You’ve got goosebumps because your website is finally finished! Finally, what seemed like an impossible project is now a reality. Pretty soon, the phone will be ringing off the hook, and your inbox will be overflowing with new leads. Today is the beginning of something amazing!
Then tomorrow hits no calls or email leads.
You smack your computer’s side to ensure it’s working properly. Maybe if you press Alt + Option + $, something will happen? Then, you refresh the browser for a good 30 minutes because something has to give!
Finally, with a sour taste of defeat, you slink in your chair: no one is coming to your new site. What did you do wrong?..
Sadly, this isn’t Field of Dreams, and just because you built your site doesn’t mean “they will come.” However, launching your beautiful site is just the beginning. Now, you need to design and implement a marketing program to drive traffic to the website.
In this article, we will explore a range of effective strategies to drive traffic to your website, helping you achieve the success you envisioned. Whether you prefer free or paid methods of generating traffic, these tips will empower you to optimize your online audience and boost sales.
Why more website traffic?
Some companies may question the necessity of having a website, but in today’s business landscape, even traditional brick-and-mortar businesses must maintain an online presence. A well-structured website is essential for allowing potential clients to familiarize themselves with your company and for guiding them through your sales funnel to become customers.
Furthermore, your website’s traffic serves as a vital indicator and catalyst for business growth when it is of this nature. It can benefit you in several ways, including:
- Assessing the effectiveness of your marketing strategies.
- Collecting valuable information about your target audience to make informed decisions.
- Enhancing your visibility on search engines and bolstering your reputation.
- Boosting lead generation, conversion rates, and client acquisition.
Nevertheless, reaping these advantages requires a deliberate effort to increase your website’s traffic through the right channels while emphasizing the importance of attracting high-quality visitors. This article will explore techniques that can significantly impact your bottom line in this regard.
Free ways to drive traffic to your website
1. Write like the [Charles] Dickens
Blogging can be time-consuming, but the return on your investment (ROI) makes it worthwhile. Even if you write only one post a week on your website’s blog, you are creating new, thoughtful content relevant to your industry.
Related: How to Build a Blog in 5 Steps
In return for your contribution to creating content here, search engines like Google and Bing may display your website when someone searches for keywords related to your product or service. If you’re not convinced, take a look at these jaw-dropping stats about blogging and google search here:
- Websites with a blog tend to have 434 percent more indexed pages.
- Companies who blog receive 97 percent more links to their website.
2. Focus on evergreen content
Evergreen content is basically high quality content that has a long “shelf-life” and requires little maintenance to stay “fresh”. It’s the kind of content that stays relevant long after you publish it. For example, that can be your “how-to” blog posts. “How to make pepperoni pizza”, “How to choose shoes for hiking”, “How to lose weight”. As you can tell from search results, there will always be demand for these topics.
Evergreen blog posts should be optimized for SEO, as you want to use their relevancy to drive organic traffic to your website. Unlike timely blog content that quickly loses pageviews after a short while, you’ll see a steady stream of traffic coming to your evergreen posts over time.
Not to mention, creating and posting evergreen content helps you establish authority in a particular subject, which is critical for attracting new customers. However, you must ensure that the evergreen content you want to create is relevant to your website. Don’t write posts on topics that are easy to rank – but have no relevance to your business and main audience – just for the sake of attracting searchers.
And while evergreen posts stay relevant for a long time, they won’t stay that way forever. So it’s always good to revisit and update them once in a while.
3. Guest posting
Guest posting is a very effective method to increase website traffic by way of referral.
In addition to creating evergreen quality content, for your own site, take the time to write for someone else’s. Don’t forget to ask them to place a link to your website/content. This can give you a sudden boost in traffic (since you’re tapping into an entirely new audience). But it can require lots of work to set up. You’ll need to do some networking and earn the trust of the outlet you’re trying to write for.
