The efficient traffic can enter your website through different channels and it is best to use each and every one of them – search engines (Google, Bing), social networks (Facebook, Twitter), internet advertising, email marketing, blogs, forums, and other websites placing links and banners to your website.
To a large extent, following Google’s SEO rules is enough to position your project in good places in the search results page. The traffic from the search engines depends very much on the website’s type. Sometimes it varies from 30-35% to 89-90%. I would rather place rates of less than 35% in the category of a not very well optimized websites or a website that needs serious analysis on where from and how consumers enter it.
Reaching 90% is great but also you need to be careful with it. The reason is that if 90% of the visits on your website are generated by Google, imagine what will happen if you disappear from the biggest search engine in the world. Then, you will have to count on the remaining 10%, which is highly concerning. However, you will not necessarily disappear from the results completely. It is enough for an optimizer to make certain changes on your website and accidentally ruin the good optimization and these 90% will start decreasing gradually, thus affecting the number of visits.
The high levels of traffic from search engines points not only at the fact that you have a good optimization but also that you have a serious deficit in traffic from other channels. When making an analysis of the traffic with Google Analytics, you should pay particular attention to the charts and information available in the Traffic Sources section. Having very strong dominance of one of the traffic sources may put your business at serious risk in case this source disappears.
Unfortunately, Google’s search algorithm is changed up to 400 times a year. This means about 1.1 times a day. Sometimes the changes are not too big and they do not affect you directly or the effect comes in a few months. At other times, however, the changes are so serious that you can quickly lose positions without doing anything wrong. In the searches for certain words or phrases, Google brings out content not following the standard manner, in which we are used to seeing the results.
For instance, some places (hotels, attractions, restaurants) appear with a concrete description of the place, a map provided by Google Maps and a commentary from Google Places. If in the past consumers used to enter the website of a hotel or other websites for hotels to learn the address and see comments on the issue, now they can do it directly from the page with the Google results. This way, instead of entering your website, it is more likely for the consumer to get onto and stay in Google’s network. More and more statistical data are processed by Google and it comes with a solution to the consumer’s problem presented above all the results it offers.
For instance, if you are looking for information connected with the World or European football championships while they are underway, you will see a small square of information about the games for the specific day – teams, starting time, place, or the final results, if the games have been already played. All websites offering such information are suffering a loss this way. If you used to enter certain websites to see the currency exchange, now you can simply type “USD in EUR” on Google and you will immediately see the information about the current exchange rates without the need to enter any website.
The latest news is that Google is about to launch a semantic search. It is expected that the world’s biggest search engine will get so smart that it will not search only words found in the article, it will not only analyze how often they appear and whether they have synonyms, at what places they are and whatnot, but it will also understand the sense and meaning of the article. This way, regardless of the words you use in a certain article, Google will know the meaning of what is written and the context in which it is written and searched by the consumer. What is even scarier is that it is expected for Google to start answering questions automatically, as well as visualizing more and more data directly above its search results.
This way you will receive everything without any efforts, directly from the search engine and you will not need the results. This may lead to a drastic decrease in the traffic to the websites, while those counting on the 90% traffic coming from Google will suffer the biggest loss. And I am not speaking about something into the distant future, this is already a fact.
Just a few weeks ago, Google announced its wish to provide an option for consumers to make hotel bookings directly from the search results. For instance, if you are searching for the Zeus hotel, Google will willingly show you a map of the hotel, phone number, working hours, photos, and a button with the option to choose a date and make a booking. Currently, this option is experimental but it aims at converting the traffic with reservations as efficiently as possible, without wasting consumers’ time.
At the same time, the biggest search engine aims at eliminating intermediaries in the sale and purchase process for tourist products and services, by becoming the intermediary itself. To the end consumer, it does not matter where the reservation will be made as far as the prices are favorable and the reservation is done swiftly and easily. Such an aggressive approach may render websites like booking.com absolutely pointless as a service.
When thinking about your future stellar project, you should consider whether it can be overthrown by such or another crazy idea by Google and if the answer is yes, you better give up. This is what happened to the weather websites as currently if you type “weather in Berlin”, Google will visualize it directly above the results and you will neither be interested in nor need to enter such websites anymore. The same is valid for the stock exchange rates and many other small services that deprive thousands of websites of millions of consumers.
Although one can write tens of books on search engines, this topic will be just slightly covered here because whatever I say, it will be already out of date the moment you read it. What you are required to do is to reach Google’s blog and judge carefully the consequences of every new piece of news. For consumers, certain news may mean easier life and work, while for you, it may mean loss of traffic and money.