Having finished all the needed work to get your website up to speed, it’s time to talk about the next biggest task – getting a consistent stream of visitors to your website. This is not just the biggest, but also the most important task for you after your website is ready and you have started to post regularly.
Why Is Traffic Important To Your Website?
You have done a tremendous job of building your brand identity by setting up a professional quality website for yourself. You have also done a great job by having a blogging strategy in place. However, isn’t the goal of having a great website to have people visit you and consume your content?
What is the value of your content if there is no one to appreciate it?
That brings the next hottest topic in the online world – the topic of consistently driving a growing traffic flow to your website. It is the hottest topic for many reasons:
- More traffic means more people getting to know you
- More traffic means more money for your online business
- More traffic means more opportunities for you to get even more opportunities
Alright, how do we do that? Let’s see some statistics so you can have a realistic expectation in the beginning.
When you start writing blog posts, there are some people (usually your friends, relatives and business associates) who will visit your website whenever you promote it to them. That is a good asset you have right off the bat.
However, to have people visit your website all day long for 365 days a year — you need traffic from search engines, usually known as ‘organic traffic’ to your website. This is the best way known to man so far to bring traffic to a website.
That is why I dedicated the last chapter on setting up your WordPress website to have better SEO. It is important to have the right SEO optimization on your website right from the beginning.
Consistent Traffic Growth Takes Time
It takes at least 3 to 6 months of consistent blogging to even get a fraction of the organic traffic from search engines for most people. Statistically speaking, to have a sizable amount of traffic, it takes about 2 years for most serious bloggers.
Everyone wants more traffic and there are hundreds of thousands of websites fighting for their spot on the first page of search results. Because everybody wants attention for the same spot, it may take time before search engines like Google and Bing begin to send some traffic to your website.
That is why it is important to have your blogging strategy in place so you don’t get tired of posting. It is important that you don’t give up while you are just three feet away from getting gold. Please understand the process and keep consistency in your blogging schedule. You shall not be denied!
You Still Can Drive Massive Traffic To Your Website
But you don’t have to get depressed about it. You just need to learn other ways to grow your brand, grow your business while search engines are catching up with you at their slow pace.
While search engine traffic is a great asset in the long term, there are ways you can still generate massive traffic for your website through other channels. These are not tactics you will be able to implement in one shot. However, implement as much as you can and you will see traffic growth. Here are a few tested techniques:
Write Quality Content That Others Would Love To Read
It is your website and you are free to write whatever you like. However, your website will define your brand identity and that means, you will want to write things that add value to your brand.
Write helpful content that solves a problem for other people. Share your knowledge about things you are good at. Write about products and services that you have experience with and provide your guidance so other people can benefit from your review. Write a lot of “How To” posts – people love that.
Make sure you do not write very short articles unless your content strategy requires only short posts. Why do I say that? Simply because I don’t think it is possible to add value to your readers until you are really detailed about what you are saying. In most cases, when you write a detailed post, your content length will easily go from 1000 to 2000 words. It also adds credibility to you as a writer.
By the way, when you write high quality content, search engines will love you too while your readers will love to read and share your content. This will boost your SEO.
Have An Active Presence On Social Media
Social media plays a very important role in driving traffic to your website today. Also, it greatly influences how search engines rank your website. In addition, your participation in social media doesn’t cost you any money.
It is important for you to go to social networking sites regularly and take this phenomenon seriously. Social media should be an integral part of your content marketing strategy.
When you write a post, share it on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, StumbleUpon, etc. Pay special attention to Google+ because it is a social network by Google and it will definitely play a big role on your search engine rankings on Google.
I have seen a consistent traffic flow from Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ to my website and there have been months when I have had hundreds of daily visitors coming through social media channels. I am usually very active in the following social networks and I think you should explore them as well. Here are my favorite list of social networking sites:
You may want to be more active on only 2 or 3 of these networks. Try them all and determine which ones suit your style. Your business and blogging strategy will drive your decision to choose the sites that you want to use.
