August 04, 2005

Statistics: Half of Website Traffic Comes from Search

There is a short article on MarketVOX about how most people reach their final destination on the web.

However, there is an interesting trend occuring. 61% of older users (25-64), which still make up a majority of online users, use search engines to get to websites while the majority of younger users prefer to directly type in or use bookmarks to get to sites they enjoy.

This information can be useful when think about SEM. Being high in both organic and paid results can be important to attract new and returning visitors to your site. At the same time, it is very important to pay attention to metrics for paid results since you are being charged everytime your ad is clicked. Depending on the type of site/business you operate, someone visiting your site may just be logging on or viewing their account instead of producing a conversion. Analyzing your own logs can show if your metrics are being skewed by returning visitors who are just using your paid ads as easy links to get to your site.

On the other side of the picture, making sure your customers are happy and return will become increasingly important for younger users (and older users as those users get older). Since this segment doesn't use search to get to their favorite sites, making sure they know your URL well or have bookmarked your page becomes one key to success.

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