So you’re finally done building your brand new website.
But all that hard work will be for nothing if no one is going to be visiting.
The good news is that you don’t need to spend a fortune on fancy marketing campaigns in order to attract more visitors.
We’re here to help.
With our 8 tips, you too can gain quality website traffic – completely free of charge.
1. Improve your SEO
SEO, or search engine optimization, helps you to optimize your website so that it will be more visible on search engines.
And it’s something you shouldn’t overlook: using relatively few resources, SEO can give your website a significant traffic boost.
SEO in a nutshell
The basis of SEO is simple.
When you search for something, what you enter in the search bar is known as a ‘keyword’.
These keywords get matched with websites that include content related to that specific keyword, or other similar keywords.
And those websites with the best match are shown at the very top of the search results – and get the most organic website traffic.
There are two kinds of SEO – on-page and off-page:
- On-page SEO includes keyword optimization, meta descriptions, and internal links
- Off-site SEO is impacted by how many other pages reference yours, among other things
Recommended reading: The Complete Guide to Small Business SEO
All about those keywords
Keyword research is an important part of SEO.
It’s free, and effective for getting new traffic to your website but takes some time to learn.
The core idea behind it is to learn the keywords that users of search engines might use to find the answer to the questions they’re looking for.
To put it simply – there’s no point in targeting keywords related to bicycles if electric scooters are trending all around you.
Keyword optimization, on the other hand, means choosing the right keywords for your content.
These keywords should reflect both your audience and current search trends.
Where possible, you should use long-tail keywords which are keyphrases consisting of three or more words (‘high heels’ versus ‘black stiletto high heels for women’), and help narrow down what your website traffic will want from your page.
Power of links
Once you’ve written enough content, it’s time to start building links to your individual articles.
Let’s say you have a cooking blog and publish a blog post of the top smoothie recipes on your site.
This is called internal linking, and it’s a great example of on-site SEO.
An off-site SEO example of linking would be when someone else links to your content from their own site – this is called referral traffic.
Maybe there’s a popular local culinary school that enjoys your work – you could ask them to feature your recipes on their website, or write a guest post for their site that would include a link to your content.
While this is a very basic example of what SEO is like, it’s worth getting your head around the whole concept of keywords, even if it might take some time.
Good SEO tools and practices will pay you back threefold if you’re committed to increasing your organic traffic sources.
2. List your business on Google My Business
Google holds the title of being the giant among the web search engines, so it’s no surprise that over the years it has launched its own set of tools for managing websites.
One of these tools is My Business, which allows businesses to manage how they’d like to appear on both Google Search and Maps.
It’s a free-to-use service that doesn’t require much set-up, but it can significantly increase your site traffic and page views.
Joining My Business
Simply link your Google account with your business by going to My Business and following the instructions there.
Once you’re done, enter any information that it asks about your business, such as its name, address, and business category.
You’ll need to verify all of this information by using your phone or email address, but it’s usually a fast process and you can get set up for free in no time.
Perks of using My Business
Now, My Business is a great tool for several reasons.
At its core, the service allows you to control how your business appears in the search results when someone is looking for a local business.
But there’s a lot more to My Business:
- You can have your business location accurately displayed on Google Maps, including all of your contact details.
- There’s an Insights feature that lets you understand your audience a bit better. It shows information like how people interact with your content or how many clicks your website gets. It’s almost like a mini-version of Google Analytics.
- Visitors can leave reviews, allowing you to get a better understanding of what needs to be improved and what people love.
- You can use Google Posts to contact your clients and keep them up-to-date on the latest news, upcoming events, or anything else you want to share.
If you want to make your business more noticeable, My Business is a great way to attract more local clients and gain more free traffic to your website along the way.
3. Optimize your website’s performance
We’ve all stumbled upon websites that perform so poorly that we’ve clicked away altogether.
People don’t like to wait around for a page to load, but the more people are clicking away from your website, the higher your bounce rate is.
And this, in turn, negatively impacts your website’s SEO – that’s because the number of bounces plays a big role in determining your website ranking in the search results pages.
It’s a bad sign to most website traffic check tools, like Google Analytics, if people visiting your website leave too early.
Basically, it means that these tools will consider your website as having no sessions and that the traffic you’re getting is not useful.
How to start optimizing
Sometimes the reasons for a high bounce rate are simple.
Maybe your website has a poor overall design or lackluster user-experience.
Or maybe your landing pages don’t leave good first impressions, or they take forever to load.
Start your optimization process by making sure that your site performs well on all main internet browsers as well as on different devices.
Use web performance tools like Google’s PageSpeed Insights frequently: they help you identify reasons for long page load times.
Google Search Console (GSC) is another industry favorite when it comes to good website traffic checker sites.
It allows you to monitor the performance and health-related stats of your website: from URL inspections and website traffic statistics to your website’s overall backlink profile, and much more.
Go over your pages with a fine comb and pay attention to the navigation flow and overall user experience.