If you’re just looking for another place to do guest posts or post content, some businesses choose websites like Medium.com, which is easy to write for but can leave your content buried. Creating a relationship with someone in your field and guest writing for his or her audience is much more fruitful. You can also look into guest posting on reddit (in subreddits that allow it), Quora, local websites, forums, community blogs, influencer blogs and more.
4. Integrate SEO best practices into everything
If you want to increase website traffic, customer engagement, leads and revenue, SEO is one of the most effective digital marketing strategies.
SEO requires investment to be effective. But if you do it correctly, it’s one of the most cost-effective tactics to drive more website traffic on a long-term basis.
You can start by writing blog posts with topics that are relevant to your business, that also have high organic search traffic volume and demand. Blogging not only keeps your website fresh for visitors, but every page you add to your site can help to further increase web traffic and your visibility on Google.
Make sure you create an SEO content strategy instead of just writing whatever you feel like. Before you start writing, do some keyword research to find out what phrases searchers use to find content on a topic. Then, set a focus for each blog post and optimize them for those keywords. And don’t forget to add internal links from one relevant post to another. It’s an easy but effective way to get relevant traffic and increase your post’s ranking.
Research the pillar cluster content strategy. Adopting a pillar cluster strategy for your website brings several benefits. It enhances your site’s organization, making it easier for visitors to navigate and find relevant content. It improves SEO by signaling search engines about the interconnectedness of your topics, resulting in higher rankings. Ultimately, it boosts your site’s visibility, traffic, and user engagement.
By adopting strong technical SEO practices like using canonical tags, index and noindex tags, optimizing internal links, and optimizing meta data, you can also help increase website traffic. These core SEO practices enhance search engine visibility, improve website crawlability, and boost organic search and traffic. They also enhance user experience, increase site credibility, and ultimately drive higher conversions.
Pro Tip: Monitor Google Search Console data to understand how effective your SEO strategies are!
5. Focus on a specific niche
Your low or stagnant website traffic could be because the content you’re sharing and the value you’re providing on your blog are too general.
If you’re in a competitive industry and you notice that most of your competitors share similar information on their blogs and website, consider zeroing in on a niche topic within your industry to differentiate from competitors. This will help leverage you as an industry influencer in the minds of prospective customers looking for specific information about niche topics that relate to your industry.
For example, suppose you’re in the real estate industry. In that case, you might consider launching a blog that offers tips specifically for first-time homebuyers instead of a general blog about real estate topics.
6. Be a social butterfly
Did you know that there are over 2.3 billion social media users worldwide? Your customers (and competitors) are there, so you need to start socializing. Social media provides a way for you to (1) connect and engage with your current customers and (2) attract new prospects to your website.
Choose one to three channels that complement your product or service offering and dedicate one hour a week to managing them. Consider starting with Facebook and branching out to Twitter, Pinterest, or TikTok as these platforms can help increase website traffic for free. Here are some tips on posting to individual platforms:
Facebook (Over 1.71 Billion Users)
- Place your website link all over your Facebook page:
- Call-To-Action Button
- The “About Us” section
- Timeline milestones (i.e., Launched Website)
- Take advantage of Facebook’s “Link Share” feature by copying and pasting your website URL into a new post (an image from your site will auto-load)
Twitter (Over 300 Million Users)
- Place your website link in your account profile.
- Use images and video to increase link clicks.
- Pique curiosity with a slight glimpse of your promotion or new content when sharing a link to your website.
- Rinse and repeat links by reposting with a new comment or image each time.
Pinterest (Over 100 Million Users)
- Verify your website to show Pinterest users that you are legitimate
- Upload your Pins from your website, not your computer
- Limit your Pin descriptions to 200 characters and avoid too many hashtags
7. Support a cause
In order to connect with more passionate social media users online, more brands have started intentionally partnering up with and supporting causes and nonprofit organizations.
This strategy can help humanize your brand and prove to prospective customers that you’re not just in it for the money—but that you also are a company that wants to help people. If possible, pick a cause or nonprofit that aligns in some way with your business.
