Where Do Your Website’s Visitors Come From?

One of the things you can learn by looking at your Google Analytics is where in the world your visitors are when they come to your website. Just click on Visitors> Demographics> Location at your analytics dashboard, and you’ll see all the countries that sent you visitors. You can then look closer and see the region, state, or city your visitors were in.

If it’s a personal website you’re looking at, you can respond to this with, “Wow, cool, people from Hungary come to see me!” If you’ve got a business website, this information can be more useful than that.

First, consider whether you can actually sell goods or services to people from 92 countries. If you have local business — a brick and mortar store, a service that requires your physical presence, things like that — then it may still be cool to have visitors from 92 countries, but you want the great majority of your visitors to be local. If they’re not, then you need to do more linking with local sites, to encourage your actual customers to visit your website.

One company I’m working with right now is a roofing company. They’re not going to fly out to mend a roof on the other side of the country, let alone the world, and yet they currently have quite a bit of traffic from other states. We’re working with them on social media and linkbuilding that will target their customers better — reduce their out of region traffic and increase their local traffic.

If you have a national or a global reach, you can still benefit from the information. The school supply company we worked with serves the entire country, but school calendars differ from one state to another. Seeing when New York’s teachers start their Back to School browsing let us target our marketing and plan for staffing and stocking needs — if we relied only on the data from the local brick and mortar store, we’d have missed those opportunities.

Watch for changes, too. A sudden spike in visitors from Milwaukee? Then you need to find out what happened there — a radio show? a local mention of your name in the paper or of your product at a workshop? Find out so you can repeat the effect.

Finally, you can look more closely at a particular population’s activity once they reach your website. Is the content your visitors from India choose to look at different from that most popular with your visitors from the UK? Do some countries have a higher conversion rate than others — and if so, might you want to focus efforts on them rather than on the people who look but don’t buy? Or do you just need to tweak your message to increase conversion from that other location?

The map overlay doesn’t need to be a daily check, but it should be something you look at before your next marketing strategy meeting.

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