The main challenge facing businesses is ensuring that customers who search for your products or services find you and not a competitor. Getting traffic for your website isn’t all about paid advertising. There are plenty of ways to grow organic website traffic. Even website design plays a part in generating traffic.
It may take some time and effort to see the results that you want. Contrary to paid advertising, organic growth is a long term plan with lasting effects. Like anything worth doing, it is going to take some commitment to see your strategy pay off. Here are the top five techniques to grow organic website traffic.
Google My Business
Google My Business is a free tool that organizes your company’s information and makes it easily accessible to searchers. When someone searches for a business type, like “boutiques near me”, it’ll recommend businesses in the area, like yours. The tool allows customizable contact information, location, websites, and hours to be displayed in an orderly fashion to potential customers.
Just like search engines, Google My Business ranks businesses. They do this based on three factors—relevance, distance, and prominence. Relevance refers to how well a business lines fits what a searcher is looking for. Distance is how far away it is from the searcher, as closer businesses may be more convenient. Finally, prominence applies to how well known a business is.
How do you determine prominence? Prominence can stand for the status of a listing, like if it’s a famous landmark or a well-known chain like Target or Walmart. For a normal local business, it takes into account web information, like links, articles, and directories.
Search Engine Optimization
Search engine optimization (SEO) is where the journey to organic traffic begins. While there’s a strong focus on ranking, don’t forget that content should be created for users and not for search engines. Write meaningful content that readers will enjoy but still contains specific keywords.
Keywords help your article appear when the phrase is used in a search engine.Avoid spamming an article with keywords. This is called keyword stuffing, and it reflects negatively on your content. Keywords apply to more than just written content. Apply keywords to your images. Use hyphens to separate the words in the image description and name, as you would with a URL.Find a way to weave keywords into informative content naturally.
Guest posting is an often overlooked way to generate more traffic for your website. This is when you create content for another site. The right guest post in the right place could lead to a massive spike in organic traffic. Having reputable sites link back to your site also improves your SEO ranking, and in turn makes you more searchable.
When it comes to writing articles, include some heading tags to break up the content on your page. This makes the content less intimidating and more readable. Carry this tactic throughout your entire website. Usually, any large block of text scares away readers, so using headers and white space helps retain attention. While this is a good start, there are many more SEO tactics you can implement.
Content marketing is another essential part of driving organic traffic to your website. Basically, it encompasses any content your business pushes out to the public. This includes tools like blog posting and social media. People respond well to content where the title grabs their attention, like starting with a number or using appealing adjectives.
Try to come up with a schedule on how often you will post. You’ll want to create consistent, quality content. Need some ideas? You can post a walkthrough on a specific product or task. Tap into trending topics and meld them to fit your company’s theme. Another great content idea is to share industry tips with your audience. Help them learn while at the same time showing you’re an expert in the field. You can also throw some entertaining, lighter topics into the mix.
Make sure to include a call-to-action within your posts. What do you want the viewer to do? Maybe you want them to comment something specific or share with a friend. It’s also a good idea to use content marketing to drive new users to a different article or product page. Be sure to link to these new pages and optimize them to get the most out of them.
Sites like Yahoo Answers and Quora, by themselves, aren’t perfect solutions for passive traffic generation. With that said, it can go a long way if you use it properly. These sites allow users to ask questions that can be answered by other members. This same tactic can be done on social media sites as well, like LinkedIn. Answering questions can make for a great way to supplement traffic generation methods and provide a healthy boost to organic traffic.
Create your own profile to stand out and become recognized on the platforms. People are more likely to trust you when they can see the other answers you’ve provided. Look for high visibility questions where your answer will stand out—the more people who view your answer, the better. Be sure to include visuals and a narrative in your answers, and dig a bit deeper than the average answer.
Leverage Social Media
Social media marketing isn’t the be-all and end-all of traffic generation, but it is still one of the most critical elements. Each platform is suited to different goals, so start by choosing the best platform for your business and goals. You don’t need to be on every site, but be ready to stay active on the platforms you choose.
Pinterest is the best choice for visual-related businesses and DIY. LinkedIn is where you go to find business professionals and experts. Marketing with Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter offers a more broad approach. These platforms allow you to connect to just about any niche or market you can imagine.
Once you’ve chosen your platforms, create content and post frequently. Get inspired by the 80–20 rule. Create educational, informative, or downright entertaining and fun content. You can have these posts relate to your business, but avoid giving a sales pitch in these posts. Have this make up 80% of your content. The other 20% can be promotional and aim to drive sales— think of doing specific service or product promotions.
Like we mentioned early, be sure to include a call-to-action. There are plenty of options to choose from with a social media marketing plan. You can choose to promote posts on your blog, specific products, the website in general, and anything else you can think of.
It can be challenging to create organic traffic and will require some work on your part. Don’t trust people that promise the world overnight. If something sounds too good to be true, then it usually isn’t true. Work on creating great content and providing readers with solutions to their problems. Shortcuts may work in the short term but are sure to backfire in the long term, so use these tips and put the work in to see long term success.