Have you ever excitedly hit the “publish” button after spending hours writing quality content perfectly crafted for your audience, only to find that your contribution to your market’s knowledge base has gone completely unnoticed?
It can be incredibly frustrating when you commit time and energy to developing interesting and actionable information that doesn’t get picked up by your marketplace.
Fortunately, there are countless opportunities to turn what feels like wasted time into quality engagement.
Driving traffic to your website takes more than quality content. In fact, well-developed information won’t achieve any substantial growth without deliberate efforts that improve your chances of opening a dialogue with your customer base.
Building an audience takes hard work and dedication – the internet will not do the heavy lifting to grow your business for you. You have to be in methodical control of every aspect of the publishing process.
From creating content, to promoting it and cultivating relationships with those who will share on your behalf – driving traffic to your website requires a real understanding of how the process works and a committed effort to maximizing your opportunities.
Here are a few tips to help you get the ball rolling.
1. Use attention grabbing headlines
Developing engaging content is a critical start to driving more traffic to your website, but if your content isn’t highlighted by an attention-grabbing headline, most readers will overlook it and move on to other topics with more powerful headline strategies.
Always consider your website and content as a little fish in a VERY big pond.
There are millions of other people trying to promote content on the web, and in order to get someone to stop to view yours, you’ve got to get their attention right from the very first line. Don’t be vague with your headlines – state clearly and creatively what your reader will find.
Consider what “pain points” your audience has and craft headlines that provide a specific answer to their questions.
Promoting information that meets a specific need compels them to seek further for more detailed information. “How tos,” DIY (do it yourself) and tips and tricks oriented posts are best married with captivating headlines that clearly identify what the reader will learn, why they need to learn it and how the information will be delivered.
Follow this path when you consider content and headlines for your website blog:
- Choose your blog post. What questions are my readers asking? What needs do my clients have? What questions/needs can my business provide answers for? What am I an expert on?
- Write your blog post. Headlines don’t just include the title for “compel to click” impact. Headlines also include “captivate to stay” strategy throughout the blog post. Split your text with headlines that distinguish the content readers need to stick around for. Here’s an example:
- First Headline “What is social media?”
- Second Headline “How to get started on social media.”
- Third Headline “How to grow your business with social media.”
- Final Headline “Why you need to stay consistent on social media.”
- Develop a powerful headline. Does your headline let your readers know the answer to their question is in the body of your post? Is your headline keyword rich? Does your headline highlight your authority? Here are a few potential headlines for the example referenced above.
- Understanding the Social Media Jungle and Why Your Business Growth Depends on Consistently Engaging with Your Clients Online
- How to Enter the Social Media Arena with Confidence and Grow Your Business
- 4 Tips to Get Started on Social Media and Grow Your Business
- 10 Tips to Grow Your Business by Opening a Social Media Dialogue with Your Clients
2. Select engaging images
Another crucial strategy that attracts attention to your website is the use of engaging images.
A powerful image can speak for itself, triggering an emotional response or personal connection to your content before the reader has even had the opportunity to read the headline.
Images should be an extension of your content, visually telling a story that your readers can relate to and setting the stage for what they can expect when they enter your website.
You want to take advantage of every aspect of your content to ensure that all parts are cooperatively working towards the common goal of driving traffic to the site.
Create images grounded with compelling, keyword-rich text to increase your chances of being discovered through search engines and also to use for promoting your website on social media platforms like Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.
For example, avoid uploading an image titled “saturday1234” on your “How to Enter the Social Media Arena” post. Re-title your image “How to Enter the Social Media Arena” and put a description in it that supports the content. “Join XYZ Company and learn how to enter the social media arena with confidence.”
Engaging images don’t end with the featured graphic. They should move your reader through your entire article, supplementing and supporting the content as the reader traverses the information thoughtfully and with interest.
Images can help break up complex content, spark creative thought and encourage a reader to continue to the next paragraph. Allow your images to lead the way, validating your content and why the reader needs to remain on your website.
As yourself these questions when choosing an image to support your blog content:
- Does this image meet the basic requirements of a quality image? Is it in focus? It is clear and well-exposed? Do I have the legal right to use this image? Is it titled properly?
- How does this image support my blog content? Does it help tell the story? Do the setting and subject naturally connect with my topic? Could my reader “guess” what this post might be about just by looking at this image?
- Will this image resonate with my readers? What emotional reaction might spark when my readers see this image? How does this image make them feel? What personal or professional circumstance can they relate to in this image?
One way to find great images for your website is through Pixabay – a WordPress plugin that allows you to search thousands of images and easily add them to your site.
There are numerous stock image companies, like Big Stock and iStock, that can provide professional-grade, captivating images for your industry. Remember to think like your audience and constantly ask yourself how you’d react if you stumbled across your own content.
3. Take full advantage of social media
Platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest are vital to the continued success of your website. Take advantage of every opportunity to share your content on these platforms, and share often.
