PostHeaderIcon How to Check Website Traffic

Knowing how to check website traffic is useful for two main reasons: getting to know your audience and learning about your competition. Traffic monitors now allow you to look beyond numbers and see other statistics, such as how long visitors tend to stay, where they come from, and which sections they read the most. They also offer a peek into competing websites and how they work compared to your own. Both provide valuable data that can steer your marketing and content in the right direction.

The most popular and widely recommended tool for checking website traffic is Google Ad Planner. Site statistics are provided both in country-specific and worldwide perspectives, and include total versus unique visitors, page views, monthly statistics, and average time spent on site. Its interface is also one of the most user-friendly in the market, making it especially useful for new site owners and those who like to focus on the business side of things.

Alexa is better known as a ranking system, a measure of a site or blog’s popularity. It provides useful metrics such as global traffic rank, country-specific traffic rank, page views per user, bounce rate, and search percentage. It also shows the top keywords that lead to the site, which can be useful in search engine optimization efforts. The comparison tool allows you to see how your site measures up with up to four others. The data is a little less accurate, but works well as a prediction and site-valuing tool.

For U.S.-specific users, Compete is also worth checking out. Its data is based on a list of 200,000 users in the U.S., which makes it a little limited but well-targeted for those who don’t really care about international traffic (such as community-based websites). QuantCast works in much the same way; like Alexa, its accuracy doesn’t quite match that of Google, but it serves as a supplementary resource for Compete or a similar service.

If your main goal for checking website traffic is ad revenue, BuySellAds may be worth a look. It’s primarily an ad network specializing in banner ads, but it offers very reliable traffic estimates. The catch is that you have to use the service (i.e. install the script) before you can get your hands on the data. Experts recommend it mostly for an overview of the most important metrics, including rankings on Compete and Alexa, social network shares and followers, and SEO statistics.

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