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35 Unique Ways to Increase Your Website Traffic

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35 Unique Ways to Increase Your Website Traffic

When it comes to web traffic, the more, the merrier.

Part of your job as a marketer is to come up with new and inventive ways to drive more eyes to your site. This has a couple of big benefits for any business, including ramping up brand awareness and sales as well as growing your email subscriber list.

The connection between web traffic and overall email marketing success is a big one, with the more visitors that you can bring to your site equaling more opportunities to sign them up for your emails and make stronger, more impactful connections. 

We have lots of advice on how to capture contacts once they make it onto your site, but how do you get them there in the first place? Keep reading for 35 creative ways that you can increase website traffic, then get to work tracking visitor behavior so that you can put website forms in optimal spots.

How to Track Website Traffic

Before we get into the specifics of how to increase website traffic, let’s go over how to figure out where you already stand.

The first thing to be aware of is that there are three basic types of web traffic:

  • Paid traffic – Web traffic that comes from paid ads, such as pay-per-click campaigns and sponsored social media posts.
  • Organic traffic – Web traffic that comes from earned clicks, specifically unpaid search engine links.
  • Referral traffic – Web traffic that comes from a link to your site on another web page.

There’s also email traffic, which is web traffic that comes from links in your email marketing outreach.

All of these types of traffic are important, though you may not rely on all of them equally. For example, some brands may devote a huge chunk of their marketing budget to paid traffic, while others prefer to focus more on organic and in-house opportunities like blog posts and emails.

There’s no wrong or right way to prioritize where your traffic comes from (it’s all about what works for your specific brand, budget, and objectives). There are, however, some best practices for tracking it.

Probably the best — and most popular — web tracking tool is Google Analytics. Not only does Google Analytics give you a snapshot of how many visitors are coming to your page and what they’re doing once they get there, it also makes it a cinch to see where that traffic is coming from.

There are other web traffic tracking tools out there as well, including both free and paid platforms. These include SimilarWeb, Bitly, and Open Web Analytics.

Digging into your data around web traffic is essential, both for knowing where you stand and for knowing what strategies are working out the best for your brand. With that in mind, let’s look at what those strategies might be, with unique ways to increase web traffic and bring more visitors to your page and more subscribers to your email contact list.

35 Ways to Increase Website Traffic

More traffic is always a good thing. Check out this list of traffic-boosting tips and find some new ideas for helping make your site the place to be.

  1. Invest in SEO. The top three Google search results get 75.1% of all clicks. Put time, effort, and money into an SEO strategy so you can be one of them.  
  2. Get social. Stay active on social media to increase engagement and followers and promote content on your website.
  3. Build backlinks. Partner with other publications to share your insight and content on their page — and get a link back to your site in return.
  4. Include internal links. Keep attention once you’ve got it by using internal links to drive visitors to other important, informative pages on your site.
  5. Update your website. Make sure that you’re constantly adding to your site with new posts and pages. This will ensure your site continues to grab and hold the attention of visitors and bring them back for more. 
  6. Run contests and promotions. Run a giveaway that requires people to visit your website in order to submit an entry.
  7. Write guest posts. Publish original content on sites like Medium to reach a bigger audience and get them interested in what you’re doing.

Mark Schenker from The Glorious Company, a copywriting and content marketing agency, uses a guest-posting campaign to get valuable backlinks back to his site. Mark uses anchor text that corresponds to keywords his agency wants to rank for, such as “copywriting agency” or “content marketing agency.” 

Using keywords effectively will help the content you place on these sites rank higher in search results, which increases the likelihood that searchers will click on the content, read it, and click the links leading back to your site. 

  1. Pay for ads. Set aside some of your budget for PPC ads and other paid search opportunities.
  2. Include calls to action in your emails. Aside from just sharing information, use your emails as a place to encourage (and maybe even incentivize) visits to your site. Even though your emails are being sent to people who have already opted in to receive them, people share emails with their colleagues and friends who may not already be subscribed. 
  3. Connect with influencers. Invest in an influencer marketing strategy by having micro or nano influencers share your products, services, and content, sharing your brand with their fans.
  4. Get reviews. Ask existing customers to leave reviews for your company through sites like Google and Yelp.

