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What does Panda mean?
1. Ads targeted locations
2. Demography of visitors who came
3. Install on-line satisfaction query
4. Install eye tracking measure
7. Check service again because if you can not make efficient ads to purchase, there is maybe issue with service and its perception.
IMHO, its likely that your increase in traffic is made up off non converting queries.
People at a significantly different stage in the buying process, i.e tire kickers
what analytics package do you use
an where you using analytics in the previous period you're comparing with?
when you sales sales are down, i don't know if you mean gross sales volume or organic sales...
and if you mean organic, how are you measuring things...
...if my sales are down and traffic is high there's usually some scraper copying my content, stealing my sales leads and usually posting a doorway page to Amazon.
...you need to segment the traffic by source and page and see if the traffic you expect to convert, is converting at the rate you expect it to.
..one nice thing about ppc is the speed and flexibility of traffic, and therefore, data collection. think of paid search and organic as partners who help each other. segment the data so you understand each separately. once you reach that level, organic traffic can help you uncover new areas to ppc. and ppc successes can lead to targets for your organic efforts.
Do you have ecommerce tracking set up in your Google Analytics? And goals? If so, take a look at the sales funnel.
What would you look at first to figure out why this is happening?
You'll have your hands full with just those for a while.
Is your GOOGLE traffic up 17%?
possibilities - Google is sending you more traffic but has pre-filtered what they consider "likely to buy" visitors and sent them elsewhere by showing them personalized results.
#3 - Which pages is your traffic up on? Perhaps your old performers got a downgrade and your newer content moved up a little.
"Personally, I wouldn't worry about doing PPC until you've figured out how to work your Analytics info like a mofo."
Exactly! Especially if your PPC campaigns are, as you said, not good.
I usually recommend putting a slightly different template/look-n-feel on new ones that don't sell as expected or old stale ones. It's a bit of spice that gets the product going for some reason.
[edited by: lorax at 12:27 pm (utc) on Oct 16, 2011]
[edited by: lorax at 12:06 am (utc) on Dec 9, 2011]
[edit reason] no self-links please [/edit]
I think the easy response here is to look at the top keywords in traffic sources you had before and after panda. That should show you that you had more qualified relevant visitors before.
DO you know which keywords are used to come to you site?
if not, then this is where you need to start!
if keywords used to come to your site are same before and after the Google Panda, then your conversion issue is obviously on your site (although I doubt this is the case).
my guess is that visitors are now coming to your site using different keywords.