I know why you’re here: You’ve set up your website. It’s sitting right there in front of you. Shining in all its glory. Ready for visitors to pour in… But sadly, not much is happening, huh? And you’re wondering: How to get free traffic for my website?
I know it, I’ve been there. Not just once! So trust me when I tell you: That’s normal! However, I obviously do understand that you want to change this, and that’s why you’re here! You came to the right place 🙂
In this article, we will discuss 5 well-working and proven techniques to get people to read your blog. And they are all FREE! (Even though there’s a slight twist to number 5, so stick around 🙂 )
Strategy #1: Organic Search Engine Traffic
I know what you’re thinking: Organic Traffic? Search Engine Optimization (SEO)? Captain Obvious was here! Yeah, for sure, but hear me out!!!
People, especially marketing agencies, tend to lead people into thinking that Search Engine Optimization is some kind of rocket science that you simply can’t do well without the in-depth knowledge of a professional, high paid advisor. Right? Is that what you are thinking as well?
Well, then here’s the good news: SEO isn’t rocket science. It’s not a science at all. Anybody can do it and be successful with it! No mojo required!
Relevant And Helpful Content Ranks
Yeah, it’s really as simple as that!
Google‘s mission, or for that matter any search engine’s mission, is to find the most relevant answer for any search query that a user types into their search bar. Google’s job is to answer people’s questions! Plain and simple!
If you manage to provide the best answer to a given question, then google will honor that by ranking your content (be it a video, a website, a podcast, an ebook, or whatever) higher than the content you compete against.
Therefore, I encourage you: Simply start with creating content that is relevant to the people you want to have as visitors. DO NOT overthink it!
Even though creating relevant content obviously involves some research in terms of finding out what these people are actually looking for on the internet (i.e. keyword research) and what drives them. Finding out what that is and how to create this type of content is the real deal and the relevant skill you want to learn! But again: It isn’t rocket science, either!
Ultimately it comes down to one simple truth: Create relevant content with the intent to actually HELP your audience and people will find your website, come as strangers and leave as customers!
But What About Google’s Black Magic?
Here’s the thing: Yes, there’s probably more to it. Obviously!
And there will be times where you just wonder why that badly written article on sunscreen for kids written by “killaninja2001” ranks better than your own well-researched masterpiece you’ve published on your parenting blog months ago.
For sure! Google does its magic behind closed doors! But please do yourself the favor of understanding and accepting that this is something you CANNOT influence. None of us understands all the ins and outs of google’s highly sophisticated algorithms. Not even the best-paid agencies out there do. And if someone claims he does, I tend to get very, very careful! And so should you!!!
But This Guy From This YouTube Ad Said…
… that he wants to tell you all his SEO secrets when you sign up for his expensive online course? Sure, go ahead. But I promise you: There really aren’t any secrets, golden bullets, or shortcuts.
Back in the days, there were several techniques that used to work to “trick” Google’s algorithms into thinking that your very content is highly relevant. You may have heard about terms like “building backlinks”, creating tons of content by “text-spinning”, setting up “hidden text” only visible to search engines, or even “spamming keywords” you want to rank for at a certain density throughout your content, and so on!?
But guess what: Google got better and better at detecting those grey hat techniques and it will punish you and your website if you use them.
So I encourage you to stay away from “secrets” and “shortcuts”. They’re usually not worth your time and money. And certainly not the integrity of your business and its “good relationship” with Google’s algorithms.
Back To The Basics: How To Get Free Traffic For My Website
By the way: When people think about SEO, most will automatically think about Google and forget about the rest. But there is serious competition and alternatives to Google, like Bing, Yahoo, or DuckDuckGo. All these search engines have different algorithms that rank content differently, sometimes even with different intentions. I’m just bringing that up to further drive home my point: There simply CANNOT be ONE SINGLE truth to being successful in terms of search engine rankings and therefore traffic generation for your online business.
So let’s forget about all this “black magic” crap. The truth is simple:
Content is king!
Write and create with the intent to help, and search engines will honor you by ranking your content high!
If you want to learn more about this general concept of “helping others first”, I would like to invite you to read my article about the inner mechanics of affiliate marketing (and content marketing) here.
Strategy #2: Social Media
Another great and FREE way that you can utilize to drive traffic to your website is social media.
If you already have some sort of followership on Twitter, Instagram, or Pinterest, then that’s great. If not, it is always possible to set up a new account and start from scratch.
Put it to good use by sending out tweets, stories, or posts and link to your content. However, make sure that it is relevant to your audience. If you run a Twitter account about parenting with 10.000 followers, do not start sending them tons of tweets about how to homebrew beer. Just because it is YOUR new passion and you recently started a new blog about it, doesn’t necessarily mean that 10.000 moms and dads are interested in it as well, right?
In any case: Don’t overdo it! Whether you have 10 followers or 10.000: If all you do is push forward and promote your own content, people will feel that you are just self-promoting. Instead, socialize! React to other people’s posts, pay it forward. Be helpful (there it is again) and people will reward it by visiting your website.
Finally, you can also reach out to your friends on Facebook and ask them how they like your new blog!
Get in touch with other bloggers and influencers in your niche. When you are just starting out, this may be a little tricky as you do not have that “traction” that may make you an attractive partner for an already established blogger.
However, blogging communities like Wealthy Affiliate, for example, allow you to get in touch with other bloggers very quickly.
