A website without visitors is like a party without people. The whole reason why almost anyone creates a website is to have people visit that website, whether it’s just to gain information, to contribute information, to be entertained, to make a purchase, or whatever else the site was created to do.
If you’d like to start or grow your business online and increase your website traffic and visitors, we’ve got you covered. If you’re already driving lots of visitors to your website, that’s great to hear. But just like Oliver Twist, you probably want more.
Provide great content
Why do you want more people to visit your site, business or blog? It’s not just for the sake of it. Ideally you want to turn them into subscribers and customers.
So the first thing you need to tackle when it comes to getting more people to check out your site is to ensure that you’ve got important information to share.
All other things being equal, it is much easier to increase your website traffic to a beautiful site with great content that loads fast than to another beautiful site with poor content that loads just as fast.
- Why is Netflix the number one movie streaming service in the world? Because aside everything else, they’ve got the greatest movies available.
- Why is Amazon the number one online shopping destination in the world? Because they’ve got the widest selection of products sold online.
- Why is Google the number one search engine in the world? Because they have the best answers to any question you can throw at them.
And because these companies have exactly what some people are looking for, they do not lack visitors and always seem to have the traffic to their website and businesses increasing.
We’re going to go into how you can get more traffic for your website, but an important foundation is to make sure you’re trying your best to make your website the most valuable it possibly can be in your niche or industry.
If you sell hair pieces, make it the best hair piece-selling website in the country. If you’re blogging, make sure your articles are the most unique, intriguing and engaging articles you can find anywhere on your topics of choice.
Really put as much effort into your content as you can and answering the question of how to increase website traffic will become a whole lot easier.
Configure analytics correctly
Now that we’re sure you’ve got great content on your lovely website, the next thing is to make sure that you have accurate data regarding visitors to your website.
Without great website analytics software that has been properly configured, if you do increase your website traffic and visitors over the next few days or weeks, how would you even know?
This step requires diving into your analytics program of choice and retrieving some of your most recent numbers
You might be surprised to find out that your website might already have a sufficient number of visitors. It might just be your conversion rate that needs to be improved.
For example, if your main competitor gets 1,000 visitors a month and you get 700, you can still reap greater rewards by improving your conversion rates to a level higher than your competitors. If they convert at 1% and you can reach a 2% conversion rate, you’ll be getting 40% more customers.
You can find a lot of ideas here on improving your conversion rates.
Outside of that, once you have the right data regarding your current website traffic, it’s useful to benchmark that against similar websites in your industry. That gives you an initial and realistic target of what you can aim for.
It can be discouraging to compare yourself to websites in a completely different industry and even country which might have certain things working for them that just might not work for you.
Whilst websites like Alexa and Similarweb can be of some assistance in identifying your competitors and the level of traffic they get, you might want to contact your SEO agency which can provide you with a complete analysis of your competitors and their traffic levels compared to yours.
You might have an idea to increase your website traffic by 500% over the next 6 months. Your SEO agency would be able to analyze and determine what is possible for your business within what time frame.
So now onto the 5 types and areas you need to focus on.
Direct traffic is any website traffic you get because people already know you or are becoming familiar with you. An existing customer who types your website into their browser, or has already bookmarked your website, counts as direct traffic.
Direct traffic generally shows that your brand awareness is on the rise and that’s a very good thing. The more direct traffic you get, the better.
Sometimes, direct traffic is under reported because people visit your site by typing your name in Google to actually find your website.
To increase direct traffic requires increasing your brand awareness, and making sure that your website’s domain name can be found on all your material, be that a branded coffee mug, bumper sticker, poster, flyer, email signature, etc.
Also, running offline ads helps get you lots of direct traffic. Radio ads, TV, newspaper, billboards, magazines, conferences, trade shows, sponsorships and others are opportunities for your target audience to hear/see and visit your website.
A minor disclaimer though is that if you take a look in Google Analytics, there is a section called Acquisition Overview that displays your various website traffic sources. A source refers to where your visitors are coming from.
Sadly though, the share displayed as direct traffic can be slightly inflated because any visit to your website which Google can’t accurately pinpoint is classified as direct traffic.
