The Client Asks: “Why Is My Website Traffic Decreasing?”

Website traffic

I’ll start by saying that this question is more complex than it looks. Bad news.

But the good news is that you can uncover the issues impacting traffic, and/or jump right into resolution, depending on your timeframe and resources. Here are some of the top reasons for decreasing website traffic (assuming it’s even a metric you need to get worried about – see#1 below), with suggestions for resolution, as well as additional resources.

  1. First, know that the success of a website is not necessarily measured by web site visits alone. Additional metrics from Google Analytics should be considered. Ultimately, you want qualified leads coming to your site; rather than an increasing number of unqualified leads. Unless you can tell which you’ve got, it’s hard to make a judgement about traffic alone. If you know your site is set up well to drive traffic, then look to optimizing your marketing efforts as a start.
  2. In reality, businesses have to market a lot to drive traffic to their site. (I’m going to assume you’ve already optimized your site for SEO).
    1. Email is the most successful traffic driver. Make sure you’re doing all you can to collect the email addresses of your interested-but-not-yet-ready-to-buy prospects. If you are, then email them regularly with valuable content which includes links back to your website (and make sure there are good reasons why they should want to click back to your site!)
    2. The next best source of traffic is Thought Leadership, otherwise known as Content, i.e., blog posts, webinars, white papers, conference talks, etc.
      1. Frequent (but valuable!) blog posts drive traffic. A recent Hubspot study showed that “companies that publish 16+ blog posts per month got almost 3.5X more traffic than companies that published between 0 – 4 monthly posts.” . In other words, you gotta’ blog a lot!
      2. In addition, consider other content mechanisms. For example, host a monthly webinar series providing prospects with valuable and relevant industry information. Find well-known guest authors to write white papers for which you can require email addresses to download. Record any panel or conference talks you give, and then post that content on Slideshare, as well as your own site, after the event. 
      3. Finally, make sure you are distributing all this content across relevant social media channels frequently (this post shares frequency best practices)
  3. It may be that one or more of your competitors has done something new (such as increasing marketing efforts) and is suddenly drawing away prospects that may have gone to your site. It goes without saying that you should keep an eye on competitor marketing efforts.
  4. In the beginning of 2015, Google made a change to its search algorithm so that it now requires sites to be mobile-optimized in order to rank well. If your site isn’t truly mobile-friendly, it will definitely impact traffic.  
  5. Finally, there are a host of website technical issues that can impact website traffic (e.g., site load time, accidental duplicate content, expired SSL certificate, etc.). You’ll need your developer(s) to investigate these.

There are certainly other issues that can impact site traffic, but if you go through the list above, you should be able to turn that trend around.

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Actionable Content Marketing Stats You Should Know

content marketing metrics

Content Marketing Works & Research Shows Buyers Respond to It

Consumers’ average attention span is 8 seconds – 1 second less than a goldfish. [Source]

70% of consumers prefer getting to know a company via articles rather than ads. [Source]

57% — that’s how far the average B2B buyer is through the purchase decision before engaging a supplier sales rep. [Source]

Inbound (content) marketing delivers 54% more leads into the marketing funnel than traditional outbound leads. [Source]

Content marketing generates 3 times as many leads as traditional outbound marketing, but costs 62% less. [Source]

60% of people are inspired to seek out a product after reading content about it. [Source]

The top content formats that B2B buyers seek to research a purchase include: whitepapers (78%), case studies (73%), webinars (67%), eBooks (58%), videos (58%), blog posts (56%), and infographics (52%). All other formats fall below 50%. [Source]

B2B buyers share these content formats more frequently with colleagues: blog posts (40%), infographics (39%), videos (37%), white papers (34%), case studies (29%). [Source]

Blogging  Creates a Relationship with Prospects & Customers

82% of marketers who blog see positive ROI for their inbound marketing [Source]

80% of internet users are reached by social media sites and blogs [Source]

82% of buyers feel more positive about a company after reading custom content [Source]

78% perceive a relationship with a company after reading custom content [Source]

Companies that increase blogging from 3-5X/month to 6-8X/month almost double their leads. [Source]

