Building traffic to your website should be a ongoing focus of any digital marketing strategy. The key is to focus on tactics that help drive the right kind of traffic. An upward traffic trend line is a great thing to show your boss, but ultimately, she's going to ask "What is all of this traffic doing for us? Are these people coming to our website becoming customers?"
We have written many blogs about how to turn website traffic into leads, but I'd like to take a step back and focus solely on getting the right kind of visitors to your site. The ideas below are simple to integrate into your monthly marketing activities and can generate some great results. I'll tell you what to do and give you an example of how that work impacted a few of our clients (along with our own efforts).
SEO, SEO, SEO
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) work can make marketers want to run and hide. From understanding how Google changes its algorithm, to specific nuances of things like optimizing the text in anchor links, there are so many SEO tactics that at times it can seem overwhelming to know what to focus on.
One of the most important SEO activities is to clean up and take care of any issues identified through a technical audit. It's the first thing we do with a new client, as fixing technical SEO issues can yield some great results both in keyword ranking and an increase in website traffic. A technical SEO audit will look for coding issues, server errors, or re-direct issues that could be impacting your rankings.
If you want to find out whether you have any technical audit issues, we offer a free audit, along with advice on how to address technical and content related SEO issues, but you can also DIY with free tools such as Moz and SEMRush.
Here are the results for one client that had over 300 technical audit issues when they first came to us for help in building more traffic. You can see that just by fixing technical audit issues, how traffic improved in just 60 days. (The big dip after the initial improvement was a suspected algorithm change, but the recovery was quick!)
In addition to running a technical audit, I always recommend checking on how Google scores your page speed. Analyzing your page speed for any performance issues is free to do through a tool called Page Insights. You can check performance for desktop users as well as mobile users. After analyzing the page, it will return a score from 0 (Poor) to 100 (Good) and provide a list of improvements (if needed) that you can apply to your site to improve your score. The most common issue we find is that images have not been optimized; the file size is too large and need to be compressed. This blog can tell you exactly what you need to do to compress your images.
Granted, some of the issues will involve some coding/development skills, but take care of image optimization and check your new score first.
SPEND more time promoting existing content through social media
If you've got great content, you want to make sure you're doing enough to promote it. Most organizations will email their existing database of customers when a new blog is published or they develop a new content piece. Doing this, of course, is important. Many organizations will also push out social media messaging at the time that content is developed. But then what? How can you reach new visitors and grow your website traffic? Knowing what content is being shared in your industry and its relevant communities can help you better promote your own content and give you valuable insights into potential new followers and social sharers. My favorite tool to use for this is BuzzSumo (which has a free version to get you started).
You can search for a topic or domain (a competitor’s domain, for example) in BuzzSumo, and your results will look like this:
From here, you can click on View Sharers to see Twitter followers who have shared that content. This is a great entry point to follow potential clients or members of your communities, and it also lets you see what type of content is being shared by other companies/organizations (i.e. what’s “working” for them).
Once you've completed this "research" get to work on sending out social messages to those new communities and or putting together plans to adapt existing content to provide more value to them.
CHANGE THE TITLE TAGS ON UNDERPERFORMING PAGES
In search engine results pages (also known as SERPs), your title tags are the key to getting people to click through to your website. They are your “headline” that convinces a searcher that your content is exactly what they need versus something they will skim over.
We find that this is one of the easiest ways to drive new traffic to your site is to identify pages that are already getting traffic from search engines and then optimize the title tags to have the most potential to drive new traffic and then
Here's how to find those pages:
- Log into Search Console (If you don’t have Search Console set up, you can find details on how to do so here)
- Go to Search Traffic – Search Analytics, and select the radio button next to Pages
- Check off Impressions (how many links to your site users saw in Google’s search results) and CTR (click through rate – the click count divided by the impression count).
- Look for pages that have a good amount of impressions but a click-throughh rate of less than 4%. These are pages that are being shown frequently when people are searching, but those people are not clicking through to view your content.
- Change Title Tags: Think of your title tag as a headline. It needs to be attention grabbing and informative – all in 70 characters or less. Use words that pique curiosity or answer a question. Don’t forget about keywords – put those towards the front of your title.
Here is an example from one of our clients. This image from Search Console shows some of pages that could use some title tag work.
We made some minor changes to the /battery-testers/ title tags and saw great results in the how many people were finding this page in their search results and then clicking through to the site.
So give these ideas a try and I know you will see some can help you find some immediate positive changes in your website traffic. If you have any tips of your own, please feel free to share them in the comments below. Thanks for reading!
Header photo by Alexander Popov on Unsplash