But don’t stop there. Do what Marco Maric from Clockify, a time-tracking software, does and tie this approach in with your SEO strategy. They read every customer review and tailor their content strategy to target the specific problems and use cases their customers are talking about.

By focusing on customer issues and needs, they’re able to ensure the content they create capitalizes on the right keywords and is informative and helpful to their audience. 

  1. Host a webinar. Put together a webinar and host both the signup and the link on your site. Consider partnering up with another brand on the endeavor to tap into their audience too. However, make sure it’s a brand that has a similar audience base as yours, so the new leads you acquire are qualified and interested in what you have to offer. 
  2. Write an ebook. Publish an original ebook on your site and gate it, so people have to provide their contact information in order to download it. Make sure you include a box to opt-in to your emails or provide a disclaimer that explains they’ll automatically be opted in. Promote it on your social channels, so it gets more exposure. 
  3. Join Facebook Groups. Aside from just general Facebook posts, join one or more groups to connect with a new audience of potential site visitors.
  4. Lend expertise. Make yourself available as an expert commentator for blog posts and articles and get your name — and a link to your site — in more press. 
  5. Apply for awards. If you’re hitting it out of the park with content or products, apply for awards that increase brand recognition and authority.
  6. Publish press releases. Spread the news on company updates through syndicated sites like PRWeb and PR Newswire.
  7. Post to LinkedIn. Use LinkedIn as a platform to share original content, as well as company news and other relevant info.
  8. Test your website. Double-check you’re not putting forward any unintentional barriers to better web traffic, such as slow loading times or broken links.
  9. Try out video marketing. Produce original videos and then share them (along with site links) on YouTube and other social media channels.
  10. Get in on trending topics. Use a site like Buzzsumo to find out what your competitors are talking about and then create content that adds your own voice to the conversation.
  11. Become part of the community. Join communities like Reddit, Quora, and public Slack groups and find and engage with more of your target audience.
  12. Update old content. Breathe new life — and new search potential — into existing posts by updating old content with new keywords and links, as well as more up-to-date information. This will help that contents’ ranking so it can generate more site traffic. 
  13. Get rid of duplicate content. Search engines don’t like when you have multiple posts on the same topic, so merge them into one master post instead.
  14. Find guest contributors. Make it easy for others to write for your site or contribute to your content. They’ll almost certainly share that link with their own audience which will increase exposure and cast a wider net for your efforts. Try creating a co-branded opportunities page where people can contribute thoughts and input or pitch content for your site. 
  15. Start a podcast. Podcasts are becoming increasingly effective tools for outreach. Start your own, or apply to become a guest on an existing broadcast.
  16. Create surveys and polls. Send surveys to your audience or create polls on various topics to help you comprise data that others will find useful. Proprietary data is great because people can’t get it just anywhere else, and they’ll not only share it but link to where it came from in their content. 
  17. Make technical website improvements. Search engines, as well as visitors, prefer websites that work better and faster and that are more accessible for all users. Make sure your site is optimized and loads quickly, as that will create a pleasant user experience which can encourage repeat traffic. 
  18. Don’t neglect voice search. More and more visitors are conducting searches through voice assistants like Alexa, so ensure your keyword and content strategy is optimized for voice search.
  19. Grab that featured snippet spot. The featured snippet on Google — a.k.a. position zero — is a great place to be. Answer questions and focus on your keyword strategy in order to get there.
  20. Optimize your emails. Web traffic is crucial for email marketing and vice versa. Segmenting your audience and sending out a regular newsletter are two of many ways you can be sure to attract people to your content and links.
  21. Create automated email workflows. Connect with your audience when you’re most likely to grab their attention, such as when they first subscribe to your emails or when they abandon their cart.  
  22. Run a referral program. Incentivize referrals so that your current happy customers bring others to your page.
  23. Post a Twitter thread. Turn content into a shareable Twitter thread, with links to your site throughout.
  24. Attend conferences. Network in-person to put a human face to your brand and forge connections that encourage web visits.