SEO & Keywords Meet Prospects Where They Are

B2B buyers conduct an average of 12 searches before ever jumping on a specific brand’s site. [Source]

61% of global Internet users research products online. [Source]

SEO leads have a 14.6% close rate, while outbound leads (such as direct mail or print advertising) have a 1.7% close rate. (Source)

Email & Lead Nurturing – The Most Effective Way to Convert

Emails sent via marketing automation drive 18x more revenue than email blasts. [Source]

79% of marketing leads never convert into sales. Lack of lead nurturing is the common cause of this poor performance. [Source]

Nurtured leads make 47% larger purchases than non-nurtured leads. [Source]

Nurtured leads produce, on average, a 20% increase in sales opportunities versus non-nurtured leads. [Source]

Facebook – 72% of Online Adults Use It. You Can’t Ignore It.

Posts that contains photos make-up 93% of the most engaging posts. [Source]

Most engagement occurs towards the end of the week from Wednesday to Friday. [Source

Question posts get 100% more comments than standard text-based posts. [Source]

35% of users participate in contests, 42% like a page in order to get a discount or coupon. [Source]

Timeless Twitter Tips

Image links can get 2x the engagement rate. [Source]

Tweets with hashtags get 2x more engagement [Source]

Tweets have a 12x higher chance of being retweeted if you ask for it, and 23x higher if you actually spell out the word “retweet” [Source]


>> Overwhelmed by the thought of creating your own content marketing strategy? Or simply need a one-off, conversion-friendly white paper, infographic, or case study? Email carla@3to5marketing and let’s generate some leads!


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How the Paradox of Choice Affects Marketing | Guide Your Customers Through Their FOMO

The paradox of choice, marketing. consumer marketing, product marketing

At first, it may seem like a benefit to be able to offer a whole lot of choices to your customers. Whether its choice of products, product bundles, colors, sizes, or pricing options, more is better, right? You offer so many choices, it sets you apart from your competitors. Your customers can pick exactly what they want because you offer so many. That’s how the thinking goes, right?

Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way at all — a fact which we often forget in our “more is better” world.

Here’s why. There’s a concept called the “paradox of choice”, which was identified and studied by lots of psychologists in recent years. What they’ve found is that having too much to choose from actually creates high levels of stress and anxiety, especially if the choices represent high-value purchases or outcomes. It turns out there’s a point at which too much choice causes paralysis (and hence indecision) at the thought that we might choose poorly. You may have heard this described as FOMO (fear of missing out). We’ve all been there, right?

Americans make 70 different choices every day. Talk about overload! Is it any wonder we can be indecisive?

Therefore, when you’re creating marketing messages for your products and services, think about the fact that someone’s purchase decision around your product might be #68 for that day. You can see why, at that point, they just want you to tell them what to buy!

So, guide them. Curate the information for maximum relevance.

  • Think hard about whether or not your marketing message should lead with the fact that your product comes in 50+ variations. Maybe that’s not actually a good thing.
  • If your product can be easily customized to reduce choices by say, asking a few questions; or it comes with a “default” setting; or additional choices can come at different stages of the purchase, then promote that in your messaging. Consumers will feel relieved that you’re helping them make a choice.
  • (And if your product doesn’t come with the above, consider changing it so that it does).
  • When offering pricing packages, for example on online subscription services, default to the medium option, rather than the highest or lowest priced.
  • And finally (my own pet peeve), cut down on your CTAs! Whether it’s an email, blog post, or web page, don’t cram it full of multiple calls to action. Pick one primary and make it prominent. If you need to have secondary CTAs, make them less prominent so that there’s a clear hierarchy of choice.

>> Trying to find the balance between too much and too little in your marketing messages? I can help you negotiate that fine line. Give me a shout.


Interested in reading the scholarly evidence behind the paradox of choice? (I’ll admit, it’s a fascinating view into human behavior!) Start here:

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The Secret to Better Conversions: Answer These 3 Fundamental Product Questions To Get People to Buy!


