If you thought your SEO job begins and ends with some backlinks and on-site optimization, you’ve probably realized one thing…
SEO is unpredictable these days.
I think we can all agree that it’s getting trickier to get by with only doing the basic SEO activities we’ve all come to use (and abuse).
And I keep harping on this, but it’s still true: We’re only doing SEO to get traffic and visitors.
So, if that’s the ultimate goal, then why not focus on the marketing aspects that, in the end, gives us those visitors?
The good news is that if you do, SEO benefits often follow.
And since Google is hellbent on destroying those who deploy scalable link schemes and tactics, why not seek out links in an indirect manner?
The “freshness” factor of the Google algorithm is being abused left and right, so you could still chase after loopholes if you want to.
But let’s play a longer game that will still yield us traffic and rankings in the long run, and “Google Proof” our work.
Let’s toil in the vineyard of content promotion so we can reap the fruits of our labor.
I’ve put together a list of 6 traffic strategies that still work and essentially taps into existing buckets of traffic, helping you circumvent that long, hard road to page 1.
Let’s do this…
1. Leave Product Reviews (Yes, You Read That Right)
Ever thought about leaving reviews on market and industry related books, media, and products on sites like Amazon? If not, you should consider it.
You can build a reputation as a credible reviewed and your profile displays a link to your website. You can also comment on other reviews and capture really interested traffic that way. Think about it: if someone is reading reviews, they’re really interested in the book or product. And if so, it’s not much of a stretch for them to find your reviews, like it, and end up on your website at some point.
Seems far fetched? Maybe, but have you tried it yet?
Amazon gives you the ability almost run a microblog, with your advice, insights, and being helpful. It’s a huge site and receives a ton of daily traffic. Why not try to catch some of it?
This goes for any product site that allows for reviews.
2. Bookmarking Traffic
I know, who does this anymore, right? Everyone.
You can and should still do this. I know there’s limited value in bookmarking links but you’re not looking for link juice here, you want visitors.
- Your blog and site should be on Technorati.com. Do I need to explain why?
- Use Triberr.com to promote and get social shares of your content.
- You can surely find an appropriate sub-reddit on Reddit and submit it.
- Digg.com is still around, and can still be used.
- Remember StumbleUpon? Yep, still worth it to submit your content there.
3. Social Media & Community Traffic
There’s certainly more tactics and strategies for capturing social media traffic, so we’re not pretending to go in-depth here. The focus is on small actions you can take:
- Extract short snippets from your content that you use in your posts and updates on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+. This would be with headline variations, short quotes, statistics, and statements from the content piece.
- Collect 30+ of them and share them once a day for a couple of weeks.
- If your topic and content fits on a site like Pinterest, create a board and pin all your posts to it.
- Use Instagram (you have an account for your site, right?) to share images from your blog posts.
- Share in LinkedIn groups and on your profile as well as your business page.
- Use content curation sites and feeds like Bloglovin.com to drive traffic to your site.
- Likewise, Tumblr is perfect for sharing niche-focused content and worthwhile to have a microblog with.
- Sign up for Empire Avenue and reward, and get rewarded, for sharing content and generate network engagement to your blog.
- Got some how-to posts and domain knowledge? Get on Quora and get involved with the question and answer format.
- Submit your content to communities like Sulia, Blog Engage, TribePro, and BizSugar. Sure, lots of content, but if you’ve created a huge content piece, like an Ultimate Guide to something, then it’s well worth sharing your content on sites like these.
4. Piggyback On Your Sources
Does your content have references to source and people? Mention them when you share your post. You should do this with interviews, linked, or mentioned to someone.
You might even go as far as emailing them and letting them know, but be careful here to not overdo it, and only do it if you think they, and their audience or market, would benefit from your post to. You shouldn’t do this anytime you barely mention someone, or only in passing.
5. Re-Purpose Content Into Various Formats (Video, Audio, PDF, And More)
Let’s assume your content is of more value than your usual sub-par 300 word SEO article that is as close to spam as you can get.
It only follows, then, that you should share it in a variety of formats so you can reach more people and show up in more places.
Let’s say you just wrote a big 1,500+ word blog post. The next step would be to rework it into a variety of formats, such as:
- Graphics (infographics, etc).
With a video, you can publish and distribute it on Vimeo, YouTube, Viddler, Tumblr, on your site, and all over the place. There are millions of viewers to be reached, and even if your topic is narrow, there’s still a potential deluge of traffic to be captured.
And extracting the audio from it is useful for offering an audio download and/or a podcast episode — not to mention, creating a transcript and publishing it with the video is bound to catch some long-tails and additional SEO benefits.
Besides, thumbnails for videos show up in Google, which could lead to a higher click-through rate, too.
If you do end up creating a slideshow, keep in mind that SlideShare has millions upon millions of unique visitors every single month. In addition, it also transcribes it for you for search engine spiders and their crawling.
Optimize the headline, description, and include a backlink to the original post and/or your website.
As with video, this will reach a different kind of audience that may otherwise have missed your blog post entirely.
6. Pay For Content Ads On Outbrain, LinkedIn, And Even Facebook
A personal favorite is Outbrain, which is a service that promotes your content on other content. Sounds like Inception? It’s pretty simple. Your content ad can show up on other related sites, and you pay for clicks. The cost is pretty low right now and you can target your ideal visitors.
Aside from Outbrain, paying to promote posts on LinkedIn and Facebook is not a bad idea. You don’t have to do a lot of it, just enough to give it an initial wave of traffic to kickstart the more “organic” social shares and engagement.
I would only do this with cornerstone, evergreen, and really exceptional content.
You Win Or Lose The SEO Game With Your Promotion
Sure, Search Engine Optimization is still a game of links and getting them. I doubt that will change.
But what is changing all the time is how we actaully get links.
Google does not like scalable, potentially spammy tactics. I can see why. I mean, how often do I, or you, want to waste our time on spun and crappy content, right?
More than links, however, and the actual goal of link building, is to get relevant traffic and visitors to our websites.
That will never change, but link building tactics come and go all the time.
So, if links are still valuable, but the desired outcome is traffic, how do we get both?
Easy: create content that’s valuable to your market and audience, and then share and promote it.
Showing up in the SERPs take time, but you need traffic, like, yesterday.
Links and SEO benefits will follow, but you’ve already capturing and directing traffic.