What is referral traffic?
Referral traffic is commonly defined as traffic which come from any website when a hyperlink is clicked on that is not a search engine, social media site, or advertisement (these are organic, social, and paid or display traffic respectively.
What is referral traffic really?
Go to any starbucks walk up to the nerd with a fedora on a new macbook and they will repeat the vernacular definition above. However it is technically any traffic that can be identified whether email, display banner, search engine, or a link from Buzzfeed (or a real site whose primary audience isn’t a central Californian gender fluid preteen these all have a traceable source and are therefore all techinically referrals.
Again no one actually refers to referral traffic in this manner.
The Power of Eating Your Cake
Hire a SEO consultant or even more hilarious a “digital specialist” that has credentialliing in SEO and you will probably hear some buzzwords. “Is that contextually relevant?” or “Make sure your imaging is relevant to the content.” or “Backlinks only work if they are relevant to your content.”
Relevance doesn’t matter from an SEO perspective…like at all but in this case relevance is actually is best practices. Or in consultancy talk, “ensuring that all of your referral traffic derives from topically relevant sources will maximize your total conversion.”
But yeah that’s actually true. Referral traffic generally has some of the best value. It’s good for your organic, and it is good for conversion. As they provide definitive benefits as the likelihood of a user coming from a trusted source is good.
In other words, a user that comes from a website has a high chance of them trusting that website and therefore the links that said website provides vs say a search engine or paid link but that is only assuming that…it is relevant from the referral source.
Pass Go & Collect
If you sell B2B widgets you reicieve a referral visit from a site that teaches people how to get six pack abs in a week what is the probablitiy of that visit converting? Now imagine you reviece a referral visit from a B2B informational site. Relevance is actually good advice after all, that consultant actually regurgitated something worth paying for.
Spend 1%-10% of your time researching other relevant sites, identifying good contacts from the decision makers of said site, and find ways to stay in contact with them, and of course write good content for and get links from…