My Website is Starting to Get Views, What Should I Do?
It's the feeling that a webmaster looks forward to, but also one that can deflate you, as numbers begin to dwindle without explanation.
What are the top tips for maintaining traffic to your website and deciding what your viewers want?
Well, as you can see in the above, you need top monitor the pages that get people excited or fulfil their desire for knowledge or assistance or whatever. The top ten pages will have things in common, whether from the perspective of the SERPs, or the readers, or both. Your style of writing must be easy to read, you should speak it to yourself as you write so that you can hear how it sounds. Your standard of grammar should be high, but not too high-minded. You do not want to make people shy away from your articles because you pen too many esoteric words or obscure references and phrases. Google Analytics is the web monitoring tool of choice, obviously.
You also need to see how many of these visitors want to engage with you. We recommend tawk.to as a tool for keeping in touch with website users as they provide a free messenger service that accompanies one of the finest app/sites on the web. Tawk.to allows you to interact with your visitors and create cases for users that have issues with purchases or downloads etc. The monitoring tool is beautifully designed and the page layout is easy on the eye.
As you can see it is a great monitoring tool for keeping an eye on numbers of users showing up, just like the Google Analytics real-time pages. The messaging facility allows you to keep in touch with your clients and prospects and make special offers or give support to at a fraction of the cost of having a support desk or customer services desk.
Now about Google Analytics, this is your gateway into how your visitors interact with your site and what they are most interested in. The first page we are going to look at is the main overview page:
As you can see from the above, this site is quite popular in the week, but not so much at the weekends, this is because most of the interest is business-to-business. We can also see that the bounce-rate (how many people decide they don't like it from the first page) is high at over 70%. This is an indication that possibly the aesthetics dissuade people from further interaction, or that this is a site that people are arriving at expecting content and are not immediately seeing it. Either way it is a call to action.
In this case the above site is actually a blog about various on-line fraud sites and how to avoid them, so it is possible that the visitors are either searching for one of these sites (typically get rich schemes and the like) and not a blog warning them of these sites. Either way we can get further information from the rest of Google Analytics. Let's have a look at the real-time overview:
OK so once again we can see that the page views per unit time top right has increased considerably as the working day has begun across Europe. There are some users connected in the US too, but they must either be starting very early indeed or they are perhaps using US based VPN services or connected to services at the HQ of their respective companies. The majority of users appear to arrive at the home page of this blog site and then go to another page based upon what they are interested in. This behaviour is as expected as the blog has a front page that shows the previous 12 blog posts:
We can see from the Google Analytics real time/locations page where our current visitors are based and what they are looking at:
In this case they appear to mostly be visitors from the US but once again we suspect that this is because of service providers and VPN set-ups as it is just after 04:00 hrs Eastern Standard Time.
If we move down to the audience section on Google Analytics, we can see the following on the main page:
The majority of these users are not returning users, so they are in search of a certain blog that they have heard of elsewhere, let's have a look at the traffic acquisition section to try and understand how they found this site.
So the majority of visitors appear to arrive directly by typing in the URL or by having had it saved as a bookmark or regularly used URL, which could be a good sign. But the majority of these visitors are considered by Google to be new visitors, which means that they are either on a dynamic IP and have not visited for a few days, or that these users are being referred by a service that does not pass the link forwarding back to the browser. Either way this is strange behaviour for visitors to a blog, where you would normally expect at least half of visitors to be returning to see the latest updates.
We can see that about 10% of visitors come from referrals and another 10% from social media, these are healthy and pleasing statistics as they mean that the site contents are being shared by visitors.
If we have a look at the acquisitions queries we can get a more definite idea about how organic search traffic is acquired:
This is again, surprising. The vast majority of searches for which this site is returned as a result, it is returned low in the rankings, or it is an uncommon search. Most of this sites visitors' are arriving from sites other than Google.
Let's check the behaviour of our visitors by moving down to that section:
So here we can see that the home page definitely accounts for around half of all of the traffic arriving at this site in a week, and so these visitors are arriving at the home page, most likely as returning visitors who perhaps only check the site once a week or month, as they are not detected as returning visitors by Google.
We can also see, from the landing page section of the behaviour pages on Analytics, that this is the case:
Most users then, are arriving at the home page in search of an article or subject that they do not find. Perhaps they are all looking for the same scam being investigated that has not yet been intercepted by the blogger. Either way this site appears to be doing well and has a loyal fan base, but needs to make sure that they stay on top of the latest scams and keep posting, or they will start to lose readership to the competition.
If we look at the audience section for mobile devices, we can also see that iOS represents the largest group of visitors for this site. This is important for something like a blog as it means that bootstrap compatible mobile pages are vital to maintain the readership:
As we can see, the tablet visitors do not even represent 5% of the total, and that Apple & Android page compatibility is absolutely vital if we wish for this page to continue to grow.
We can confirm this by looking at the devices by OS:
Apple iPhone iOS is definitely the platform of choice for browsing this site.
Finally we should have a look at the performance of load times for the site:
We can see that the the home page is loading slow, presumably because of all of the images that are resized and shown as thumbnails for each article. We can also see that a number of pages for the site load very slowly, probably because they are rich in video or image content.
If we look at the average load speeds for the site:
This does seem pretty slow to us. Anything above two seconds is generally a sign that the site needs to be faster. This website is on an entirely dedicated physical server with very fast storage and so the timings are a bit of a disappointment. The site will require further optimisation if the rankings are to improve and increase readership.