Everything about starting your own company is expensive, from unseen material costs to additional labor, you’ll find your “unforeseen” budget line quickly spent.
Yet surprisingly, one of the most important aspects of ensuring your company’s success can be done absolutely, totally free of cost. Driving up the traffic to your company’s website quickly builds interest in your product or service, promotes your brand, and converts site visitors to paying customers. Eventually, you may consider buying advertisement space or paying for social media promotion, but that can be postponed or avoided by some hard work for free traffic. Free promotion is often just as effective or even more effective than paid promotion in terms of attracting visitors to your site. To help you start, we’ve compiled a list of the top 20 ways to increase traffic to your new website, completely free of cost.
Concentrate on your social media presence
More than ever, consumers are turning to social media to research a product or company. Make sure you not only have accounts on all appropriate social media sites, but are active and informative in your posting. Each social media site offers a different opportunity, so make sure your posts are appropriate for each platform. While Twitter is best for short, snappy comments, longer articles are best to be shared by Facebook. Don’t forget to consider creative sites such as Pinterest when developing your social media strategy, as sharing creative uses for your product can drive up business. Through a variety of different social media sites, from professional sites such as LinkedIn to casual sites such as Instagram, you’ll be sure to reach any audience.
Actively participate in or moderate Facebook groups
Maintaining your company’s social media profile is simply not enough. On more interactive sites, such as Facebook, you’ll want to join groups pertaining to your industry or even geographical location. Consider moderating groups or at least actively participating in Facebook group conversations. If you become known as an expert in a certain field, any interested person will doubtlessly scroll through your profile looking for your website link.
Post on forums within your niche
Find any popular message boards or online forums within your market. Posting informative information, articles relating to your niche, or just participating in conversation will get you noticed. Make sure there’s a way to access your company’s website from your forum profile.
Answer questions on Quora
Quora and similar question-answer sites are a great way to find potential customers. Many people turn to peers on the internet before deciding on a purchase. Answering questions within your niche will get you noticed as an expert, and people will more naturally turn to your services when the time comes. Remember to not structure your posts in advertisement form, as this will more than likely deter any customers. Instead offer insightful, informative information and wait for the consumer to make his or her own choice based off the information you’ve offered.
Write a guest blog
Do you follow any industry players within your field? Know of a popular website pertaining to your industry, but not competing against you? Ask them if you can write an article as a guest blogger. Make sure the site is within your niche, for example if you own a restaurant, you can write a blog for a food critique page. Write an informative, non-advertorial article. If people like what you write about, they’ll find your link in the author’s bio.
Accept a guest blogger
Apart from writing guest blogs, you can accept a guest blogger’s article on your own site. Many bloggers already have an audience, and by allowing them to write on your site, you are inviting their followers to visit your webpage. You can even consider reaching out to someone you respect within your industry to request a guest blog.
Review your SEO checklist
Make sure your website is visible and ranks high on search engines. When people research a certain product within your industry, you want your website to be one of the first pages they visit. To make sure your website is ranking high in search engine compilations, create a good plan to improve your SEO, or Search Engine Optimization.
Not all strategies to increase traffic to your website are implemented online. You want to be visible and present in a physical sense as well. Attend conferences, live forums, and any networking events within your niche. Make sure to have plenty of business cards ready with your website URL.
Concentrate on your headlines
More often than not, consumers skim the headlines rather than fully read an article. Make sure your headline is creative, catchy, and informative to capture your audience. Even the most well written article will go unnoticed if the headline fails to grab your audience’s attention.
Research keywords and trending phrases
The best way for people to find your site is by recognizing keywords in your industry. Brainstorm with your team a list of the best keywords someone may use when searching for or discussing your product. You want these keywords and trending phrases to be dispersed throughout your website, posts, and most importantly, in your headlines.
Make sure your site is fast and cell phone ready
Long gone are the days when people surfed the web using only their desktop computers. Consider that the majority of visitors to your site will be using cellphones or tablets, and make sure your website is ready to accommodate them. Also make sure that once your visitors land on your page, it is fast and responsive. Know more about website speed optimization.
If you have the ability to create informative, aesthetically appealing infographics – do so! Infographics grab the attention of any web surfer and are a great way to deliver quality information without overwhelming a semi-interested visitor. Make sure all your graphics are also SEO optimized to guarantee increased traffic.
Sponsor competitions and giveaways
Everybody likes a gift, and even more so if they’ve won it! Consider sponsoring a competition or gift giveaway in your community, whether this be a geographical community in your city or through an online community, such as an active Facebook group. This will get people interested in your company and spread awareness about your product or services. The more interest people have, the more likely they are to find your website.
Create videos for Youtube and presentations for Slideshare
This tip is very similar to the first suggestion about social media. You want to be active in any platform which holds conversations relative to your industry. Again, the more you are recognized as an expert, the more people will visit your site.
Make a big deal of any new product or service launch
Social media offers a great opportunity to raise excitement and suspense, and you can use this to your advantage when announcing a new product or service. Make every new launch a celebration, and make sure any informative posts offer links to your website.
Many people think you have to gain a significant reputation within your niche before you’ll ever be asked for an interview. While this may be true in some cases, you’ll be surprised at how many reporters would be willing to interview you if requested. Participating in an interview gives you an opportunity to talk about your business, products, and policies in a seemingly less biased environment. The more active you are within your market, the more people will search for your website.
Newsletters and email marketing
Many companies do periodic newsletters and gain a strong following over time. Consider announcing any exciting news and achievements, introducing your staff, and showing off your products in a monthly newsletter. Remember to always include a link back to your website in everything you do.
Host webinars and live-streaming forums
Host live-streaming information sessions. Live internet videos and forums draw in a larger audience and give a chance for visitors to ask any questions they may not have had the initiative to ask otherwise. By streaming live, you can engage with your audience in a more natural way and put a friendly face behind your company.
Company-run blogs are more common than ever and offer yet another opportunity to draw in any interested visitors. By offering valuable information, you are again creating a reputation for your company as a reputable source of information. The more people trust a company, the more likely they are to make a purchase.
Create quizzes and fun activities
Another great way to entice visitors to your site is by offering fun, entertaining games. Try creating a quiz with an app such as Quizzr that would appeal to you audience. The quiz should relate to your industry without being an obvious advertising tool.