Website ROI: How to Increase Traffic for Free

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Jan 2014
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Author : Michael Georgiou

Continuing our series of Website ROI, we’re turning our attention to web traffic. Given the low conversion rates, we know that increased traffic means everything, and to take it a step further, increased unique traffic. I’m going to show you how to increase traffic the free way which few are doing.

Free advertising? Wait, we are talking about websites where you need to be a nerd or celebrity in order to increase traffic without paying for it, right? Yes… But no, you don’t need to be an SEO guru or celebrity in order to generate traffic. Here we’re going to learn how to increase traffic to your landing, blog, and features/pricing pages without paying for it.

Media Websites

There are thousands of media sites such as Tech Crunch, Triangle Business Journal, Forbes, or republishing sites such as Hacker News and Reddit. Find a way to help them while helping your company. You need unique visitors, they need content.

One of the easiest ways is to write an article for them. Of course, the content must be relatable to their community and adhere to their guidelines but it also can include links to your landing, blog, and features/pricing pages. The content must be unique for the media site to allow such links, and you want the content to be unique as to not dilute the SEO you’ve worked so hard to achieve. That being said, words are just words unless put in the right context.

Every media site has sub topics and finding the right sub topic is the difference in you achieving your goals or your content falling on deaf ears (or eyes in this case). Pro tip: find companies who have a similar target audience and are paying for advertising on media sites and then find the sub topic they’re most visible on. That’s the portal, or sub topic, that you want your content to be seen in.

Become Active

What makes all of our tech marketing efforts possible is simple: We live in a reward-driven society where people want to be rewarded for their efforts. Use your company’s brand and voice and become socially active as the company. No, this isn’t just about social media.

Find corporate, personal, or media blogs and social accounts that have a similar target audience to you and become active. Comment, like, up-vote, down-vote, anything! It brings your company into the spotlight and shows your company’s prowess and thought leadership and while giving you a new medium to provide links to your important landing, blog, and features/pricing pages.

I want to really stress the idea of ‘voting’ on articles/posts. Not everything has to be all rosy. In fact, you’ll generate more attention if you can be the first to say why something is wrong and provide accurate resources to back up your reasoning while also showing a different way for doing things (this is where you insert your company link). Again, we live in a social, reward-driven world, so make your company just as social as you are as an individual and stir the conversation pot. To see what I mean in action, go to Quora (you’ll need to log in).

Marketing Partnerships and Link Sharing

This is simple: Share your links with other websites and share other company links on your website. Why? Well, I didn’t write the rule book I just follow it. The two rule books I follow are Google and SEO Moz. These companies set the standard for how website reputation and optimization are decided. So, how does link sharing and partnerships have to do with this?

It’s pretty simple. Go to OpenSite Explorer and enter your web URL along with two of your competitors. This will give you a general idea of where you stand along with some insight into how you can improve. What I normally see as the deciding factor between website grades are the number of links. The companies who have the most optimized content, are the most reputable, and have the most inbound/outbound links will have the best score. OpenSite Explorer is run by SEO Moz in case you’re wondering the connection, and link sharing is almost always the deciding factor when you compare two websites side by side.

Who, what, where, when should I share links? Obviously you don’t want to try this with competitors… Nor do you want to do this with companies who have no relation to your business. You want to use websites that have a similar target audience so your link is actually used. Don’t use the same page as your link share for every site. Change it up based on the audience, context, etc. Lastly, when link sharing, use the smaller sites or blog pages to get traction on certain links at certain times; i.e. if you have a landing page you want to get in front of developers, write a post for a popular developer blog that you can include links to the landing page.

Now that you’ve got a new idea of how to increase traffic to your landing, blog, and features/pricing pages, how are you going to implement? Join the conversation in the comments below or tweet me @WillSoprano.

I’ll be finishing our series on Website ROI by digging into the numbers; tempering expectations and helping you understand WHY your experience is what it is. Again, if you’ve missed the first two articles on Website ROI, you may want to read “Website ROI: What Are Your Goals” and “Web ROI: (Qualified) Lead Gen”.

 

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