You spend time thinking about getting more people to your website to ultimately get them into your salon. You put your website on your business cards, your advertisements and you potentially spend a lot of money with experts managing your search engine optimization and pay-per-click campaigns. So, understanding where your traffic is ultimately coming from is an important element of analyzing how effective each initiative is.
Using Google Analytics, the free online analytics tool courtesy of the largest search engine, you can review page views are an important element in measuring the success of your website. Once logged into the Analytics dashboard, you take a look at the “traffic sources” portion of your website analytics tool, you will see several types of traffic. These breakdowns can help you determine what promotional techniques are working well, and what keywords are helping your overall page views.
These are website visitors who find you through a search engine, like Google or Yahoo!, also be referred to as “organic search.” Most analytics tools will break this down further and let you know what words or phrases exactly led those visitors to your salon website.
When your site is linked from another one, like a local directory or a lifestyle blog that mentions your salon, any visitors that click are grouped in this category. This also represents the times people click to your site from social media sites like Facebook or Twitter.
This happens when someone types your salon URL directly into their browser when they see it in an advertisement or a business card, for example. As a salon owner, this is a really important traffic source because it means that people know you by name and do not need to go looking for competitors to find you.
If you run a pay-per-click campaign, this is where those hits are tallied. This will tell you if people are indeed clicking on your ad, but you will need to put further strategy in place to find out if that traffic converts to sales.
NOTE: If you do not use Google Analytics these categories may have different names or be broken out to more specific results.
It is especially important to pay attention to spikes in traffic in particular categories when you are running a specific campaign. For example, if you get the chance to guest blog and link back to your salon site, keep an eye on the rise in the referral traffic portion of your analytics to see how much of a boost it gave you.
What has most surprised you about what drives your salon site’s traffic?