Consider things like:
- Is my web design clear or confusing?
- Do users know where to go when they land on a landing page?
- Are my call-to-action (CTA) buttons and banners easy to see and understand?
Ask for second opinions from friends and family, or run a short pop-up survey for people visiting your website.
Once you know what works and what doesn’t, you can start A/B-testing new designs, solutions, and ideas.
4. Link building
A more direct approach to get free traffic to your website is through link building.
In its simplest form, this is a practice where someone shares a link that directs traffic from one website to yours and vice versa.
For example, let’s say someone likes an article on your blog and uses it as reference material in their own content, linking back to the original blog post.
If your content is good enough, those visitors from other websites can become returning visitors to your site, too.
Focus on reliable websites
If you get backlinks from a reputable website or you’re mentioned on quite a few sources, that tells search engines that your content is worth recognition.
A strong backlink profile is an incredibly powerful way to get more free traffic to your website. It also helps in building a strong and prestigious domain.
But there’s more to backlinking than just gaining traffic.
Through the use of backlinks, you can contact and build relationships with other websites that are relevant to your niche but aren’t your competitors.
Getting a backlink from your competitor is especially useful, but this doesn’t happen too often – it’s easier to focus on more sites that share the same target audience.
Build trust with guest posts
Backlinking also builds trust between you and your customers.
If your content is informative, other websites will use you as a reliable source of information.
You can make it work for your advantage, too: if your content is considered reputable and trustworthy, you can start building promotional partnerships through guest posting.
Unless you’ve been approached by others, the easiest way to get started is by personally reaching out to other related sites, proposing a collaboration.
This content marketing strategy is a highly reliable way to get high-quality site traffic from a specific target audience.
Of course, in order to do this, you need to have quality content. If your website doesn’t contain much value, you won’t get useful backlinks.
5. Promote your website on social media
It’s hard to deny the value of social media and its marketing potential.
Since social media has grown exponentially in recent years, businesses have quickly made it their second online home.
The best thing is that it doesn’t require much of an investment, especially in the beginning.
And there’s a good chance you have already created at least one social media account for your business.
Take advantage of the big audience
Places like Facebook or Twitter have millions of active daily users.
Sometimes it’s enough to be briefly mentioned on social media by the right person to receive a flood of referral traffic to your website.
Begin by taking care of your business profiles by:
- Including links to your website and to your online store, if you have one
- Providing your contact details and opening times
- Using the same branding across your social profiles
- Including testimonials and product reviews as social proof
Carefully manage your social media accounts to make them look credible and professional by making sure you look and sound the same, never mind the platform.
Make use of Instagram Stories or regular Facebook updates, if you’re on the creative side – let your audience behind the scenes of your industry and brand.
6. Create an email list
Here’s something that’s more reminiscent of the good old days – newsletters and email promotions.
An email marketing campaign still packs a massive punch, attracting more traffic to your website as well as keeping those users engaged with your content.
And if you play your cards right, you might get them to come back for more.
Creating an email list allows you to send out promotional content to your customers easily.
You can also use your list to remind your customers about an abandoned shopping cart, or reach out to them to share news and articles with them.
Launch an industry-leading newsletter
Depending on your niche, you can create a subscription-based newsletter.
These kinds of newsletters let users receive weekly or monthly emails containing information on what’s going on with your business.
For example, a weekly email could include information about a specific discount on certain items. Or, it could simply be a short recap of all the content you’ve published that week.
Use pop-up opt-in forms on your website that remind your visitors to subscribe to your newsletter.
Remember to collect the contact data of your traffic in a transparent and legal way – you don’t want to end up in spam folders, do you?
Tip 💡 – Spend time perfecting your email newsletters. Use animations, great copy, and even carefully-selected emojis. Make the emails stand out so people will want to read them all the way through.
7. Run webinars
Probably the newest trend on this list, webinars are a great way to interact with your audience directly and attract new customers to your business – and more traffic to your website.
While a successful webinar does require some preparation, there’s a lot of potential behind the concept.
How to run a webinar
Webinars are basically online presentations for people who would like to interact with your business more directly.
Think of them as both promotional and informative events for your customers.
You might be introducing your new product and you want to talk more about it – planning a webinar is a great way to engage with your audience on a more personal level in a business context.
Use your webinar to:
- Share your ideas with the rest of your community
- Talk about your business’s future in detail
- Explore each of the products you’re going to release in the near future
Questions and answers
If hosting a webinar doesn’t sound appealing, consider hosting a live Q&A session.
It’s a more intimate way to connect with your audience since they can ask questions in person, instead of leaving a comment online.
If your webinar is a success, it will not only attract more traffic to your website but also increase your perceived honesty and sincerity as a business.
It might be a bit intimidating at first, but a lot of people are already successfully implementing webinars as part of their marketing strategies.
8. Try influencer marketing
Getting back to social media platforms, there’s a lot of potential with influencer marketing.
Influencers are social media personalities that have a massive amount of followers online, counting from thousands to millions.
