Getting Traffic Going Beyond Search
If you operate a website or internet business, or plan to in the future, one of the issues probably foremost on your mind is that of how to attract traffic to your site. If it is not uppermost in your mind, it should be. Traffic is the life-blood of your site.
For many site owners, particularly new ventures, the primary means of traffic is through organic search. The term “organic search” is used to describe the search results you get when you enter a search term or phrase into a search engine. It is also referred to as natural search.
One of the key elements of organic search is that it is free. It is traffic which you do not have to pay for, as opposed to that which is created through advertising. Another important aspect of organic search traffic is that, in most cases, it is relevant to the subject matter of your site. In other words, it is “targeted traffic.”
Targeted traffic is visitors that are looking specifically for what you are offering. Most of the visitors who come to your site as a result of a search engine query will have found you by searching for a term that is consistent with your site’s content.
The downside of relying on organic search is that it can be inconsistent and, in many instances, quite minimal, depending on how your site ranks for critical search terms. In order to draw sufficient traffic through search, it is necessary to rank on the first couple of pages of the search results, preferably on page one. Very few searchers look beyond the second or third page of the search results for their query. Additionally, search rankings can change very quickly and dramatically.
In order to optimize your traffic flow, you might want to consider some other means of pulling visitors to your site. Following are three methods you can use to get the traffic you need by going beyond search.
The World Wide Web has evolved into a social harbor, where everything is connected to everything. If you are not part of this social playground you are missing a vital link in the marketing of your site. When it comes to delivering traffic to your site, there are two areas of social media to think about – social networking and social bookmarking.
Social networking sites are those in which individuals are sharing and communicating information about their lives and experiences with other users. These sites result in an almost continuous conversation between the “page holder” and his or her “friends.” There is usually a considerable amount of feedback and communication between the users. These will be sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
The value of social networking sites, as far as traffic for your website, lies in getting information about your site out to those whom you are engaging through a particular media and, in turn, getting those people to share the information about your site with their friends and followers on their own pages.
Social bookmarking sites are sites that allow their users to share (bookmark) sites of interest to them with others. Two of the more well known bookmarking sites are StumbleUpon and Digg. With these types of sites a user simply posts a link to a site, page, video, etc. that they have found interesting. In most cases, the user can add a comment about the link. In this way, they are promoting the site to their friends and those that follow them.
While social media venues have the potential to bring a lot of traffic to your website, it might not be the best of traffic. Many times the visitors you will receive from social sites will merely be curiosity seekers. Too often, it is not targeted traffic and, as a result, the visitors do not stay around your site too long.
Links From Other Sites
Another method for acquiring non-search related traffic is to procure links from other sites. The key to this approach is to seek out sites that are in the same industry or niche as your own. In this manner, the traffic you receive from the link will be people who are interested in your content, service, or product.
One of the most effective ways to get links from other sites is through guest blogging. Many site owners welcome others who are knowledgeable in their area to guest post on their sites. In many cases, the site owner will allow you to add a brief bio about yourself and will allow you to include a link back to your own site within the bio.
If you choose to follow this route, be sure to take your responsibility seriously. You will want to provide quality content that adds value to their site. In doing so, you will be working towards establishing yourself as an authority and will enhance your chances of being invited to post again.
The third alternative for delivering targeted traffic to your site is through the use of paid advertising. Internet advertising can take many forms, from placing banners on individual websites to running full-scale ad campaigns through programs such as FullTraffic.
One of the most common advertising methods in use by small websites is CPM, which stand for “cost per thousand.” With CPM advertising the ad program administrator places your ad in various places around the web. Your ads might show up on related websites or in search results for a relevant query.
In a CPM campaign, each time your ad is displayed is referred to as an impression. You bid on how much you are willing to pay for 1000 impressions. The cost of running such a campaign can be remarkably low. The results will vary and will greatly depend on the effectiveness of the ad itself, as well as where the ad shows up.
There are several other types of paid advertising campaigns that can be employed, also. Such programs will often result in some of the best quality targeted traffic available.
So Go Beyond Search
There is no denying that organic search is one of the best ways to get traffic for your site or blog. However, never put yourself in a position of relying on one method alone. Use these and other practices to go beyond search and increase your traffic.