Website traffic comes from a variety of sources—by going straight to a website without using a search engine (direct), through linking referrals, paid ads, or social media. However, organic search is still king and is responsible for 53% of all traffic coming to a website on average . While organic search traditionally delivers far more traffic to websites than any other channel, tracking organic traffic continues to be difficult.
There are 4 core intents when it comes to organic search. Each of these intents ties into different search layouts and results. This helps the searcher accomplish their goal (or intent) as quickly and accurately as possible.
Each intent has different features that become part of the search result to make the result more useful and accomplish the intent better/faster. For example, navigational and transactional searches will likely yield map results with direct click-to-call actions and directions—while informational search results have a featured snippet or direct answer at the top of the SERP, requiring no further action (or “zero-click ). In fact, informational search results are often the main culprit in lost traffic—zero-click results are great for the end-user but require no additional action which means often there is no click or conversion tracked by your website.
Other results, like research, typically yield expanded search features like Google tools (job listings widget, direct booking, etc.), related images, carousel results, and recommended videos. Each of these additional search results/features detracts from a website s overall clicks and traffic, which is why we typically see a rise in impressions (the amount of times content is displayed) rather than direct visits (clicks/traffic leading to a website).
Good SEO can help capture zero-click customers! For example, if there is a phone number in the meta title or description of your website, this is easily clickable by searchers using a smartphone or tablet. When SEO is done right, searchers can also click on local listings, maps, and features snippets without ever going to a website.