Build Your Website Traffic from Scratch: Laying the Foundation

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Build Your Website Traffic from Scratch: Laying the Foundation
Today, we’re beginning a new blog series on how to build your website traffic from scratch!

This series will run for 10 weeks with one in-depth article featured each week. The articles will map out effective ways you can bring more traffic to your blog or business website.

I get several emails like this…

Email Screenshot
Many of you have blogs/websites and put in a lot of work to get visibility, but hardly see any traffic coming in. You have high expectations when you publish a new post, but when no one reads it, you lose interest altogether.

This can be quite discouraging, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

With the right strategies, hard work and patience, you will start getting a good stream of visitors to your site. In fact, one of our client websites, Paradise Holidays, recently crossed 1 million visitors a year!

I want to help you build traffic to your website, just as I do for my clients.

I’m assuming that you have a blog/website with little or no incoming traffic. Let’s start from there.

But before we begin, there are a few things you need to keep in mind.

  1. Right Strategy – You should have a business strategy in place that determines what you plan to achieve through your site.
  2. Dedicated Effort – You need to allot dedicated time to work on building your site traffic. You might also need a team or some kind of support system to make this work.
  3. Consistency – You can take it from me, traffic growth is a slow process, but consistency pays. You might not see drastic results within a month, but when you keep working at it, the traffic will start flowing in.

I’m so excited to begin this journey with you! I hope this series will help you gain new insight on how to get more people to visit your site.

Let’s get started, shall we?!

Laying a Strong Foundation

It’s common knowledge that for a structure to be stable, its foundation needs to be strong and secure. So, even as we begin to drive traffic to our websites, we need to make sure the basics are in place.

The foundation, in this case, refers to two distinct factors that need to be identified:

  1. Who your target audience is and where they are likely to hang out.
  2. What are the potential traffic sources for your business website.

Let’s look at each of these in detail.

Phase 1: Who is Your Target Audience?

Identifying your target audience is a crucial step in building your site traffic. It helps you customize your website and the content you publish based on what your audience might require.

The danger of not targeting your website copy or blog content is that people will not be able to connect with you. This in turn makes them turn away from your site and not return to it regularly.

When people feel your content is written specifically for them, they tend to identify with the solutions you provide. They begin to trust you as their go-to person; your site becomes a trustworthy resource to meet their requirements.

This happens only when the content you publish/share is created with a particular person or target group in mind.

An Example:

When I started Clothed In Scarlet, it was with a vision to help women build their own businesses and support their families financially. Our ideal audience consisted of women who wanted to work from home.

We identified what challenges they might face, and wrote a host of articles dedicated to solving their problems. The blog series we wrote specifically for work at home moms generated a lot of interest because it was targeted towards the right audience group.

Create an Ideal Customer Persona

Identify who your audience is, what their lifestyle is, and a list of the problems they face. It’s recommended that you map out specific characteristics of one person who represents your target group.

Customer Persona
You can create your ideal customer based on the following demographic factors:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Marital Status
  • Number of Kids
  • Location
  • Occupation
  • Hobbies
  • Income Level
  • Education

You can also take into consideration what their goals are and the challenges they may currently facing. Once you’ve identified their challenges, you can map out how your site can strategically solve some of these problems.

Find Out Where Your Audience Hangs Out

Once you’ve identified who your target audience is and what their challenges are, you will have to identify where they might be present. This gives you a clue on different ways they might come across your site.

Your audience may find your site through:

  • Social media
  • Videos
  • Images
  • Podcasts
  • Search engines
  • Related websites

Once you have a rough idea of where your audience may find you online, you can mark out those avenues and concentrate on getting your presence known there.

Phase 2: What are the Potential Traffic Sources?

Identifying who your ideal customer is and where they are present online is the first phase of planning your traffic building strategy. The second phase is identifying potential traffic sources based on the data you already have.

Example 1:

The travel website I manage needed tons of inbound traffic in order to get more online bookings. We initially tried our hands at SEO, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, and studied the incoming traffic to see which was most efficient.

We eventually found that the major chunk of visitors came from Google. That makes sense because when planning a trip, we usually tend to perform an online search to get more information about our destination.

So, while we do continue to be active on social media and other channels, the major part of our traffic building strategy includes search engine optimization (SEO). This has been very effective and the site has continued to get a lot of traffic through search engines.

Example 2:

For Clothed In Scarlet, I started off with just Facebook and Twitter initially. After a couple of months, we started optimizing our content for search engines and saw a good stream of traffic.

It was only quite some time later that I noticed traffic from Pinterest was picking up, even though we weren’t active on Pinterest. We started concentrating on Pinterest then.

We studied different Pinterest marketing strategies, created specific content for Pinterest and consistently pinned good images there. Eventually Pinterest became our #1 traffic source, beating all search engines.

We still continue with SEO and pin semi-regularly Pinterest, which has kept our inbound traffic going, even when I’ve taken a break from blogging.

So basically, depending on the type of industry your site is associated and the content you share, you may have a list of potential traffic sources.

Study your Google Analytics and insights from various social media platforms to identify your top traffic generators. Once you’ve narrowed that down, you need to create an overall strategy of how you will incorporate intentional traffic building on these channels.

Each medium would also require individual strategies, as the type of content, the timelines and the way it is shared will vary for each channel.

We will be looking at how you can set up these channels and plan strategies for each of them in the coming weeks. So, stay tuned!

In the meantime, we’ve created a printable questionnaire that you can work through as you lay the foundation for your traffic building strategy.

Click here to download the questionnaire

About the Author:

School teacher turned internet marketing consultant, Sunu Philip is a Certified SEO Specialist. She founded “Clothed in Scarlet” to help women discover their unique God-given strengths and turn their talents into profits online. She offers subscribers a Free Online Business Startup Kit to help them start their online business from scratch.

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