If you’re like me, you’re probably fed up with how Google is always calling the shots. Not long ago, getting online traffic was as easy as “build it, and they will come.” Build a website, and Google would send traffic.
But after recent Google updates starting with Panda, Google is tightening the noose; the fight for online supremacy has become more competitive. With Panda, Google’s looking closer at onsite quality. And Google Penguin isn’t charming anyone with cuteness. Penguin flags websites for having unnatural link profiles, sending their rankings into the abyss.
With your site shoved deep into Google’s index, your online business might as well not exist. After all, the majority of sales-generating traffic comes from Google.
Or does it?
It’s time to Google-proof your business.
There’s a way to tame both the Panda and the Penguin. In other words, you can Google-proof your online business so that it won’t matter what Google throws at you.
So, how exactly do you Google-proof your business? By constantly driving high quality traffic to your site.
Whoa! How’s that possible with your site nearly non-existent in Google?
Below, I’ve outlined seven ways for you to drive traffic to your site. And they don’t involve costly PPC campaigns that are often expensive for business owners.
These seven proven non-Google strategies will not only help you get traffic to your website, they’ll also result in higher rankings in Google.
With all the traffic that your site will gain from these non-Google strategies, you will gradually move your way up to Google’s search results. This ranking improvement is the manifestation of the inbound links and social signals you’ll achieve from executing these tactics.
Let’s get right to business. The following are 7 non-Google traffic-generating strategies that you should take advantage of right away.
Blogging is inherently SEO-friendly. It actually doesn’t matter which blogging platform you choose, whether it’s Blogger.com, Tumblr or WordPress. However, many online marketers (including myself) prefer WordPress because of its flexibility, abundance of community resources, and extremely extensible features.
WordPress has several plugins that greatly enhance your blogs’ SEO friendliness.
When creating a blog, try to use your business’ main keyword phrase in your domain. Use your top keywords in your blogs’ meta title and description, and use long tail keywords in each post title. Before writing any blog post, you should already have a keyword identified for that post.
Your blog can explore topics related to your niche, but in order to effectively monetize your blog, each post should focus on building your business email list.
2. Email marketing
There’s an old tune that a lot of marketing gurus are playing these days called “Email Marketing is Dead”. That idea couldn’t be further from the truth.
Email marketing is still one of the best traffic-generating and best converting strategies out there. One of the biggest benefits to running a regular email marketing campaign is that it reminds your audience about the value that you offer them.
Also, with email marketing, you build a stronger relationship by nurturing their trust with relevant and valuable content that you keep on providing them for free. If done properly, email marketing places you right in front of your audience each time they check their email as they start their day.
3. Submit content to social bookmarking sites
There’s an extremely effective traffic generating activity that seems to be forgotten by veteran online marketers, and that many newbie marketers are not taking full advantage of.
Social bookmarking is one awesome link building activity that offers your content an opportunity to garner traffic without Google’s help. I have been promoting my posts on StumbleUpon, and I have been loving the results I’m getting. One post on optimizing your Google+ profile had over 540 stumbles (visits from StumbleUpon users) in just under four hours.
Pretty neat stuff, huh?
Also, social bookmarking is good for organic search rankings, because most of the major social bookmarking sites allow “dofollow” links.
Two of the most widely used and most popular bookmarking sites that have very high authority are StumbleUpon and Reddit. For a list of other good dofollow social bookmarking sites, click here.
Tips on promoting content on social bookmarking sites:
- Strive to promote only original and high quality content.
- Each time you update your site with a new content, post link to your content on social bookmarking sites right away.
- Always be relevant. Be sure to bookmark content on the appropriate category. This allows you to target the right audience for your post.
- Observe SEO best practices. Social bookmarking sites allow you to create titles and descriptions for your for each content you bookmark. Be sure to include keywords in titles and description.
4. Affiliate traffic
Allow your affiliates to help you drive traffic to your site. Here’s how you do it:
- Before you set out to create a product that you want your affiliates to promote, announce a launch first. The announcement should be about 90 days before the launch.
- Create a blog where you will keep your affiliates updated
- During the pre-launch period, keep building your list of subscribers
- Give away free content and tools to your affiliates through your blog
This strategy treats your launch as an event. As such, it creates a lot of buzz, and the momentum it creates leading up to the launch will improve conversion rate and frequency.
5. Contests and sweepstakes
These are two different strategies but are similar in many ways. Running contests and sweepstakes effectively increases your social media engagement and attention and helps you build your list of subscribers.
With contests and sweepstakes, you get people lined up for something that they want. But don’t just give away anything; try to give away something that is related to the topic of your site. I’ve found Amazon (gift cards) to be a great way to fulfill giveaways.
Choose a good social networking site to run your contest on. Facebook seems to be the most popular choice these days for contests. However, be sure to follow Facebook’s guidelines on running social media contests.
6. Guest Blogging
One of the most highly-effective ways to generate targeted traffic is through guest blogging. Start by making a list of the top blogs in your niche. Technorati.com makes a great starting point. Visit each website and reach out to the webmaster or editor, and explain your expertise in the niche. Offer to write a guest blog post, and use primary data or new research in your writing to deliver excellent value. Be sure to include a link to your website in the byline at the end of your post.
Build a relationship with your contacts by connecting with them on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, and be sure to thank them when they publish your post. After your first post is published, offer to continue the relationship.
The benefits of guest blogging include:
- Highly targeted traffic to your website
- High-quality inbound links to your website
- Development of your brand
- Higher search engine rankings (resulting from the high-quality inbound links)
- Establishment as a niche authority
If you’re not yet doing active outreach for guest blogging, include it in your regular online marketing efforts.
7. YouTube marketing
You should love YouTube marketing, because Google loves video.
Another reason to fall in love with YouTube is the fact that it is the undisputed #1 video-sharing site, and is, by far, the most visited. Many marketers don’t know this, but YouTube is actually the second most used search engine in the world. On an average, YouTube gets about two billion views per day. Imagine getting just a fraction of those eyeballs on your marketing videos.
Video ranks quickly and strongly in the search engines, provided it’s properly optimized, which is actually pretty straightforward.
Optimize your YouTube video by including your main keyword phrases in the title, description and tags. And to rank it even higher, get people to comment on, like and share your videos, especially to Facebook and Twitter.
There you have it. Seven of the no-frills non-Google traffic getting strategies you can take advantage of now to Google-proof your site. Have any of these tactics worked especially well for you? Let me know in the comments!
Image Credit” Shutterstock SteveWoods