Quality Traffic vs. More Traffic for your Shopify Store [Scale-up Shopify Part 3]

Quality Traffic vs. More Traffic for your Shopify Store [Scale-up Shopify Part 3]

Blog Series Overview

Shopify is one of the world's largest, if not the largest, e-commerce platforms. At the time of writing this article, there were more than 1.5 million Shopify merchants and 3.75 million Shopify websites. This number is growing exponentially every year. However, almost 50% of these stores are small in terms of size and revenue. While setting up a Shopify store is quite easy and takes just minutes, it is not quite as easy to grow & scale to a larger company. There are certain obstacles and non-technical hardships along the way that no one talks about. We aim to help these smaller-sized companies become more successful in Shopify. We are launching a new series of informative blogs. This is part 3 of the series.

The 7 Golden Steps to Scale & Grow your Shopify Store:

The links will be updated once new blogs are published.

Qualification & Justification

Firstly, an introduction is in order. Why would you take my points of view as a credible source of information? Well, I have been working as a data scientist in {SaaS (Software as a Service), named Enhencer, for more than 4 years. Our goal as a company is to help e-commerce companies to dig out valuable visitors as their target audience from their website traffic and improve their returns on marketing campaigns. As an individual and company, we have worked with many Shopify store owners ranging from small to large. We have encountered and solved many problems faced by these companies and helped many companies go from small-sized to larger sizes. As a result, we have seen a fair share of different scenarios that can emerge under different conditions.

Aim of this Article

The fastest way to get traffic is through paid online traffic campaigns in Facebook Ads & Google Ads. This is one of the most sought out methods to boost traffic in the short run. The idea is simple, you choose the region and the type of people you want to advertise towards and pay the money based on each click or each ad impression. It gets you a decent traffic boost for your money.

Here comes the catch, this type of market and audience selection only brings you traffic but does not increase the conversion on your website. The short answer is that the traffic was not relevant to your product or brand. As a result, you are left with the question of; I have a lot of traffic, but the website sales are low. If it is any comfort, you are not alone. This is faced by most of the Shopify stores at some point.

There is no absolute definition for what quality traffic is. This might change from business to business and website to website. However, the underlying idea of quality traffic can be generalized.

  • The traffic is from the region of your business operations.
  • The traffic demographic is relevant for your products.
  • The new inbound traffic has a decent conversion rate on the website.
  • The traffic bounce rate is low, while on-site session time is high.
  • The cost per visitor is low.

A blog article with step by step guide on how to create an effective traffic campaign on Facebook & Google ads is coming up in the upcoming weeks, and the link will be added here:

Why Quality Traffic is Important?

The most important asset of an e-commerce website is its traffic. The higher the traffic, the higher the PROBABILITY of a sale. Notice that keyword is probability. It's because not every visitor purchases something from any website. The higher the traffic you get, the probability some of them buy increases.

  • On an individual level, you have to convince your visitors to linger longer on your website, browse products, attract them with some value proposition and make them purchase. This is a whole new topic worthy of its own article; therefore, I will not be going into details.
  • On a massive scale, you need to attract the right audience to your website who are interested in your product. This makes the convincing part on the individual level all the more easier. Provide them with some coupons, free shipping, or any sort of nudge, and the chance of them buying becomes very high. Even then, only a fraction of all visitor buys something.
  • Attract the wrong audience for your website, and the convincing part gets all the more harder. You will notice the bounce rate will get higher, the session time will fall, and most importantly, the website's conversion rate will plummet.

Since you are paying online platforms like Facebook and Google Ads for the traffic, might as well make the most of it. Chose the right audience for the traffic campaign and see the differences over time. In other words, spend more on the traffic but spend smartly and rightly.

How to Evaluate Traffic?

Facebook and Google Ads show the campaign results very transparently. However, this does not show the full picture, and you have to dig a little deeper. Don't worry, you don't have to be a data scientist or data analyst to understand all of these. Additionally, this blog is not about the technical details of these steps. One more thing, for this step, you need Google Analytics integrated into your website. If you have not done so, then visit the link below for a comprehensive guide:

Setting up Google Analytics for your Shopify Store

If you have google analytics integrated, then we can move forward. In any Facebook ads, you can provide a UTM code (Here is the Link for a Guide: Setup UTM for Facebook Ads that helps google analytics o track the traffic coming from that campaign source. In any Google ads campaign, this is already tracked.

In any traffic campaign, here are the matrices you want to look out for in google analytics:

  • Bounce Rate: A 'bounce' (often called a single-page session) happens when a user lands on a website page and exits without navigating to other pages on the same site or clicking on any on-site links. For example, a 10% bounce rate means 10 out of 100 visitors did not click anywhere on the website and exited. In other words, the lower the bounce rate, the more relevant your traffic is to your products.
  • Average Session Duration: This means the average length of period the visitors spend on your website. Obviously, a campaign (let's call it campaign A) with an AVG Session Duration of 5 minutes 5 seconds has better traffic than a campaign (let's call it campaign B) that brought in more visitors but with an AVG session duration of 30 seconds. In this case, the campaign Ais going to increase your website's conversion rate in the long run.

There are many other matrices and attributes that need explaining, but that is a topic for another blog article.

Lookalike Audience vs Interest-Based Audience?

Facebook ads have a neat concept called interest-based audience selection. If you set pet products, you can pay Facebook to bring you visitors who are interested in pets. How Facebook determines this is undisclosed. The interest-based audience can be hit or miss, and its performance is all over the place. It is very hard to recommend.

Speculation: [Skip if you want]. The Internet has its way of figuring out undisclosed information. It has been theorized that Facebook determines the interest of its users based on what kind of groups they participate in, the pages they like, the videos they watch and for how long, the type of posts they engage with, and many more. There is a whole debate about whether this is ethical or not, but that's a topic for another day.

Here comes the Lookalike Audience to kind of save the day. You know the visitors who purchased from your website in the past. They are your most important visitors among all the visitors. You can create a lookalike audience based on your past visitors who purchased something. This way, Facebook finds more people whose characteristics meet the ones you provided. This is slightly better than a purely interest-based traffic audience. Then again, you have to choose the right audience to create the lookalike based upon. This can be a harder task than you realize at first.

Role of Enhencer Lookalike?

This is where e-commerce meets machine learning. Enhencer is an online platform that helps e-commerce companies improve their ad campaign conversion rate, improve ROAS and bring better traffic. Enhencer does this by automatically collecting and analyzing your website visitor data. Using sophisticated AI-Algorithms, Enhencer segments the visitor based on their behavior and likelihood of purchasing something from the website. In other words, based on the website visitors' behavior, Enhencer provides the most relevant and optimized target audience for all your marketing campaigns.

You might have noticed the word “behavior” is thrown around a lot. That's because it's the most important differentiating factor from all the other methods, tools, and platforms out there. If certain behavior leads to purchase, then these behaviors are important to investigate. What's more important is that you can create a lookalike on Facebook ads based on the Enhencer audience to get more traffic not based on just interest but based on your website visitors' behavior. This is significantly more relevant since they already came to your website, displayed some certain behavior, and purchased something, meaning they are already interested in your products. Create a lookalike based on this and advertise to them to bring in more quality traffic to our website.

Conclusions

This blog tries to show you the importance of quality traffic over just more traffic. Remember, in order to grow your business, you need to have constant sales on your website and bring in revenue. Therefore, if the visitors who visit your website don't purchase something, you are no better off just because you have high traffic. Instead, make adjustments and changes to bring in quality traffic in the long run.

Author photo
Written By M Ahmed Tayib