Paid advertising seems to be the most obvious choice when you want more web traffic, but it is not the only way. You can certainly attract and lead visitors to your website through ads, but they don’t guarantee an increase in conversions.
Not to mention, not all businesses have the budget to pay for digital ads. Fortunately, there are plenty of sustainable ways to drive traffic without putting a hole in your pocket.
It takes a lot more effort, but in the overwhelmingly busy and crowded virtual space where competition among businesses is fierce, you need to do whatever you can to rise above all the noise.
1. Optimize for mobile
There’s a lot to unpack here. Most people are on the internet for work or leisure. If they’re not on their computer, they’re on their mobile phone. As we rely more and more on our smartphones to perform our daily tasks, we will continue to see mobile accounting for more web traffic.
According to recent statistics, more than 50% of internet traffic comes from mobile devices. Businesses use this data to adapt marketing campaigns to include mobile strategies and make content accessible via smart devices.
If you want consistent web traffic, you have to optimize your website for mobile. The key is to keep your content short and straightforward.
If you’ve ever browsed an unoptimized mobile website, you’ll know that it is frustrating to navigate using tiny buttons and links and scrolling through walls of text. Website friction will cost you sales as potential customers look for mobile-friendly websites to do their business.
Here are some ways to optimize your site for mobile search:
- Implement Google Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) markup — This helps website pages load quickly on mobile devices.
- Use Schema structured data — Its use of code or semantic vocabulary helps search engines crawl your pages better.
- Switch to responsive web design — A responsive theme enables websites to be visible on all smart devices, including phones, tablets, and computers. This is an excellent route to take if you want to revamp an old website.
2. Use social media
More than 3.5 billion people worldwide use social media platforms to connect with peers, discuss interests, and keep up with the latest news and trends.
It’s safe to say that rampant social media use has shaped our view and experience of the world. Businesses have adopted this knowledge to engage their target audience and drive traffic to their website.
Establish social media presence by signing up to popular platforms and optimizing your social media profiles to include relevant information and keywords. Don’t stop at Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
Utilize media sharing networks such as YouTube, Snapchat, or even TikTok if they apply to your target market. Visual content is proven to increase engagement and conversion, so make sure you share lots of photos and videos.
Tips on how to drive web traffic using social media:
- Optimize social media profiles — Add relevant keywords and include essential information in your bios.
- Post regularly — Build an audience by posting meaningful and actionable content consistently. The frequency of posts depends on the platform you’re using, so increase or decrease the number of your posts accordingly. Remember to post during times when your audience is most likely to be active.
- Share visual content — Create well-designed and on-brand visuals to lure in potential customers.
- Interact with the audience — Social media is a tool that connects businesses directly with customers. Reply to comments and messages promptly and consistently to keep your audience engaged.
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3. Write unique content for websites
Guest posting is a great way to drive traffic to your website and enhance its credibility. Writing for other websites to get a backlink toward your own is a surefire way to get noticed by search engine crawlers.
But it would be best if you didn’t write for every blog you see. To effectively increase web traffic, you need to find websites that are related to your industry.
Identify the topics you should write about by doing some keyword research. Build your guest post strategy around keyword phrases that you want to rank for, as it will help boost organic search rankings and drive referral traffic back to your website.
Then create unique articles that are engaging and offer value to your readers.
While the technical aspect of content development is important, making sure that your articles are compelling. You can achieve this with storytelling.
In a captivating manner, stories told help build a connection and get readers to do what you want them to do. A clear and linear narrative with good visuals has the power to turn readers into customers.
Most blogs allow an author byline with a link to a website. Make sure your bio is interesting but not sales. Some blogs allow social media links, which will enable readers to connect with you on Facebook or Twitter and check out more of your content and business.
4. Update old blog posts for web traffic
If you’ve written many blog posts in the past, chances are some of them are dated. Some of those impressive pieces may have been high performing with a lot of quality backlinks. Updating your old blog posts is a simple way to extend the life of your evergreen content and drive more website traffic to them.
Google would value high-quality content, even if it were published years ago. There are many ways to update old blog posts. The most critical issues to look out for are broken links and media.
Revise outdated information and include new and credible resources to provide fresh information for users. As you update your content, make sure that you optimize according to Google’s most recent algorithm updates as well. If you think the meta description needs a rewrite, then do that too.
The last step is adding an editor’s note to indicate when the post was originally written and updated.
5. Host contests and giveaways to drive website traffic
Drum up interest and create many buzzes online for your business by holding contests and giveaways with prizes that people will want to win. Just note that while there will be a huge web traffic boost during the promotional activity’s duration, there will also be a significant drop once it’s over.
Inevitably, some people will only stick around until the announcement of winners. However, this is still a great way to generate a lot of leads. The success of this strategy will depend on how well you deploy it.
Structured online giveaways become more successful when you plan for them sufficiently. Here are some tips to help you out:
- Have an action plan — This should include pertinent details, such as the purpose of the giveaway or contest. Are you trying to boost website traffic, increase social media engagement, or generate referrals? You should also decide the timeline, type of contest or giveaway, prizes, rules, and how best to promote the activity.
- Create a dedicated giveaway page — Entice your audience by putting them front and center of the prize. Include concisely written rules, a call to action, a lead capture form, and a countdown timer to the page.
- Set up an autoresponder — All participants should be sent an email confirming their entry. You can even include built-in plugins to help them share the contest on their socials.
- Promote on social media — This helps you reach more people who are likely to be interested in the contest or giveaway.
6. Collaborate with bloggers and influencers
Influencer marketing is a strategy that allows businesses to tap personalities who have a strong influence over a target audience. This partnership involves collaborating with influencers to introduce your product or service to their followers.
Identify the right influencer type and influencer marketing strategy for your brand. Influencers are usually social media stars, bloggers, industry experts, and even celebrities. Popular strategies are reviews, social media mentions, affiliates, discount codes, and sponsored content.
7. Build a community of brand enthusiasts
The competition among brands vying for attention online is intense, which is why we are bombarded with thousands of ads every day. So much, so that dedicated ad filters were created to combat this.
If you’re among the brands that pay for targeted ads to reach an audience or boost web traffic, you might not get the result you want as it gets harder to reach prospects this way.
With that said, it’s time to think outside the box and figure out a better way to build your brand. Instead of paying for ads or buying followers, focus on building a loyal fanbase.
Brand loyalty marketing is a great way to retain customers, and a cost-effective way to keep them coming back is through consistent and meaningful engagement.
Building a fanbase from zero can be challenging, but it’s not impossible. All international brands started from the bottom, and now they’re thriving because they know their audience well. Here are some tips on how to build a community of brand enthusiasts:
- Post consistently on your socials — There’s nothing to fan about when you don’t have content. Offer something unique and actionable that will make followers want to engage. You can ask for feedback or opinions to start.
- Provide rewards — Engaging with fans and recognizing them online is great, but it’s often not enough to keep audiences coming back. Rewards can be in the form of discounts, insider information, or being placed on a list for special promotions.
- Interact frequently — Let your audience know that they are heard and catered to by being responsive, whether through comments, email, or via social media private messages.
The strategies mentioned above prove that while paid advertising helps target your ideal audience, it is not the only way to drive website traffic. Diversifying different online marketing tactics helps sustainably increase traffic.
The best way to know what works best for your brand is to track every campaign. A detailed review of the data you’ve gathered will let you know which ones contribute the most traffic and which ones are not working. This way, you can identify the strategies you should continue with and those that aren’t worth your time.