For example, suppose your business is technology-related. In that case, consider partnering up with a company like Worldreader (they put tablets and e-readers into the hands of children around the world in order to help eradicate illiteracy).
8. Develop partnerships
If you’re like a lot of business owners, you’ve probably developed strategic partnerships with a handful of other businesses that complement the services or products you offer to your customers.
But have you taken the time to nurture those same partnerships online? Suppose you’re looking for additional ways to increase traffic to your website. In that case, you might consider working with your partners to develop a plan that creates awareness about your partnership in the digital space.
This can be done through:
- Blog posts that highlight the partnership and why it exists.
- Social media engagement between you and your partners.
- A shared giveaway or offer that will help both businesses connect with each other’s online communities and loyal customers.
9. Engage with new online communities
If you’ve developed a presence on sites like Facebook and Twitter but aren’t seeing any increases in website traffic as a result of your engagement efforts on the sites, you might want to consider developing a plan to interact with a new online community.
Though Facebook and Twitter are the two social media sites primarily used by businesses to connect with prospective and current customers, there are a number of other sites that can be beneficial for businesses to develop a presence on.
If you’re not getting the return you thought you would get by interacting with communities on Facebook and Twitter, make a plan to build a presence for your business on a different popular social media site.
After you’ve had time to regularly engage with users, start looking over your website analytics to determine if your efforts are resulting in increased website traffic. If your efforts are paying off, continue spending more time consistently and genuinely interacting with the new online community.
What other little-known tips have you used to help increase traffic to your website? Leave a comment for us below.
10. Be a resource
If the traffic numbers on your website or blog are dwindling, it may be because you’re not offering enough value to your visitors.
As social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest have continued to increase in popularity over the last few years, competition has greatly intensified among businesses and brands fighting to win over prospective customers online. In order to differentiate and create sustainable relationships with consumers online, it’s essential that you leverage yourself and your business as an industry leader.
You might have the best products on the market and the easiest website to use, but if you’re not spending time positioning your company as a valuable resource, you’re not going to end up convincing prospective customers to do business with you.
You have to implement strategies that will help people online understand that your company, products, and services are the solutions to their problems. You can leverage your company as a valuable resource by:
- Creating blog posts with original content
- Giving away helpful ebooks and other industry guides for free
- Being available on social sites like Facebook and Twitter to answer any questions any prospective customers might have (even if they don’t relate directly to your products)
- Uploading and sharing industry-related (NOT product-related) educational videos for your current and prospective customers
11. Post to social media
Social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn are great for increasing website traffic affordably. You can attract a broad audience by regularly posting interesting content and linking to your website.
Creating content that your audience loves and wants to share boosts your online presence.
Also, interacting with your followers, joining relevant groups, and using the right hashtags can draw more people to your site.
Plus, using social media analytics helps you figure out what’s effective, so you can improve your strategy and get better results.
12. Build backlinks
Backlinks, also known as inbound links, are links from other websites to your site. They play a crucial role in search engine optimization (SEO) and can drive organic traffic to your website. In addition, backlinks created on high quality websites will also be a source of driving free referral traffic. When your content is authoritative and relevant, other websites are more likely to link to it.
Here’s how to build backlinks for free:
- Guest blogging: Write guest posts for other websites in your niche. In your author bio, include a link back to your site. This not only builds backlinks but also establishes you as an industry expert.
- Online directories: Submit your website to relevant online directories, including local business listings and industry-specific directories. These directories often allow you to include a link to your site. Popular online directories such as Yelp Houzz often show up in organic search results, helping increase the likelihood of earning website traffic.
- Broken link building: Find broken links on other websites in your industry, and then reach out to the site owner to suggest replacing the broken link with a link to your relevant content.
13. Start email marketing
Email marketing is a cost-effective way to engage with your audience and drive traffic to your website.
