Something that caught my eye when Listing Router was introduced, a comment by ActiveBob in his whiteboard explanation:
There are thousands and thousands of searchers every day that come to ActiveRain and leave after viewing one page.
This is typical for search engine traffic. That’s called a ‘bounce,’ in internet lingo: a short, one-page-no-click visit. Part of the point of Listing Router (in my humble opinion) is to try and capitalize on those bounces – to take those visitors who would have clicked away and give them the opportunity to go to a site that might interest them – to send them to your site with listings.
So now you’ve got to deal with the same problem. Bouncing users. Especially as you’re paying for those visitors – a bouncing user is wasted money. So how do you measure bouncing users on your site?
How do you know if Listing Router is working?
You need a system to measure and monitor the traffic sent to your IDX site from ActiveRain. Because if you’re going to spend the money, you better know if it is working for you or not.
Depending on your IDX site, that may or may not be difficult. Some sites only give very basic user analytics, if any, and then you’ve got to decide if you’ll continue to use that site or not.
One of the best free ways to better understand the users at your site, if they bounce or not, and how they found you is to create an account at Google Analytics and install a snippet of code on your site. That will tell you exactly how much traffic you’re getting from ActiveRain, how often those users click away immediately, and how many spend some time clicking around on your site.
Another simpler, but still good and free solution, is to use GetClicky, which will also help you learn where the traffic to your IDX is coming from and how long they stay on your site.
And then, once you know what the users who clicked over from ActiveRain are doing, you can try to improve those visits by improving your site. Maybe you send those users to a different page, or configure the existing search differently. Maybe you start using a different IDX, or maybe you send people to a list of search results instead of to the page where they enter their criteria. And now you can measure the results of those changes, using your web analytics.
Measure the traffic and behavior of the users who click over from Listing Router, so you’ll know if the money you’re spending is worthwhile.
In case you missed them: