Website Traffic Reports – How Often Do You Read Them?

Website Traffic Reports If you live in a big metropolitan area, chances are you listen to a traffic report before you head out to work or for an appointment. You wouldn’t have any idea how long the trip is going to take unless you are aware of any issues that affect the flow of traffic.

The same thing holds true when it comes to your website. Without analysing your website statistics often, how can you know what’s going on? It is recommended that you check your website traffic reports at least once a week; more if you are running a PPC campaign or implementing a new offer.

Benefits Of Viewing Website Traffic Reports Weekly

Let’s consider a specific scenario. Imagine that you added a new offer on your website in order to gain subscribers. You will give each visitor who opts in to your mailing list a free eBook. You develop a marketing campaign that includes placing paid banner ads on various websites that draw your target market demographics as well as being a guest blogger at a few popular blogs. Now you sit back and wait for the subscribers to roll in, right?

Well, not if you want to ensure your marketing efforts are achieving success.

In the early stages of a new marketing campaign, it is imperative that you keep an eye on what’s happening. It is truly worth leaving the campaign in place for a month and paying for placement if it is not achieving the desired results?

Statistics To Look For

No matter what type of website statistics tracking software you have installed on your web pages or blog, you are sure to have access to a large amount of information. This may include the number of overall visitors, new visitors, bounces, time spent on the site, referring sites, referring search engines, geographical location, and more.

Going back to our sample scenario, what would you be looking for when viewing your website traffic reports?

One thing you would probably want to determine is whether or not traffic is being driven by your paid PPC ads. Consider the percentage in relation to the overall number of new visitors coming from search engines. Determine how many new visitors are arriving on the landing pages to give you further insight into the effectiveness of your advertisements.

Look at the bounce rate, or the number of visitors who reach your site only to leave within seconds. Is this traffic coming from your banner ad clicks? Then perhaps your banner needs to be adjusted to better describe the offer. It could be that people are clicking through expecting something different than they are finding on the landing page. Maybe the landing page itself needs a redesign.

Are you finding a large number of visitors coming from a particular geographical region? That’s some important information. Does this have anything to do with your guest blogging? Perhaps you need to focus your marketing efforts on attracting more visitors from that area.

Finally, look at the bigger picture. Take the traffic statistics during your campaign and compare them to the number of new subscribers you actually gather. Are these subscribers converting to customers? That’s another important statistic. You may need to rework your entire marketing campaign if it is not achieving your end goal.

Website traffic reports are invaluable when it comes to determining the success of any of your marketing efforts. Don’t forget to check the traffic statistics often and use the information to better future campaigns.

About Sean Rasmussen

I am a passionate blogger and have been a full time internet marketer since 2005. When I'm not with my family, you will find me doing SEO, building websites for many of my clients, and creating products out of thin air! This is a cool gig and I love it!

Comments

  1. Thanks Sean,

    This has been very helpful in explaining what to look at and why when using website statistics tracking software like google analytics. I can see how important it is to analyze such data especially if you have a variety of traffic sources within your marketing campaign.

  2. Hi Sean,

    I am regularily checking my website statistics and can see the direct results of posting a blog or an offer immediately.

    I am currently using Google Statistics as well as the “onboard” WordPress statistics. Sometimes the data are a bit different – which one would you rely on more?

    • WordPress stats are quite good Renee, but Google Analytics provide far more information. They both should be fairly close for traffic volume.

      • Hi Sean,

        Yes, Google Analytics gives you a lot more information to work with. But, do they include your own visits to your site? I think they do but I’m not 100% sure.

  3. This is the beauty of an Internet Marketing campaign combined with the right software – you can keep track of your campaign’s progress in one place where conventional marketing would require time and effort, not to mention the cost involved, to determine how a campaign is doing.

  4. Great post on interpreting Website Traffic Reports, Sean.
    Its one thing to collect the data, but being able to interpret it and take correct action with it is another.
    This post answers some questions I had in one of your other posts I read recently.
    Thanks,
    Cade.