Building an email list of subscribers who are genuinely interested in your content or products is crucial. You can collect email addresses through opt-in forms on your website or by offering incentives like eBooks, newsletters, or discounts.
Regularly send informative and engaging emails to your subscribers, including links to your website content, promotions, or updates.
By delivering valuable content and maintaining a consistent email schedule, you can encourage recipients to visit your website.
Be sure to track the performance of your email campaigns using email analytics to refine your strategy over time.
Paid ways to increase your website traffic
1. Email marketing
Email isn’t the most exciting option for marketing anymore, but it’s been around a long time for good reason. Actually, email marketing boasts one of the highest returns on investment (ROI) of all marketing channels.
It is a cost-efficient and time-effective way to drive traffic to your website. And it’s proven to increase awareness of your business, generate repeat sales, and boost revenue. This is because you’re communicating with subscribers who already had some forms of contact with your business. By providing useful website content, updates, and promotions, you may persuade them into buying from you.
Make sure to not spam your subscribers with too many emails, as that might be annoying for them. They may even develop a negative experience towards your brand, unsubscribe from your newsletter, and decide to not do business with you. So, do plan your emails carefully, and try to provide value in every email you send out.
Not to mention, email marketing is especially useful for its real-time qualities. There are reports showing who opened your campaigns, what links they clicked, and how engaged they are. This allows you to easily measure the success of your campaigns, then adjust your strategies accordingly.
Looking to incorporate email into your marketing effort? Check out our article on how to get started with email marketing.
2. Affiliate programs
An affiliate program is a deal between a business and a content publisher. Sometimes this is referred to as “performance marketing.” Why? Because you can set the terms of engagement, paying the publisher who is promoting your content based on the number of clicks or sales they send your way.
Usually, these partnerships are set up through a network, such as the CJ Affiliate network. The network will help ensure your promotions get in front of an interested audience, but you should vet the options thoroughly to see if they’re a good match for your business.
3. Press releases
Distributing press releases can help you build brand awareness and generate referral traffic to your site since they are still widely used by news outlets looking for stories to cover.
If done correctly, your press release can be picked up by multiple outlets, which means more eyes on your business and your content. In addition to attracting website visitors, your release may also lead to contact with a reporter or two, which can certainly help with marketing down the line.
Depending on the distribution service you use, your press release can be sent to vastly different outlets. While the distributed press release may not have much SEO value, it does generate great exposure for your story.
4. PPC (Pay Per Click) advertising
If you’re looking to generate traffic from other websites as quickly as possible, paid ads can be a good option. Generating organic traffic from search engines is a long-term goal and can take weeks or months. Whereas paid ads, if done correctly, can create an immediate influx of visitors.
That said, there are a few pieces of advice to keep in mind. For example, you should never pay for banner ads. Banner ads have a notoriously low rate of return, and most people only click on them by accident at this point.
For small businesses, social media advertising is a good place to get an easy return on investment. The great thing about digital advertising is that you can see statistics on your ad performance, like its reach, the number of clicks, and even conversion rate. This data will allow you to easily measure results and adjust your ads on the fly.
Do keep a very close eye on your ad setup, budget, and performance. And make sure that you properly set up your ad campaigns, or they may make you overspend without realizing it. Though, this is preventable by regularly checking how they perform on a daily basis.
If you want to dip your toe into social media ads, see if you can get some free ad coupons to start experimenting and avoid paying money for your early mistakes.
5. Social media advertising
While social media platforms offer free methods to drive traffic, they also provide paid advertising options to reach a wider target audience. Platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn offer robust targeting capabilities and ad formats. Consider the following when leveraging social media advertising:
- Targeting options: Define your audience based on demographics, interests, and behaviors to ensure your ads reach the right people.
- Ad formats: Experiment with different ad formats, such as image ads, video ads, and carousel ads, to capture users’ attention.
- Budgeting and optimization: Set your advertising budget and continually optimize your campaigns based on performance metrics like click-through rates (CTRs) and conversions.
