One way to measure the success of a website is to know how much website traffic it receives. Traffic or visitors doesn't just flock a website once it's launched out of nowhere, so some effort need to be poured to get the traffic you want.
Increasing website traffic requires quite a bit hard work, and it is a continuous process. It might be slow at first, but once it reach its tipping point, things will work automatically as the job is carried out by the visitors, voluntarily. All you need to do at that time is to monitor and promote the process.
There are many ways that a visitor would come to your website. Increasing visitors to your website would therefore mean improving any if not all the entry points to your website. You can prioritize your strategy based on the importance of each type of website traffic.
This the type of traffic that find it's way to your website via search engines such as Google, Yahoo! or Bing, just to name a few. It is the most common and valuable website traffic because the type of visitor coming to your site via search engine usually search for certain information of product. They are normally unique (non-repeat) visitors, don't stay long at your website, and they are the type that would convert most if your website is selling products or serving ads.
There are normally millions of search results for a particular keyword during a search via the search engine, and people normally clicks only on the first few results of the search engine results page (SERP). It is therefore very important for your website to have high search engine ranking and appear as the first few results on a search engine results page.
Referring traffic means traffic that originates from other websites. This type of traffic has conversion rate almost similar to search engine traffic, and therefore is good for website monetization.
Referring traffic normally comes from forums, though it's also common in blog posts or in blogroll links in blogs.
This type of website traffic is also mostly of unique visitors and generally generate more pageviews per visitor than the search engine traffic. Visitors from referring traffic are also more likely to be a loyal subscriber to a website.
Direct traffic visitors are visitors that come to your website directly, without being referred by other sites or from a search engine search. It is common for forums and blogs, and doesn't monetize well. The visitors are familiar with the particular website and visit them on a regular basis.
The direct traffic visitor generates the highest pageviews per visit compared to any other type of website traffic.
Social traffics are traffics that originate from social bookmarking or social networking sites. It could get viral sometimes and produce high spikes in web traffic to your site. It's doesn't convert well if you're monetizing your site, but a small percentage of tens of thousands visitors is still a good number.
You'll never never know for sure how much traffic does your website get unless you have a way to actually monitor each and every visitor to your website. Having a good insight of you website's visitors will help you plan your next step in your strategy to increase your website traffic.