Keep in mind that social media feeds move at an incredibly fast pace and because of that, you’ll want to maintain a constant presence so that your content isn’t buried and lost.
Find new ways to repurpose old content to represent to your audience regularly on social media. Make the best use of your information by engaging across a variety of channels with messages carefully crafted to seamlessly integrate with the open dialogue that social media provides.
A few creative ways to repurpose old content include:
- Rewriting your original blog post
- Repurpose the copy to reflect an “interview style” with questions and answers.
- Take the content and develop a new focal point that still puts your already written work to good use.
- Share blog content via pinnable infographics
- Boost your Pinterest traffic by creating different pinnable images that support your content in a variety of ways.
- Develop clear action points and lists that can captivate Pinterest users to “save for later.”
- Use appropriate keywords and attention-grabbing imagery to make sure your pins are easy to find and understand.
- Host a webinar or online conversation
- Take the foundation for your blog post and ask others to join a live conversation.
- Do a live demonstration that covers your blog post content in person.
- Ask other experts and authorities to share their personal thoughts and resources in a community dialogue.
The infographic received an extra 2,000+ social shares.
- Join Facebook groups that relate to your niche where you can share your website and authentically engage with like-minded individuals. Bring the human element to your business.
- Take advantage of trending relevant hashtags on Twitter to join the online conversation and share your expertise. A relevant hashtag is one that naturally dovetails with your business or authority.
For example, if you are a painter, you wouldn’t use a trending hashtag like #recipes or #couponing. You would use hashtags like #homeimprovement or #smallbiz or #handyman.
A word of caution when sharing across social media. Social media is grounded in authenticity and genuine interest in your marketplace and your customer’s needs.
If you drop links to your content without regularly and meaningfully engaging in conversation or becoming an active member of the network within which you are sharing, you are likely to be spam-blocked or completely ignored.
You could also incite a negative remark from someone who doesn’t appreciate your attempts to showcase your brand without supporting and engaging with others.
Make sure that when you’re sharing on social media, it is with the intent to engage with others and develop mutually beneficial relationships, not just splash your name over their accounts via “commercial breaks.”
4. Network, network, network
The idea of networking really goes hand-in-hand with taking advantage of social media.
You’ll want to connect with other entrepreneurs in your niche to create a community of supporters that will happily promote your website if you return the favor.
Here are a few tips for identifying a great arena to enter and establish mutually beneficial relationships:
- What is the purpose of this group? Who is in the group? What platform does this person champion? What is their social media voice? Who is their audience?
- How does this group relate to my business? Does this person share a like-minded passion or interest? Are they speaking to a similar audience?
- What would I like to achieve by building this relationship? What are the potential benefits? Pros? Cons? Am I clear on my intent and whether this relationship or group can achieve it?
- What can I give back to this group? How can I offer similar support to this person? Do I have the resources and tools to reciprocate? How will I authentically engage to develop a genuine connection?
Networking outside of your direct customer base is often overlooked and can be a huge misstep for companies looking to grow and expand online.
Trusted partnerships often cross industry lines and rely on the human connection to boost brand loyalty and website traffic. Get creative and explore new arenas that can extend and reciprocate mutual efforts to send clients to the right place.
How do you break free from your niche network?
- Join your local Chamber of Commerce. Attend events and meetings regularly. Explore programs and opportunities to maximize your membership.
- Sponsor local events or charities. Get involved with a cause that is important to your community. Extend your friendship as a company that cares. Service before sales!
- Regularly attend conventions. Diligently seek to make new in-person connections at conventions, webinars, seminars or other opportunities where like-minded peers are gathering together to learn.
- Engage on LinkedIn. Create a well-developed profile and business page that will attract new relationships. Actively seek to connect and open a dialogue with online influencers and local leaders.
5. Post frequently and consistently
Maintaining an active presence on your website is absolutely necessary if you want to increase your site traffic.
Sharing content once in a blue moon or very irregularly will only ensure that you get buried in the fast-paced environment of online marketing and will reap little to no returns. It can confuse your audience and chip away at your reputation as an authority in your arena.
That’s not to say that you have to share new content daily, but you should set a schedule to publish new material routinely, as well as recycle and repurpose old posts.
The more frequently you engage with your readership, the more opportunities people will have to discover why they need to work with your business.
There are countless analytical programs available that will provide critical data to help you you sculpt a productive content campaign.
Simple tips, such as understanding that certain days of the week are more likely to yield successful results than others, can provide important boosts to your content visibility.
For instance, according to Coschedule, the highest traffic time of day for most blogs is 11am – which means people are most active at that time. It can also mean that your content is likely to get buried because it is being shared at the same time as a lot of other content.
This is where a program like Hootsuite can be useful.
Not only can you manage all your social media platforms in one easy place, but it also allows you to analyze your shared content to see what works and what doesn’t for your unique audience.
Relying on a program that can keep your content organized and help you schedule at the most productive times will not only help drive traffic to your website but will also do wonders for your sanity!