Comment Regularly On Other Blogs
This is the aspect of building traffic and reputation that most bloggers ignore. Yes, it is a bit of discomfort to visit other bloggers and comment. But it is something you must do in order to gain some following and your personal brand identity online.
What you need to do is make a list of blogs in your niche and bookmark them. You could also subscribe to their RSS feed to get updates as new content is published. Make it a policy to comment on at least 5 new blog posts each day. It will not take hours of your time, but it surely will help you increase your SEO and bring you more traffic to your website.
Oh yes, when you comment, please do not write self-promotional comments on other people’s blogs. They don’t like it and most probably your blog comments will be deleted. When you comment, make sure you are adding value to the post from your side. Provide some valuable information in your comment that benefits other people.
Make sure you use your real name and the URL of your website when you comment. This way you allow people to click on your name and end up on your website. I get 20 to 50 new visitors each day through the comments I’ve written on other blogs. Isn’t it an amazing way to gain readers and also improve your SEO?
Build Relationships With Other Bloggers
By commenting, you’ve already taken the first step towards building a relationship with other bloggers. Sometimes, you may have to reach out to the owner of the blog by linking to their blog posts or even sending them an email.
When you linking out to their blog posts by referencing in your posts, usually they will get notification and they may visit your blog, comment or even return the favor. It is a good idea to send a personal note notifying them of your reference in case they don’t acknowledge to your link. It is a great way of starting a conversation.
Linking to other bloggers this way may also benefit increase your traffic if they choose to share your blog post with their network (which they usually do).
Write Quality Guest Posts
These days, guest posts have become one of the best ways to not only generate quality backlinks, but also to increase your brand awareness as a new blogger.
When you guest post on other blogs, you get a link or two pointing back to your website and that not only brings traffic to your website, but also adds value to your overall SEO efforts. For search engines, the number of sites pointing out to your websites is a solid indicator of your popularity and they rank you accordingly.
What better way to get quality backlinks than being able to write a guest post to a more popular website within your niche?
You also need to know that a lot of SEO agencies are working their way using guest blogging for their clients to generate backlinks and because of that, it has become very vital for you to write quality content when you approach a blogger with your proposal to guest blog.
If your guest post is not of a high quality, chances are it will get turned down. On the contrary, if your content is high quality, you will have a great SEO benefit plus you will get heavy traffic from the website where your guest post is published.
Promote Your Posts And Ask For Tweets
First of all, you need to build a following on Twitter to be able to follow this step. Get active on Twitter, tweet every few hours, follow influential people, retweet and reply to their tweets. By doing these simple things you will naturally start gaining followers.
When you have a few followers on Twitter, it is a good idea to start also sharing your blog posts among other posts that you share. Do not share only your own posts and appear spammy. Share other people’s blog posts, some quotes, some retweets, etc. along with your blog posts in between. This will get you a clean image and grow your following on Twitter helping your traffic.
To boost your traffic even more, make a list of followers on Twitter and send them a private message asking them to visit your blog post and tweet to their followers if they enjoyed your post. I have done this many times and received additional traffic from Twitter.
One caution however is, do not ask people to retweet every time you write something. Request this selectively and only do it when you know that your blog post is really awesome. People will love to tweet your post if they like it. You just have to be a considerate about asking for retweets.
Register Your Website With Web Directories
The first thing you want to do as you start promoting your website is to get your website listed in as many top online website and blog directories as possible. The more places your website is listed, the more backlinks you get and the more traffic you will receive.
Some web directories are free to use and a few of them are premium and charge money for listing. I recommend you to start with the free ones. There are plenty of popular and powerful web directories that will add tremendous value to your blog. You don’t need to worry about paying for getting listed.
To make the process easy, here is a list of a 50 top web directories posted beautifully organized by their page rank and search engine rankings etc. I highly recommend you to go ahead and register your website with as many directories as possible.
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Next Post (Final Chapter): In our next chapter (which is also the last chapter in this online course of 10 chapters), we will discuss about list building and monetizing your website. We will discuss several strategies for you to start making money with your website.