Every marketing director knows the key to directing traffic to websites is search engine optimization (SEO). Certain factors have changed since 2014—there are now other elements that increase the number of visitors. Google and Facebook have changed their algorithms; so much of what you knew about SEO and the golden ticket to web traffic is no longer true. The following are several things to note when you are looking to maximize website traffic this year.
Keep a running blog on your website.
An SEO myth for 2015 is that having a bunch of links works better than content to drive traffic. This is not true anymore! Engaging posts encourage shares, which in turn brings more traffic. Link building is something you should do, but make sure that you are building quality links that complement your website content.
Keep your blog short and sweet with a call to action at the end directing readers to do what you want them to do. This could include calling your business to make an appointment, emailing you with questions, or signing up for a monthly e-newsletter.
Use keywords in your blog and throughout the website.
Use keywords appropriately throughout your blog. To find the best keywords to use, set up Google Analytics and link it with Webmaster Tools. You can find the most searched keyword phrases under “search queries” in Webmaster Tools. This will tell you what search terms take you to your website. If you want a specific phrase to start pulling up your website, make sure to include it in each blog post; for example, “advertising firm in Towson” (notice we added a location element in this phrase). Local search terms boost your chances of being found online in your area. The more times you use a keyword phrase, the higher your chances are of showing up on the first page of Google Search. Don’t go overboard though, because Google analyzes the purpose and relevance of your keywords and will lower your search ranking if you can pack as many as you can into a post.
Create press releases.
Set up a web page for press releases—this allows you to post your successes and direct friends to take a look. Apply for awards. If you win any sort of competition, such as a MarCom award, you can turn it into a press release. In turn, you can email this press release out and also post a link to the article on your social media sites, like Linkedin and Facebook for business. Google Authorship is gone, so you don’t have to worry about tackling that linking task. You can track where visitors are coming from within Google Analytics to see if your posting tactics are working.
Create and maintain an email list.
Having an email list allows you to send mass emails out directing clients, friends, and potential new business to your website. It is important that you keep this up-to-date so you can use an easy email marketing site such as MailChimp or Constant Contact. Send e-newsletters regularly, but don’t bombard your readers with too many in a short period of time because they will most likely unsubscribe from the list. Include your new blog or recent award blurbs in the e-newsletter, with links to your website to learn more.
Incorporate responsive design in your website.
Websites with responsive design automatically adjust and optimize their presentation to whatever device screen you are using—desktop computer, tablet, or smartphone. This will increase the flow of mobile traffic. Most people will leave your site immediately if it is hard to read on their mobile devices. In 2015, an even higher number of visitors will be going to your site via a smartphone, guaranteed, so the sooner you can make responsive design a part of your website, the better.
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