Pseudo-Direct Traffic: Direct By Intent Not Definition
Posted 19 February 2012 - 11:37 PM
Note: know your third party analytics programs defaults - often direct is more of a catch-all miscellaneous repository without some tweaking.
However, if one considers intent then direct becomes much more interesting. By intent I mean that the visitor woulda coulda shoulda come direct except that for some reason they came via third party, i.e. SE navigational query.
The reason that separating, for instance, SE navigational queries from term queries is that the visitor's intent, behaviour on site, and conversion percentage is significantly different; indeed it more mirrors true direct traffic. I labelled this type of traffic pseudo-direct but did little else until recently.
Now, with the increase in social traffic, in the significant time many people spend on various social sites, I grew to wonder how much of my social traffic is pseudo-direct: using a link from their social site page as if it were a bookmark. I've been investigating this for a short time now and the indications are that significant numbers, but unclear percentages as yet, of my social traffic is indeed direct by intent if not by strict definition.
Social traffic is quite complex. So many ways that things get shared or tagged or listed; trying to filter and qualify the various streams is...interesting.
Posted 20 February 2012 - 04:32 AM
Posted 20 February 2012 - 03:20 PM
Search engine navigational or brand queries are a common source of direct traffic.
People merely typing your site URL into their browser or using bookmarks are also DIRECT visitors.
But what about people subscribing to RSS feeds? Are they Direct visitors?
I think at some point the universal agreement breaks down and each of us has to decide for ourselves what should go into the "direct" bucket.
Posted 20 February 2012 - 04:22 PM
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