Just because you’ve built it, doesn’t mean they will come
You finally have a powerful website that you are proud to show off, with messages that clearly explain how you help your clients and the value you provide. Now you need to increase website traffic in order to gain visibility, grow your email list, sell your product or services to the right audience.
Getting traffic is hard and doesn’t happen without you doing something to make it happen. The following 10 marketing activities will drive traffic to your website and turn it into a powerful hub for your web presence.
1. Optimize your website around your top keywords
Before you do anything else to increase website traffic, you need to spend some time optimizing your content. Organic search is the top priority for small businesses. Done well, you can gain ranking in the search engine results and stay visible without paying for ads.
Understand how people search for your products or services and then develop a keyword list that you use for all of your marketing activities.
Optimize each page of your website around one keyword phrase. Use the Yoast SEO WordPress plugin to make sure you use it in your web page title, the meta description tag and appropriately throughout your content. Now dive deeper into keyword research and create a list that can be used for blog post topics and optimize each of them as well.
2. Create content regularly
Whether you choose to blog, use video or podcasts, you need to create content to extend your digital footprint. Focus on providing helpful content that attracts the right audience. If you know what your audience cares about, what pain they are in or what challenge they need help with, offer a solution through your blog.
To ensure your content will make its way into the hands of those interested in what you have to say:
- Gather topics on what your audience needs and what questions they ask.
- Put your editorial calendar together that includes topics, which media to use, publish dates and focused keyword phrases.
- Begin with a compelling headline that will entice the human first. A good headline will also help the search engines lead your audience to you.
- Tell a story so people stay interested.
- If using video or a podcast, create a brief transcript so visitors can scan for important points.
- Use interesting images that reinforces your message that will be seen when you promote the content on social media.
- Include a call to action, even if it is simply to leave a comment or leave a review for a podcast or video.
- Don’t forget to promote your content on your social media profiles and email it to your list.
Don’t underestimate the power great content can have on your visibility. It is a lot of work, but the value it provides to showcase your expertise and increase website traffic is worth the effort.
3. Promote and syndicate your content
Don’t let your quality content sit dormant on your blog.
- Promote your content on your Facebook Page and then share it on your personal profile.
- Post your content on your LinkedIn profile and LinkedIn company page.
- Make sure you have a featured image in your post and select it when you post to Twitter. The image makes your content more visible in the Twitter feed.
Syndicate your content to legitimate sites like Business2Community to distribute your content to a much larger audience, making you visible to their readers and providing inbound links and social shares. Most times, content posted on Business2Community gets more visibility and shares than content posted on my blog, but those shares lead people to my website to find out more.
4. Publish on LinkedIn
LinkedIn provides a publishing platform, Pulse, to all members. You can post original content within your area of expertise and interests to help you reach more of your audience with your content. This content becomes part of your professional profile and is searchable both on LinkedIn and through search engines.
When you publish a long-form post (not just share an update), your connections receive a notification in real time that contains the title of the post only. So remember: begin with a compelling headline that will entice the human reader. You only get a moment to attract your connection’s attention.
LinkedIn is definitely a resource for publishing content if you are a B2B business. But don’t underestimate the power of publishing content on LinkedIn for consumer-oriented businesses as well. Your connections are people who might need what you have to offer.
5. Offer to guest post
There are a lot of benefits of guest blogging in addition to helping you increase website traffic. You can gain more visibility with your audience, establish credibility and get more backlinks to your website from reputable sources. But it is not for everyone. Writing is hard. And it takes a lot of time.
For most business owners, having enough content to support your inbound marketing strategy is challenging enough. Ensuring you have unique, quality content for guest posting only adds to the challenge.
But if you are a writer and want to increase your digital footprint with additional content on high ranking websites, put together a strategy and learn how to succeed at guest posting. Otherwise, your efforts could be ignored.
6. Host webinars
Whether live or on demand, free webinars are an excellent way to increase website traffic. People are always looking to gain knowledge and offering a free webinar is your chance to share your knowledge with an audience that is already looking for that information.
Webinars are cost effective and can be multipurpose. Live webinars should always be recorded and turned into a powerful lead magnet to drive even more traffic. Promote your webinar across all of your social sites and consider using paid social media advertising to gain more targeted visibility.
7. Record a podcast
There are more people that would prefer listening to educational content rather than reading it. Those who have to commute or simply want something other than music for their workout will subscribe to podcasts if they are interested in your topic. This allows busy business owners to make better use of their time.
There are many podcast platforms now. Anchor.fm is a good alternative for getting started. It offers a free platform to create your podcast. You have the option to monetize your podcast as well. The podcast gets distributed to Apple, Google, Spotify (who owns Anchor.fm), Pocketcast, Breaker and Radio Public.
Promote your podcasts as you would your blog posts – on social media and out to your email list – and drive them back to your website to subscribe.
8. Create a powerful web presence
Your web presence does not end with your website. You need to take control of other online properties that list your business. Google My Business and the Better Business Bureau and are a good start, creating credible listings for your business and providing inbound links. Depending on your industry, InsiderPages, Merchant Circle and Yelp are others. Both directories and review sites are valuable properties in building a strong web presence because the number of citations are now taken into consideration for rankings.
9. Invest in Facebook advertising
Given the decline in organic reach of Facebook Page posts, putting a little money into Facebook paid advertising can drive better, more qualified traffic to your website. You absolutely need a strategy before you just decide to promote a post. Make sure you know exactly what you want a visitor to do when they click on the link you provide.
Paying for traffic without a strategy can be a waste of money. To get started:
- Learn about the Facebook Business Manager. This is essential to create successful Facebook Ad campaigns.
- Take note of advertisements that come through your timeline. Get some ideas you can use for your ads.
- Experiment with Facebook Audience Insights and building custom audiences. This allows you to target your ads to a more suitable audience for your content.
- Understand the entire advertising process. Start with a strategy, call to action, landing page, ad content and ultimate goal of the ad (website traffic, qualified leads, visibility).
- Understand remarketing and how to use it without stalking. You can set up remarketing audiences in Facebook by installing a tracking pixel on your website. This allows you to continue to market to those who visited your website.
As you can see, there is a lot to learn but getting it right can be an effective way to increase website traffic. When you are starting out, seek help from someone experienced in Facebook advertising to be sure you are doing things properly.
10. Invest in other paid advertising
In addition to Facebook, paid search and other social media advertising are more ways to increase website traffic. Whether you choose to advertise on Google, Twitter, Instagram or display advertising on appropriate directories, first determine your goals and select the channel that is most appropriate.
Paid advertising is an effective option for driving traffic when you have a new website until SEO begins to take effect. Depending on your business, you may continue with a paid search strategy as long as the return on investment is worth it. Once your website begins to rank well in search engine results for your top keywords, you can slow down or pause your campaigns entirely.
And as with Facebook advertising, it helps to engage a resource that specializes in the specific platform you are using to ensure you get the most out of your efforts.
Which options will you choose to increase website traffic?
Look at your marketing plan and determine which of the above traffic building ideas will work for you. You probably can’t do them all, so pick the ones that make the most sense and get them working for you first.
Share your secrets: What other cost-effective ideas do you have to drive people to your website?