Here’s a simple way to increase search engine traffic…
… simply give your visitors MORE of what they are looking for!
There are two types of people who visit your site: those who already know OF your business and those who are being introduced to your business for the first time. For both types of visitors, it is important to know what questions they are trying to answer when they visit.
For returning customers, those who already know who you are, the questions are usually:
- What are your hours?
- How do I get to your location?
- Do you carry what I want?
For new customers, those just being introduced to your business by way of this visit to your website, their questions are radically different. The questions they are asking are more along the line of “how do I ____?” And when your website adequately answers their question, you have taken one more step closer to landing them as a customer.
But, how do you know what questions your web visitors are asking?
You can start by putting yourself in their shoes. Remember back to when you didn’t know a thing about your industry, what were some of the questions that you needed to have answered? Then, create content that answers those questions and post it on your website.
Once you’ve started to get a bit of traffic to your site, you can use Google Analytics to look behind the curtain and actually *see* what questions bring people to your site.
If you are using WordPress, install one of the free plugins that work with Google Analytics. You can install the Google tracking code yourself, if you are technical enough to do so, but it is easier to use one of the plugins. Then, simply link the plugin to your free Google Analytics account and you are ready to go.
In your Google Analytics account, you’ll see a graph of Traffic Sources Overview. Click View Report to see the details. Scroll to the bottom and there will be a list of Keywords on the left. You can click View Full Report to see the entire list.
Each keyword variation will be shown separately, so you’ll want to take a close look and try to spot patterns.
These keywords are the search terms that your site is already ranking for. This is important to remember. You can work hard to rank for your keywords of choice, or you can take the low hanging fruit and simply maximize the keywords that you are already getting traffic from.
Once you know what is already bringing traffic to your site, you can create additional content that more closely answers the questions that people are trying to answer by visiting your site.
I’ll give you an example from one of my own sites.
I use MailChimp for my Email Service Provider.
As a result of loving MailChimp, I have a couple of blog posts about them on my website. When I looked at my Google Analytics account, I discovered that most of my Search Engine traffic was to my MailChimp posts. I also learned that people were searching for help customizing the MailChimp opt in form, which I didn’t have adequately explained on my site.
So, I created a step-by-step guide to customizing the form and posted it to my site. I did a bit of SEO to it, making sure that it had good keywords in the title and description, but I didn’t do anything extraordinary in terms of SEO, just the same things I do for every post. And then I forgot about it.
It took only 3 weeks for my Search Engine traffic to pick up. In fact, my traffic has doubled and all I did was create one blog post that answered one question! (UPDATE one month after publishing: I am now getting 76% of my traffic from Search Engines, 45% goes directly to this page, and my traffic is up a whopping 243%).
I could have gotten even better results, faster, if I had actually promoted my blog post. But I didn’t. I just wrote it and published it. The Search Engines and their web crawlers did the rest. (I do have a Sitemap generator installed on my site, so the Search Engines did get pinged when I posted the new content. The Sitemap generator and the Google Analytics plugin are among the essential WordPress plugins that I use on every site I create).
There are a lot people out there offering advice on how to increase your Search Engine traffic and companies offering tricks that get you great traffic, fast. But a lot of that stuff is time consuming or expensive and it doesn’t always work – or does work, but only until Google changes their algorithm and closes the loophole that was being used.
A better way to build traffic to your site – and to grow your presence online – is to figure out what people want and then give it to them. Figure out what 3 things bring people to your site – new visitors and repeat ones – and make sure that your site answers those questions.