How do I drive traffic to my website

This is called digital marketing and, this might be stating the obvious, but websites need lots of traffic 
from as many different sources in order to help them get more visitors and ultimately appear higher organically in search results. The little spiders at Google want to see lots of different platforms linking to your website so that they sit up and take notice. So much so that they want to see what all the fuss is about and go and take a look themselves (this is called site indexing)

But how do I do this?

I have banged on and on about this, but content on a blog within your website should be one of the first things that you do. You need your content to be written for humans, be localised wherever possible, be fresh and authentic and be content that people engage with. Your content should also be regular so that you have a dynamic area on your website that visitors almost come to as a source of information or a point of reference. 

Other key ways to drive traffic are – 

Optimise your website for your search terms.
Google wants to see that the websites it lands on have been put together correctly with nice, ‘clean’ code, labelled images, correct page properties and the right balance of appropriate words for it to scan read.

Submit your business to search engines
Use Google Places for Business
https://www.google.com/intl/en_uk/business/ 

Submit your site map to Google Search Console
Use Google Search Console
Google Search Console

Add new products or content to your website daily
….or as often as you can. Sites that display lots of products for you to browse and buy generally get lots of visitors as there is so much more to look at. 

Add downloads or whitepapers to your website
A report or a guide that informs readers about a complex issue and presents your philosophy on the matter is a good way to attract attention. Write something that can be downloaded which helps readers understand an issue, solve a problem, or make a decision

Use email marketing and send out campaigns
Use a platform like Mailchimp. https://mailchimp.com/en-gb/?currency=GBP 

Guest blog for other websites
You are the authority in your sector. You know what works, what doesn’t, what people like etc. Offer to write about it on other blogs as your knowledge WILL get noticed.

See what your competitors are doing! 
AI like SEM Rush allow you to see exactly what your competitors are up to; what works for them, what content has the best reach etc.

Google also wants to see answers to questions that you put into its search bar or via Siri so that it can direct you accurately to what you are searching for and it doesn’t want to see the same information multiple times (duplicate content).

Other ways to drive traffic to your website is to keep active on social media. It’s no surprise that what someone types in the search bar of Instagram or YouTube is the most important signal to search. Social Media looks for relevant usernames, bios, captions, hashtags, and locations to send you to.

The above initiatives are all ‘free’ to use. However, they need a strategy to be effective and need doing professionally. Once you put something out there, it is out there for life so do not just jump straight in and start sending out poorly written content or shoddy eshots. Similarly, social media is called social media for a reason. It is a dialogue not a monologue so interact with people. And by the way, nobody really cares about your evening meal or your son’s birthday (sorry!).

The next part of your strategy to attract more site visitors is to use paid traffic and I will give you some pointers in my next post.

Advertisement

Implement Google Adwords into your Digital Marketing activities

Google Adwords

When a company first opens its doors, one of the biggest initial challenges it will face is awareness; the prospective market becoming conscious of you and what you do. Roll back the years and building a brand was a long, slow process that took time, money and a lot of perseverance.

Nowadays, however, the internet has revolutionised how brands, organisations and businesses become visible to their target audience. Digital marketing such as social media platforms, websites, SERPS, influencers etc are all fast and costs effective routes to market, but I want to talk about one particular initiative that should now form a part of your digital marketing strategy – Google ads.

As we know, digital marketing has gone from being a specialist approach for innovative companies to being a vital part of any marketing strategy and today businesses of all shapes and sizes, from start-ups to huge international brands, are turning to Google ads to target potential customers directly via what they are searching for.

Fact. Google is the most widely used search engine fielding more than 3.5 billion search queries every single day and it offers advertisers access to an unprecedented and unequalled potential audience of users who are actively looking for goods and services. But……with these sorts of numbers and a global platform, using Google effectively is definitely a specialist skill.

Having an SEO strategy, no matter how large your business is, is vital, but getting to the Holy Grail position of page 1 organically takes time and not all businesses have that luxury.

Fact. Google ads are faster than organic SEO. In fact, this is arguably the biggest advantage of using Google adwords to reach your audience. Yes, there is leg work required to research, write (and/or design) the ads, create a bidding strategy and implementing, but the campaigns can be launched pretty much immediately….and you only pay if people click your ads!

What PPC do I do?

Google’s advertising initiatives are split across two main networks – the Search network, and the Display network. The Search network encompasses the entirety of the Google as a search engine, and advertisers can bid on millions of keywords and phrases to target prospective customers.

The Google Display Network, which offers advertisers more visual ads such as banners, spans approximately 98% of the World Wide Web, making it a great choice for advertisers who want to accomplish marketing goals that aren’t necessarily as conversion-driven as those of PPC ads, such as raising brand awareness on a large scale using banner ads.

Yes, but why launch a google adwords campaign?

In a nutshell, Google Adwords is an effective way to drive traffic from the search engine through to your website. Google plays a vital role in increasing the reach of your marketing campaign and adwords can get your company or product there quickly. Adwords however, is an auction so the more budget you have, the more your ads will show.

Google does have support on offer and can talk you through how to set up adwords, but……I very much feel that it is very much worth hiring an independent expert to research keywords and then set up a search ad campaigns. Ongoing, campaigns also need monitoring and optimising to make sure that you are getting the best bang for your buck.

Digital Marketing. How do I do this?

Sometimes it’s impossible to decipher the wood from the trees when it comes to developing a digital marketing strategy. There are so many online platforms available these days and the vast majority are free to configure making each one saturated with millions of companies “shouting” online.

Similarly, some companies quickly configure accounts on platforms like Twitter just to be “on there.” They then do nothing with them and subsequently have accounts with no activity, no interaction and no real point. This actually damages a companies’ marketing rather than supports it as there is nothing worse than looking at a time line to discover that the last tweet or blog update was in 2016!

Putting together an effective digital marketing strategy is a common challenge since many businesses know how vital digital and mobile channels actually are for acquiring and retaining customers. But they don’t seem to have a plan to how they intend to engage with their suspects and prospects or even a plan as to what content to use, when or even on which platform.

I also think there can be a fear that a massive strategy report is required which then requires a huge execution budget, but we believe that lean planning works best. Start with a separate digital marketing plan defining what you want to say, why and to whom. i.e do you want to enhance your “digital footprint” and sector credibility, raise awareness or target specific search terms and drive more traffic to your website.

Either way, begin with some R&D to find out which platforms your competitors are using and what are they saying. Look at what content are they posting. Similarly, research whether they are running Google adwords and if so, what terms do they target.

Then talk to your clients. What platforms do they use? If you are an SME, Twitter is a good platform to use to market your business. If you sell to consumers, then Facebook will be key and you may well consider implementing Facebook ads.

You need to make the case for an investment in digital marketing and then create an integrated digital plan which is part of the overall marketing plan – digital should be fully aligned and becomes part of business objectives.