Performing a website traffic check isn't the most glamorous part of internet marketing, but it's also one of the best ways to make sure that the techniques you're using are actually working in the way you intended. When you check website traffic, you can learn things about your website that would be impossible to tell just from navigating the site itself. Most of the time, performing a free website traffic check that tells you anything beyond the basic numbers will take copying and pasting a piece of code into your website's HTML. In this guide, we'll look at why you may want to check website traffic, and some information on what to do with what your website traffic check reveals about your site.
Why Should We Check Website Traffic?
Performing a website traffic check is something that you should consider doing every week to two weeks, but up to half of smaller law firms literally never check their website traffic. If you haven't done a check of website traffic in longer than three months, you really need to get in there so you can look at what's going on. Without running a website traffic check at least periodically, you'll have no idea if your website is really bringing in new site visitors, or whether your traffic numbers are being created by unique visitors or just the same people checking the site repeatedly.
Checking website traffic regularly also makes it much easier to experiment with different types of marketing and advertising campaigns. By watching the differences to traffic to different landing pages (which should be different for each ad, to help you track results), you can determine what phrasings are most effective and what kind of ads seem to get you the most conversions or the most overall clicks.
Performing Your First Website Traffic Check
Even if you haven't yet installed any code on your website to help you do a detailed check of website traffic, you should be able to do a basic traffic check using Alexa or Compete.com. These sites can not only help you see what your website looks like in terms of traffic, they can also help you compare your traffic numbers to a website of a competitor or a similar website.
Keep in mind that websites like Alexa and Compete.com do have a slight delay in their statistics. If your website is brand new and most of its pages aren't yet indexed by Google, it's not going to help you much to use Alexa or Compete.com. However, if you have a well established website, these sites can give you a good idea of where you're starting.
You should also put Google Analytics code onto your website. This code can ensure that you are able to check more than just the big, raw numbers about who's visiting your site. By using Google Analytics, you'll also be able to examine the more detailed numbers that are relevant to your website traffic, like bounce rates and how long people read each page on your website.
Why One Website Traffic Check Isn't Enough
If you check website traffic once, it's kind of like taking a single snapshot. Trying to extrapolate about what's going to happen next or what came before is very difficult when all you have is just one image of one moment in time. Once you start putting images together, though, you can start to see movement—the more images, the more clear the movement becomes. That's why you should check website traffic fairly frequently. By using a tool like Google Analytics, you'll actually have continuous monitoring done, so any time you do a website traffic check you'll be able to monitor smaller increments of time as well.
Getting The Most Out of a Website Traffic Check
In order to really get a feeling for what's going on when you check website traffic, you should take a look at what numbers are available for you. See how long people tend to spend on each page of your site. If there are pages that seem to be making people leave, you need to check up on those pages. They may contain broken links or content that is not really well targeted toward the market most likely to contact your offices.
You should also see whether any particular phrases or keywords are generating the most traffic for your site. In some cases, it'll be exactly what you expect, but in others, you may find when you check website traffic that you're actually getting a lot of hits from a niche keyword you didn't expect. Consider making a specific landing page targeting that type of client to better draw them into your law firm's website.
Finding More Sources For Website Traffic
If you check website traffic and are disappointed in what you find, you may want to start bringing in traffic from more diverse sources. For example, if you're not already active on social networks like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, you should become part of those social networks and then do a website traffic check after you've figured out how to effectively create content and share it on those websites.
You'll also get better results when you check website traffic by making sure that your website is search engine optimized without being spammy or over-optimized. Search engine optimization means not just doing keyword research and a website traffic check, but also making sure that your hosting is fast and reliable and that the code for your website is optimized effectively.
Outsourcing Your Website Traffic Check
While some companies may offer to do a paid check of website traffic and then give you an analysis, there's no reason you shouldn't be able to do it yourself. This ensures that you can keep all the data that you mine, rather than leaving it in the hands of some other company. It also ensures that you are the one keeping up with the latest trends and what those trends are doing for your law firm, rather than a company trying to sell you on a particular method of advertising.