Here are a few guidelines for consistent engagement on social media:
- Facebook: Post 1-2 times daily on your business page. Visit, like and comment on 3 other pages every time you post.
- Twitter: Post 6-10 times daily. Retweet 2-3 posts daily. Reply to all @ mentions within 24 hours. Keep content 30% you and 70% other content for your audience.
- Instagram: Post 3 times daily. Every time you post, like 3 pictures in your feed and comment on 1 image.
- Pinterest: Pin different content once hourly. Develop shared boards and invite other influencers to pin their content. Curate content from other thought leaders and authorities to create an “easy access” resource library for your followers.
Related reading: Hootsuite Vs Buffer – The Heavyweight Social Media Showdown.
6. Explore guest post opportunities
Not only should you post frequently on your own site, but you should look for opportunities to share your content on other websites.
Get your website, name and brand out there in as many ways as possible and you will see a drastic increase in your website traffic. You cannot build your website viewership on your own, so it’s important to seek out other high traffic websites that can give your site a boost.
Beyond basic search results, when your marketplace begins to see your brand represented in multiple channels they respect and trust for quality information, your reputation improves exponentially. Becoming a recognizable face in your online arena keeps your brand fresh in your market’s mind.
Not sure how to get started? The best way to start is by giving instead of getting.
- Create a list of thought leaders and authorities in your arena.
- Connect personally to invite them to contribute a featured post to your blog.
- Market their guest blog heavily to help expand their reach in thanks.
- Send them a personal thanks with a warm (read: soft) offer to contribute to their blog if they’re open to it.
Related reading: Guest Blogging Strategy – 11 Tips To Double Your Exposure.
7. Connect with your audience
Once you start attracting readers to your blog or website, it’s important to maintain genuine contact with them.
If they comment on your content, respond to them. If you receive messages through your site, respond promptly and thoughtfully. Show gratitude for shares and respond to mentions swiftly.
Developing a reputation as someone who is connected with their target audience is helpful in building supporters who will then share your content for you. Once you open a dialogue with your readers, it’s important for you to maintain it and keep that door wide open.
These people can then become your Influencers.
Influencers are people who have an impact on their community and an opportunity to promote or deter traffic to/from your site. They are trusted by many and can sway your business traffic one way or the other often with just a simple word.
Maintaining a strong relationship with your audience ensures that you will be able to build a solid influencer network. As they say, word-of-mouth is the best advertising, and influencers have the power to build a positive reputation and presence online for your business.
Winning their vote takes more than great content. It takes authentic relationship-building and genuine interest in their needs.
Brand support is very personal and influencers must feel emotionally connected to your company, whether it’s as a result of stellar customer support, critical updates to user-friendly software, or even just the class and grace that your company has when they take a moment to say thanks.
8. Be an active reader on other blogs
Driving traffic to your website is just as much about giving as it is receiving. In order to get the support of others in your niche, you have to offer reciprocal support. The golden rule goes a long way when it comes to product and brand endorsement.
Visit other blogs and websites to leave positive feedback. Be an active member of the online community, and make sure to include a link to your own website any time you comment.
Again, proceed with caution and make sure you’re not just link-dropping. Engage authentically with other bloggers, show interest in their content and respond thoughtfully – this will encourage them to do the same for you.
While the overall result will be an increase in traffic for your site, focusing on building relationships with other bloggers is what will yield the most successful results.
Building mutually beneficial partnerships online can open doors to new opportunities that can impact your business even more powerfully than increased website traffic.
What is authentic commenting?
Your first stop will be identifying whether or not you are an active reader. Once you’ve embraced the skill set, it’s time to get started.
Here is an example of a lackluster comment: “Great post! Thanks for sharing!”
Here is an example of an authentic comment that will reap returns: “This post really hit home for me. Thank you! There are some great tips in here that will help me improve my workflow. I’m going to share this with my staff to get them on board as well. Do you have any follow up posts on this topic?”
*BONUS TIP!* Increase the chances for someone to “Stumble Upon” your website
Adding your website and content to a site like StumbleUpon.com will drive traffic to your website without as much direct work on your part.
People who may not have necessarily been seeking out your website will quite literally stumble upon it while perusing content in this unique social network. It’s just another tool you can take advantage of, and requires very little work.
Take measures to stumble the content of your influencers and blogger partners and watch your returns blossom.
Wrapping it up
Driving traffic to your website is a marathon, not a sprint. You have to be willing to put in the time to find your best avenues towards success.
Take advantage of the many tools available on the web, as well as the other entrepreneurs in your niche that can become a pivotal part of your network. Develop genuine relationships wherever possible and in so doing, create a successful word-of-mouth advertising strategy.
Combine these tips with SEO keyword rich content and compelling imagery for your website, and you are certain to see an increase in your site’s traffic and your brand reputation.
Stay the course, be service-oriented and fight the urge to become an internet wallflower. Dig in and create your tribe, and watch your business grow as a direct result of a well-cultivated online strategy.
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