In a recent post, I wrote about how to find your website’s Alexa score to see if you’re getting good traffic. My advice was, don’t panic if your score isn’t so impressive. Rather, use it as a baseline to measure progress. So, let’s say you’ve checked your website’s Alexa score, and you’ve learned that your score is fair to middling (or, OK, downright discouraging), and you’d like to make some changes to attract more visitors. What might you do? Here are two top tips for bringing more traffic to your site:
Tip #1: Start Adding More Content on a Regular Schedule
The more good content you offer on your site, the more visitors will like it, stay looking around, and come back. They might even share your site with others via social media, bringing in even more traffic!
So what do I mean by adding more content? Well, you could add more pages, but that’s usually not very practical. Pages are the foundation of your site and should, if you’ve constructed your site well, include all the information there is to offer about your business, product line, or service, covering all the details corner to corner. So, the easiest and most common way to add more content is to write blog posts. And by the way, write them regularly, and space them out. Don’t bunch your posts up and then leave long gaps of inactivity. Four posts a month, for example, will give you more points with Google (which drives traffic to your site) than seven posts over two days. (I’ll explain about the Google scoring system in a later post.)
You Don’t Have to Create Your Posts From Thin Air
If the prospect of writing blog posts makes you shudder with loathing, don’t despair. First, know that blog posts don’t have to be about your dreams, longings, and emotional travails, or what you ate for breakfast this morning! They can, and most of the time should, be about topics related to the focus of your website. If you’re a healthy living coach, for example, then you could write all kinds of informational posts about nutrition, diet fads, exercise, the effects of aging, lifestyle habits, and so on. You can look for other articles on the web to get ideas and information, and write something based on what you find.
Of course, the process still involves some work, but it’s much easier than sitting down at your kitchen table with a blank screen and creating a written piece out of thin air.
PSST – You Don’t Actually Have to Write the Blog Posts Yourself
If you hate writing no matter what, don’t despair: You can find someone to write your blog posts for you! It may be hard to believe that you could find someone to do for you what you loathe doing yourself, but you can. I, for example, love writing, and it’s one of the main services I provide my clients. I research topics related to their businesses or services and write posts in a style and voice to match theirs. No one’s the wiser, and my clients can relax knowing that their site will feature new, well-written content on a regular schedule. Other benefits can flow from this arrangement too: One of my clients, who absolutely hates to write, won an award last year as one of the top 75 baby boomer sites on the web! (No, it wasn’t Sixty and Me, by the way! I don’t ghost-write any of Margaret Manning’s articles. She’s won all of her awards in her own right!)
Tip #2: Come Up With a Good List of Keywords and Phrases, and Use Them
Experts have told you to use keywords on your website to pull in traffic, but what exactly does that mean? Most website owners believe that it means a list of words they would use to describe what they do. Well, yes and no. Yes, you want to have a list of words and phrases that relate to what you do. But no, these are not necessarily the words that you would use. What you want are the words and phrases that your potential customer or client would use.
Here’s an example: When I first built my website for Women At Woodstock, my annual retreats for women, I thought my most important keyword phrase would be “boomer women.” But then I did a little research, and I found that actually, very few women search for that phrase. The phrase that’s used far more often, in fact, is “women over 50.” So, I went through my site and switched out the less popular phrase for the popular one.
How to Find the Best Keywords and Phrases For Your Website
There are several ways to go about this. First, you can do a series of Google searches using various keywords that you feel are best related to your site, and see what comes up on the search engine results pages. Are the sites and articles all about businesses similar to yours, or not really? Do some phrases seem spot on, while others seem to lead you down tangents? Note the best-matched words and phrases and begin using them more often on your site.
A more sophisticated way is to do more data-driven keyword research. This involves coming up with a beginning list of keywords and phrases (your “seed list”) and then plugging the list into a tool to test them. There are many such tools out there, and they all work basically the same way; they generate an expanded list of variations on your keywords plus related phrases that you might not have thought of. From this, you create a newly expanded and refined list, and you submit that list to testing, using a tool to analyze which are the most popular phrases (meaning lots of people search for them) and which have the most competition (meaning lots of websites use them). What you want is to find words and phrases that are searched often, but used infrequently on other websites. Those are your prime candidates because when you use these words or phrases, your website will come up higher on the search engine results pages, and people searching the web will be more likely to find you!
Hate Research and Data? No Problem; Hire It Out
If you’re a do-it-yourselfer, you can find keyword tools online such as Keyword Tool or Wordstream’s Free Keyword Tool. But if you hate the thought of immersing yourself in data and analysis, never fear. There are SEO experts out there who will perform your keyword research for you. (Shameless self-plug here: Yep, I do keyword research. I love it, as a matter of fact. It makes the nerd in me come alive!) The good news is, it’s a one-time expense. Once you’ve got your golden list of the best and greatest keywords and phrases for your website, you can use it over and over again as a guide as you add pages and posts to your site, and bring in more traffic!
This article was first published on Sixty and Me.