10+ Ways to Increase Site Traffic

Believe me, You can devote your life to increasing web site traffic, and I assume you don't want to do that. But with persistent, incremental effort, you will find that your traffic will build. Here are some of the simple things that you can do to make a difference in the number of site visitors you get.

I rarely link to another site unless there was a really good reason. The reasons are:

  • The other site is a great resource that demonstrates my ability to impartially and consistently find good resources for my visitors.
  • I will get paid for the referral or if the referee buys something (Affiliate Programs or such)

What Not to Do

  • Lnking back to me in exchange for my link to them (Recripocal Linking is Frowned Upon).

I do not recommend submitting to sites that are solely for reciprocal links because they are discounted by search engines, and they are often created to collect your email address to send spam to you.

The third is called "authority links," and they have a number of benefits for you. Besides generating traffic from those other sites, links back to your site can improve your positioning in search engines (google.com, for example). The thinking is that links to your site demonstrate that people think your site has value, therefore your site should rank higher in searches.

 

7831193501?profile=RESIZE_400xPress Coverage for Your Site

It's surprising how many sites get written up in local newspapers these days, as well as in national magazines -- and often those sites are not that special -- certainly not as special as yours! The only way they got there was because someone sent a press release or made a call.

Well, you can do that, too. It's not hard to think of ways to make your site a local story, and if your site has features on it that apply to specific audiences, get a write-up in an appropriate magazine. If your site has community features --a directory, a resource center, a message board -- this can be considered newsworthy.

In Connecticut, the Stamford Advocate, the town daily with a circulation of about 50,000, has a weekly feature of a locally sponsored site. This coverage is a great promotion for the site and for the business. With little effort, you can get results here, because very few other people are making the effort.

 

Create an Email Newsletter

An email newsletter is a great way to build your site traffic. Anyone who has sent a newsletter has seen their traffic jump with each mailing. You may say that there are so many newsletters out there that you don't want to add to the mess. Well, that's your choice, but newsletters still work -- if you have something to say. Many newsletters get deleted immediately, but they are still a consistent reminder that you and your business exists, and even serve a pupose when they get deleted. There are many services that can manage the email addresses and make your newsletter look nice (Constant Contact, MailChimp, etc.), and the cost is minimal. We also getting help developing a newsletter that is compelling and original.

 

Win a Web Site Award

There are a slew of awards programs for web sites, and they are always looking for new nominees and winners. If your web designer likes the attention, and you want to have an "award-winning" site, submit to different awards programs (or ask your designer to submit), and you may get lucky. Many people look at the award winning sites, and that means traffic for you. Also consider awards that are given by associations and organizations that you are affiliated with:

  • Your Chamber of Commerce
  • Local Business Associations (Rotary, Kiwanis, etc.)
  • Professional Associations (NSA, ICF, ODN, ASTD, etc.)
  • Trade Organizations
  • Networking Groups (BNI, LeTip, etc.)

     

     

Use Your Personal Email Activity to Drive Traffic

If you are already sending email out, why not use it to generate traffic for your site? If you have been corresponding by email with someone who has not gone to your web site, there is definitely something wrong. Here's how to fix the problem:

  • Use an email signature that promotes your business and your site. Make the signature interesting enough to attract visitors and consider changing it regularly promoting new site features, special offers, etc.
  • Use an email address that includes your domain name.

     

     

Directory & Referral Listings

If you are a member of any professional or business organizations, chances are that each has a web site with a directory of members, and hopefully, they include links to member sites. Get your site into those directories! It doesn't necessarily mean a lot of traffic for you, but it can bring in some, particularly if the organization actively seeks to get referrals for their members. You will also benefit from "link popularity" on search engines. In some cases, you can get enough business from these links to justify the cost of membership! Some ideas:

  • Your Chamber of Commerce
  • Local Business Associations (Rotary, Kiwanis, etc.)
  • Professional Associations (NSA, ICF, ODN, ASTD, etc.)
  • Trade Organizations
  • Certification Organizations (assessments, therapy, etc.)
  • Networking Groups (BNI, LeTip, etc.)
  • Hobby & Personal Development Groups (Toastmasters, Recreational Sports, etc.)