Considered as trend-setters and sometimes even A-list celebrities, being endorsed by an influencer can hugely boost your overall website traffic.
How influencer marketing works
Companies ask influencers or the agency that represents them to promote their products and services to the influencer’s audiences.
While some people who have an almost cult-following prefer being paid upfront for their services, others simply enjoy free products and services that your business is able to provide.
Interestingly, studies show that influencers can have a considerable impact on how consumers view a particular brand, or their products or sites.
For example, if you’re developing an app, getting it reviewed by a popular influencer who covers similar topics could result in a huge influx of free referral traffic to your website.
Depending on the terms of the agreement, you might receive a short mention in a video or Instagram post, or get a whole post talking about your services.
Just make sure to pick the right influencer – your audiences have to overlap.
Otherwise, you risk getting traffic that won’t stay long on your website, resulting in poor website session performance in the eyes of the website traffic checker tools.
Why do you need more traffic?
To put it shortly – website traffic is essential for your business growth.
More traffic means an increase in the number of potential clients to purchase products from your store or recommend your website and its contents to their friends.
Without traffic, your website and your brand are unlikely to enter the consciousness of the general public.
There are generally two ways to get traffic to your website:
- Organic or free traffic. Your website traffic is free when visitors land on your website while searching for something on a search engine, clicking on an unsponsored or paid social media post, or visiting a site via a friend’s recommendation.
- Paid traffic. When you’re paying for ad space on Facebook, Instagram, or on Google’s search results pages, the traffic that is generated from these types of ads is usually referred to as paid traffic.
Paid traffic can also come from buying advertising space on media platforms (think news websites) or investing in sponsored content, such as letting someone else advertise your business for you (for example, managing influencer marketing campaigns).
There are pros and cons to both paid and organic traffic. While paid advertising requires additional funds, some free traffic campaigns need extra effort and time investment instead.
But the fundamental goal remains the same – both paid and organic traffic aim to generate more overall website traffic.
Aim for high-quality website traffic
Regardless of the type of traffic that you’re concentrating on, your main focus should always be on generating the most relevant and high-quality traffic to your website.
Many people seem to think that organic traffic can’t also be just as high in quality as paid traffic.
While it’s true that paid ads are much easier to target at the most ideal kind of visitors, usually organic traffic is a sign that your branding and marketing is working.
It means that people are actively searching for your website and online presence because they are considering to buy from you, not your competitor.
How to check, monitor, and analyze website traffic
Here’s the deal: if you don’t know how your website is performing, there’s no way to improve.
That’s why it’s important to understand where you’re getting your website traffic from, how well that traffic is converting and performing overall.
The more you understand and are able to analyze your traffic sources, the easier it will be to cut out the sources that bring in bad visitors and consequently boost the content and campaigns that perform well.
What metrics to use
While you might have some standards that are most suited to your industry only, there are a few common measurables that you should pay attention to:
- Unique visitors. It’s important to measure all the people who visited your website at least once within a selected time period. This way, you can identify the number of returning and new users and plan your marketing activities accordingly.
- Pageviews. Knowing how many of your pages have been visited within a certain time period helps to optimize your website: you can focus on perfecting each of the pages that get the most views. And vice versa, having traffic estimates on which pages never get viewed might be a tell-tale sign for scrapping those pages altogether.
- Organic search traffic. Understanding how many people visit your site via a Google search or another search engine helps you find more ways to perfect your content marketing strategy and SEO.
- Other traffic channels. If you have a big Facebook or YouTube presence, for example, tracking the traffic numbers from other sources helps you understand better which social media campaigns work – and which don’t.
Additionally, you might also want to track traffic from your newsletters, or affiliate sites, if you manage affiliate marketing campaigns.
While additional data equals a more detailed analysis, focusing on data points that are most important to your business can help you become more profitable and beat your competitors.
If your Instagram posts are the real money-makers, there’s no point in spending overly long analyzing the click-through rate of your About Us page.
How to measure your traffic
A bit unsure of how to get started with analyzing and measuring your website traffic?
The good thing is that there’s a website traffic checker for everyone.
Google Analytics is probably one of the most used website traffic checker out there.
And for a good reason – it’s easy to use and free of charge while providing users plenty of information on their site.
Ubersuggest is a good alternative for anyone looking to strike a balance between monitoring website traffic and SEO.
This online marketing guru Neil Patel’s website traffic checker tool not only has fair pricing plans – but it also gives the members access to various learning resources and research tools.
Ahrefs gets praised as one of the go-to keyword and SEO research tools, but you’re able to conduct decent website traffic analysis with it, too.
If you’re already a member, you can use Ahrefs to analyze estimations of your domain’s organic traffic, in addition to that of your competitors’ sites.
SEMrush is, like Ahrefs, first and foremost an SEO tool. But you can analyze your website traffic through its traffic analytics reports.
You’ll get an estimation of the number of unique users, different referring traffic sources, and top-performing pages, among other data points.