Sometimes we’ll get an influx of emails from different inbound marketing clients all at the same time questioning why their website or blog traffic is down (this happens internally for us too!). Recently this happened all at once, and ended up being a mix of #1 and #2 below, but it had our clients wondering what they could or should be doing differently.
In these scenarios where traffic drops unexpectedly, it’s important to think about a few key-contributing factors that could affect your inbound marketing program for a brief moment in time. If you find yourself staring at a screen full of negative percentage points, here is what you can do first.
- How many business days have you had on the calendar? Some months start out with more business days (when the majority of B2B website traffic and lead generation is happening) while others could have a significantly lower amount. It might take a couple weeks for the playing field to even out to the month prior, so take a look to see if this is the case.
- What holiday or season could be affecting your results? Holidays that fall in the middle of a workweek or big travel seasons (like summer) could play a role in decreased website traffic and lead generation. Take these into account and plan for ways to capitalize on them with themed content.
- Did you do anything different the month before? If you had an ad running or pumped up your promotion to clients or hosted a workshop, these could all play into having higher than normal traffic the month before that could affect how your numbers are looking. This is another reason why a month-to- month review is great, but more accurate results can be measured by looking at growth over a longer period of time.
- Has your content publishing been consistent? If you’re looking at your numbers on the 15th of the month and you’ve published 6 blog posts so far, go back and look at how many you’d published by the 15th the month before. Depending on how often you publish regularly, being off by 1 or 2 could play a role in your overall numbers. Make sure you catch up by the end of the month or even throw an extra blog post for good measure.
- Has your social media strategy changed at all? Posting less on social media or employees sharing posts less could be a big contributing factor to decreased traffic, especially if it normally plays a big role in your inbound strategy. Take a look at your social media analytics and see where anything has dropped off or changed
Determining Your Conclusions and Next Steps
Take a look at these five areas first and determine if any are directly affecting your inbound program. While there are many contributing factors, these typically seem to be the primary ones. Especially for new inbound marketers and bloggers, slight changes in your program can play a huge role.
However, you want to also remember that an “off” month isn’t going to make or break your results – sometimes it just happens.
As long as you know you're not having an "off" month as far as your content publishing and promotional efforts go, then just continue following your strategy plan and working hard to publish quality content that people want to read and review results over a longer period of time.
Interested in learning more about inbound marketing and how it helps you with capture new, valuable leads through your website? Download The Essential Guide to Making Inbound Marketing Payoff eBook today.