Justin Bridegan

6 Tactics for Increasing Site Traffic and Improving Content

September 2nd, 2011

increase site trafficWhether 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.

Justin Bridegan

About Justin Bridegan

Justin is the senior marketing manager for MECLABS and oversees the product marketing for all conferences, events, and publications. He has over eight years of experience in marketing to the software training industry, printing industry, and marketing professionals. As one of the contributing authors of MarketingSherpa’s 2011 B2B Marketing Benchmark Report, he regularly speaks at our Summits and webinars. He specializes in creating, planning, and implementing new marketing techniques across the industry.

Categories: Viral Marketing Tags: , ,

  1. September 2nd, 2011 at 10:01 | #1

    HI Justin, Came across this post today via recommendation on Google + and I’m glad I popped over.

    This is the second post I’ve read this week that talks about writing for people first. The way you state tactic #1 should have a lot of people saying Amen & Allelujah!. Coming from a freelance writing background, the whole SEO thing can be quite daunting. For the average business person, who is not necessarily a confident writer to begin with, it can be even worse.

    However, having the understanding that both your blog post and headline for example need to human optimized first will relieve quite a bit of stress. Of course SEO needs to be integrated, but I believe many people hesitate to even start blogging, or give up quickly, because they aren’t sure about writing with keywords. I’ve been writing professionally for over a decade and it stresses me out plenty.

    Thanks for this list. Amen & Allelujah :-).

  2. September 2nd, 2011 at 11:06 | #2

    “Is the work worth the effort?” I think this is a key point, often under-emphasized in SEM. By and large, people think that lots of effort = profit. Maybe 5 years ago that was truer, but if you want to “optimize” today, effort alone won’t suffice.

  3. Justin Bridegan
    Justin Bridegan
    September 2nd, 2011 at 12:51 | #3

    @Cheryl Pickett
    Thanks for the feedback Cheryl. You’re right the humanizing component is key, let the SEO work follow.

  4. September 4th, 2011 at 00:43 | #4

    Great article Justin. I laughed at your struggle to find a good product review on a baby seat, I tried last year to accomplish the same exact thing, no dice, just unlimited ads. Also, congrats on being a new dad! Best wishes to you and your wife.

  5. Justin Bridegan
    Justin Bridegan
    September 6th, 2011 at 08:38 | #5

    Thanks Karl!

  6. September 14th, 2011 at 08:23 | #6

    Great post! I like the holistic thinking here. start with the customer/audience, test, analyze, and improve.

  7. January 30th, 2012 at 10:03 | #7

    I have applied some of the tricks on my site.

  8. March 1st, 2013 at 14:14 | #8

    I’m extremely impressed along with your writing talents as neatly as with the format on your weblog. Is that this a paid subject or did you modify it yourself? Anyway keep up the nice quality writing, it’s rare to look a great blog like this one these days.

  9. March 4th, 2013 at 01:36 | #9

    Good article and very important i like it. thank you..

  10. March 8th, 2013 at 15:24 | #10

    Hi Justin!

    Thanks for this helpful information. I can relate to what you said when searching for product reviews. I seem to hit the back button more often than not!
    Your tip number 3 is crucial to driving traffic to a website. Without doing the proper keyword research, someone might do a lot of wonderful work for not much in return. It’s fun to be in the first spot on Google but if only 5 people a month are searching for that keyword, it’s not worth it.

    Have a great day! Look forward to more insights from you.

  11. March 18th, 2013 at 05:01 | #11

    thank you for the tips , it helps me to drag more traffic to my website

  12. April 13th, 2013 at 05:56 | #12

    It’s awesome designed for me to have a web page, which is beneficial for my knowledge. thanks admin

  13. June 15th, 2013 at 02:04 | #13

    I am highly pleased with all your writing capabilities and as well using the structure on your web site. Is it some sort of settled theme or maybe does one transform it on your own? Anyways keep up the wonderful good quality producing, it truly is unheard of to look an awesome weblog exactly like it presently.

  14. June 17th, 2013 at 08:06 | #14

    Thank you Natcher for your kind words, I always appreciate the feedback. Our topics are chosen based on questions from the audience and our editorial calendar. If you have a topic you would like to know more about feel free to ask. @natcher

  15. June 17th, 2013 at 08:14 | #15

    Thanks Lisa 🙂 You’re exactly right when it comes to evaluating potential traffic, doing your homework can save you a lot of time.@Lisa

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