Robert Scoble wrote a piece yesterday that advertisers are starting to look beyond just pages views and visitors to the value that traffic is really worth. In the end he asked the question
“How can I take my art further?”
I used to get obsessed about my traffic but you are right and the thing that I have started to look at is how the blogs that I have and the blogs that i follow are a bit of an echo chamber.
There is no reason in this day and age of the internet to just make incremental change but instead I have been looking a lot more at how I can really expand what people would expect to see from a blog. Over the last year we have seen blogs become communities a lot more than just commenting, Arrington at Tech Crunch and Problogger have job boards, many people are starting to build on forums and the blog is just a start to building a community with new articles as being the start.
There is good reason why we are doing what we do and for internet marketers we are looking for more traffic always but we should also be looking at what our traffic is worth to an advertiser. I have one page that converts almost nothing on 200 pageviews a day as the people are seeing the content, liking it and moving on.
What is more important than a pageview? There are a few things behind that visitor.
How many pages is that visitor looking at?
How long is the visitor hanging around for?
Is there a good chance that the visitor is going to come back?
How much chance is there that this visitor will trust you enough to buy?
These questions are stepping stones in the value of your traffic. As you get visitors you want to move your visitors through these questions to the point where your visitors are loyal to your positions on subjects within your niche.
Building content on a daily basis is important but more important still is doing what the big hitters and opinion leaders are doing and that is to add tools and features to build community amongst your viewership.
When you are looking at your traffic everyday, hopefully from Google Analytics, look beyond the pageviews and visitors and instead look at how deep your visitors are going and start quizzing in your blog about what people would like to see to build up their experience and stay on your site.