Analytics That Profit™: Case Study
DOES INCREASING WEBSITE TRAFFIC INCREASE SALES?
People tell me all the time, I want more website traffic!
I always ask why?
A common answer I get is more traffic means more business.
Is this a given?
Does increasing website traffic increase sales?
Just like a bricks and mortar storefront, a website has different types of visitors. Some people love shopping, but do not buy. Others know exactly what they want and go on a seek and find and buy mission. Another segment are just not comfortable buying anything without conducting extensive research. Your website needs to address these different types of visitors. That is a separate discussion(maybe my next article).
Wouldn't it be nice if only those ready to buy came into your store!
Probably not a realistic expectation for a bricks and mortar store or your website. If people come into your store looking for hot coffee and you sell shoes you may sell some shoes to them anyway. Hey, you might even start to give away free coffee to bring visitors in.
So you give away coffee and you sell some more shoes. Did the coffee sell more shoes or would they have purchased anyway? Do you spend more on coffee than the profit you made on shoes? You need to use the same logic and ask the same questions about your website.
Anecdotal evidence makes you feel good.
Data puts money in the bank.
Let's look at a real example. A provider of very niche B2B services with 70% of customers being involved in manufacturing and the rest in the service sector was experiencing a high conversion rate on their website for quote requests and who doesn't want that. They do not sell any services directly online. Due to the technical nature of the services it is necessary to have a detailed conversation in regards to customer requirements. They live in the ISO world.
A dive into the data showed that the largest source of traffic was from paid advertising.
- Spend more on paid advertising and get more sales.
- It is that simple.
- What was the monetary value of those paid conversions?
By tracking offline sources to find our initial sale value and repeat sale value it was discovered that paid conversion sources actually had a negative ROI. This path was easy to trace as the client was using the HubSpot Enterprise Platform. The data revealed that they were losing money even though they were generating sales on paid conversions. Connecting the offline and online pieces showed that organic and direct traffic produced better quality leads- higher initial sale and repeat sale.
We have formulated the hypothesis. Now we need to test it.
The experiment was easy. Get more direct and organic traffic to the website and measure the quality of the leads in revenue to the company.
A dramatic decrease in website volume traffic!
In addition, no increase in quote requests!
Obviously a failed experiment until you look at the revenue impact.
In fact, better quality leads meaning higher initial sales revenues and higher quote values were achieved.