Website traffic from many apps, including WhatsApp all show up as direct traffic instead of referral or social traffic.
So to increase site traffic via a mobile or app strategy, make sure that you are able to correctly identify or tag links on those networks so they don’t mistakenly show up as direct traffic.
Any time a link to your website or an article of yours is shared on a social network, visits from that link fall under social traffic.
And considering the sheer volume of people spending hours and hours each day on Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, etc, there’s a whole lot of website traffic and visitors to be gained there.
Whilst all social networks are different, having their advantages and disadvantages, they are also almost universally visual. Terrific imagery and video usually do well when shared on these networks.
To get website traffic to your business via social media, open up some accounts on these platforms if you haven’t already (after you’ve done your research on which ones would suit you best) and share well crafted entertaining and/or educational content there.
Be sure to fill out your profile including a link to your website and any other information you’d want your followers to know.
A consistent posting strategy is useful in ensuring you can build a loyal audience. You should remember though that social networks are a 2-way affair.
It’s not you talking at your audience but talking with them. So engage with your users and reply their comments as they engage with your content.
And don’t forget to have sharing buttons on your website. This makes it easy for people to share the interesting things they find on your website with their own circle of friends.
In your efforts to increase website traffic via social media, remember that it can be a double-edged sword. If a post or content of yours goes viral, it can be truly amazing.
The visibility of your brand shoots up overnight, enquiries and orders coming from all over the place and it does lead to some websites being so overloaded that they go down.
Don’t let that happen to you. Make sure you’ve got a lovely website on great hosting that can deal with all the website traffic you might get.
And make sure you don’t go viral for the wrong reasons. You may increase online visitors to your business only to find out that a poor customer service experience from your outfit has gone viral, bringing you very negative attention rather.
When someone clicks on a link of yours found anywhere other than on a social network or search engine, that constitutes referral traffic.
One of the beautiful things about information is that it becomes a lot more useful to people when shared. People have been sharing information for thousands of years and on the Internet, one way that’s done is by linking to content elsewhere.
Of course, the only reason why people link to content elsewhere is when that content is valuable to them. (Again, we come back to our initial point about creating valuable content.)
Take Wikipedia for example, it’s one of the most authoritative websites in the world with content on just about every subject you could imagine.
Whenever possible, they cite sources with respect to the various facts and issues mentioned in their articles and link to those sources.
And just as they link to sources they find valuable, hundreds of thousands of websites link back to Wikipedia because they find their content valuable.
Valuable content gets linked to a whole lot more than content that isn’t as impressive. News outlets and blogs pick up content which they think their audiences would love to hear.
That’s actually a big deal called Public Relations. If your company has done something noteworthy, you could have a writeup about that submitted to various online news portals who might run with your story and link back to your website.
Examples include launching your company, opening a new branch, releasing a new product, breaking a long-standing record, working in partnership with another company, etc,
For example, we had the privilege of working with Paystack earlier this year as one of eight digital marketing agencies they selected to help small business survive and thrive during the lockdowns brought on by the Corona virus pandemic.
Their generous offer helped hundreds of businesses who needed a website or already had one, to have Paystack’s online payment solutions integrated for free.
Paystack wrote about this on their website, with a link back to us. This led to an increase in website traffic for us from both Ghana and Nigeria.
The collaboration was picked up by news outlets and that’s some of the power of public relations to increase website traffic and visitors when they feature you.
Affiliate and referral programs capitalize on this also. One of the things that helped Amazon become the tremendous success that it is, was their Amazon Affiliate Program.
They allowed millions of people to sign up and place banners and links on their blogs and websites, which encouraged site visitors to make a purchase of a particular item from Amazon.
And when a transaction went through successfully, that person (or site) would get a commission on the sale.
If your business can capitalize on an affiliate program, it’s a terrific way to greatly increase the amount of referral traffic you get to your website.
Having many websites linking to your website is terrific for your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) because it’s a ranking signal. It tells Google that your site is important because lots of people are linking to it.
However, paying for a link to your website (without a nofollow or sponsored tag) is prohibited by Google and they will penalize your website if they discover what they consider “unnatural links.”
