This is a guest post by Adarsh. If you would like to write for ShoutMeLoud, check our Guest posting guidelines.
Most small business owners are plagued by the issue of not having enough readers for their website. Here are two simple strategies for generating traffic to your site.
Article Marketing to Generate Traffic
Article marketing, is one of the most popular ways of promoting a local business website and increasing its traffic. It is a simple one-two-three process which can immediately give your website instant links and traffic. That is, if you do it right.
The first step in article marketing for small business is to create an article. The article should be checked for grammar, relevance and spelling mistakes. It is then submitted to specialized websites called article directories. These websites compile articles about different niches and in return, they allow the submitter to place a link on the article to their website. It’s as easy as that. But there’s actually more to it. Some article directories have strict rules regarding the quality of the article submitted. Others just look for unique content. A good example of article directory with strict content quality guidelines is ezinearticles.
A lot of people do article marketing in order to try to increase their web traffic but not all of them are successful. This is largely because they do not know how to properly market their small business website through an article. One of the most common problems is that people get these articles written by someone who doesn’t really understand the concept of article marketing. Another common mistake is to not making use of everything an article directory site has to offer, like “in content” anchor texts (GoArticles is a good example of one article directory that allows links within content).
When submitting to an article directory, most of them would simply show you a form to fill up which includes the title, body and the resource box for the article. But, there are directories that allow you to place other Meta data such as tags, description and more. Take advantage of these things as it increase the visibility of your article on the directory, thus increasing potential traffic to the article and to your website. Some directories like ideamarketers even goes to the extent of explaining step by step what kind of content needs to be written and in which order.
Article Marketing is considered to be one of the best ways to increase website traffic to your local business site. However, there are certain things that you should take note of. Be creative in both writing and submitting the article. Do it right, and you will see that this is actually one of the most powerful online marketing tools there is.
Always pay your content writer the money they deserve. You must know that article directories are not meant to be an ad farm. Forget posting a press release in there. What you need to do is, create a compelling article without a conclusion. The reader must feel enticed to click through to the link you have in your author by line to know more about the subject.
Here are some tips for article marketing
- Write short articles with a compelling by line
- The byline should include a link to your site where the reader can find similar information but at a greater depth
- Make an offer in the author resource box that your readers cannot resist
- Never provide too much or too little information. Try to strike a balance between the two
- Write a compelling yet related title. This will determine the number of people who read your article
- Now that you have already put up a website, you should start focusing on how you could increase the search engine traffic for your web site. If you are strapped for time, you could always hire SEO consultants aimed at small and large scale business owners. Below are some of the things that you can do to generate traffic and more profits eventually.
- Know the right keywords that potential visitors use on search engines. You can use these keywords on the website title, description, and within your articles as well. Remember, no keyword stuffing though
- Work on your link popularity. Create articles that directories would accept. Then use the resource box to link the keyword to your website
- Promote your article on the article directory. Build links to it. The more links it has, the more link juice it will provide to your site
10. Write for the users and not for search engines. If I wrote for search engines, I would have stuffed the title with keywords. Yet, if you look at most of my articles on my blog, they don’t include even the primary keywords sometimes
Traffic Generation with Social Media Strategies
One aspect of internet marketing that marketing personnel will have to get their head around is the tendency for there to be something akin to mob mentality when it comes to adopting a particular new approach or fad. So many internet marketers end up jumping onto the proverbial bandwagon for the “latest and greatest” marketing strategy so they do not lose out to their competitors who are looking for any sort of advantage over their rivals.
Social media is the latest industry catchphrase that has had website owners across the internet all riled up, but it should be noted that social media strategies for affiliates is not a marketing campaign strategy that is optimal for every single type of business and or website owner. The last thing you want to do is to throw away money at a particular issue just to keep up with the times only to later discover that you have wasted valuable resources chasing a will-o-wisp.
First off, you need to actually consider your target audience, the respective demographics that they fall under and whether or not social media websites such as Facebook, Bebo and Myspace are indeed home to them. I am not simply referring to an already existing client group but rather, a potential one as well. Could your business actually appeal to another demographic, or are you trying to reach out to a niche group?
If you operate a business that caters to arthritis medication and geriatric healthcare, or a funeral services then it is highly unlikely that use of social media will actually provide you with a solid return for your investment and you may find that other forms of advertising for your local business are far more appropriate and cost effective. If, however, you happen to offer teen apparel and clothing then social networking sites (the exclusive domain of bored teenagers everywhere) may indeed be a worthwhile avenue to exploit and explore.
The next issue to consider is just how exactly will you actually reach out and communicate with the customers (whether actual or potential). Will you adopt a passive approach, merely relying on static adverts posted on the social media sites in the faint hope that customers will have their interest piqued to a sufficient degree for them to learn more about your company? Will you host competitions and affiliate programs on the media site, such as games to raise awareness about your business? Again, the methods you adapt to reach out to your customers should depend on their demographics.
If we can refer back to the earlier example used within the article, i.e. concerning teenagers and young adults, games and competitions with appropriate prizes maybe an excellent way to quickly and readily raise your company profile. After all, as the teenagers challenge their friends and family they will be further spreading the good word about your company with little input from yourself. The key to success for any social media campaign is to choose your options carefully.
Some tips to generate traffic through social media
- Don’t join Facebook or twitter just because your competitor is in there. If you don’t have the time to participate in community discussions, it’s better you don’t get started at all
- Social media traffic is perhaps the most difficult to convert into buying customers. So, focus on building a brand instead of trying to make a sale
- Don’t blindly believe social media gurus since most of them don’t know a thing about what “social” means in social media
- Twitter is an excellent tool for certain kind of audience such as internet marketing, blogging etc. If your niche is personality development or healthcare or something like that, twitter might not be that effective
- No one cares what you had for lunch, unless you are a Hollywood celebrity. So keep the message focused and consistent with your business
- Be personal. Don’t appear too formal. Social media is all about informal communication and relationship building
There are numerous ways to generate traffic for your small business. It needn’t be just the two strategies mentioned in this post.
The best strategy to grow a business on the internet is to find the right kind of traffic. Once you figure out which traffic works best for you, continue focusing on that traffic. It doesn’t hurt to try out other strategies, but most of the time, stick with what works for you.
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