  5. Hi Sean,
    I must admit I have not been checking my Website Traffic Reports, much lately have been so busy doing other things, looks like it is something that must go onto my Must do list.

  6. I love a good chart. I eat them like a cookie monster eats cookies. Upward trends definitely put me in a good mood (except when it’s for bounce rates). Interpreting the charts and tinkering with the big ticket items are the low hanging fruit that I am for.

  7. WordPress provides some states on the main page… These are good to get started with.

  8. Have never checked website traffic reports as I’m pretty sure I don’t have any traffic at the moment. Being new to the industry, I would find it useful if there was a tutorial on how to analyze a particular website traffic report from a tool such as Google Analytics.
    Also could you elaborate more on Guest Blogging?

  9. Brenda McNutt says:

    OK… as you can see I am trying . Second time lucky.

    I will never be able to listen to the traffic reports on the car radio now without thinking about Website Traffic Reports.

  10. Hi Sean,

    I am guilty of checking my website traffic reports way too often. It’s always exciting to see an influx of visitors after you’ve just shared a new post throughout the various social bookmarking sites.

    At the moment I mostly use the traffic statistics to tell me things like how many unique visitors I’m getting, which keywords people are using to come to my site and which are the best and worst posts.

    I think the traffic statistics will be much more beneficial when I start using split-testing with my PPC campaigns.

  11. Very comprehensive – thanks Sean. Without it we wouldn’t be able to refine and continuously improve our websites. It can be easy to forget about goals if we focus too much on the inbound traffic. One of the underlying questions I always ask is – are my visitors finding what they came for, fast and easily?

  12. Hi Sean,

    Thanks for the great information. I used web statistics with my hosting company. I have now upgraded my theme, and decided to apply Google Analytics. I refer back regularly and have been receiving a bit of traffic from the USA. And in relation to bounce backs, I wasn’t sure what that was, but now I do!

    Thanks again,
    Nicole.

  13. Hi sean

    dont have my own website yet, but thats why we joined the YOTA forum! However i can see through this article the true value of tracking your website. If something you put in place is not bringing in traffic, its worth knowing so you dont waste time, money and efforts!!!

    thanks!

  14. Tara McGhee says:

    Like a good chef who is not good with the business and numbers side of their restaurant, many website owners do not go into the statistics side of their site.

    This is very dangerous. Like Sean says, you need to constantly monitor what is happening otherwise how can you have an idea of what is working and identify room for improvement.
    I believe you can incorporate this into a SWOT analysis (Stengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats).

    Its good to be reminded of things like bounce rate, length of time on site, how deep they went, georgraphical location etc.

    Also if you are running PPC then this information is vital if you want to measure ROI. I was a bit intimidated at first by google analytics, but it is there to HELP you. just take it one step at a time and you will soon be wondering what took you so long to start! Here is some youtube videos by google on this subject: http://www.youtube.com/googleanalytics

    Thanks Sean for shedding light on this valuable subject!

  15. Angus Turner says:

    Hi Sean,
    Like Tegan I dont have a website yet, but this info is really great. I see that it will allow us to determine which strategies are working and those not. This will ensure we put effort where it will most benifit us.

  16. Jean Follington says:

    Hi Sean,
    I don’t have a web site yet, but this information is very helpful so I’ll know what I need to do, and get used to the jargon.
    Thanks
    Jean

  17. Makes sense to check the traffic reports to see how the site is doing. I do not have a web site either so will look out for them when I get one.

  18. It’s great to see all the people coming on-board who do not have a website yet.

    My piece of advice; start a blog (even if it is a free blog) and visit seanseo.com frequently. You will find great tips and tricks to get you started and may even discover new things that you ould have never found out about yourself.

  19. I always check my website reports. As I am in the biz of creating websites for people this is an important factor I let my clients know.

