Traffic doesn’t matter.
Traffic is a vanity metric that does not pay bills.
Relevant traffic, on the other hand, is your golden ticket to more sales and excellent ROI.
While there are a lot of ways to get cheap traffic to your website, I don’t recommend them. The traffic that we, at Idunn, generate for our customers is the kind of traffic that pays the bills. AKA the kind of traffic that attracts and converts the right crowd.
These are some of the techniques we use and/or recommend to our customers:
1. Create valuable, shareable content
Content writing and email marketing are the top earning forms of digital marketing. If you’re not investing in them, you’re missing out. But it’s not just about ‘doing’ them. It’s about doing them right.
Authority content is what you should always be aiming for. Forget about short articles that barely scratch the surface.
Go in-depth and make sure that you cover your topic exhaustively every time you publish something.
Before you start writing, take a moment to consider your buyer persona. Who are they? What do they need? What do they want? What are they confused about? How can you help with the above?
At the intersection between the first four questions and the last one lies your recipe to content that is successful – content that attracts the right crowd to your website. And yes, content that is profitable to your business.
Take the time to understand what your audience needs and then deliver that. Don’t write about things you think are cool. Write about what your audience needs to read.
This is the kind of content that gets social shares and relevant traffic.
2. Optimize for search engines
The safest way to attract the right crowd is to be the answer to their questions. Literally.
If your content is optimized for search engines, you will be that answer. It’s just as simple as being in the right place at the right time.
Make sure that your content has a main keyword and additional LSI keywords that help it rank for relevant queries.
Additionally, your technical SEO should always be on point. There is no faster way to waste extremely well-written SEO content than to post it on a website with poor technical SEO. Since the technical part of SEO is not my specialty, I won’t insist on it too much. You can find comprehensive guides on Moz and various other platforms.
3. Go for the low-hanging fruits
Writing optimized content is just the start. In fact, the research part is much more important than the actual writing.
Because here’s the catch (yes, there’s always a catch): you’re not the only one competing for a top spot in SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages). All your competitors are doing it.
So how do you beat them?
The strategy that worked best for both my agency and our clients is going for the low-hanging fruit when it comes to keywords.
Let me give you a few examples:
- If you have a plumbing company, you don’t want to optimize for plumbing company. It’s too expensive and irrelevant. You want to optimize for plumbing company in Halifax. Or for affordable plumbing services in Halifax.
- If you own a digital marketing agency like I do, you don’t want to optimize for SEO or content writing. Such keywords only attract people who are looking for basic information. You want to optimize for keywords like hire SEO copywriters. This is currently the top keyword that drives traffic AND business for my agency.
- If you own a cake company, you don’t want to optimize for chocolate cake. What if the user is searching for a recipe? You want to optimize for best chocolate cake in San Diego. Or artisanal chocolate cake + location.
I think you got my point. Sure, short keywords will yield more traffic. If you CAN optimize for them (it’s usually brutally hard!). But we’re not talking about just traffic here. We’re talking about RELEVANT traffic.
4. Leverage the audience of other websites
I often hear people complaining about how hard it is to grow a website and make it popular. Given a recent Google algorithm change that clearly rewards websites with a lot of traffic and ranks them higher than their less popular counterparts, this concern is understandable.
Yes, it’s an uphill battle to gain popularity online. Especially in already saturated niches.
This is why you should use the popularity of other websites to build your own.
Much like I’m doing here.
My column on SiteProNews is a regular one. At first sight, you could say that my agency’s blog and SiteProNews are competing. In a sense, they are. They compete for higher spots in SERPs.
But our goals are completely different.
So my column here helps both SiteProNews and my business. The former gets more traffic, while the latter builds a bigger audience.
As soon as one of my articles is published here, I get new newsletter subscribers on my agency’s website. And yes, even SEO writing or copywriting clients.
It’s a win-win.
You can find similar websites looking for great content in every industry. All you have to do is make sure your content abides by their guidelines and that it’s well above average.
5. Quote experts and let them know you did so
Every article that has a chance of being considered “good” (at least!) has to link to a few other websites. Linking to third-party, high-DA websites is a means to back up your claims.
And if you’re not writing just to clutter the internet, your claims should be backed up.
When you cite another website or expert, tag them on social media to let them know you value their work and their content. Odds are they will share or retweet the article that depicts them as experts.
Who wouldn’t, right?
6. Ask for help with promotion
In an ideal world, you would publish an article, it would rank immediately, the first reader would share it on their social channels and then each of their friends or followers would do the same.
Oh, how far we are from an ideal world!
While the above is obviously a joke, you can’t deny that it would save us marketers a lot of hassle.
But there are tens of millions of articles published every day. People have to choose what to read and what to share.
However, those who do land on your website might actually share your latest article if they thought about it.
It may sound stupid – everyone on the internet knows they can share stuff in various communities, right? –, but you would be surprised at how often we lose sight of this.
So why not ask your readers to share your article if they like it. Here’s how to do it to make sure it’s not a demand and that it’s easy for them share your content:
- Add a simple sentence at the end or in the middle of the article: “If you enjoyed this article, maybe your friends will to. Why not share it?”
- Add social sharing buttons to every post. You don’t want people switching tabs or losing precious minutes just to copy-paste something. It’s especially difficult on mobile – where most of the internet users are anyway.
- Ask people to share your latest newsletter. See phrasing recommendations above.
Not so hard, right?
While great content is an asset in itself, it needs help to be discovered. What if Paganini would have only played violin for his closest friends? Would we have gotten to know his music and love it centuries later?
It would have been a great loss for all humanity.
Try to think the same way about your content. Help it along its internet journey so the entire world could benefit from your knowledge.