     

     

7831194688?profile=RESIZE_400xLeave Your Web Address Around the Web

When you are surfing around the web looking at and participating on sites, try to leave your web address -- like crumbs on your trail. Many sites have guest books that you can sign, message boards that you can participate in, and discussion lists that you can join. When you put your 2 cents on that site, think of it as a marketing opportunity, and make sure you add your web site address so people can read more about you and what you are doing. It's amazing how many people forget to do this even though they heve spent a fortune on developing their site. In some cases, by adding a little code, you can make your site an active link. The way to do this is (instead of just putting your domain name in place, such as "yourdomain.com,") by putting in the following code:

<a href="http://www.yourdomain.com">yourdomain.com</a>

This will display like this:

yourdomain.com

This doesn't always work, and sometimes there are special instructions to add a link, but don't be afraid of the code -- it will bring you traffic! Using Ahrefs.com is a great way to filter out what websites are worth putting a link on or not. If it has no authority - it has no value to your domain.

 

Add Referral Tools to Your Site

Add functions to your site that will encourage visitors to tell other people about your site or articles, to return to your site, etc. This doesn't add a lot of traffic if you don't have much to begin with, but it works in the long run. I don't know about you, but people are sending me stuff to look at all the time. Why not make it easy for people to do this? These repeat visit and referral tools are relatively easy to implement, and they do make a difference -- for example:

  • Send an article
  • Reminder notices
  • Refer a friend
  • Bookmark this site

 

Search Engine Submission

Search engine positioning is an art in itself, but it's an art that few small business owners want to spend their time or money on. So to get the most bang for your time and money, I recommend that you find an agency that is willing to show you the "surface" of SEO and where your website sits at the moment when it comes to popularity and authority and compare it with you competitor(s).  In addition to search engines, plan on submitting your site to at high-authority directories. Again, f it has no authority - it has no value to your domain.

 

Publish Articles on other Sites and Newsletters

If you have gone through all the effort to write articles, don't publish them on your site alone -- put them on other sites. Sometimes you can get paid for this, but even if you don't, demand a link to your site at the end or beginning of the article (this can be payment enough). The links will generate traffic for you (particularly if you publish on high traffic sites). The best situation is if you have a regular column or are an expert on a high-traffic site. Trade association sites can also be good candidates for this. If your content is really great, you can start to look at syndication companies (print and web) to market and distribute your material.

 

Create a Sexy Feature on Your Site

I'm talking about an article or some sorty of news press here. If the feature is of value, and it has some "gee-whiz" attributes, people will tell eachother about it, and that creates site traffic for you. This can also be true if you have a particularly fun or innovative graphic or flash animation, but I question how much this stuff helps your business. I once had a brochure that was beautifully designed, and people would call me to get a copy, but they wanted the brochure, not my services. If I was really clever, I would have started selling the brochure... Anyway, I recommend (from experience) that you be careful about this. The other route to go is to offer something free on your site that is appealing enough to interest your market.

 

Add your Site Address to Stationery & Business Cards

Duh! You probably already do this, but do me a favor and take out your business card to make sure. When I get someone's business card, I routinely go to their web site -- many people do this! I have people tell me all the time that they went to my site after meeting me. They wouldn't do this if: a) I didn't give them my card, and b) it didn't have my web address on it. Put Your web address on everything you have printed:

If you have good SEO for money terms - don't worry so much about this, as customers are already finding you. 

  • Business Card
  • Stationery (including envelopes)
  • Folders
  • Labels
  • Books
  • Fliers
  • Postcards

     

     

Pay for Advertisements

Paid advertising is very controversial on the web because results can be so poor. The secret is to have the right ad in the right place, and to make the offer attractive enough so that your "click-throughs" (the people who click your ad) take action. If you pay for an ad to get people to go to a page that is not compelling, then -- Guess what? -- paid advertising won't work for you. So if you go the advertising route, make sure you are clear about what you want visitors to do, have good sales copy, and have something that sells in a way to justify the advertising costs. Rule of thumb, on average PPC agencies will charge 20-30% of the budget as management fees. The fees become lower with higher budgets.

 

Set Up Your Own Affiliate Program

If you are selling things on your site, particularly digital products, you must have an affiliate program. Amazon built it's business this way. Everytime I refer someone to Amazon and they buy, I get a piece of the action. But Amazon benefits more than anyone. Amazon gets a constant promotion on my site at no cost to them unless someone buys -- and then they make money. Today, you can easily set up your own affiliate program, which will be interesting to visitors if you give them a big piece of the action. With digital products, you really don't lose much through an affiliate program. Even if you give 50% of the sale price, you can still make money. And you will get customers that you wouldn't have otherwise.

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