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What Is Web Analytics and How to Start Measuring Data

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Website Traffic


What is website traffic?

Website traffic is the measurement of people who visit a website. When understanding how to build a website, web traffic is one of the important metrics, as it measures the potential customers, business leads, sales and (depending on the nature of your site) readers or followers you have. Regardless of what type of website you have, whether it be a one page website or an online store with a range of product pages, it's vital to keep track of your website traffic and find ways to constantly increase it.

Why is website traffic important?

The question of how to make a website is intimately linked to another: How many and what kind of web users do you hope to reach? Website traffic and its rate of conversion (to sales, for example) is the very basis of online marketing. Over time, higher traffic from a variety of traffic sources can lead to new product lines, and potentially more employees, more branches, and more products. In short, website traffic leads to growth and the monetization of said website.

Benefits of increased web traffic

Web traffic boosts your website's ranking

Creating a killer web traffic strategy plays a significant role in determining your website's ranking on search engines. When your site receives a steady stream of visitors, search engines view it as a sign of relevance and authority in your niche. This can lead to higher rankings, which in turn, attract more organic traffic. It's a beneficial cycle that starts with ensuring your website is visible and accessible to your target audience.

The correlation between web traffic and sales

There's a direct correlation between web traffic and sales—more targeted traffic often leads to increased sales opportunities. Visitors who find your site through relevant searches are already interested in what you have to offer, making them more likely to convert into paying customers. By analyzing which pages and products attract the most attention, you can fine-tune your offerings to better meet customer demand.

Web traffic as a tool for market research

Web traffic isn't just about numbers, it's also a goldmine of information about your audience. By examining where your visitors come from, what devices they use, how long they stay on your site, and what content they engage with, you gain valuable insights into their preferences and behaviors. This data allows you to make informed decisions about product development, content and marketing strategies, ensuring that you're meeting the needs of your market effectively.

What is good website traffic?

As one tech founder and CEO put it, “You can't convert anything without traffic, and without conversion your traffic is pointless.”

But what one can consider “good” website traffic is dependent on the site. Ahrefs reveals that 90.63% of webpages get no organic traffic. According to a 2019 BrightLocal study of more than 11,000 websites, the average local business attracted 414 monthly users and 506 sessions on their website. On the other side of the scale, Semrush reports that Google, the most popular website in the world, received more than 168.7 billion visits in December, 2023 alone.

The importance of quality over quantity in website traffic

While having a high number of visitors is impressive, what's more important is the quality of that traffic. Quality web traffic consists of visitors who are genuinely interested in your products or services and are more likely to engage with your content, subscribe to your newsletter, or make a purchase. Focusing on attracting quality traffic rather than just increasing numbers will lead to better conversion rates and more meaningful engagement with your audience.

Different types of website traffic

Direct: Traffic entering a website’s URL into an address bar, visited through a bookmark, or opened as a link from an email. To boost this metric, it helps to have a URL that is simple, relatively short, and memorable, like

Organic search: Traffic arriving at a site through a search engine like Google. This is one of the most important sources of website traffic and requires significant attention to best practices in search engine optimization (SEO).

Referral Traffic: Users who come to your site from links on other websites, usually in the form of backlinks embedded inside articles on these third-party websites.

Paid search: Traffic visiting a site after clicking on a pay-per-click (PPC) ad. These are highly customizable—for example, Google Ads allows you to place advertisements in search results, on YouTube or on third-party sites. To maximize effectiveness, place particular emphasis on keywords and location targeting.

Social media: Traffic arriving via social networks like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


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How to measure website traffic

To measure website traffic, you can use built-in or third-party analytics tools. Many tools need to be calibrated with your site to populate with real-time data.

Wix’s web analytics is automatically set up for all users. On the “Analytics & Reports” section on your dashboard, you’ll find a breakdown of your website traffic.

Website traffic metrics

  • Session numbers: Each user who visits a website is registered as a visitor or session. The best website analytics tools measure how long each visitor spends on your website and on each individual page on your site. They can also tell you what portion of your users are first-time or repeat visitors.

  • Bounce rate: The goal is not just to attract users, but to keep them. Bounce rate measures the proportion of visitors who click away after just a few seconds, after viewing just one page. This “bounce” reflects a poor match between the user’s intention and what your site provides. Bounce rate is a key traffic metric and can affect SEO.

  • Time on site: Another tool to help paint a more granular picture of how much time and interest your site attracts. Many analytics tools go further, showing you how much time visitors spend on each individual page.

  • Conversion rate and cost per visitor: If you sell products or services through your site (eCommerce), then conversion rate—the percentage of visitors who made a purchase—is a vital metric for your site. So is cost per visitor if you use paid advertising like PPC (see above).

Ways to boost website traffic

  • Content: Content is king of the web realm. There is no substitute for content that can boost EEAT—experience, expertise, authoritativeness, trustworthiness, or the holy grail that companies like Google expertly tune their search engines algorithms to find. And the more content, the better. Sites with frequently updated content like blogs generate three or four times more indexed pages—and traffic—than those without.

  • Keywords: Include keywords naturally in your content. Those keywords should also appear throughout your site in the page title, meta description, URL, headings, and the body text. Keyword tools like MOZ and SEMrush show the frequency with which users search for keywords, the cost of keyword-based ads and more.

  • Social Media: Active engagement on social media is crucial. Post content regularly and across multiple platforms, interact with followers by reposting and tagging them, use hashtags and update photos and links when you post new contact to your site. You also want to create content that is easily shareable in order to extend your reach beyond your immediate audience. Lastly, make sure to maintain a consistent brand voice and aesthetic across all social platforms to make your content memorable and recognizable.

  • Speed: Faster websites draw more traffic and higher sales. Slower speeds drive users and business away. Even a slightly slower page-loading time can significantly lower conversion rate and raise their bounce rate, while also negatively affecting SEO. Website speed optimization is therefore a fundamental component of building and maintaining an effective site.

Website traffic frequently asked questions

What is the best way to increase website traffic?

The best way to increase website traffic is through a combination of strategies including:

  • SEO Optimization: Ensuring your website ranks well for relevant keywords.

  • Content Marketing: Creating valuable content that attracts and retains visitors.

  • Social Media Engagement: Using social platforms to connect with your audience and drive traffic back to your site.

How does website traffic impact SEO?

Can website traffic be manipulated?


Related Term

Customer Analytics

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