There’s a good chance you’ve spent quite a bit of time, energy and money creating your business website. You’ve crafted the content, selected the right images and designed the site to be responsive on any platform from desktop to tablet to mobile phone.
All your efforts will be in vain if no one is visiting your website. Having an attractive business website is just the first step in the process of using the site to generate qualified leads that you can nurture into new customers.
Here are seven ways to start driving traffic to your business website:
1. Don’t neglect page optimization. Make sure each page of your site and each blog post you write is optimized for search engines. Of course, engaging and useful content is step one. Make sure you’ve worked in the keywords and phrases people are most likely to search. But don’t forget those “hidden” page optimization tools as well. When you add an image to a webpage or blog post, be sure to fill in the “image alt text” as well as the description.
You may think these are just behind-the-scenes boxes, but search engines can read that text embedded into the photos, so it’s one more way to work in your keywords and phrases.
The same goes for blog posts. Don’t neglect filling in the meta descriptions and tags – another place to make good use of keywords.
2. Start blogging. Without a doubt, one of the best ways to drive traffic to your business website is with a blog. Search engines look for fresh, new content and you’ll have that with regular blog posts. It’s also another opportunity to work in keywords and key phrases. Lastly, you’re providing useful content for your customers and potential customers as well as content that’s easily shared across other platforms.
To be completely effective, though, you have to commit to blogging regularly (at least once a week) and you have to take the time to craft posts that are engaging, well written and worth sharing.
3. Get active on social media. You can’t expect to launch your blog and suddenly have hundreds of people stumbling onto your excellent content. This is especially true for small or new businesses working to attract a broader audience and new customers. You need to share your blog posts and other online content in as many ways as possible. The best way to do this is via social media networks.
Select the social platforms that make the most sense for your business and that will allow you to best reach your target demographic. Then share your blog posts, ebooks, webinars and other content on these networks. And don’t be afraid to share them more than once. Your customers are on various networks and can’t possibly see everything so share your content – especially those timeless posts – a few times across Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.
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Pro tip: Make sure you’ve installed a website plugin that allows readers to easily share your blog posts on their social network.
4. Spend some money on paid advertising. Online advertising can be especially effective because you’re able to target your message to such specific audiences. It pays to devote some of your advertising budget to places like Google, Facebook and LinkedIn. Even though Facebook, for example, is free to set up and use, it’s tough to reach a vast audience without putting some dollars behind your effort. The good news is, online advertising can be less expensive because you can set limits, target your ads and pay only for the interactions you receive.
5. Email marketing is an important tool. Don’t buy into the myth that email marketing is dead. Email remains a very effective way to reach consumers and should be part of your marketing strategy. Use your email newsletter to share links to blog posts or send readers to specific pages on your website for information about products, services or upcoming events. It’s just one more way to share the content you’ve so carefully created.
6. Use those target keywords, especially long-tail keywords. Do some research in your own Google Analytics as well as simply searching on Google to see what related searches it suggests. This will help you determine common keyword searches along with long-tail keywords, which tend to be more specific and longer keyword phrases.
Once you’ve determined those target keyword and long-tail keywords, you’ll want to work them into your content, including the copy on your webpages and especially those blog posts. There’s no need to add them a dozen times, but rather work them in naturally three to five times on the page or in the post.
7. Create a backlink campaign. A great way to generate more traffic for your business website is when others link back to your relevant content. If a trusted, reputable blogger or website is referencing and linking to your content, it builds your credibility and sends their readers to your website. It also demonstrates to search engines that you have credible and useful content.
How do you generate backlinks? Comment on blogs where you’d like to see your work highlighted. This will get the attention of the site or blogger and encourage them to check out your posts. As mentioned earlier, be sure to share your content on your social networks so you’re reaching as many people as possible.
It takes extra work and planning to drive more traffic to your business website. But once you see your traffic increase, you’ll realize it’s worth the time and expense. Don’t let your beautiful, content-rich website languish on the web because people are having a hard time finding it.