6. Influencer marketing
Collaborating with influencers in your industry can significantly boost your website’s traffic and brand exposure. Consider the following steps when implementing influencer marketing:
- Finding relevant influencers: Identify influencers whose audience aligns with your target market and brand values.
- Establishing strong partnerships: Reach out to influencers with collaboration proposals and mutually beneficial offers.
- Leveraging user-generated content: Encourage influencers and their followers to create content that promotes your website and products/services.
Avoid instant website traffic generators
Automatic website traffic generators might harm your search engine results
Using automatic website traffic generators can be detrimental to your website’s search engine optimization (SEO). Search engines like Google and Bing prioritize high-quality, organic traffic from real users.
When you employ artificial traffic generated by bots or automated tools, search engines can detect this behavior and may penalize your website.
This can result in a drop in your search engine rankings, making it more difficult for your website to appear in search results and reducing its visibility to potential organic visitors. In the long run, your SEO efforts may suffer, affecting your website’s overall performance.
Your visitors will not be targeted
Traffic generated by automated tools is typically not targeted, meaning that the visitors coming to your website have no genuine interest in your content, products, or services.
They may not engage with your site, convert into customers, or perform any meaningful actions. As a result, your bounce rate may increase, and the time users spend on your website may be minimal.
Targeted traffic, on the other hand, consists of individuals who are genuinely interested in what your website offers, leading to higher engagement and conversion rates.
Utilizing instant traffic generators can result in a high volume of uninterested visitors, which ultimately doesn’t benefit your website’s goals.
Your website may be blocked
Excessive use of automatic website traffic generators can raise red flags with internet service providers (ISPs) and website hosting companies.
ISPs may interpret the traffic generated by these tools as suspicious or potentially harmful, and they may take measures to block or restrict access to your website.
This can lead to downtime and accessibility issues for your legitimate visitors, damaging your website’s reputation and frustrating potential users.
Being flagged as a source of undesirable traffic can also result in blacklisting by security services and online communities, further hindering your website’s reach.
Bring back those goosebumps
Un-slink yourself from your chair, sit straight, and shake off that defeat! Now you have a stunning website and some expert tips to start driving more traffic to it.
Can you feel those goosebumps coming back?!
Driving traffic to your website requires a thoughtful strategy and the utilization of various tactics. By implementing a combination of both free tools and paid methods of increasing website traffic, you can attract a steady stream of visitors, generate leads, and ultimately increase sales.
Embrace the power of social media, create evergreen content, explore guest posting opportunities, leverage email marketing, and consider affiliate programs to unlock the full potential of your website and achieve your desired success.
FAQ regarding ways to increase website traffic
Utilize search engine optimization (SEO) to enhance your website’s visibility in search results. Engage in content marketing by creating valuable, relevant content targeted at your audience. Leverage social media platforms to share and promote content, and engage in community building. Collaborate with influencers or industry leaders to expand reach.
Utilize pay-per-click (PPC) advertising through platforms like Google Ads or social media ads (Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn). Carefully target your audience based on demographics, interests, and behaviors. Optimize your ad copy and landing pages for conversions. Regularly analyze and adjust campaigns for improved performance.
Focus on organic methods like SEO, content marketing, and social media engagement. Create compelling, valuable content and use keywords strategically. Participate in online communities relevant to your niche. Collaborate with other websites or influencers for content exchange or guest posting. Utilize email marketing with a well-curated list.
Understand your audience’s needs and create content that solves problems or adds value. Use a mix of formats (blogs, videos, infographics). Optimize for SEO. Promote content through social media, email newsletters, and partnerships. Engage with your audience by encouraging comments and shares. Regularly update and repurpose old content.
Avoiding an inconsistent content publishing schedule. Neglecting SEO optimization and mobile responsiveness. Underestimating the importance of quality over quantity in content. Ignoring the power of analytics to track and improve performance. Failing to engage with the audience through comments or social media. Overlooking the need for a clear call-to-action in content.