The nature of organic search traffic is that it isn’t always reliable – it varies with news cycles and trends – but recently, websites have seen a serious drop in organic traffic. Natural online activity just isn’t garnering the activity it used to. Luckily, big data may have a solution.
Close, data-driven analysis of site traffic can help owners better understand current view generation trends and search habits to help companies hit their KPIs. What looks like a great website on the surface may be hiding significant barriers to organic traffic. Once you understand how to prioritize quantitative analysis over qualitative business assessment, you’ll be on the road to success.
Rethinking Ranking Data
One reason that organic site traffic is declining for many businesses is that SEO rules are constantly changing, and what once gave sites an advantage is now a source of punishment. For example, historically, guest posting was a great way to build content and increase exposure across a range of sites. But now Google’s algorithm has changed course, and sites are punished for what’s termed “manipulative guest posting.”
The party line is, it’s great if your guest posts build referral traffic or boost brand awareness, but it won’t help your rankings long-term. Visibility and ranking are, in many ways, conflicting priorities, and you data can help you establish whether your posting habits are really increasing organic site activity or just falling flat. The key is in following reporting trends and comparing them to other campaigns, in order to determine if you’re using your marketing funds and time wisely.
Supporting Social Visibility
Another major factor contributing to website traffic is social media data and visibility. The best ranked sites have more social interactions, despite the fact that searches don’t direct to the social pages. What matters to the ranking algorithms, though, is that the target sites have the greatest degree of visibility.
Even among larger companies, reputation and visibility don’t always match up. Experiencing poor organic traffic, Allied Van Lines sought out SEO services to boost the activity on their site, only to learn that, despite having a great reputation in the community and a long corporate history, their visibility was lagging. By giving the company a boost on social and carefully monitoring new campaigns for increased impressions and site views, the company increased their organic traffic by over 44% in a single year.
Using big data to track impressions, particularly unique views and first visits, can really give businesses an organic traffic boost, and don’t be afraid to think outside the box. First impressions come from many different sources, which is why practices like referral marketing are so effective at generating new business. It’s just an extension of what we already know: people seek recommendations from family and friends, but they’ll also take cues from companies they trust. That’s why referral marketing can boost reputation and visibility simultaneously. It’s part of a bigger word-of-mouth network and your data will reflect that.
Website analytics can be overwhelming, packed with data – not all of which provides meaningful information. Once you know what data points are important, though, numbers give way to strategy, and that’s when you can take your business to new heights.