    I monitor these stats also to see how their site is doing, for the keywords and seo that I originally do for them.
    Guys your stats are like your own crystal ball. Always look into your ball??

  20. As a newbie to all this I can now see that taking a close look at the statistics is really vital if I am serious about growth. Its a bit exciting to think that one day (sooner rather than later) I could be manipulating outcomes specifically by using data from the various sources.

    Great article.

  21. Elizabeth says:

    I’m in the process of building a website, but it’s been a slow process working on it as time permits. It’s my husband’s project that he started with his web classes. I may decide to go another direction and build one myself. In the mean time I have a blog and I do check the traffic stats on it. Not much right now though.

    • As you continue with your blog and learn more about SEO and social media etc, I am sure you will see the stats improving Elizabeth.

      • Elizabeth says:

        Thank you for the positive words, Sean. :D It WILL get better. I just need to be patient. It’s difficult when I want it all to happen right this minute. LOL

  22. One has to find a balance when it comes to stats – that is, being able to glean useful information rather than being obsessed about it! The beauty of the internet is that everything is quantitative, so it’s easy to track if something is working or not!

  23. Hi Sean,
    At the moment I have the stats from another bolg showing on the main blog and yes, they are interesting. I do need to look at them more often and I need to know how to analyze the stats properly.

    Thank-you for the help on learning to read a website report.

  24. I use google analytics for my website traffic reports. I am often astounded at where the clicks have come from around the world – countries I don’t even think of. I am really looking forward to watching the traffic grow on my website.

  25. Rose Kawe says:

    Thanks Sean, great website traffic tips. Learn new marketing terms every time you teach online. Now I’ve learnt about bounce rate and landing page. Something which I’ve never come across before.
    Thanks again.
    Rose

  26. I have many of my website pages on Googles URL channels to keep an eye on them, but I just didn’t think to do the same with my blogs!

    I am not great with tracking and statistics – so there is another area I have to improve in – oh well!!

  27. Cathy and Trevor Howitt says:

    Hi sean,
    Another great post.
    We all have areas of weakness, and unfortunately this is one of mine.

    Luckily though, I have a husband who looks at the “Website Traffic report” and seems to know what is going on with most of our sites.

    Google analytics is pretty awesome as it gives great feedback and gives you good information on the areas of your site you may need to improve.

    Worth doing though as there is no point having a site that is not converting or not doing what it has been designed to do!

    Cath

    • Bernadette says:

      I got on to using Google Analytics not that long ago and it IS great. Especially when I can see people visiting from other countries. That bit’s cool!

      I also picked up on one of the webinars about the bounce rate. I didn’t know what it was measuring but lucky me was listening on a webinar when I heard Sean saying it’s the percentage of people that don’t go past the first page.

      • Cathy and Trevor Howitt says:

        Bernadette,
        I know my husband constantly looks at the “bounce” rate, then looks at ways of increasing the time people stay on the site (eg: You tubes, pictures, great content etc).
        If he didn’t know how long people are hanging around, he may not know what needs to be improved on the site.
        So I agree with you about how lucky we are to be learning this information about website traffic reports.
        Cath

  28. The website traffic report is an important tool to know what sort of tweaking is required to a website. While we think we have produced a great site we need to know what our potential customers think. As actions speak louder than words these reports need to be analyzed often, thanks for sharing which areas of the website traffic reports are most useful to look at and what the results mean.

  29. Jody Chambers says:

    Not checking your website traffic reports would be like opening a shop up in the morning but not being there all day…I would check my ppc campaign every morning as soon as I got up to make sure all was still well and if need be make the appropiate changes.

  30. I am reading my WP stats quite often, but not Google Analytics as often as I should – mainly because I haven’t quite worked out all the features it offers. Thankyou for pointing out the important things to look out for when looking at our stats.

  31. Thanks Sean for letting us know how important to track our website regularly. I am reading my report on Google Analytics and I did it twice a week.

  32. Sean your information was very informative,as a startup these tips will be digested and put into operation.Thanks again

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