Using Website Traffic Segmentation for Business Success
Whether you’re running an ecommerce operation, a mega corporation, SaaS company or a simple blog, segmenting your website traffic can ensure success by enabling you to deliver the right content to the right visitors. Before looking at how to segment traffic and deliver personalised content to improve the flow in your conversion funnel, let’s first establish exactly what traffic segmentation is and why it matters.
For example, if you promote a particular range of products for customers in New Zealand, the offer should only be visible to visitors from that country. Additionally, the segmentation structure will help you treat returning customers differently from first time visitors.
Notably, Google Analytics is a great tool to segment website traffic.
Why is Traffic Segmentation important?
Traffic segmentation plays an important role in the success of your marketing efforts, as this allow your website to provide the best possible user experiences. With the right structure in place, every user can enjoy an experience that’s custom made to suit their unique requirements; this can lead to improved lead generation.
Don’t forget that providing optimum user experience is one of the fastest ways to gain search engine ranking, which in turn will improve your online visibility, driving organic traffic to your website. Traffic segmentation can also help businesses determine how traffic to their site is generated and which of their marketing channels is the most effective.
The results of traffic segmentation will serve as a basis for businesses to build better relationships with their visitors and customers, get better returns on their marketing campaigns and drive more traffic to their website.
How to Segment Website Traffic
Unlike in George Orwell’s Animal Farm – where all animals are equal – all traffic is not created equal. In fact, some are more valuable than others, which is why understanding the value of traffic segments and affording each of them the attention they deserve will help your business grow significantly.
Segmenting traffic is just the first step of the process. The ability to serve personalised content to the right segment of traffic at the right time will bring you closer to creating the perfect user experience.
Site traffic can be divided into a number of segments, but the following are the most popular:
- New visitors and returning customers
It’s important to differentiate between people who are visiting your website for the first time and those who are repeat visitors or returning customers. If possible, you can go a step further by identifying who is a returning visitor and who is an existing customer. Once you can make this distinction, the next step is to present them with different options.
For example, you could show a first-time visitor a welcome message, the option of acquiring special discounts on first time purchases or even a subscription window. Returning visitors can be shown special offers and product updates, based on a record of their previous visit. As for existing customers, they can be offered special promos, product demos and loyalty bonuses.
- Geographical location and IP address
This is probably the most common type of segmentation; when you segment visitors by their location, this helps you prepare location specific content that brings better engagement, as you can show them customised messages and special offers specific to their regions. You can also provide language options, based on the geographical location of your visitors, giving their browsing experience a personal touch.
Segmenting by geo-location is especially helpful if you’re targeting customers from a particular location. For instance, if you run a local website and notice its conversion rate is 2%, but isolated conversion rate from a particular area is 65% of the total conversion rate, then focusing on creating content optimised for local SEO in that area will do more to speed up the growth of your business.
- Traffic sources
Website traffic derives from a range of sources, including organic search, paid campaigns, social media channels, email campaigns and newsletters. It’s important to identify where each set of traffic comes from and provide content that’s most efficient for that particular set of visitors.
For example, if your paid ad campaign mentions a promo code for a discount offer at signup, you might want to show visitors from that source a separate landing page which contains details for those visitors only, including how to redeem the coupon code and procure the promised discount.
So, for a more efficient experience, provide content to people based on how they initially discovered your website, as well as their unique needs. This will boost your conversion rates significantly and bring better returns on your marketing investment.
Admittedly, optimising content for the different traffic sources is one of the less interesting aspects of SEO; fortunately, there are dozens of SEO experts who can get this set up and running for you.
- Behavioural targeting
Head of Marketing at Discount domains, James C., stated that every visitor has a unique reason for visiting your website; because of this, they will each behave in different ways. Many websites have the same landing page for all types of visitors, regardless the purpose of their visit, but this should not be so. To deliver a great user experience that can improve the success of your website, you’ll need to personalise your site’s content to reflect the uniqueness of each individual visitor.
When it comes to behavioural targeting, you have a wide range of options to work with. You can segment visitors based on the number of days in between visits, the number of revisits before conversion, as well as visitors who abandon carts, and so on. The latter category can be taken to a page that encourages them to proceed with the purchase, but you’ll need to first identify the reasons behind cart abandonment and rectify these.
- Mobile traffic
It’s no longer news that the use of mobile devices to access the internet has usurped that of desktop devices. So much so, with the increase in mobile browsing, it’s become imperative that website owners create a separate segment for mobile visitors. When you know the device type, operating system, screen size and other device specific parameters, this will help you prepare landing pages and content specific to these users.
At the risk of over-flogging a well worn issue, if your website is not yet optimised for mobile, you might be seriously hampered. Not only will you lose a good number of your visitors (who can’t enjoy their time on your site because your content isn’t optimised for their small screens), you’ll also stand the risk of losing page ranking from Google for failing to provide your visitors with a mobile responsive website. So, while you’re addressing segmentation, add mobile optimisation to your growth plans as well.