Tracking visitors to your website helps you analyze if you are reaching your target audience. It also helps you determine the number of visitors to your website. You can then use this visitor information to make changes to your website and ensure that they find the information they need and visit your website again. You can also use this information to determine if your latest advertising campaign has been effective.
Types of Traffic
Visitors can land on your website using various paths. There are some who visit your website by reading about you in traditional media, your business card, or have heard about your website from a friend. This type of traffic is called Direct traffic. Visitors who come via search engines are classified as Search Engine traffic. Then there is referral traffic that is through links to your website from other websites that talk about you. The latest addition to types of traffic is the social traffic. This is from the links that you share on your social media accounts and on groups. Apart from all these sources, there is traffic that comes from online advertisements that you put on other websites or as sponsored results on search engines. You can track your website visitors from all these sources using many different tools.
Google analytics helps you get all this information in great detail. To use Google analytics, you must first create an account on Google Analytics and submit and verify your website ownership. Your analytics account provides you information about the visitors’ demographics, the amount of time they spent on your website, the number of pages and the path they traversed, and how they reached your website.
Using your host
Another source of determining the visitors to your website is your website host. Most leading website hosts provide information about visitors to your website on the control panel. For example, a tool like AWstats gives a list of referrers to your website and individual pages. The tool also displays the search engines used to reach your website and the keywords used by the website visitors.
Using third-party websites
Other than Google and your host, which are both free, you can also use third-party tools such as Quantcast to measure your website traffic. To use this website, you must create an account and add a tracking code to your website. Similar Web is a website that you can use without creating any account or adding code to your website. All you need to do is enter your website address and you have a report on websites referring to your website, common search keywords, Social media channels contributing to your traffic and so on.
What tools have you used to track your website visitors and how have you used this data?