There are three ways a visitor can arrive at your site:
• By typing your address into his browser (or by using a bookmark, which is the
• By following a link from another site that points to you.
• By performing a search and following a link in the search results page.
The first type of visitor already knows about you. There’s not much you can do to
improve on that.
The second and third types of visitor are more difficult to predict. You need to track
them so you can optimize your web promotion strategies. In this section, you focus
on the second type of guest. These people arrive at your site from another website,
otherwise known as a referrer.
If you followed the link-building strategies laid out on page 440, the social sharing
tips from page 414, and the publicizing techniques described on page 427, you’ve
created many different routes that a reader can take to get to your site. But which
are heavily traveled and which are overgrown and abandoned? To find out, you need
to check the Referrers box, which ranks the sites where people come from, in order
of most to least popular.
Once you know your top referrers, you can adjust your promotional strategies. For
example, you may want to stop spending time and effort promoting your site in places
that don’t generate traffic. Similarly, you might want to spend more effort cultivating
your top referrers to ensure you keep a steady stream of visitors coming to your site.