Beyond Page Count to Improve Website Traffic

Page Count: Improving Website Screenshot

Previously, I looked at the importance of measuring effective page count in order to determine when you had finished installing your website. That signals a change in some of your management routines to start improving your website traffic.

I finished Effective Page Count for your Website with an example screenshot of typical numbers for a completed website. The raw numbers for a big website can become overwhelming. The secret to managing website traffic growth is to focus on those pages that have the biggest worth, or best potential.

There is now a very useful way to enhance our view of effective page count that will push us towards improving website traffic in the most efficient way.

Page Count: Improving Website

Page Count: Improving Website Screenshot
Page Count: Improving Website

By filtering pages in Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) Search Enquiries, 2 important groups of pages emerge: Position Improvers, and Click-Thru Improvers

Before I look at those, you should notice in the screenshot above that I have filtered my page count geographically to limit the count to pages that are effective in my main target country. This is not always necessary, and I will explain the uses of the geography filter separately. Note that this does not exclude you from targeting other countries, but it can help you prioritize your best audience.

There is a simple filter in GWT that allows you to focus on pages with a minimum of 10 impressions or 10 clicks. I applied that filter for the screenshot above. That tells me that I have around 60 significant pages. In theory, this is a High Volume group, but not all these pages have long term significance.

You will normally find a wide range of traffic values in the High Volume group. Actually, many will not be really high volume. The average position column will tell you which of these pages are in the top 10 search results. If pages are in the top 10 results positions, but do not have significant impressions, you need to review them. Where they are not attracting the right keywords, you have to work on the content. Sometimes, pages are attracting your intended keyword, but search volumes are lower than you expected. In these cases it is best to not waste further time on that page.

Traffic Position Improvers

Though much has been written about getting to number one in search results, everyone admits that this can be very difficult to achieve. I prefer to look at improving rather than always aiming for number one.

First, sort the list by Avg. Position. Look at the higher positions first. These are your main targets for improvement. You can gain significant traffic improvements by getting pages onto the first page of search engine results.

Traffic Click-Thru Improvers

Though Click Thru Rates tend to improve as you get nearer position 1, you can gain a lot of traffic by improving CTR for all high volume pages. Improving the title and meta description of a page gets you a double benefit:

  1. It directly increases website traffic
  2. It sends a signal to search engines that your page could deserve a higher rank

Now that your traffic volumes are rising, it is important to review your statistics regularly. Improve where you can, and always be ready to prune dead wood, where pages are not bringing in the traffic they should.

Here, I’ve looked at some basic improvements from data that is at your fingertips in Google Webmaster Tools. There are many more ways to analyze and improve by exporting data to a spreadsheet.

How do you improve your website traffic?