Traffic dropping? How to determine the cause and fix it

Traffic dropping? How to determine the cause and fix it

It’s Monday morning and you open up your Google Analytics stats. Then there it is, something you don’t wish to see at the beginning of the week: a sudden drop in traffic. And not just a small decline in traffic, no this is a significant drop. Panic strikes, time for action! First, take a couple of deep breaths and grab a piece of (digital) paper and write down the things you should check. This post will help you to identify what the problem is, and how to fix it.

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Before you start panicking, check the data

Before you start investigating the cause, it’s a good idea to check if there really has been a drop in traffic. It’s possible that you’re not seeing the right data, due to IT problems or changes in your analytics setup. This is especially true if there’s a large and sudden change.

Does the date range make sense?

After you’ve taken your deep breath, check how ‘bad’ the traffic drop is. Sometimes a drop can look sharp because you’ve set the wrong date range. For example, you’ve included today and the day isn’t over. Or you’re looking at an hourly report, or a date range including a weekend when traffic often dips a bit.

Hourly report in Google Analytics

It’s important to remember you can get skewed graphs because of the date range you’ve chosen. No website has a consistent amount of traffic; it goes up and down. It’s key that you put the drop into perspective. Take a broader date range that you can divide by seven, or compare date ranges. One of the things worth exploring is to compare the date range with last year’s date range. Did you have a similar drop in % last year? Then perhaps the dip in traffic is a normal seasonal fluctuation.

Finding the cause of your traffic drop

Now you’ve established that there is a significant traffic drop and it’s not caused by a technical error or an unlucky chosen date range, it’s time to look further.

1. Check your channels

First, you need to check if you’re getting less traffic from one or more of your main traffic sources. The



This article was written by Amy Lees and originally published on SEO blog • Yoast.

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