How Does SEO Influence Different Types of Web Traffic?



How Does SEO Influence Different Types of Web Traffic?d-tags
23 April 2024
When executed effectively, SEO can impact several types of traffic, including organic and referral traffic. It also helps drive traffic from social media and boosts direct visits to your website. If you're looking to quickly promote an offer and increase site visits, you might also want to consider PPC campaigns.



SEO is more than just a checklist of website modifications that you go through to bring in traffic. Truth be told, search engine optimization is more about understanding the purpose of every element your website is made up of. The process usually starts with running a website analysis, and later compare your strategy to what currently happens in your industry. Gathering those insights, you move on to tackle content creation, organize our website’s layout, and build some backlinks…

The main goal is always the same: to get better visibility on Google and increase conversions, helping you meet your business goals.

But let’s take a step back and look at the bigger picture. When you focus on creating quality content and improving your SEO, you’re not just pushing for more sales or a higher ranking. You’re also positioning yourself as an expert in our field. You answer your customers’ questions and give them useful information they might want to pass on, which can lead to acquiring natural backlinks.

So, how does this sharing happen, and what kind of traffic does SEO attract? The answer might surprise you!

Search Engine Optimization and Different Kinds of Web Traffic

Let’s start with a basic understanding of web traffic before getting more into the details.

One of the main goals of SEO is to rank well in organic search results. That’s usually what clients want when they get in touch with an SEO agency.

If your aim is to boost your sales and conversions, your website must show at the top of search results when people are looking for the kinds of products or services you offer.

Moreover, SEO often focuses on researching and later incorporating the keywords in the strategic places on the website. This covers everything from broad, general terms that many people search for to very specific ones that are precisely selected to attract a target group of prospects.

As you refine your SEO strategies, these search terms help your website climb higher in SERP, which leads to more views and more clicks.

Here’s something interesting: those narrower, more specific keywords – aka long-tail keywords – might get fewer searches, but they often lead to more conversions.

💡 For instance, someone looking to replace a light bulb at home is likely to search for a specific product. In other words, such a person is more likely to type the exact name of the product into the search bar: “E14 6W LED light bulbs,” instead of just using a generic term like “LED light bulbs.”

When an SEO strategy is well-devised, long-tail keywords are one of the main web traffic sources. SEO is nothing like paid ads because it attracts organic interest and builds trust.

When your website appears high in Google’s search results, this is a signal for the target audience that it’s credible.

You can see these yourself by looking at your Google Analytics traffic report:

Usability and Different Types of Web Traffic

When someone lands on your website, they must find it easy to use it. The simpler and more intuitive your website’s layout and content are, the better UX.

If your product descriptions are clear and your checkout process is simple, customers are more likely to be satisfied. They might stick around to see what else you have to offer. And if their experience is good, they’re likely to come back the next time they need a product you have in store for them. Essentially, good usability keeps customers returning to you, consequently boosting your website’s traffic.

Content marketing, like blogging, is another great way to pull in visitors. Let’s say you run a lighting store. You could write helpful guides on choosing the right lamps or offer tips on saving energy with the lighting you offer.

Make sure your articles are helpful and include the kinds of keywords that people are likely to type into the search bar while looking for products you offer. This will help more people discover your posts and increase the click-throughs.

If your e-commerce website has a blog, be sure to set up internal links correctly. That way, if someone’s reading about a specific lamp, they can easily click right over to the product page from your post. They might even buy that lamp on the spot. And if they really like what they see, they might share your article with friends or on social media. Every share can help bring new kinds of visitors to your website.

Types of Web Traffic: The Importance of Organic Traffic for Visibility in Search Results

Considering the above, when it comes to discussing the relationship between SEO and the type of traffic drawn to a website, we should start with organic traffic, acquired through building website visibility.

Organic traffic is one of the basic elements contributing to improving your website’s visibility in search results. The reason it’s so important is because it helps build trust and credibility for a brand among internet users and search engines alike.

When your website appears naturally in search results without paid promotions, it’s often viewed as more reliable and authoritative. This perception can significantly influence how potential customers perceive your brand.

Among different types of web traffic, organic traffic is highly valued by businesses. This is because people who visit a website through search engine results typically have a clear purpose or need, showing that they are already engaged with what they’re searching for. If you accurately identify and target your audience, you can expect these organic visitors to:

  • spend more time on your website
  • be less likely to leave quickly (lower bounce rates)
  • be more likely to complete desired actions like purchases (higher conversion rates)
Importantly, unlike paid Google Ads campaigns, which often stop generating traffic the moment after they end, the effects of a well-planned SEO strategy can be long-lasting, making organic traffic more cost-effective in the long run.

Types of Web Traffic: Referral Traffic

There are plenty of ways to get referral links, but just trying to gather as many as possible isn’t really effective anymore. Nowadays it’s way more beneficial to do what you can to make your website be perceived as an expert source, increasing its credibility.

When a related website of a high-ranked domain links to your website, it really helps your standing with search engines.

One common way to get backlinks is simply through writing articles for other websites. You can get them published by:

  • teaming up with website owners that are related to your industry,
  • using press release services, or
  • posting on websites primarily set up just for this purpose.

These kinds of websites are usually full of useful content so they get a lot of organic visitors. This, in turn, means search engines see them as authoritative (and that’s good for your SEO, too). If users find your articles truly interesting and engaging, the backlinks you place there will improve your website’s authority and bring in more visitors through referral traffic.

