Running a website isn’t an easy job. Nothing can cause you more stress than watching your traffic go up and down. While small fluctuations are normal, a sudden drop in traffic or a steady decline can alert you that something is wrong.
Before you jump to the conclusion that there’s nothing you can do to drive traffic back up, you should learn the possible reasons for declining web traffic so you can come up with a solution. Here are common reasons why your traffic might be declining.
You’re Not Updating Your Content
Search engines reward websites with regularly updated content. If your site is regularly updated, you’re more likely to have return visitors. If you see a drop in traffic, check to see the last time you updated your web content. A website that hasn’t changed won’t draw any new traffic, and it can keep old visitors from coming back.
A blog is a great way to regularly update your content. By writing a new post once a week, you’ll be able to start ranking higher in search engine results pages (SERPs) and can keep your visitors coming back.
You Don’t Have an Email Marketing Strategy
Email marketing can help you build brand loyalty and keep people coming back to your website. If you don’t have an email marketing strategy, you should get one so you have a holistic digital marketing plan in place. If you do have an email marketing strategy, but your content isn’t performing or driving web traffic, then you’re likely not only losing traffic but subscribers as well.
Make sure your emails provide the value your subscribers are looking for so you can use them to drive traffic back to your website.
If you aren’t using email marketing, create a strategy that includes getting signups, content topics, and design.
Slow Load Speed
If your website loads too slowly, you’ll lose your visitors. Nobody has the patience for a slow website when your competitors’ websites are fast. If you notice a sudden drop in traffic, check your page speed with a page speed tool that can help you get insights into how fast your website loads.
By pinpointing the reason for your slow speed, you can easily fix it or hire a web developer who can clean up your website so it loads faster.
You’re Not Doing SEO
Ranking on the first page of Google isn’t easy and requires a robust SEO strategy. If all you’ve done is include keywords in your web copy, then you’re not doing enough to get the top spot on search engine results pages. Earning a position on the first page of Google can drastically increase your traffic because most people never make it to the second page, which means people usually click on one of the websites in the top results. If your website isn’t there, it might not even be seen by your audience at all.
If you don’t have an SEO strategy in place, work with an experienced digital marketing agency that can help you start ranking for keywords that will drive traffic back to your website.
Unfortunately, even if you do have a strategy, your web traffic can still decline. Google can be fickle, and you have to follow the rules of the game, or else you’ll be punished.
The reason why your traffic is declining might have something to do with the fact that you lost rankings, so make sure you monitor your positions every so often.
Changes in Marketing Spend
If you advertise to bring traffic to your website, then a change in your ad strategy might be the culprit of traffic loss. For example, if you spend all of your advertising budgets on digital channels like Google or social media, but one month decide to put a commercial on television, your traffic will most likely drop.
If you advertise in print or on television, fewer people are going to visit your website than if you have a digital ad they can click on that brings them to your website.
In addition, if you recently ended an influencer marketing campaign, then you can expect to see a drop in traffic if you aren’t putting any more effort into the strategy.
Your Competitors Are Beating You
If you notice a sudden drop in traffic, you might want to take a look at your competitor’s marketing efforts. It’s possible they suddenly decided to put more resources into marketing to drive traffic to their website. While you can’t stop them from marketing, you can create strategies to help you get back on top.
Website Isn’t Optimized for Mobile
Most people don’t use desktops or laptops for a Google search; they use their smartphones. So if your website isn’t optimized for mobile, your traffic will tank because it will be difficult to navigate on small screens.
Responsive web designs are the standard, so your website should scale for every screen size. Google prefers responsive websites, so making your website mobile-friendly can also improve your rankings.
Traffic Source Disappearance
Other than organic search results from search engines, your traffic might come from other websites, known as referral sources. These websites can include anything from news sites to affiliate sites. Check your Google Analytics to see if a traffic referral source has disappeared. If one has, then you can find a way to get that source back.
Fixing Declining Site Traffic
There are many reasons why your website can suddenly lose traffic. In many cases, it can be a simple oversight of spending less on advertising. In other cases, it can be a combination of issues that took your traffic away. Regardless of why or how it happened, try to get traffic from diverse sources so you can use a combination of search engine rankings, email lists, good content, and web development to help.
Never rely on one source of traffic. By diversifying where your traffic comes from, you can still get visitors from other sources.
Matt Casadona has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with a concentration in Marketing and a minor in Psychology. Matt is passionate about marketing and business strategy and enjoys San Diego life, traveling, and music.