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One of the factors that Google considers when computing search rankings is traffic – quantity as well as quality. Indeed, quality is perhaps more important than quantity. Sure, a site that gets 100,000 visitors per day may be seen as better than one that gets 10,000 visits per day, but just because you get a lot of visitors doesn’t mean that those visitors value your site. It’s easy to game traffic counts.

Another aspect of traffic comparison is whether or not visitors return to your website. If you have a low percentage of visitors who are return visitors to your website then you may suffer from some quality marks that are hurting you in your rankings. But that’ s not all.

Other aspects of quality traffic include traffic source, time on site, time on page, and bounce rates. I think traffic source is important and will likely become more important and when I say traffic source I’m talking about specific websites and their authority. If you get high quality traffic from a website that is deemed authoritative in the eyes of Google then that counts in your favor. It is conceivable that 10,000 visitors per day where 80% of that traffic comes from high quality, authoritative sites like Google, Facebook, and Twitter versus 100,000 low quality visitors from low quality directories and such could give you more search mojo. Remember, quality counts. And I think Google is getting as sophisticated at judging quality traffic as they are at judging quality links.

The takeaway here is to seek quality traffic from high quality, authoritative social media sites, not rinky-dink startups with no reputation.

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