Doing in-depth keyword research and spotting search trends can also lead you to influencers. Get in touch with them as they can post about your product. This way you will get your name out and acquire more backlinks from reputable sources. Besides, getting links from high-ranking websites can also lead to more referral traffic.

Comment and discussion sections are hotspots for those who are looking for some recommendations concerning particular products or services. Take forums for car or tech enthusiasts, for example – they’re still popular, and therefore packed with people passionate about these topics. If someone needs to suggest a part for a repair, they might pull up their past purchases or even do a quick Google search. If they stumble upon your website and share a link to it, chances are that link will get a lot of clicks.

Types of Web Traffic: Social Traffic

Having brand accounts on popular social media platforms is a vital part of a well-rounded SEO strategy. The truth, however, is that we don’t usually think of them as directly related to SEO, which is a pity. After all, social media traffic is driven to a website by sharing links to the latest articles or presenting products we want our followers to see.

social media stats in the usa 2024

source: Statcounter

When you put backlinks on external websites, you don’t always need to present yourself as an expert. The thing,however, is a bit different with social media platforms which typically need you to act as your brand. Along with valuable links, you’re also building your company’s reputation and fostering a community around your brand.

If your content on social media is engaging, people will read it, and the links you share will bring more visitors to your website from social channels.

Your posts can be shared further, becoming part of broader discussions. This sharing helps increase traffic even more. A social media account, when properly managed as part of your SEO strategy, can start to operate on its own, putting your company in a positive light. High visibility for your brand, an interesting blog, and especially a satisfying shopping experience – positively affect how internet users perceive your brand image and ignite discussion about it.

The more visible you are online, the more likely your products, store, or services will become discussion points. This in turn will help you bring more visitors to your website.

It’s worth realizing that a well-planned-out SEO strategy also improves your social media outcomes. Eventually, backlinks start to get created almost on their own, and the job of an SEO is to sustain these positive trends and continually adapt content to meet the needs of your target audience even better.

Types of Web Traffic: Direct Traffic and Regular Customers

What other type of web traffic does SEO influence? You might not think of direct traffic first, but it’s crucial.

Think about your own shopping habits – when you find a product you’re interested in, do you always buy it right away? Or have you ever bookmarked it or come back to it by looking through your history? You likely have. This type of traffic, which often results from a website’s strong search engine ranking – thanks to effective SEO, obviously – is known as direct traffic.

The way Google’s algorithms work means that SEO often has common ground with user experience (UX). A well-optimized website is simply more inviting. If you manage to build a positive brand image, some of your customers will definitely remember your website.

A satisfied customer looking for products you offer might skip the search engines and go directly to your website the next time they need something, simply because they’ve shopped with you before and remember the positive experience.

Search Engine Optimization and Paid Traffic

One of the quickest ways to promote your product/services online is through PPC (Pay-Per-Click) campaigns, often having the form of paid search results. Google Ads has a list of requirements that need to be met if your ad is to appear in a prominent spot within ad placeholders. Whether or not these requirements are fulfilled determines if your ad will show up for targeted Google users.

A critical factor in ad ranking is the quality of the landing page it brings a user to. You need to make sure that when someone clicks on an ad, they land on a page that matches their expectations. So, how do you make your advertised website rank high? Google says that:

  • the web content should be original and useful
  • the website should be easy to navigate

Does that sound familiar? It’s similar to what we’ve discussed about the complete SEO process for organic traffic.

ads quality score

One of the common beliefs says that SEO negatively impacts Google Ads traffic, which is a widespread myth. And there are more misconceptions about paid traffic, all presented in 16 Myths About Google Ads. In reality, SEO and PPC complement each other well – more on that in SEO and Google Ads. Read it to understand that while SEO and PPC function differently, both are vital to a successful online marketing strategy.

Summary: How Does SEO Influence Types of Web Traffic?

It’s not really that easy to say what types of traffic your SEO strategy attract at a given time. It really depends on how broadly you define the impact of SEO activities. Nevertheless, one can be taken for granted: Teamwork between experienced SEO Specialists and website owners leads to notable increases in web traffic – not just from organic search results, but from other channels too, even including ads.

Want to drive more traffic and conversions on your website? Reach out to us! We’ll put together a customized pack of SEO services, selected specifically for your website to help boost your organic search rankings.

This is an update of the article published first on February 11th, 2019.

Maciej Jakubiec
Maciej Jakubiec

Junior SEO Specialist

A marketing graduate with a specialization in e-commerce from the Cracow University of Economics, hailing from the picturesque Podkarpacie region. He joined Delante in 2022. In SEO, he particularly appreciates the relationship of this field with attention to positive user experience and high-quality content. Privately, he spends almost all of his free time on music production, which he has been doing for years – or discovering and testing new recipes.

Maciej Jakubiec
Maciej Jakubiec

Junior SEO Specialist

A marketing graduate with a specialization in e-commerce from the Cracow University of Economics, hailing from the picturesque Podkarpacie region. He joined Delante in 2022. In SEO, he particularly appreciates the relationship of this field with attention to positive user experience and high-quality content. Privately, he spends almost all of his free time on music production, which he has been doing for years – or discovering and testing new recipes.

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