I just did a simple website for a startup massage business. Now, this guy is a great guy, but let’s just say that his tech skills were something to be desired. Which is pretty common among my clients, so he’s in good company 😉
He loved the website, but the first question out of his mouth was, “So how do I show up on Google?”
I saw that coming a mile away.
Ranking #1 on Google
Because the fact remains, whatever business you’re in, you’re going to want people to find your website.
It doesn’t matter how neat your website is, doesn’t matter how pretty it is, or how much great content is on there…if no one comes to it, it’s basically useless. And unfortunately a lot of people still believe that “if you build it, they will come.”
That’s just not the case anymore.
Ironically, everyone wants to be number one on the first page of Google. But the problem is, not everyone can be number one. It’s just not feasible. Yet everyone thinks that their website should automatically get pushed to the top, because they’re just that awesome.
So anyway, I started explaining to my client the ins and outs of SEO.
“What’s SEO?” He asked.
Oh boy, we’re going to be here awhile.
It finally dawned on me that focusing on the digital side of things might not be in my client’s best interest. It would just be an uphill battle for him the entire time. So I told him, do what you’re good at.
Whatever industry you’re in, you’re going to want people to find your website. Click To Tweet
What are you good at?
I find people generally fall into one of two categories when it comes to marketing a website; those who are more quiet and shy, and who are very comfortable around computers. Then there are the social butterflies who love interacting with others but technology feels a little alien to them.
The good news is, whatever camp you’re in, there’s ways to get traffic to come to your website!
Option one: Go digital
This is what people traditionally think of when they think of SEO (search engine optimization): ranking well for Google.
Keep in mind this isn’t necessary for every single person out there. This is a good option for those who are at home around technology, and might even prefer it to people. If you need traffic to come to your site, but don’t mind rolling up your sleeves, this is the way to go.
I tell everyone who wants to look into this, it’s all about content. And social sharing.
Everything you need to do is free; it just takes time and effort.
You can expect to see some real results in 6 months to a year. So beware of any SEO scams that promise you the world at breakneck speed, they rarely deliver and can get you in trouble.
Here’s what it entails:
- Create content. This can be in the form of blogs, interviews, podcasts, video, or images. But you have to create something that has to do with your industry and is of interest to your target audience. It’s important to post quality, relevant, and frequent content. I tell my clients, don’t start if they don’t intend to keep at it. You can post as little as once or twice a month, or as much as once or twice a day. Obviously more is better, but I say commit to what you can stick with. Something’s better than nothing.
- Share content. Not everyone has to be on every single social media channel out there. I wrote an article about this a while ago, but it’s worth noting that most businesses would probably benefit from being on some social channels. Once you create your content, you need to get it out there (promote it). One of the best ways of doing this is through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, etc.
- Be social. Don’t just blast your own content and promotion 24/7. You need to stay engaged with your followers, ask questions, answer questions, share interesting things. This will help drive up your traffic.
- On page SEO. Make sure your page titles and headlines include relevant keywords. When you write your content, write for humans, but be sure to keep it on track with what your site is about. Do some keyword research and include long-tail keywords in your content.
- Engage. Another great way to bring organic traffic to your site is to engage with other popular blogs. Leave comments, offer to guest blog. Get others to guest post on your own blog; this will bring in their readers.
- Start a newsletter. This can be as simple as a monthly email with your most recent blog posts, or tips and tricks to share with your readers.
- Clean house. Dot your i’s and cross your t’s on your website. Make sure that everything is running smoothly, you have no dead links, and that pages load fast.
Option 2: In Real Life
Now that’s all fine and dandy, but what if computer stuff isn’t really your forte?
Not a problem, there are still things you can do to drive some traffic to your website, that don’t involve sitting down in front of it. Now keep in mind, these tips might require even more time and effort, but they still work.
- Network like crazy. This works well if you’re outgoing and love being around people. You probably aren’t shy about talking about yourself, so networking opportunities is a good route to go to get your name out there. Hand out your business card, which should have your website on it, to everyone you meet. Even your hairdresser. Hey, you never know when he might need what you’re selling!
- Try direct marketing. Whether it’s advertising or sending out a mailer, these have good return rates and get your business seen. People will see your advertisement or mailer, and if they’re interested, probably check out your website.
- Get some PR. If you have the money, hiring a professional PR person might be the way to go. They do the heavy lifting and have the know-how to get your business in front of the right people, which in turn, brings in traffic to your website.
- Run specials. Another great way to drive traffic is to hand out postcards that promote a special, with more information on their site. Or, require that in order to redeem the special, they have to order/call/whatever from your website.
- Put your website on everything. Yes, I mean everything. Get t-shirts with your website URL, hand out promotional items that have it plastered on. Tattoo it on your face. I don’t care how you do, but get your website address out there.
- Conferences and events. Going to these can expose you (and your business) to a lot of great leads. Even better, rent out a booth and try exhibiting yourself! You might be surprised how much traffic your website gets after doing this.
Which one are you?
The good news is, anyone (yes, anyone) can bring traffic to their new website.
The bad news, all your options take some time and effort. Is it worth it? I asked my client how he was doing with his new strategy, and he’s having a blast. Slowly but surely he’s getting visitors to his website, and business is growing.
Did I miss anything?
Do you have any tips or tricks to add? What’s your favorite way of bringing people to your website?