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Do Pageviews Equal Success?

Far too many people seem to focus on the simple idea of page views. They think success is equated by the number of times someone has viewed their site.

One particular designer felt the need to brag that he had 380 million visits to his site. Honestly if you can get 380 million people to view your site then you should be rolling in money and far too busy to bother bragging about it, right?

Of course that isn’t always the case. A lot of people are able to attract people to their site through the use of good keywords and search engine optimization, but then what? Is there a prize for the most people clicking to and then clicking away from your site?

All Web Traffic is Not Equal

While marketing companies and people who specialize in SEO like to measure success by traffic numbers and increase of traffic, that number by itself is fairly irrelevant. Yes, you most certainly want people coming to your site, but you also want to right people to show up and then they need to perform the proper action to ensure that you are profiting from them even being there.

Web success is not measured in page views or simple hit stats, it is measured in conversions.

Read that statement again because it is important. Your conversion rate is going to be the key to your business success on the web unless your site is just a place that you like to post your blog with absolutely no care about generating profit from it.

To calculate your conversions take the number of purchases (or people signing up for a newsletter, performing a function, etc.) and divide that by the number of unique site visitors. That number will be the key conversion rate.

Now for our friend with the supposed 380 million visits to his site, if he had a mere 1% conversion rate then he should be very successful. But think of if he had a 20% rate?

You need to have the right kind of traffic. That means people should be going to your site that will do what you want. Would you rather have 10,000 visits a month with a 1% conversion rate or 500 a month with a 50% conversion rate?

Sadly most businesses online have a conversion rate of under 5%. That means they aren’t making the most of their opportunity. So how does one do that?

Five Tips to Increase Your Conversion

  1. Have a Good Web Design – This might seem rather obvious, yet plenty of people still opt to try and cut corners on designing a web page. Yes you can buy one of those simple packages that will allow you to design a site yourself in a few hours. Congratulations…you have a site that looks like it was designed in a few hours. Ideally if you are a professional company then you want a website that has some polish and style to it. Depending on your expectations and goals for business you might even want something unique that stands out. Ideally you will have a clean, organized site that is easy to navigate, be pleasing to the eye, has a common theme, and translates well to multiple devices.
  2. Create a Solid Call to Action – “Why are we here?” the thousands of visitors will ask. You need to be upfront about your call to action. Far too many sites put their call on the bottom of the page, off to the side, or even hide it on other pages. Smart sites use obvious buttons and action language (like Buy Now) where it is visible instantly without scrolling or hunting for it. Why am I here? Tell me right away because if you don’t then I will be gone in about 5 seconds.
  3. Keep Them Entertained – The bounce rate for some sites is very high. That means they show up, browse for 20 seconds and then hit the “back” button to check out other search listings. There needs to be things that entice your target audience to stay. Easy to find articles and blog posts about things they want to learn, forums, games, contests, the exact product they want to buy or anything else. Why is someone at your site in the first place? What are they expecting to get out of their visit? Deliver what they are looking for and more to keep them engaged.
  4. Funnel People – Depending on your business, you generally can’t have everything on the main page. That means you need to direct people to different areas of the site. The goal is easy and obvious navigation along with the least number of clicks or typing possible to get what they want. If they have to perform more than two actions to get where they want then frustration will build; that is just the way of the word these days.
  5. Target Your Market – You simply have to focus on your target market and basically ignore everyone else. People who try and throw a wide net end up failing because the net never closes properly. It goes back to the conversion rate example; do you want 500 customers at a 50% conversion or 10,000 at 1%? The smaller group is easier to target because it becomes simpler to put yourself in their shoes. Figure out how they would find what they want and then make sure your site is at the beginning of that path. The better you tailor your site to a customer’s needs, the more likely it is they will use you.
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