Pick and choose a few things to try off this list, then tweak as you go based on what’s working. Then as your traffic grows, you can take targeted steps to turn that traffic into email growth — a win-win on all fronts! 

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Marketing Team Reorgs: Why So Many and How To Survive

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Marketing Team Reorgs: Why So Many and How To Survive

How long has it been since your marketing team got restructured? 

Wearing our magic mind-reading hat, we’d guess it was within the last two years. 

Impressed by the guess? Don’t be.  

Research from Marketing Week’s 2024 Career and Salary Survey finds that almost half of marketing teams restructured in the last 12 months. (And the other half probably did it the previous year.) 

Why do marketing teams restructure so often? Is this a new thing? Is it just something that comes with marketing? What does it all mean for now and the future? 

CMI chief strategy advisor Robert Rose offers his take in this video and the summary below. 

Marketing means frequent change 

Marketing Week’s 2024 Career and Salary Survey finds 46.5% of marketing teams restructured in the last year — a 5-percentage point increase over 2023 when 41.4% of teams changed their structure. 

But that’s markedly less than the 56.5% of marketing teams that restructured in 2022, which most likely reflected the impact of remote work, the fallout of the pandemic, and other digital marketing trends. 

Maybe the real story isn’t, “Holy smokes, 46% of businesses restructured their marketing last year.” The real story may be, “Holy smokes, only 46% of businesses restructured their marketing.” 

Put simply, marketing teams are now in the business of changing frequently. 

It raises two questions.  

First, why does marketing experience this change? You don’t see this happening in other parts of the business. Accounting teams rarely get restructured (usually only if something dramatic happens in the organization). The same goes for legal or operations. Does marketing change too frequently? Or do other functions in business not change enough? 

Second, you may ask, “Wait a minute, we haven’t reorganized our marketing teams in some time. Are we behind? Are we missing out? What are they organizing into? Or you may fall at the other end of the spectrum and ask, “Are we changing too fast? Do companies that don’t change so often do better? 

OK, that’s more than one question, but the second question boils down to this: Should you restructure your marketing organization? 

Reorganizing marketing 

Centralization emerged as the theme coming out of the pandemic. Gartner reports (registration required) a distinct move to a fully centralized model for marketing over the last few years: “(R)esponsibilities across the marketing organization have shifted. Marketing’s sole responsibilities for marketing operations, marketing strategy, and marketing-led innovation have increased.”  

According to a Gartner study, marketing assuming sole responsibility for marketing operations, marketing innovation, brand management, and digital rose by double-digit percentage points in 2022 compared to the previous year.  

What does all that mean for today in plainer language? 

Because teams are siloed, it’s increasingly tougher to create a collaborative environment. And marketing and content creation processes are complex (there are lots of people doing more small parts to creative, content, channel management, and measurement). So it’s a lot harder these days to get stuff done if you’re not working as one big, joined-up team. 

Honestly, it comes down to this question: How do you better communicate and coordinate your content? That’s innovation in modern marketing — an idea and content factory operating in a coordinated, consistent, and collaborative way. 

Let me give you an example. All 25 companies we worked with last year experienced restructuring fatigue. They were not eager creative, operations, analytics, media, and digital tech teams champing at the bit for more new roles, responsibilities, and operational changes. They were still trying to settle into the last restructuring.  

What worked was fine-tuning a mostly centralized model into a fully centralized operational model. It wasn’t a full restructuring, just a nudge to keep going. 

In most of those situations, the Gartner data rang true. Marketing has shifted to get a tighter and closer set of disparate teams working together to collaborate, produce, and measure more efficiently and effectively.  

