Website traffic sources, where people come from to get to your website, it sounds really simple: there’s referral traffic, social traffic traffic from search engines, direct traffic, but actually there is a ton of misunderstanding about what these things really are, so I’m gonna break it down. For you in this video, what people mean when they say these things, what the real definition is for each of these also, how do I get to move more traffic from each so we’re gonna jump in bust some myths and explain the details of website traffic Sources hi: this is Andy from orbit media and I’m extend to be making this quick video for you.
If you’re watching this on youtube, there is a detailed text, form article version of this just open the description and you’ll find the link right there. Okay, so let’s jump right in here we go. Probably one of the most popular reports in Google Analytics is the traffic sources under acquisition, all traffic channels, a lot of people, I know start their trips into Google Analytics in this report.
The column here, the firt, the primary dimension, the first column is called default channel groupings, and these are the big buckets. So this is where a lot of people just had a glance. Look at these things this room, this little chart will give you an idea of how to understand them better email and social. You got to keep working at those or you don’t keep getting ass or traffic from those sources. Put your back into it.
You get blisters on your hands, you got to work really hard at it. Paid got some money, buy some gas put it in the engine. You can go far and go fast right away. Seo is a totally special source of traffic, because every page is the chance to catch traffic like a sail, catches, wind and you can keep adding more pages to any website. There’S no limit to the number of URLs you can have on your domain branding vivir seen the Google Analytics account lots of direct traffic as we’ll see in a bit, so this is a good way to help understand how these traffic sources are very different.
If you look at a specific URL, for example, an article that was promoted through content, marketing you’ll see a spike in traffic as soon as that went live and it was promoted through email or maybe social media. But whether or not it gets that long tail of traffic is a function of how well it was optimized for search. Was it a keyword, relevant article? If so was a keyword focused? Was it a great page on that?
Did it indicate its relevance? So we’ll start there organic search, presumably anyone who comes from a search engine, yes – and that is the definition and how they deduce that that is the default channel grouping when the medium exactly matches organic. This is a very consistent source of traffic. If you drill down to that report for most web sites, there’s not a lot of spikes right, it moves up or down slowly over months, but this is a b2b site, so low traffic on weekends. You can kind of that sawtooth profile.
The problem with this report is that it excludes your. It includes searches for your brand if somebody just didn’t type in the.com and they type in your business name, they search for your business name. That’S really a navigational query kind of weird that it’s all included in organic some websites. They say we’re doing great in search.
We’Ve got tons of organic traffic, but when you go look at the keywords that are ranking for it’s really nothing except their brand name. That’S basically direct traffic. That’S one of the problems with this report. How do you get more traffic from search target phrases based on your own domain Authority? You’Ve got to understand Authority, don’t target phrases if that’s way out of reach for the amount of credibility that your domain has.
You need to understand that there are what you can rank for is a function of the authority of your website, so you we’ve got another video made on this and another article on this. How to research keywords: domain Authority is the trick. Also, this right super detailed articles, thorough pages that answer every one of the related questions. That’S semantic SEO. It’S part of the fun the best page has an advantage of course.
Then go back and rewrite older pages update older pages. The almost high ranking pages can make a big difference right. It’S called optimization because it’s not a one-time thing. You got to keep going back and keep making improvements to those pages until, ideally, in the end, you’ve got the best page on the internet for your topic. If you’re not doing that, you’re really not doing SEO next social media, anybody who comes from a social media website right, Google Analytics has really a tough time understanding what this is so the way that they put things in that bucket is that either the social source Referral matches yes or the media matches all this stuff.
That indicates it might be from a social media network. When you look at social media traffic separately, you’ll find that it’s actually very spiky people are just unpredictable. Do you know what’s going to go viral tomorrow? I have no idea: what’s gonna go viral tomorrow, sometimes a bunch of people share something. Sometimes they don’t.
Social media websites have algorithms that well, seemingly randomly just show us something too many more people. So it’s very hard to predict traffic from social. Also, the problem with this traffic source is that it include dark social traffic that from shares that weren’t attributable to social media right there are. There are studies that show that maybe 85 % of all sharing happens within emails or in text messages or other places. That might be most of social sharing, it’s not in social media networks, so this is dark.
Social is a giant black hole and it’s a that traffic could appear in referral or direct as well see if you want more traffic from social, just keep, sharing it’s partly a function or just how active you are in sharing. You want help with that. There’S a ton of tools for that it schedules and automates your social media very helpful. Also, the best thing we’ve ever done for social sharing and driving traffic from social media is to create short, one-minute videos that promote the content. If you worked really hard on that piece of content, make it tiny commercial to promote it works like a charm.
We’Ve got lots of tips for that and avoid Instagram Instagram. Not so great, there’s not really a link in there like it’s, not a great channel for promotion and driving traffic Pinterest, surprisingly good. So it’s partly a function of the the network itself. Third bucket referral traffic: this is any visitor from another website right. Any visitor from an on site search engine non social media website.
Easy for google analytics understand this. It’S just. Whenever the media matches referral, it is not as consistent as traffic from search. It’S also not as chaotic as traffic from social. You will see spikes, it’s partly just press coverage, or you got mentioned somewhere problem with this is it does include traffic from so from some social sources.
Just look closely you’ll see them strange, you know, think URL, shorteners and from search engines. Google Analytics by default, doesn’t consider go to be a search engine. You could set it up to track it as such if you’d like. If you want more referral traffic, just carefully pay attention to your inclusion in directories. Are you part of an association?
