Driving organic traffic to a website may look like the first step to business, but the truth is that there is a lot of tactical work involved in acquiring interest online. The biggest effort usually comes from content strategy, and a 2020 report by Content Marketing Institute shows that 63% of content professionals are challenged with finding enough talent in this field.
Social media is often a big piece in this strategy, and always a tricky one to navigate. With stiff competition, moving guidelines and fast-paced trends, capturing attention online via channels such as Facebook, Instagram and TikTok is an all-consuming task. For smaller businesses that cannot afford to invest dedicated teams in this aspect, an external content strategy company may be the answer. But that said, there are also other ways one can tap into in the meantime to drive some traffic to the website – ones that can bolster your social media presence even more when you are ready to launch them.
WHAT ARE THE WAYS TO GARNER TRAFFIC ONLINE?
Traffic to a website is usually from one of the four following categories:
- Direct: When a visitor types in your URL on their browser directly. This could be from seeing a physical signage or advertisement, or maybe from offline events.
- Referral: When a visitor clicks through from another site. This could be an affiliate or partner site, or perhaps one with similar content.
- Search: When a visitor clicks through from a search engine result listing.
- Campaign: When a visitor clicks through from a marketing campaign, often with certain tracking parameters, generated by online mailers, advertising etc.
ALTERNATIVE WAYS TO GET TRAFFIC TO A WEBSITE WITHOUT SOCIAL MEDIA
Based on the above avenues of generating interest, one can still draw traffic to websites using methods linked to these categories. They include:
Search engine optimization (SEO): By optimising your website and its content to match search engine guidelines, one can rank higher and attain better visibility from keyword searches. This often involves inserting relevant keywords, creating high-quality content, maintaining updated information, and building backlinks from other credible websites. For more explanation about SEO, can check out our other blog post here.
Content marketing: Creating informative and useful content that appeals to your target audience can attract and retain visitors to your website. Blog posts are common, but one can also include infographics and videos. Regularly publishing content that is relevant can build authority and valuable repute.
Email marketing: Building an email list of potential customers and sending them attractive updates can be an effective way to drive traffic to your website. Include calls to action with mechanics such as contests, a new design or colourway, or promotions, and provide links to your website to encourage readers to visit.
Influencer marketing: Partnering with the right influencers for your niche can help with reach, and send new leads to your website. You can see this as an indirect way to engage on social media by proxy – using their large following on social media to promote your brand to their audience.
Paid advertising: Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, such as Google AdWords, can be a good way to drive traffic to your website. This allows you to create ads that appear at the top of a Search Engine Results Page (SERP) when specific keywords are searched for, and you only pay when someone clicks on your ad. Other forms include display advertising where you add content like visuals or text to ad spots in other websites, or affiliate marketing with relevant partners.
Referral traffic: Word of mouth can be incredibly powerful, so gently drop reminders to encourage your existing customers to share your website with their friends and family. There are also opportunities to gain referrals from collaborations and sponsorships, where links can be included to gain referrals.
Online communities: Online forums on large platforms like Reddit, Discord etc can be filled with potential visitors. By targeting topics in your niche, you can gain interest. Or join those that are relevant to your industry e.g. Tripadvisor for hospitality and tourism companies. Don’t try to sell here. Instead, share your expertise and provide help to the members and you’ll naturally gain followers. Don’t forget about review sites – responding to them online in a professional way can gain fans reading them.
Optimise your website for mobile: With an increasing number of users accessing the internet on their mobile devices, it’s important to make sure your website is optimised and responsive for them. Speed is important here, but so is ensuring the design is easy to navigate on smaller screens.
Leverage Google My Business: This free tool from Google allows businesses to manage their online presence across Google, including Search and more importantly, Maps. By verifying and updating your business information, you can help provide accuracy to important information such as opening hours) to maintain customer satisfaction.
These are just a few strategies you can use to drive traffic to your website without relying on social media. You can begin tackling those you feel most equipped to handle, before broadening into others. It’s important to remember that building traffic takes time and effort, and you may need to try a few different strategies before you find the ones that work best for you. But the results are always worth it.
Prefer to leave these to the experts? Let the consultants at Weave provide you with the most relevant methods for your business and achieve the traffic you deserve.