Are you one of those entrepreneurs who has poured a considerable amount of time and money into a professional website but see no visitors there?
You are not alone, “how do I draw traffic to my website?” is one of the most frequently asked questions marketers are asked. It is probably asked so often (and you can see this in Google) because most of the search results have one common problem.
The articles just don’t differentiate by the type of website you are trying to get traffic to.
But are there any working methods that will help you drive traffic to your website no matter of its type? Yes, there are and we will focus on them in this article.
You surely want not only grow your audience but make them come back every now and again. At present, we will concentrate on driving new users to your site for the sake of scope. This will let you grow your traffic over time, but won’t keep it constant.
So, what is the goal of this blog post? I am not going to teach you how to drive traffic because there are too many of “it depends” situations. Instead, you will get actionable tips on obtaining new visitors.
Are you ready? Then we set off.
Paid traffic like Google Adwords, Google Shopping ads, banner ads, Facebook ads, etc. works great for eCommerce sites. It is a practical way of driving traffic and obtaining sales, especially when you are just starting your online store.
The point is that you pay search platforms like Google AdWords for being at the top of the search engine. For instance, you rank #1 organically for a particular product. But paid search ads are placed above the organic results. That is why they bring so much benefit to eCommerce stores.
You should have a list of keywords with high commercial intent to bid on for each product. Here’s how I search for the right keywords. I take a look at what the competitors are bidding on using Ahrefs. First, I enter the URL of the competitor’s site into Ahrefs Site Explorer and then select “PPC keywords”.
So, this is a list of keywords your competition is bidding on. What can you do with it? Pull out the ones with high commercial intent and bid on them. Google Keyword Planner is also a decent tool to find good keywords to bid on.
Please note that paid search does not work well for specific products or items with unique characteristics. This happens because users usually don’t search for them.
Do you have such kind of product/service? Use paid social (i.e. Facebook ads, Instagram ads, Pinterest ads, YouTube ads, etc.) to promote it.
Organic ranking supplies your website with a steady targeted traffic flow. That is why it should be your ultimate goal. You need to be ready to resign yourself to the fact that these terms are very competitive and it can take you some time to rank for them.
If you are selling something on your site, you need to consider all the little things first. The preparations include writing irresistible product descriptions, images, videos, reviews, etc. All search engines including Google love pages full of useful content and your customers will love them either.
When you are done with on-page SEO, start building backlinks to your pages. They are necessary to rank as you know. This is going to be a pretty tiresome job. The difficulty is that not many websites are willing to link to product pages. But you want to rank for them.
The best solution for solving this link problem is to create content that is less relevant to your product, but less competitive.
Such blog posts rank considerably well and drive a noticeable amount of traffic to a website. Creating content in its turn increases your website’s traffic potential and helps to answer the top of funnel product related questions. When you answer these questions, you move potential customers down your funnel and prepare them for the purchase.
Here is a number of things you can do with this traffic as soon as you have it:
- Retarget these visitors with ads
- Convert these visitors into email subscribers
- Convert these visitors into actual sales
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In this section, we will talk about another cool way to drive traffic to your website. Ask other websites to review or talk about your product. This won’t be free, of course. You will have to offer them something in return: an affiliate program, payment with product or money. It’s natural that people are rarely interested in talking about your resource/product/service if they don’t get their cut.
Here is a quick recap of other helpful strategies to use when you are serious about driving referral traffic:
- Guest blogging. I advise you to focus on long tail keywords when you are writing your guest posts. If done right, the technic can bring incredible results in terms of generating search traffic.
- Build relationships offline. Sponsoring local events and speaking on them gives you valuable one-on-one communication with other people involved in blogging and marketing sphere. Just agree that it’s much easier to reach out to a person you already know and get a backlink from their site. What’s more, chances are that eventually you’ll become the go-to industry expert and start making money not only from referral traffic but speaking fees.
- Blog comments. If done properly, writing comments on blogs can increase your referral traffic. The first rule is not to spam and post only insightful messages that add value to the main piece of content. Measure blog authority and note how responsive the readers are to comments.
- Landing page. A relevant landing page having all elements necessary for conversions will help you vividly demonstrate your value proposition, build your email list and nurture a captive audience.
