If you’re willing to spend money, paid search, display advertising, and social media ads will help build your brand and drive traffic. Advertising works, but there’s a price to pay. It’s not the only way to get traffic, however.
Here are some of the paid and free strategies that drive traffic.
Search Engine Strategies
Getting your website to be in the top listings for what people are searching for at that moment is the single best thing you can do to increase traffic. In paid search, you get exactly what you pay for while organic search provides long-term benefits. However, it takes a strong SEO strategy to move into the top positions.
For many categories, Google puts the paid search results at the top of the page followed by its local map pack. That means even the top position in organic search can easily be the 8th or 9th listing on the page. At the same time, the top three paid search results get nearly half of all clicks on Google. So, if you’re not doing paid search, you are losing half of all the clicks.
To be effective with organic search, you have to be at or near the top of the organic listings. A third of all clicks from organic search go to the #1 position on the page. Another 18 percent goes the number two spot and it drops precipitously from there. If your website is buried on the second page (outside the top 10 results), forget about it. Less than 8% of search users ever get to the second page, let alone click on a link.
Getting listed on Google My Business is free. It helps with SEO and it helps you show up in the local map pack. Make sure you optimize your listing and fill it out completely. Optimized listings get seven times more traffic than incomplete ones.
It’s also important to get listed in free directories and review sites.
Make sure your website is set up with strong SEO tactics. It’s critical that you master the four pillars of SEO: Technical, On-Site SEO, Off-Site SEO, and Content.
Technical SEO means your site is set up properly to appear in search results. It’s mobile-optimized, indexed properly, fast-loading, and structured properly.
On-Site SEO includes using the right keywords, descriptive URLs, page titles, and descriptions. It also includes a good user experience.
Off-Site SEO means link building from high-quality sites. Not only does it help with search, but links from high-quality sites bring more targeted users that are interested in your content.
Content is at the forefront of anything you do. If you get people to your site and they don’t feel it was worth coming, it damages your brand.
Once you get someone to your website, you have three jobs:
- Give them a reason to stick around
- Give them a reason to come back for more
- Give them a reason to share
Great content will help get them there in the first place and get them to look around. Make sure you link to additional content within your site on related topics. Emailing newsletters and encouraging social media “follows” can help ensure that they see your content in the future.
Getting them to share content on social media will expand your reach. It’s free advertising for your content and it comes with it an implied endorsement from the person sharing it.
Social Media Strategies
Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram are free. Posting links to quality content will drive traffic especially as you expand your social media presence and followers. Using hashtags, especially on Twitter and LinkedIn, can help people find your content when they are searching on social media for related topics.
- Provide content with value (more content, less promotional)
- Snappy headlines that entice clicks
- Vary content format and length
- Use strong visuals, images, and video
- Make it personal and not corporate
This is one of the best marketing strategies you can employ. Getting your content featured in other places automatically expands your reach. It can also boost your SEO, generate leads, and help build your brand. In addition, guest posts help with the following traffic builders:
- Reach an audience that otherwise might never find you
- Targeted traffic from an interested audience
- Connect with industry influencers and grow your network
- Increase sharing on social media and grow your social followers
- Increase backlinks from high-quality sites and improve your online authority
In addition, having a high-quality site or industry influencer publishes your content and links to your site, they are telling their audience you have something worth reading. They may also share it to their social media expanding your reach even more.
When creating content for guest posts, it is important to deliver value for the reader. If it comes off as a sales pitch or fluff, it will not work.
Make sure to prominently feature your contact information, including your website, expertise, and social media connections. Often, however, contact information gets buried at the end of the content which readers may skip. It helps to feature links to additional content on your website within the article itself. This drives more traffic than the bio.
Blog And Encourage Guest Blogging On Your Website
If you don’t already have a blog, start on right now. Not only does it give people more reasons to visit and return to your website, but it also provides fresh content which the search engines like.
Invite industry leaders and influencers to guest blog for you. You get strong content, borrow authority from known leaders, and tap into their promotional network for additional traffic. Another tactic is to reach out to industry influencers and interview them or ask for quotes on topics. You increase the credibility of your content and may also get social media pushes.
If you have content that performs well, one strategy is to update it with new content and publish it again. Great content often stands the test of time. If it worked once, it may indeed work again. You may get more traffic from the right topic than you will ever get from a new post on the wrong topic.
Post Content To Additional Sources
Creating More Content
The more quality content you create, the better chance you have of drawing people to your website. The key, however, is quality. Volume alone will not draw the audience. Poor quality will drive people away.
It’s important you have someone that you have someone on staff that can monitor and post this great content. Once that’s done consistently, then the job of marketing that content can begin.