One of the best ways to get a lot more visitors to your website is via Organic traffic. This refers to website traffic that originates from a search engine like Google, Bing, Duckduckgo, etc
Organic traffic is by far the largest source of website traffic in the world. Probably the most important too.
If you aren’t getting a sizeable amount of organic traffic to your website, it probably means you can’t be found on the first page of Google.
And you need to fix that as quickly as you can. That’s because search traffic has some really great advantages:
- It’s highly qualified. They found you because they were looking for something that you have.
- It’s absolutely free. You don’t have to pay Google anything to get this free traffic.
- It’s scalable. The more people search for what you offer, the more they’ll find you.
- It’s long term. Work you put into getting organic traffic today can continue earning you organic traffic in 5 years time.
- It increases your credibility. Who wouldn’t want what you’re offering if Google is vouching that you’re the best?
To increase traffic for your website via free or organic means, you need to rank much better in Google (and other search engines). What that means is that your website must provide the best answers and solutions to the questions people are asking.
No matter your industry or field, people are asking questions about it night and day. If you answer these questions well on your website, Google rewards you by showing your website higher up in search results.
For example, if you want to know how much a website costs in Ghana, you’ll possibly come across this as the first answer:
In Google’s opinion, this article answers the question the best, although there are a lot of other factors that influence rankings and not just the content.
If you haven’t already, do go through our article on how to get on the first page of Google. We’ve got lots of great tips for you there to increase organic traffic to your business via SEO or Search Engine Optimization.
The fastest way to increase traffic to your website and business is via advertising or sponsorships. Paid traffic refers to any traffic you had to pay money to get and basically covers the whole landscape of online advertising, pay per click advertising, native ads and sponsored content.
The great thing about paid traffic or online advertising is that you have a huge amount of control over it. Want to get more visitors? Spend more money! Feel like you have enough customers? Simply stop spending.
Not only can you control the flow or volume, but you have control of the framing of your content and its context. You get to paint yourself in the best light possible, unlike if a blunder your company makes becomes headline news and goes viral.
There are lots of ways you can run paid advertising to get visitors to your website. Some of the most popular include:
- Google Adwords or Search Ads
- Google Display Ads
- YouTube Ads
- Facebook Ads
- Instagram Ads
- Twitter Ads
- Pinterest Ads
- Native Ads (on networks like Taboola and Outbrain), etc.
Because of the cost involved with paid traffic, it’s important that you track it very well and measure the leads and income you gain from your campaigns. This will help you calculate your ROI (Return on Investment) and make sure you’re gaining rather than losing money.
Another thing to take notice of with advertising is that many platforms have made advertising as easy as they possibly can because they want to reduce the barriers between your money and them.
Whilst easy, this means that it’s also easy to blow a lot of your money on ad campaigns that aren’t optimized. You end up having to ‘just trust’ the system selling you the ads and believe that they will be nice and provide you the most value for the very least price.
Whilst your aim is to increase website traffic for your business, not all website traffic is good traffic. You might want customers from Ghana but your ads are being shown in India.
You may want middle-income wage earners interacting with your ads but you rather have them showing to high school kids.
Your product is for car owners but is only being shown to people who ride bicycles. You get the point.
Do read up on how to ensure your ads perform the best they possibly can so that when you do have traffic coming from paid sources, that traffic will actually be valuable to you and your business.
It can be a bit overwhelming with respect to all the different platforms, their different strengths and weaknesses, different audiences, different systems, different everything!
If that’s the case, we’d recommend finding a digital marketing agency to increase website traffic to your business for you via an online marketing strategy.
For your business to truly grow and succeed, finding methods to increase website traffic via all 5 types is going to be crucial. They have their pros and cons as already outlined but are all valuable in the right proportions.
Whilst paid traffic is probably the easiest to gain (as long as you have the money to pay for it), organic traffic would be on the other end of the scale as the hardest.
That’s why Search Engine Optimization services are usually both in demand and quite expensive. Because when your website starts ranking well in search engines, it’s like getting Google to advertise your website for free for months and years to come.
We look forward to seeing your company succeed and grow stronger online and off.