When writing about your products or services, especially with more complex b2b products, it’s important to answer the three fundamental questions listed below. Answers to these questions clearly set expectations and communicate your product’s benefits. Not knowing the answers can be an obstacle to purchase.

  1. Why do I need (Product A) ?
    1. What problems does my business have?
    2. Which of those problems can be solved by Product A?
    3. Why should I pick your Product A over XYZ Company’s Product A?
  2. Ok, so what exactly will Product A do for me? What can I expect will happen when I hand over my money to you?
    1. What results can I expect?
    2. Have other customers seen results? What exactly?
  3. How does Product A work? 
    1. When does it start working?
    2. How easy is it to implement?
    3. Do I need to purchase anything else to be able to use it?
    4. How long before I get results?
    5. How will I know I’m getting results?

These are  questions that buyers ask when considering any purchase – but especially a purchase that is either an “unknown quantity”, or more complex, or involves a larger outlay of money. 

Conversions happen when you tell prospects who have made their way to your front door, exactly what your product will do for them, followed by how it will do it.

And you have to tell them in a way that is clear, concise, compelling, succinct, and quickly scannable (that means they won’t read everything, so say it a few different ways). My favorite professor in business school used to say, in customer communication, “subtleties don’t push the ball forward.”  

There. There’s your marketing secret to better conversions. Answer the Big Three questions about your product, and do it in a very clear, jargon-free way.

Need help answering the big three for your products? I can help. Contact me and let’s see what we can do.

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I’m busy. I’m stressed. I have 8.25 seconds. WTFSIC? | Marketing for Our Short Attention Spans

Copywriting, marketing

WTFSIC? aka Why the F**k Should I Care?

The average attention span of a consumer today is 8.25 seconds. That’s down from 12 seconds in 2000. That’s also less than the attention span of a goldfish (9 seconds), although I have no idea how they go about measuring that.

Put yourself in your overwhelmed, frazzled, impatient customers’ shoes, and for their sake, ask yourself WTFSIC? every time you create / write / develop / post a marketing message / tagline / tweet / headline / blog / email / or ad.

That’s right. Every time.

If you follow this advice, it should keep you from falling into the trap that businesses so easily fall into –

  • talking about your products from your company perspective instead of the customers’.
  • describing the product’s features, but not the benefits.
  • thinking that a prospect will make the leap of logic that you’ve made in your clever ad, and understand why your product is so great, without you spelling it out.
  • assuming that prospects will take the time to click around your website to learn about your product.
  • believing that the only thing you have to do to get prospects to give you their email address or request a sales call, is to display a “Learn More” button on your website.

“Learn more”? Seriously. Why would the average adult consumer, who has 360 messages firing at them every day via TV, radio, web, and print media (source: Media Dynamics), take the time to click a “Learn more” button? Even prospects who are actually in the market for your product don’t have that kind of patience.

What they do want is for you to describe your product’s benefits (not features) in a very brief, concise message, using simple, non-buzzword language, in a way that tells them immediately how it will make their life better, starting tomorrow. This goes for the B2B and B2C space (after all, all purchase decisions are made by the same frazzled humans).

Oh, and maybe give them a value-added resource too (like a white paper, an infographic, a how-to guide). Note: I did not say “give them a brochure about your company”. Because that requires thinking. A purely value-added piece will be useful to them and will make it abundantly clear what your product will do for them, right away.

Don’t make them think. Don’t make them click. Don’t make them hunt for where to click. Put the WTFSIC right on your homepage. In fact on every page of your site. Or at the top of your email (or better yet, the subject line). Or at the top of your ads. Make every single word in your marketing messages be meaningful to your audience. Spell out for them exactly why they should consider your product.

So, what do I want you to do now?

Every time you craft a marketing message, stop after every sentence and ask “WTFSIC?” It will force you to think from your customers’ perspective (after a while, this becomes embedded in your thinking process) and craft marketing messages that get them to take action. And ultimately sell more of your product. Because that’s why you’re in business, right?


If you need help crafting concise, meaningful, compelling marketing messages, websites, blogs, or graphics, give me a shout. This is what I do best. But be prepared to hear WTFSIC a lot.


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