As Gartner said in true Gartner-speak fashion: “Marginal losses of sole responsibility (in favor of shared and collaborative) were also reported across capabilities essential for digitally oriented growth, including digital media, digital commerce, and CX.” 

Companies gave up the idea of marketing owning one part of the customer experience, content type, or channel. Instead, they moved into more collaborative sharing of the customer experience, content type, or channel.  

Rethinking the marketing reorg 

This evolution can be productive. 

Almost 10 years ago, Carla Johnson and I wrote about this in our book Experiences: The 7th Era of Marketing. We talked about the idea of building to change: 

“Tomorrow’s marketing and communications teams succeed by learning to adapt — and by deploying systems of engagement that facilitate adaptation. By constantly building to change, the marketing department builds to succeed.” 

We surmised the marketing team of the future wouldn’t be asking what it was changing into but why it was changing. Marketing today is at the tipping point of that. 

The fact that half of all marketing teams restructure and change every two years might not be a reaction to shifting markets. It may just be how you should think of marketingas something fluid that you build and change into whatever it needs to be tomorrow, not something you must tear down and restructure every few years.  

The strength in that view comes not in knowing you need to change or what you will change into. The strength comes from the ability and capacity to do whatever marketing should. 

HANDPICKED RELATED CONTENT:  

Want more content marketing tips, insights, and examples? Subscribe to workday or weekly emails from CMI.

Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute 

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Boost Your Traffic in Google Discover

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Boost Your Traffic in Google Discover

2. Understand topical authority: Keywords vs. entities

Google has been talking about topical authority for a long time, and in Discover, it is completely relevant. Traditional SEO includes the use of keywords to position your web pages for a specific search, but the content strategy in Discover should be based on entities, i.e., concepts, characters, places, topics… everything that a Knowledge Panel can have. It is necessary to know in which topics Google considers we have more authority and relevance in order to talk about them.

3. Avoid clickbait in titles

“Use page titles that capture the essence of the content, but in a non-clickbait fashion.” This is the opening sentence that describes how headlines should be in Google’s documentation. I always say that it is not about using clickbait but a bit of creativity from the journalist. Generating a good H1 is also part of the job of content creation.

Google also adds:

“Avoid tactics to artificially inflate engagement by using misleading or exaggerated details in preview content (title, snippets, or images) to increase appeal, or by withholding crucial information required to understand what the content is about.”

“Avoid tactics that manipulate appeal by catering to morbid curiosity, titillation, or outrage.

Provide content that’s timely for current interests, tells a story well, or provides unique insights.”

Do you think this information fits with what you see every day on Google Discover? I would reckon there were many sites that did not comply with this and received a lot of traffic from Discover.

With the last core updates in 2023, Google was extremely hard on news sites and some niches with content focused on Discover, directly affecting E-E-A-T. The impact was so severe that many publishers shared drastic drops in Search Console with expert Lily Ray, who wrote an article with data from more than 150 publishers.

4. Images are important

They say that a picture is worth a thousand words. If you look at your Discover feed, you’ll see most of the images catch your attention. They are detailed shots of delicious food, close-ups of a person’s face showing emotions, or even images where the character in question does not appear, such as “the new manicure that will be a trend in 2024,” persuading you to click.

Google’s documentation recommends adding “high-quality images in your content, especially large images that are more likely to generate visits from Discover” and notes important technical requirements such as images needing to be “at least 1200 px wide and enabled by the max-image-preview:large setting.” You may also have found that media outlets create their own collages in order to have images that stand out from competitors.

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Everything You Need to Know About Google Search Essentials (formerly Google Webmaster Guidelines)

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Everything You Need to Know About Google Search Essentials (formerly Google Webmaster Guidelines)

One of the most important parts of having a website is making sure your audience can find your site (and find what they’re looking for).

The good news is that Google Search Essentials, formerly called Google Webmaster Guidelines, simplifies the process of optimizing your site for search performance.

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