Do they link to you if we run an award, they link to you just look for links. Just don’t miss a chance to get a link from another website. Obviously, also write for lots of other sites makes a big difference. It bigger audiences to you than you. You can borrow that visibility by writing for other places.
It’S something we learned a long time ago and we still do a lot of write for everyone and then do something. Newsworthy be interesting, get mentioned in other places. If you want to get a press hit, do something press worthy and that’s those spikes in referral traffic are often from press heads. Our next traffic source number four is email. It’S any visitor from an email campaign.
Right Analytics knows it’s just whenever the medium exactly matches. Email, if you look at the traffic from this source, it’s gonna be super spiky, but also very consistent over time. Every time you send an email, it’s going to bring traffic and from that medium, as long as you add the campaign tracking code, it’s going to connect all the dots and you can see Bert for each email. The bounce rate pages per visit average session duration conversion rates all that stuff. The problem is, it only works if you add that campaign tracking code, all right – we’ve been talking a lot about this, in other words, every link to your website from every email that you send.
They click on that link has to have in the URL. At the end, a bunch of parameters that show like this Google Analytics can see those and that’s how it knows that that visitor came from email. How do you add that, using a campaign campaign tracking code added by a URL builder, here’s the one we made it? Basically, just puts the campaign UTM source equals UTM medium equals UTM campaign equals. It puts all that on the link.
You can then put that link in the email. Our our tool is fun. It actually previews for you. What the report would look like what the campaign report would look like in Google Analytics now it connects the dots your email service provider gives you delivery, open and click-through rates, and now Google Analytics will know that that person came from email put them in that. In that medium show them in the camp in the default channel grouping in the all channels report and then show you all the engagement metrics on those emails.
If you want more traffic from email send more email, it’s a. There are very few brands in my experience that I’ve met that really tested the comfort level of their subscribers. These people asked for email. Why aren’t you sending them email so and if they get bored of it, they can just unsubscribe it’s a wonderful channel, because it’s totally opt-in, you should never send an email to someone that doesn’t want one that would be terrible and anyone that doesn’t want to get Them anymore can simply unsubscribe improving your subject lines and your calls to action will of course, impact your your traffic from email as a channel and try counter competitive timing. Send things at different times ever sent a weekend.
Email might work great. Your campaign report will show you it’ll also show up in your default channel groupings direct we finally get to it. The fifth and final source of traffic is direct. Supposedly it’s any visitor who typed a web address into the browser, or maybe they had a bookmarked. In fact, it’s when the true source match is direct and the median match is not set or, and get this read this carefully when the medium exactly matches, none direct means everything that they don’t know.
It’S the unknown bucket. It’S there everything else bucket. It’S the junk drawer of traffic sources. When you look at it separately, it’s very spite. It’S it’s kind of consistent, but you’ll see spikes in there.
What are those it’ll be hard to find out because it’s gonna be when the traffic sources is unknown? It’S all that unknown stuff. What could it be? I’Ve got a big list for you. Yes, hypothetically right that person manually typed in the address it was in their browsing history or they had a bookmark, but it also could be all that dark social traffic right.
What about that person that that actually, like emailed it to someone right all that shirring that happens? That’S not in a social network clicks from non browsers! You send it to me in an email. I open that from my app email, app apps, don’t software doesn’t have referral data right? There’S, no, there’s no referring data because that’s not a browser, so all traffic from everything – that’s not a browser, gets categorized as direct that includes PowerPoint presentations.
Pdfs slack will drive direct traffic right, SMS or text messages and what, if that visitor on any visitor who’s in incognito mode or private browsing mode that clicks through? That’S not going to pass any referring data direct tracking code, direct and clicks from any HTTP page to an HTTP page on your site. If you’ve got a, if you don’t have a security certificate that gives you the HTTPS and there’s a visit from an HTTPS website, it gets categorized as direct. Don’T ask me it’s just how the internet works. So it is a huge category of traffic.
As you can see from the top online services, I asked my friends at similar web to pull a report to show the top sources of traffic to the top online website online service websites. This is like exact target and how to spot and get response and semrush, and all that user testing all of these sites, most of their traffic, is direct. Why there are big brands. Why else it’s just unknown? It’S just the everything else.
It’S the least accurate of all of those, but we should all still work to work hard to get more traffic from direct. Do some offline marketing put a web address into a TVs spot? Where is that going to show up direct radio, direct print or outdoor right? These are ways to try to drive, get people to go to the Internet and then go to your website right. They didn’t come from anywhere else.
They came from offline, launching useful tool that people remember and type in will be an incredible source of direct traffic. We all just watch her own browsing, behavior right, you probably just type in tools all the time they were helpful. You remember them and building a brand. It’S a fun idea right now to get more. Anyone ever deliberately try to get more traffic from direct that as soon as you start thinking about that you’re gonna start thinking about how to grow your brand grow awareness for your brand final thought be diverse.
You should have diverse traffic sources. You shouldn’t have too much traffic from one source. This is mine. It’S a little bit off balance. You can see a lot of traffic from search.
You are more secure in your future and your destiny as a marketer. If you have multiple sources of traffic that you have control over each write more levers to pull here’s an example of a brand that has very diverse sources of traffic. This is a friend of mine, Sean! Well done! That’S what great web marketing looks like there.
You have it a bit different than most people thought right, there’s a lot of things in there that I don’t think everyone understands we’re glad you found this useful. If you know anybody else who has misconceptions on this topic, we’d be grateful if you sent this video along to them and if you want to make sure that you don’t miss the next one as soon as it comes out, just subscribe and you’ll get it right. You’Ll get a notification as soon as it shows up great again, Annie from orbit. We’Ll see you next time.