- Powerful headlines. There are many tried and tested headlines templates, but if you add a bit of creativity, you’ll stand out from the herd.
- Create ego-bait content. The purpose of creating such kind of content is to write about other people the way that serves them as well as your readers and generates editorial links that improve your search traffic and rankings in the process.
Social Media Traffic
Social media is another traffic acquisition way you can pursue. Promoting your product/service/whatever to your followers is a must, but this type of traffic isn’t necessarily new.
That’s why you should remember that promotional social media campaigns should aim to make your followers share your posts/products with their followers. In other words, don’t just promote who already know your brand. BTW, people are not eager to share products unless they are really worthy.
Being a wise brand use content to get shares. People like to share fascinating content. Sharing creates a buzz that drives new traffic to your website, increases your reach, and grows your brand.
Did you know?
According to the HubSpot survey, 83% of marketers indicate that social media is a key marketing platform for their business. Another statistic from HubSpot states that 61% of businesses that embrace social media marketing increase their site traffic.
So, the takeaway here is that social media leaders like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, are powerful referral traffic drivers. Just give them some time and you’ll reap your harvest.
What do you need to succeed on social networks?
- Mobile-friendly website. If your site is not responsive, your chances of getting organic referral visitors are poor, so you’d better take care of that.
- Social timing. You need to know the best time to tweet or share on Facebook or LinkedIn, pin on Pinterest board, and so on. There is a perfect time for each platform that’s proven to work.
For instance, the research from Quick Sprout shows that the perfect time to post on Facebook is 1.00 PM, if you want the most shares and 3.00 PM if you want to get more clicks.
By the way, the statistic shows that websites that use the +1 button get 3.5x the Google+ visits than sites without the button.
- Tweetable quotes. When it comes to social media marketing and getting qualified referral traffic, tweetable quotes are real gems. They make your blog posts easier to share, read, drive more visitors to your site.
This point is about building your email list, which is rather important for most of the businesses. What does email allow you to do? To reach your customers directly, immediately, and free. Email doesn’t necessarily bring new traffic to your website. However, it lets you keep the past visitors updated with information and offers that make them come back to your site. They wouldn’t do this otherwise, so the trick is worth practicing.
Some of the email list building techniques:
- Lay out a signup sheet and encourage people to write down their details.
- Invite people to ‘join the club’ (it may be a birthday or anniversary club) that allows to “enroll” by providing an email address and relevant date.
- Arrange a giveaway. Use snail mail and/or your existing email list, send people a gift card offering a reward and asking for email information.
- Use your blog to build an email list. End each article with a call to action encouraging readers to sign up for your newsletter.
- Encourage people to visit one of the channels where they can sign up for your email list via social media.
- Create an online community including a sign-up form for your newsletter on every page.
- Use competition to your favor. Sponsor a contest in which customers create something and leave their emails to get the prize in case they win.
- Create an exclusive online email training course available only to subscribers.
- Encourage people to sign up for your email list with the help of pop up boxes. Let them appear on visitor’s screen with a slight delay, after they’ve scrolled down the page a bit.
Email marketing solutions like MailChimp and MailerLite allow you to build extensive email lists and schedule tailor-made email campaigns to keep your audience informed about your brand, as well as providing offers to maintain a steady flow of traffic to your website. For an e-commerce operation, investing in email marketing software goes a long way to supercharge an online store. Here’s an in-depth take on Mailchimp pricing to give you an idea of what costs you can expect to incur. And if you are open to alternatives, here’s a story on why we decided to switch from MailChimp to MailerLite. Both services also have free plans FYI.
Well, I have told you about generic tips, tricks, and life hacks of driving new visitors to your website. Nevertheless, I still insist that when it comes to growing traffic the only right strategy is “it depends.”
Please keep in mind that not every method of driving traffic mentioned above will work for your particular site. Take this guide as a framework pointing out strategies to pursue depending on the type of your website.
To find out if a traffic acquisition strategy works for you, you need to try it and analyze the results’ success. Anyone who claims that has a strategy for gaining traffic that fits every business is stinging you.
This post was a brief intro to driving traffic to various types of websites so if you have any specific questions about driving traffic to your website, please drop me a line in the comments.