You can start by asking some simple questions:
- Have you made any major content changes that would change your numbers?
- Do you have new marketing campaigns driving traffic to your site?
- Have the search engines made any significant changes that would change your inbound traffic for better or worse?
- Have you done any maintenance on the site that may have changed your tracking code?
Sometimes, you need to dig deep into your analytics for the answers. For example, you may investigate your top referrers to see where traffic is coming from. Is your organic search traffic on the rise? Hmm… maybe your visibility in Google has improved!
Once You Have Some Insight
Once you’ve done some investigation, it’s time to act on what you’ve found.
You can quickly make adjustments. For example:
- If your search traffic has dropped, you may invest in a search engine optimization strategy to boost your visibility.
- If you notice an increase in traffic coming from social media sites, can you take advantage of that with a campaign to build on that traffic?
- If you’re benefiting from someone linking to your content, maybe it’s time to partner with that new friend and get some more exposure.
Don’t Make Assumptions
The key is to not make assumptions or have knee-jerk reactions when traffic shifts. Shifts are normal and will happen.
Often, they may be predictable (a marketing campaign, SEO efforts) or unpredictable (a major blogger linking to your content or a dip in your search engine rankings), but it pays to investigate and then act.
Always be aware of your data and how you can use it to your advantage from day-to-day. It’s an easy way to get your website to give you results.