More traffic = more money. That’s true whether you’re an running an e-commerce site, writing a blog or operating a toll bridge. But how do you get more traffic? In all three scenarios, the steps are pretty much the same:
1. Make it Worth Visiting
This should be a no-brainer, but there’s no point working hard to send traffic to your site if it provides a terrible user experience. Before you get promoting, make sure your site is as awesome as you can possibly make it.
At the bare minimum, it should be functional, consistent and easy to locate key information. For best results, it should be chock full of interesting content that provides value to readers.
2. Build More Ways to Get There
Like a bridge, people aren’t just going to magically show up at your site. You need to put pathways in place—in this case, links. Don’t go overboard—having too many links can be detrimental to your SEO, especially if they’re on spammy sites. But a few well-placed links in high-traffic areas can send great leads your way.
Be sure to include your URL anyplace you’re already producing content and building a following:
- Your email signature
- Your social media profiles (think Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest)
- Forums in your field. Look for conversations happening on Reddit and Quora, too
3. Make it Easy to Find
If your bridge doesn’t show up on Google maps, no one is going to go there. The same goes for your site if it doesn’t appear in search results. (Related: would Google be a benevolent world ruler?) Use best practices for SEO to help bring in organic traffic.
- Include relevant keywords throughout your content—but avoid keyword stuffing. The optimal keyword density is around 0.5–2.5%.
- Rename your images and add alt text. People searching for images online aren’t likely to stumble across your site if your photo is called IMG-7738.jpg. But if it’s called most-beautiful-bridges-bixby-canyon-bridge.jpg, they might.
- Use subheadings. Don’t just make text bigger—use logical heading tags from H1–H5, and include keywords and phrases in your headings. Google recognizes that these are more likely to accurately reflect site content.
Feeling overwhelmed? Don’t. There are lots of great online tools to help with SEO.
4. Tell Everyone About It
Word of mouth (and keyboard) are powerful tools for driving traffic to your site.
- Post about your site on your social media channels. Open accounts for your company, and use your personal accounts to direct people there.
- Use outbound marketing to get the word out there (there are inexpensive options, too!)
- Get in touch with influencers in the industry. Send them samples, follow them on Twitter, mention them, see if you can set up meetings with them.
- Be visible. Comment on relevant blogs and news stories, do guest posts on related blogs and attend industry events in your city.
- Start an email newsletter. It’s a great way to share valuable information with connections and contacts, and it can help keep your site top of mind and bring visitors back to it.
The point of working to boost traffic is that your efforts compound. Over time you get repeat visitors and referrals, and slowly build a following. Short version:
- Build awesome site.
- Drive traffic there.
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