“If you build it, they will come” is a fallacy online. Once you have launched a website, you need to develop a plan to drive traffic to your website so that you can convert more leads and prospects into customers. To increase conversions, you need (1) generate more traffic, and (2) optimize your website for conversions.
As the foundation to your online presence, you need to leverage other marketing channels to drive traffic to your website. Here are 10 ways to increase website traffic to your website:
#1 Leverage Search Engine Optimization
Integrate search engine optimization (SEO) to increase the quantity and quality of website traffic. SEO is all about increasing the visibility of your website in the search results to increase website traffic.
Start with some basic search engine optimization (SEO). Optimize each page for one specific phrase. Try to use long-tailed keywords. These keywords are longer, more specific phrases that are less competitive and easier to rank for. Detail the page title and meta description that displays in the search results. Specify the alt image tag for all images, so that website crawlers can understand what the image means. Also, implement schema markup on your website to make it easier for search engine bots to find and index your pages.
Connect your website to Google Search Console for indexing and submit your sitemap. Google Search Console provides valuable insights on the keyword rankings and performance. Also, integrate your Google Search Console with Google Analytics so that the data can synced in between the two.
Once you have optimized your current pages and posts, define how future pages and posts will be optimized for search. To keep your search engine rankings high, you need to continuously invest in search engine optimization by refreshing content on published page/posts and continuously adding fresh, quality content. If you stop updating your website, don’t be surprised if your content goes stale and your search engine rankings slowly start to decline.
#2 Claim Your Google My Business
Promote your small business as a local business with a free Google My Business listing. You can control how your information shows up on Google Maps and in the local search results. Update your contact information and hours so that customers can get in touch. Even if you have not created a listing, you need to claim the current listing and ensure that all information is accurate, up-to-date.
Also, consider the additional features of adding a coupon, posting an event, or publishing a post. It is also beneficial to leverage Google My Business reviews. You should create an internal process for requesting testimonials and reviews. Make it as easy as possible for clients to review your business by sending them a link that they can click to leave you a review.
#3 Invest in Content Marketing
Leverage content marketing to position your business as an expert. Listen to your customers, collect a list of FAQs, answer the question via a blog post or podcast, and add it to your website. Great content is valuable, relevant, consistent, and on-brand. In the interest of search engine optimization, make an effort to publish one blog post and to refresh a few posts or pages every month.
As you build out your content, make sure you link internally between articles and externally to other industry experts. Your website’s link profile will directly influence your search engine optimization and will be beneficial to the user when navigating your website.
In time, you can expand from blog posts to video and podcasts. Create different content formats for different preferences – those who read, watch, or listen. Once you have a better idea of what content works, continue to expand to case studies, white papers, eBooks, books, workshops, webinars, etc.
#4 Build Your Email List
Sign up for a free email marketing platform, such as MailChimp. Create an audience list, create a sign-up form, add the sign-up form link to your website, and start building your email list. To encourage subscriptions, integrate a giveaway. Your email list is an asset.
Unlike social media platforms who own the data, you own your email list. An email list takes time to build, so start early! Email is also a great way to distribute your content and blog posts. Email marketing is a great way to stay top of mind and build customer loyalty.
#5 Get Social
Create a social profile on your preferred platform and connect with your customers directly. Start posting your resources from your website, testimonials, and work samples. Social media is a great way to promote your content and engage one-on-one. To be effective, you must be active and engage online – comment on posts, answer questions, participate in groups, and respond to messages.
Try to integrate hashtags in your posts, so that you can extend your reach beyond your following and get discovered by users searching for similar products and services.
#6 Leverage Online Reviews
Encourage clients to leave you a review on Google, Facebook, or another online directory. Many consumers regularly read and value online reviews. It is estimated that 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations (Search Engine Land). In some industries, online directories, such as Angie’s list, can help drive traffic to your website.
#7 Learn from Analytics
Connect your website to Google Analytics so that you can monitor your website’s performance, learn more about your audience, and improve accordingly. Google Analytics provides insights on where your traffic is coming from, your most viewed posts and pages, and where traffic is leaving your website. You can gain insights on how you are acquiring traffic, your audience, and user behavior.
#8 Build Backlinks
A backlink is a link to your website from another website. Backlinks from complementary businesses in your industry will increase the amount of referral traffic to your website. Plus, backlinks make your website appear more trustworthy and Google rewards trustworthy websites with traffic.
Through your content marketing efforts, create content that begs to be linked to. If your content is valuable, others in your industry will link back to your website.
Once you capture more organic traffic, you can integrate capture paid traffic through online advertising. Facebook Advertising and Google Adwords are two of the more common online advertising channels. Through Google Adwords, you can create search campaigns, display campaigns, and retargeting campaigns. You can aldo tailor your paid advertising strategies to fit your goals of more website traffic.
#10 Collaborate & Partner
Partner with other companies in your industry as well as service providers to help each other out. For example, consider appearing on a Podcast. This provides the podcaster with a topic and content, while you benefit from audio content and a link on their website. You could also consider integrating guest blog posts on your website or connecting with others to publish your content.
These digital marketing tactics are a great way for small business owners to start driving traffic to your website. Using one channel in isolation is not going to generate results, rather you want to craft a medley of marketing tactics that fit you and your business.
If you want your website to help your business grow and reach its goals, it is essential that you invest in your website and driving traffic to your website. If it has been 6+ months since you have updated your website, sent a newsletter, or posted on social, it’s time to ask for help! You can always hire a full-time marketer or outsource work to a freelance specialist or marketing agency.