Trending and Analytics: Watch for Patterns

This past week I have been busy prepping monthly analytic reports for clients. As I was working on the first one though, I was amazed to see a sharp drop in website traffic the week of April 13 and again on April 20. It didn’t dawn on me until much later that of course April 20 was Easter and many schools were out on spring break around that time.

Of course not everyone went on break and certainly this wouldn’t always affect website traffic, however it’s an important message to remember – Always be aware of what’s trending in search and social media and how it relates to your website. You’ll be surprised at how factors in your environment may affect your website traffic.

Many years ago I was consulting for a high-end vacation condo rental business. My timing just happened to be at the start of the financial crisis though. I told the owner that website traffic was being affected by negative financial news in the media but the owner kept telling me that, “rich people didn’t care and would book luxury vacations regardless.” While that may have been true, I was really bothered that my analytic report was being dismissed.

This continued for several months. It wasn’t until I pulled out the monthly reports and aligned them with significant news releases – Market crashes, major companies going under, etc. The dates of those articles clearly showed that website traffic dropped every time announcements were made. It was a significant drop too.

In the end I lost that consulting job, and in fact 4 others at the business also lost their jobs. It seemed that even rich people were affected by the economy, or at least unwilling to consider luxury vacations when the market was crashing. I may have lost my consulting job, however I will stand by the reports I delivered, and knew I did right by the client.

In short, always be aware of what’s trending. It may make the difference in your website traffic and ultimately your business.

~Tammy