In the world of internet advertising, marketers often look at website traffic as an indication that their work is successful.
It may seem like the more traffic that is coming to your website the better, right?
Think about it like you would your brick and mortar store. You certainly want more “boots in the door” as one client puts it. But you want more than that as a business owner. You want people who will actually buy your products or pay for your services.
That doesn’t mean that every person who comes in the door has to buy something on the spot or you will kick them to the curb! Depending on your business you may actually have plenty of activity that does not, in that moment at least, seem to generate income.
Potential customers may browse through your shop and not buy now. For some, they look around and learn that your store does not fit their needs or style. Others like it, but don’t see anything right at this moment–but they probably will come back.
You may be a service business and provide free consultations. Perhaps you have a business where you offer free samples. These are types of advertising where you spend your time and/or money/goods in the hopes that you will get some customers. You know that your will not convert all of these trials into clients or customers, but if you are doing it right you will get more than enough to make this a great way of getting new business.
Now apply this logic to your website traffic. You may offer products for sale directly on your website, you may provide information that potential customers “consume” online as a way to get to know you (“a sample”), or your website may allow them to book an appointment, reach you by phone, etc.
These are all great forms of traffic. Some may convert to paying customers. Some will not. Just like the storefront example, there will be potential customers who decide that you are not a good fit for their current needs. That is OK. You don’t want or need every single human being on the face of the planet to be your customer. You want the RIGHT customers.
So when is website traffic NOT good traffic?
Let’s look at the storefront example again. Do you want to have a bunch of people who have absolutely no intention of buying your products or services loitering about, making it hard for your ideal customer to get through the door? Nope, you don’t. Do you want people coming in who are going to steal from you? Of course not.
You may not have a problem with too many people loitering around your site in cyber-space, but we can have problems with people trying to “break in” to our sites. These hackers may try to get in through the front door or they may use sophisticated code to try to come into your site through the backdoor.
Just as you might have security cameras to monitor and safeguard your physical doors, you will want to safeguard your cyber-doors as well.
Hackers will try to break into sites for many reasons. Sometimes it will be to try to get sensitive data. But just because you don’t collect information or accept payment on your website don’t think that you are uninteresting to cyber-thieves.
Be sure that your webmaster is keeping your website protected. The last thing you want to have happen is to look at your website and discover that it has been hacked. Best case scenario it is merely inconvenient–an inconvenience that takes time and money to fix. Something you just don’t need when you are trying to run a business.