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S...E... What? Evaluating the Behavior of Consumers on Your Website

Let's begin again with a definition as a refresher from our last installment of S...E...What?

SEO — A Definition:

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of trying to get the best visibility (highest ranking) in search engine's organic (aka natural) search results. Remember, there is no "how-to" guide for SEO; it is very purposefully kept mysterious.

SEO is, by nature, a slow process. Like we have mentioned before, the slow progress keeps "black hat" SEO techniques from polluting the relevance of organic results overnight. There are no black and white answers when it comes to SEO. What works well in one instance may work poorly in another.

Wondering How You're Doing?

Remember... there's no point in setting out to improve something unless you know what, exactly, needs improvement.

Beginning your quest to improve your store's SEO with a thorough understanding of how it's doing today allows you to direct your resources where they count the most and to realistically evaluate the effectiveness of whatever strategy you ultimately decide to employ.

One important thing to measure is the behavior of visitors once they are on your site.

Use A Great (Free!) Tool – Google Analytics:

Make sure your current website is all set up with Google Analytics. Most websites are, and if yours isn't, contact your provider – they should be able to set this up for you quickly and easily. If they can't... it's time to start worrying.

Viewing and Understanding the Behavior of Visitors on Your Site:

We suggest you look at 90 days' worth of data and look for trends over time, like year over year and quarter over quarter. To find this information in Google Analytics:

  • Look at the dashboard, which is automatically displayed as soon as you log in
  • Adjust the start and end date of the time period you want to review
  • And look at the following numbers:
    • Average time on site
    • Average number of page views
    • Bounce rate

It looks something like this:

Consumer Behavior: Analytics

How Do Your Websites Consumer Behavior Statistics Measure Up?

That's a difficult to know without context – like what types of products you sell, what geographic area you are located in, what type of competition you have and more.

However, here are some good guidelines for generally accepted norms for these types of behavior statistics:

  • Average Time On Site: if yours drops below 1 minute, start worrying! Obviously, the higher you can get this number the better! WebFronts™ customers' have some of the best average time on site stats in the industry; it's not unusual at all to see averages of 3, 4, 5 or even more minutes!
  • Average Number of Page Views: if you see an average number of page views below 3, it you may have a problem. As I'm sure you can imagine, the number of pages viewed is highly related to the average time on site. The more pages a consumer views, the more engaged they are with your business and more likely they are to continue on to buy from you (whether online or in your store).
  • Bounce Rate: Bounce rates can vary widely, but a good rule of thumb is to try and keep yours under 50%. If your bounce rate goes above 50%, this could mean that consumers are getting to your site, but immediately leaving because it's not meeting their expectations or providing them with the information they are seeking.

Not Sure Where to Start?

That's what we're here for! Contact RWS any time and we'll be happy to provide you guidance, or even prepare a report of how your RWS WebFront is currently performing in these areas completely free of charge. Remember that visitor behavior is just one piece of your site's overall SEO performance. And it is will change over time with tweaks and adjustments to your strategy. Be diligent about analysis and focusing on making one adjustment at a time and you can see positive and dramatic changes in your analytics!