If you’re a blogger trying to increase your traffic you’ve probably read about all sorts of amazing software that can instantly attract thousands of page views without doing any work. A number of these programs tout social networking schemes whereby you generate lots of fake profiles across multiple social media sites that are somehow supposed to generate massive amounts of traffic and organic links. Sorry to burst your bubble, but that’s not the way link building works.
My blog targets family caregivers who care for elderly relatives at home. Most of my target market is not on Twitter, never mind Facebook. Being popular on social media does not guarantee that you’re going to attract the right type of traffic. As an affiliate marketer I’m interested in reaching individuals who are looking to purchase senior healthcare products like medical alerts. I’m not interested attracting traffic for the sake of traffic I will attract qualified traffic. So what’s my strategy?
- Write About Topics That People Want to Read About – If no one is searching for your topic don’t be surprised if you get no traffic. Keyword research is essential so that you don’t waste your time writing about something that has little chance of generating real traffic.
- Post Often – All other things being equal the site with twice as much content get twice as much traffic.
- Choose Titles Carefully – You want to make readers curious enough to click on your link and only a strong headline will do that.
- Right Well – You want people to share your article and that won’t happen if it’s poorly written
- Deliver Valuable Content – If you’re just rehashing the same article that people have read before there’s little chance that they’ll share it.
- Be Remarkable – Contribute something to the web that hasn’t been there before and that adds value. But don’t wait for the big idea – blog everyday to increase your chances of producing a winner.
- Make It Easy To Share – Be sure to include buttons on your blog so that people can like your article on Facebook and send it out to their followers on Twitter and other social sites.
- Get Connected – Use social media to meet the influencers in your market. Do your part to help them promote their blogs and in time they will help you promote yours.
- Think Visually – Make your blog as graphically pleasing as possible so that people will feel more confident to share your information.
- Rank highly for your keywords.
There’s only two types of traffic out there; paid and organic. I’m not interested in paying per click, I only one to attract free traffic. Free traffic breaks down into search engine traffic and referred traffic. To get traffic from search engines you need to get your blog to show up on page 1 of Google when people type in the relevant keywords. In my case, I want to show up for keywords like “buy a senior alert
” not for “information about Alzheimer’s disease.” Why? Because the first example is a key word with commercial intent, the searcher is intending to purchase something. The second example is purely informational. They may click on some Adsense ads, but these keywords are not very lucrative. Therefore, I must have a strategy to show up on page 1 for the keywords that I’m after.
After all is said and done the only way you can rank highly on Google is to have quality, relevant content in a properly designed blog and lots of back links. Back links are nothing more then another website linking to you. Not all back links are equal. The page that you’re earning the link from must be relevant to your topic this doesn’t mean the entire website has to be relevant to your website, just the particular page that links to you. For example, Ask Will Online, has nothing to do with eldercare, senior health or any of the other topics that I’m trying to rank for. But you will notice that this page is full of references to eldercare. See, I just did it again! Now when Google spiders this page and see the link to my site about Senior Citizen health and safety ( I did it again) a link to my site makes sense in this context. Remember, Google does not rank websites it ranks Web pages. If you can get a webpage that is relevant to your topic to link to you it will help you get your site to the top of Google. So how does one do this?
It’s exactly what I’m doing right now! I’m doing a guest blog and contributing content that helps readers of Ask Will Online learn how to get their blogs ranked higher and generate more traffic and page views while the same time slipping in a link or two back to my site. This is a decent strategy but not the best one. Ideally you should be contributing content to websites that are related to your topic and that attract your ideal reader. Now, most your competition is not going to want to give you a link so you’ll need to broaden your thinking a bit. If you have a blog about equestrian vacations it’s very unlikely that a number questioning vacation site is going to give you a link since you are there direct competition. But what about all the other sub topic blogs you could go into? Someone that blogs about Arabian stallions might be happy to post your article on the best vacation spots to ride in Arabian horse. Or, you might find an equestrian supply website. You could write an article about equestrian supplies and which ones you want to bring with you on your vacation. Using this strategy you’re adding value to the other bloggers property, adding value to their readers and at the same time earning a back link. Plus, readers of these sites are more likely to plan a horseback riding vacation than people who are reading Ask Will Online.
One final note, use anchor text to link back to your website whenever possible. Just having a link to your homepage using your URL is okay but having a descriptive anchor text for the keywords that are targeting is much better. The higher up your link appears the more relevant and important it will seem, so don’t settle for a guest blog that only allows you one link in the footer. Very your anchor text as you post articles on other people’s sites so that it appears more natural to the search engines.
Marie Clark is a senior health writer at ElderKind. She offers advice to family caregivers who take care of elderly loved ones. She lives in New York City.