A lot of newbie marketers have become anxious about attracting visitors to their websites out of a fear that Google might slap them for something they aren’t aware of.
Sure, we know all about Google Panda and Penguin, but what if Google rolls out another update one of these days? How would it smack websites that it decides are offensive?
Take heart. There are time-tested ways to attract visitors that we can feel reasonably certain are within Google’s regulations and will probably stay that way.
Let’s take a look at some of the ways you can drive web traffic without resorting to spam or compromising web ethics. Consider giving one or more of the following tips a try.
Place quality content at the top of your priority list
Creating high-quality, useful, and relevant content is a Google-proof tactic. No matter how many times Google changes its rules, as long as you stick with high-quality content that has been written for humans and not machines, you’ll be fine.
Great content will always market itself, so there will be less need for you to devise various tricks to push it before the right audience. They will find their way to you.
Make your site and content social-friendly
With the explosion of social media, there are more ways to drive traffic now without having to rely solely on SEO. And it’s a lot easier to share content.
Make it easier for your audience to share your content across their network of friends by adding social media buttons to each of sample of your content. Buttons such as Facebook Likes, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Twitter, and Google+ make it a simple matter for fans to share your content.
Answer questions wherever you see them
Nail any questions you can find that relate to your industry. When you see people looking for solutions to their problems on social networking sites and Q&A sites, seize the opportunity to position yourself as an expert.
Give them the answers they need, and then point people to more of your content that supports your claim to expertise.
Publish and distribute press release articles
When you’ve reached a milestone, when your business has something new to market, or when you are going to host an event, take advantage of press release distribution.
Use it sparingly, though. Don’t toss out press releases just for the sake of pointing people to your business. You should always have a good reason for asking people to read what you have to say.
Play SEO by the rules
Pay attention to SEO updates. The biggest ones were Google Panda and Penguin, which have changed the face of the SEO world. Be careful not to over-optimize your site, and pay attention to current SEO best practices and rules.
Strive to be natural in all ways, such as whenever you create new content and backlinks. If you play by Google’s rules, you’ll see a dramatic increase in your ranking and traffic.
Don’t take blogging for granted
The search engines love blogs because they tend to be constantly updated with fresh and relevant content. It’s in your interest to post useful content on a consistent basis.
By regularly providing fresh content, you will build a stronger relationship with your audience, as well as with the search engines.
Take advantage of slide presentations and infographics
People love visuals and graphic content. It’s a smart tactic to distribute and publish content that includes slides and infographics. That’s because they are extremely engaging and very easy to share. Publishing slides on SlideShare and Scribd will help you to land new visitors to your site.
Run a newsletter campaign
Email newsletters work, especially those that promote useful and enlightening content. Don’t listen to the naysayers who declare that email is dead. Email is alive and well. I use it every day. You use it every day.
Run a podcast series
Podcasts are a great way to inject personality into your web marketing campaign. Some sites swear that podcasts provide webmasters with highly targeted web visitors through this ear-catching medium.
Set up a YouTube channel for your site
YouTube is the world’s second largest search engine, and it enjoys an average of four billion views per day. Grab a handful of those four billion hits for your site.
You don’t have to create high-end videos to get results. At its simplest, you can create a video version of your most recent blog posts. Check out Andy Jenkins, who runs a great YouTube channel that mostly repeats the messages on his blog.
Take advantage of guest posting
Guest blogging or guest posting is growing in popularity. When you guest post, try to choose blogs that are relevant to your industry and are authoritative. Having your content featured in top industry blogs is great for both building traffic and increasing your own site’s authority.
Keep an eye out for new social networking sites
Pinterest caught everyone by surprise. Now it’s one of the fastest-growing social networks, and it’s driving massive traffic to other sites. Set a Google Alert for anything related to the social media industry so you have a chance of finding out which social network may be about to break out next.
Create solid content on your site
Strive to create several solid pieces of content that can serve as the centerpieces to your site. If it’s well-written and in-depth, it will serve as an authority builder. Pillar content is a sure-fire way to get the word out about your authority and make your site go viral.
Deliver on your promise
When people decide to follow you, it’s not just because they like something you did in the past; they also expect you to deliver in the future. When you deliver, strive to over-deliver. This will create word-of-mouth promotion for your business that will provide you with tons of lucrative prospects.
Leave insightful comments on other people’s sites
Choose several of your favorite sites for this tactic. But make sure the sites you post comments on are relevant to your own. When you leave a comment, be sure to write meaningful statements that add value to the content, not ones that merely parrot other people’s points or say “Thanks for the post” or “Good work!”
SEO is not the be-all and end-all of online marketing. If you take advantage of other ways to drive traffic to your site, you will be surprised by how much your traffic will increase, as well as your ranking. Remember that traffic is one of the factors the search engines take into account when ranking.
Want more information on content marketing? Head over to our comprehensive guide on content marketing here: The All-in-One Guide to Planning and Launching a Content Marketing Strategy.