When it comes to writing for SEO, you should have identified one of two objectives.
- To acquire qualified website traffic from search engines
- To encourage or increase brand engagement on external platforms by providing value
The purpose of your SEO content should fulfil either of these roles (note it can be both) and you will need to have identified it before you start writing. If you’re using your content for social media engagement, to provide added value content or for backlink acquisition, you may find that you need to write differently than you would if working on traffic acquisition – plus it’s always good to know the purpose what you’re doing first, right?
If traffic acquisition is the goal you’ve identified, read our tips on how to acquire traffic with content.
How to increase website traffic with SEO
For the majority of our clients, organic search makes up the largest proportion of visits every month – unless they’re working on something mega with PPC, usually.
Writing good quality content is an important start but it’s really only half the battle. Content for acquisition needs to be written in a particular way with a smart SEO approach.
Get to know your audience: identify who a qualified visitor is and what they’re interested in. If they’re coming in to your site, why? What are they looking for?
Let’s say you’re an accountancy firm. As well as optimised services pages, you’re going to need to provide added value content that targets people wherever they are in the funnel – perhaps they’re just researching at this stage, whereas others may be ready to press the button, so to speak. So as an accountant, what are your prospects going to be interested in or find helpful? You can conduct keyword research to help you on your way, but you might start by thinking along the lines of ‘what expenses can I claim back as a self-employed person’, ‘do I need an accountant’, ‘how to become a limited company’, ‘accountancy software recommendations’ or ‘how long to keep accounting records’, for example.
Google indexes content based on relevancy and value, so it’s important that you can provide genuinely helpful content and focus on qualification as you write – remember that it’s all well and good having high traffic numbers but if they’re not really interested and bouncing quickly, all Google is going to get from you is negative user signals.
Once you’ve worked out which keywords are worth your time, realistic and indicate intent, you can start to produce the right content.
You should include your keyword in your H1, first paragraph, within the main body copy, the last paragraph, in your metadata and within any image alt tags – but they should occur naturally.
Following this process will help you to ensure that your content is in a good position for ranking and indexed for the most appropriate, qualified and relevant terms – and that’s how you acquire traffic with content.
How to increase website traffic with social media content
Whether you’re using social media platforms for brand awareness, gaining enquiries or simply as a shop-front, you need to be providing helpful information first and foremost.
Effective social media management is all about engagement: not only should you be spending time speaking to followers and prospects, liking and sharing, you should also be providing content that encourages other users to do the same.
Identify your target market and niche interests, and produce content that is likely to be helpful. Let’s go back to our accountancy firm – social media followers are likely to find your piece about accountancy software recommendations useful. The idea is to ensure that you’re consistently providing value rather than banging on about what you do every damn day. Be useful.
All the time you’re providing the right content for the right audience utilising interesting or insightful blog posts, resources or downloads on your website, your traffic will increase.
But remember – it’s no good just ‘increasing traffic.’ You want to be increasing qualified traffic.
How to increase website traffic with content amplification
Content amplification helps to increase the reach of valuable content by serving it to targeted audiences as they go about their lives on the web. It means that they can access your content without having to know about you, search for you, visit your social media channels or come across your website.
Whilst users visit their favourite or most-visited platforms (think news websites or blogs, for example) your content can be served in a ‘related content’, ‘people also read’ style setup using content amplification tools that work out the best places for your content based on who you’re targeting and where they frequently visit.
As with anything, to maximise results here you need to be providing value. There’s no doubt that the sheer volume of content available on the web now is a force to be reckoned with – we’ve all got it coming out of our ears – but equally, if you want people to listen to you, you need to be communicating things that are genuinely helpful. Think how-to guides, downloadable resources, tips, lists. As ever, work out who your audience is and what they’d be likely to find useful. Solve their problems.
How to increase website traffic with email marketing
Marketers have been using email marketing to drive traffic for decades and despite scepticism in more recent years, it’s still as effective as ever – if you do it right.
Research shows that 91% of people access their email at least once a day, and still prefer to receive business information via email over any other platform. With this in mind, it’s important to note that it’s a saturated space and we must, of course, be aware of data regulations. We all know what it’s like to receive tonnes of marketing emails day in, day out: it’s more important than ever to do it right.
Your email list provides a pool of people that you know are interested in what you have to say – it’s a goldmine – but it’s keeping them that is more difficult.
If you send sales emails to your contacts all the time, they’re going to unsubscribe – and frankly, we don’t blame them. We’ve said it many times before and we’ll say it again: you must provide value. Have we made that clear yet?!
Use your emails to help solve your customers’ problems. Tease blogs, tips, advice and useful resources to drive traffic back to your website and encourage new sign-ups on key landing pages. Having had some value from your comms, you’ll be their first port of call when they have a problem that you can solve, and it creates another touchpoint for warm, already engaged users.
How to increase website traffic with advertising
We know… immediately you’re thinking ‘budget’.
If you use useful content to drive traffic, your advertising costs will be lower.
Bidding on competitive products is a good way to burn through your budget because you’ll be fighting other businesses for ad space. Instead, promoting articles, blogs and resources will be far less competitive and much more useful for your target markets. Value for them, bang for your buck for you.
You’ll reach new, targeted audiences and if your content is genuinely helpful, you’ll increase your web traffic.
To find out more about creating content that acquires qualified website visitors, get in touch to speak with a member of the Patch team.