More threads by HoosierBuff

Dec 12, 2013
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Hi all,

I wanted a sanity check:

I have a client I've done some work for, and we got the Google profile verified (there was none) on October 1. My rank trackers (I check several) all show improvement in rank, yet, this month, I saw a 20% decrease in Organic traffic compared to September. Direct traffic (which some say is where GMB traffic counts as), was up, but not enough to cover the organic decline.

It may just be seasonality, but, i had one thought:

- Could the Google profile steal visits that would have been organic? So a user searches for "company name" or "product" and sees the Profile, and no longer clicks thru?

I think that is a likely scenario, but, I don't want to kid myself.
What industry is this client in? Depending on the query, it's not beyond the realm of possibility that people are simply calling directly from the listing and not visiting the website.
I think your thought of the possibility that users are no longer going to the website,could be a correct assumption. Users may have only been visiting the site because they were only looking for a phone number/contact information. Now that you have a GMB page and Google provides that info without the need to click through, it would make sense that traffic is down.

A better question to ask is whether leads/sales are down month over month? What industry is this client in? If the majority of leads are coming via phone call over web form completions, then I would make sure you're doing call tracking of some kind (if you're not already) to look for a delta in incoming calls to the business.
This is an office furniture supplier. . . so, it is possible that they would mostly get phone calls.

What do you use for phone tracking?
Callrail is good, but there are others out there as well. Since you don't want to mess with the existing number (will hurt citation consistency), you would want to look into porting the number over to the provider. That will allow you to retain the old number, but take advantage of the analytics tracking. Most people use tracking numbers to understand the data behind phone calls, so porting would solve both.

There is a little bit of legwork to get this done, since it would be similar to switching phone providers. Companies that offer porting should provide documentation how to get this done with minimal hassle.
The Insights section of the GMB account can give you more data on this as well.
Instead of guessing on click throughs to the website, just change your GMB link to track properly in analytics. Andrew Shotland wrote an article about how to do that here.

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