6 Tactics for Increasing Site Traffic and Improving Content
Whether you’re an experienced marketer or just getting started, chances are that you’ve probably heard the phrase “Content is King” more than a few times. And for good reason, engaging content plays a vital role in driving site traffic, creating buzz online and improving search engine rankings.
However, I would add that people aren’t just looking for content, they’re looking for value.
This became more evident to me recently. As a soon-to-be father, I was tasked by my wife to research car seats brands and safety for our son. I can’t tell you how many web sites over the past couple of weeks I’ve found that were just completely useless and were written like a sales page or ad that went on and on about the product.
Just like watching your favorite TV show that abruptly goes to an unwanted commercial break, I would quickly hit the back button and exit these pages.
On the other hand, I visited a relatively few that had personal stories from consumers including research and insights on how to make a good buying decision. Guess which ones I forwarded on to my preggo wife and key purchase decision maker? You guessed it.
This got me thinking, on a marketing level. “Is our content inviting to look at, memorable or fun to read?” If not, then we are missing out on a key opportunity to provide real value to our audience. And chances are they found what they wanted elsewhere.
A few weeks ago my boss, Todd Lebo, and I were invited to speak at the Florida Magazine Association Conference and Expo in Orlando. Even though the audience was primarily publishers, they asked us to speak on SEO marketing and how to leverage content for maximum results.
It was evident early on in the presentation that those in attendance weren’t experienced marketers, but they did understand how search marketing could help them bridge the gap between content they already had and an audience eager for value.
Highlighted below are just 6 of the many tactics we discussed for increasing site traffic and improving the value in your content:
1. Create strong content in your visitors’ language
The number one goal is NOT to get found by search engines. The main goal should be to provide high-quality content for your target audience. It’s important to meet visitor’s expectations with clarity and in a writing voice that they are familiar with.
2. Analyze referring phrases by number of words
Review your Web site analytics for search words and phrases you may not have even known your audience was looking for. Some of these long-tail keywords may give you some insights into possible new content development topics. Also review queries to try to infer your consumers’ needs and:
- How your site meets these needs
- Which areas could be improved
- Which areas you’re missing entirely
3. Evaluate the traffic potential of topics
Now that you have found some potential new topics from your analytics, ask yourself this question, “Is the work worth the effort?” If so, identify keywords for which your site is well-optimized. Use free and paid tools to estimate search volume and understand the ratio between actual traffic and search traffic. Finally, use that ratio to estimate potential.
4. Produce content that targets topics (not keywords)
Build your Web pages with your target audience in mind, Web pages should never be built with keywords as the driving force. A better long-term strategy is to add general content on a specific topic. Explore other possible content resources such as blogs, clients and vendors. Remember some of the most informative pages come from user-generated content.
5. Gauge visitor satisfaction
Conducting surveys from your visitors gives you instant feedback to help you determine if your content is meeting their needs. The results of your surveys can also be used for content creation or published and distributed in future reports. Another way to gauge satisfaction is to monitor the analytics of your content pages for high bounce rates.
6. Keep Optimizing
I love this quote from Peter Drucker, “Adequacy is the enemy of excellence.” The difference between a good page and much better page is testing. Only through extensive testing on your Web site pages can you optimize your content. It’s critical that you seek new opportunities to improve your copy on a regular basis.
If you’re interested in learning about the top SEO tactics, including more on content creation, external link building, and keyword and key phrase research, you can download the FREE 2012 Search Marketing Benchmark Report excerpt.