Partnering up with other bloggers in your niche can have various benefits, such as:
Benefit #1: Partner Posts And Interviews
One thing you can do is write partner posts. You can write posts for your partner’s blog and link back to your own, existing content every now and then and then ask him or her to publish it. In return, you offer to publish a similar post that they have written.
If you don’t overdo it, that will lead to a nice link portfolio that
- (a) allows visitors from your partner’s blog to visit your website and vice versa (i.e. “direct traffic”) and
- (b) shows google that your content is worth receiving external links, which is always a strong signal that your content is relevant and should rank higher, and such attract more visitors (i.e. “search engine traffic”)
You can also work together on posts. For example, you could interview your partner on a particular topic that you want to write a blog post about and then publish this interview on your blog. In return, you can offer your expertise on a topic that your partner may be interested in. Expert interviews are always great content and a good, relevant read for your visitors!!!
Partnerships like this may even lead to other, bigger projects in the longterm, such as a joint podcast, for example!?
Benefit #2: Honest Feedback
Another great benefit that a partner can provide is honest feedback.
Especially when you start blogging you will rarely get in touch with your visitors. They may read your content, even buy articles that you recommend to them. But as long as you do not start an email list, it will be hard to get in touch with them and ask for feedback!
However, honest feedback is incredibly important when you are just starting out. And a partner, with an unbiased opinion, can be of huge help here, as long as you trust each other and provide some feedback in return.
That is, by the way, another great thing where a blogging community like Wealthy Affiliate comes in quite handy: You can reach out to many, many already successful online marketers. So, if you are a beginner, you don’t necessarily have to trade feedback with people who are just as inexperienced as you are. And if you are an already experienced online marketer, you can contribute greatly to a community of like-minded individuals…
Benefit #3: “Free” Content Creation
Another thing a partner can provide, if you are just starting out, are comments on your blog post. Why discuss questions about a topic you have blogged about in your private WhatsApp chat? Make it public, discuss in the comment section right under your newly published article. Make your partner ask questions about the topic you’ve just blogged about!
That way, your readers can see right away that you are willing to get in touch, that you are open to questions, and that you are an expert in your niche.
A 1000 word article, followed by 2 or 3 good questions from your partners that you then respond to can easily turn into a 1500-2000 word page. This makes it an excellent read for your visitors, but it will also make it very interesting for Google and other search engines to understand your content better and subsequently rank it higher (which, again, leads to traffic).
Benefit #4: Inspiration
Finally, partners can be a great inspiration. I’m not talking about copying their content.
But reading through other people’s blogs will, without a doubt, give you ideas about what to write about, what to improve on your own blog, and just how to overall perform better as an online marketer!
Strategy #3: Reach Out To Journalists
This one may sound a little bit out of your range. But many journalists, especially those from smaller, local newspapers or radio stations are always looking for interesting people, thoughts, news, products, and so on, that they can feature on their program.
Reach out to them! The worst thing that can happen to you is that they might you down, or outright ignore your email. But the potential outcome is certainly worth it.
Well, not exactly a case study. But it sounds so interesting 🙂
Personally, I had radio moderators from local radio stations interviewing me at my kitchen table in the past and even a featured article about a piece of software that I had published years ago in one of Europe’s largest computer magazines. Just because I reached out to people and told them: “Hey, I have something your audience might be interested in. Dare to check it out?”
All of these occasions netted a nice increase in traffic to my websites!
Bonus-Strategy: “Free” Paid Traffic
This one is a bit confusing. I don’t think it is a big secret that you can use ads to generate traffic for your blog, right?
You just set up a simple ad with Google Adwords, for example. You basically tell Google: “Hey, show people who search for ‘best electric lawnmowers’ my review of lawnmowers on page 1! Here’s a link to my article. Oh, and here’s the cash!!!”
But how can paid traffic be free?
Imagine you have written a review about a product that nets you a commission of USD 100,- per sale. Consider you manage to pay Google $1,- per visitor, who clicks the link in your ad and subsequently reads your product review, and 1% of the people decide to buy the product, you are already at break-even!
In many cases, and depending on the keyword you are bidding for (i.e. the keyword you want your ad to show up for), clicks can cost much less than $1,-. But they can also cost much more!
You can see how you can tune this Pay Per Click (PPC) model to a traffic-machine, and essentially get you “free” paid traffic, in terms that it pays for itself or even nets a nice profit. Simply put: Your mileage may vary!
And while a $100,- commission may be a little unrealistic for lawnmowers. But there are many products out there that you can review and recommend to people that will net you such a high profit!
Let’s be clear, though: Most likely, this strategy isn’t for you if you are just starting out. But, just like email marketing, PPC can be a nice addition to your online marketing toolbox once you get the hang of it and start making some money that you can then reinvest into your business.
There you have it: 3 totally free strategies that allow you to drive more traffic to your blog. Plus one semi-free, ideally profit-netting bonus strategy of using PPC as your magic money-making wand 🙂
I hope you found this article helpful and that you can put some of the strategies to good use in your online business. If you have any questions about the topic, please reach out in the comments below and let me know. If you know anyone who might want to benefit from what I have written above, please tell them about it. You know how the saying goes: “Sharing is caring!”
Finally, if you are just starting out and want to get a clearer picture of what business models the world of “making money online” has to offer, please make sure to read my article about online business models that work for everyone.
If however, you really want to ROCK IT FROM HOME and get started right away, make sure to read my full review of Wealthy Affiliate.
Have an amazing day!