Tracking Pokemon is a vital skill and something every Pokemon Go Trainer needs to know. As one wanders the world in search of Pokemon they will either get closer or farther away depending on their location.
Each footprint is loosely equivalent of being 100 meters from the Pokemon. At 3 footprints, the Pokemon is 300 meters or more from your location. The distance is updated every 8th radar ping from your avatar.
When a Pokemon has no footprints next to it, you are within range to potentially find it. This can take a while depending on the servers and location of the Pokemon. Tap on the screen once in a while to encourage the Pokemon to reveal itself.
Tracking Specific Pokemon
Using the Nearby tab, you can tap on a specific Pokemon. This will have them appear in the Nearby tab instead of its showing 3 of the closest Pokemon. As you walk about, you will see the number of Footprints decrease as you head in the direction that Pokemon is. You can also see a small green pulse emitting from the nearby tab. These pulses will help you find the proper heading. The closer you get to the Pokemon, the quicker the green pulses will emerge. With the last footprint gone, the Pokemon will appear.