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Don’t Rely on Google: Top Traffic Sources Other than Search

SEO is one of the major traffic sources for any business operating online—that probably includes your business as well.

 

But we all know about the risk of keeping all your eggs in one basket. That would be a big mistake, especially in the world of online marketing.

 

Sure, search traffic is amazing. Generating targeted visitors specifically looking for your products, services, and solutions—and for free—is clearly a big draw.

 

But … there’s always that nagging doubt that Google could change up its algorithm and destroy your traffic overnight. Or that you could lose your page-one ranking when a competitor puts on the pressure and ramps up their efforts.

 

The truth is if you are doing everything right and white-hat, and you make consistent effort, SEO is an amazing and reliable source of targeted traffic.

 

The main reason why you should invest in other types of traffic generation techniques is that they can help you to increase your overall traffic beyond what you would get with SEO alone.

 

You will get different visitors who might not have ever found your website in search—and you can get a LOT of traffic.

 

So what are these other types of traffic-generating techniques? Here are a few of the best that we’d recommend.

 

  1. PPC / AdWords

 

Search for “SEO vs PPC” and you’ll find no end of debate on the topic. The truth is, there is no debate: They are both excellent sources of traffic.

 

PPC (and our favorite platform, AdWords) is:

 

  • a way to take up more SERP real estate, which is useful even if you are ranking on the first page.
  • a super-fast way to get to the top of the search results (as in, a few hours).
  • a highly measurable strategy that can be endlessly optimized to improve results.
  • an affordable source of traffic (when you do it right).

 

Rather than go into more details here, here are some of our recent pieces on PPC advertising to give you a solid foundation to build your campaign on:

 

 

If you haven’t yet experimented with AdWords, now is the time. Use it in addition to SEO, and that way you are almost certain to increase your traffic—and the traffic will flow in thick and fast.

 

  1. Paid Social

 

Social media has come a long way, and it’s now one of the dominant marketing channels for businesses of all sizes.

 

But many businesses make mistakes with their social marketing and go about it in the wrong way.

 

They post only occasionally, they share without enthusiasm, they engage halfheartedly, and they desperately try to grow their followers because they think this is all they need to do.

 

Social activity is important—and it’s also an important part of a well-rounded SEO campaign. More shares lead to more eyes on your content, more links, etc.

 

But paid social should definitely make up a part of your strategy. And the one paid channel that you should almost certainly experiment with first is Facebook Advertising.

 

You might wonder why you would want to advertise on Facebook if you are already advertising on Google. But they are two very different platforms:

 

  • Facebook is passive advertising. People are not there looking for your solutions. They are looking at funny pictures and videos of their friends.
  • With AdWords, people are searching for something very specific. They want to find your solutions.

 

The good thing about Facebook is that it tends to be less expensive. You still pay to get in front of the right people, but campaigns can be incredibly cheap to run.

 

The targeting options on Facebook are insane. And because almost everyone is on Facebook, you can fine-tune your ad campaigns in a way that you cannot on other platforms.

 

The way to get traffic is to create ads that link back to your website. And not just any page—a landing page optimized for conversions.

 

Direct leads back to your landing page and get visitors to sign up to your list. Remember, people are not on Facebook to buy. But build up your list, market to them, and you can convert them into customers.

 

Here are some of our best posts on Facebook advertising:

 

 

  1. Content Marketing

 

Sure, content marketing related to SEO, and many think of SEO as the end-goal of any content strategy. But there are other reasons to invest in content marketing. It’s not just about getting traffic from the search engines.

 

Take guest posting, for example.

 

It has long lost its SEO power. There’s way too much spamming going on to make it worthwhile, and the idea of blasting low-quality blogs with endless guest posts has long been dead.

 

But guest blogging done right still works.

 

And while high-value content on authority blogs, the sorts of blogs that don’t make it easy to get published, can help with your SEO, there is more to it than that.

 

A good guest blog on a highly trafficked site can direct a good amount of traffic to your own site from your link, either in the article you publish or in your author bio.

 

Over time, as you continue to publish guest posts, the amount of traffic will accumulate. Old guest blogs will still get found and read, and the traffic will keep coming.

 

As well as guest blogs, you could offer interviews. Blogs are always wanting to hear interesting stories. Did you launch your business from your garage? There’s an interesting story that people want to hear about.

 

Think about angles you could take and then approach authority blogs and ask them if their readers would be interested in your story.

 

Another approach is to interview influencers on your own blog. It takes quite a bit of work to get the interviews, but once you get a good interview from an influencer, this is certain to attract traffic when the influencer shares it with their community.

 

Here are some blogs we’ve published on content marketing to give you some more ideas:

 

 

  1. Blog Comments

 

Blog comments? Really?

 

If that was your reaction, you’re forgiven for thinking it odd that we’ve included commenting here. And as far as SEO is concerned, blog commenting is dead.

 

But when it comes to generating traffic, a smart commenting strategy can work well.

 

This involves finding authority blogs with high traffic levels and leaving insightful comments. This is the key—you can’t just leave quick comments saying what a great post it is.

 

Share interesting information, and add to the points made in the blog. Provide additional info, and disagree with the blog’s major argument.

 

Don’t worry about do-follow and no-follow links—there is no link juice to find here. Just worry about the authority and traffic of the blogs, and the quality of your comment.

 

Focus on a few websites rather than posting comments everywhere you can. Start with about 10 authority sites in your niche, read them regularly, and comment on them quickly to try and be first. (Use Feedly to get alerts as soon as a new blog post is published.)

 

Make a habit of this, and readers of the blog—the same readers you are targeting—will start heading over to your website.

 

In addition, blog comments can help you to build relationships with the blog owners and influencers, which can lead to opportunities for guest posts.

 

Blog owners love meaningful comments. It adds to the discussion and keeps people on their site—and if you regularly post valuable comments, you’re sure to catch their eye.

 

If you’re still dubious, read this QuickSprout post on the topic and you might change your mind.

 

  1. Don’t Forget Email

 

Finally, don’t overlook email. While email marketing may not be a great source of traffic, it is certainly an amazing source of return traffic.

 

Once people are on your list, you can target them over the following months and years with relevant content that encourages them to return to your site.

 

Tell them about your latest blog posts, competitions, new products, industry news—and get them back to your site where they can access your content and share it with their social circles.

 

So set up your email campaign, offer a lead magnet, optimize your landing page, and make sure you collect the emails of all the targeted visitors you are generating—and keep them coming back for more.

 

Experiment with Other Traffic-Generating Techniques

 

Traffic is too often linked solely with SEO. But there are far more options than the search engines when it comes to generating traffic.

 

Does that mean you should ignore SEO? No. It still remains one of the best ways to drive targeted traffic to your site consistently.

 

Just don’t think that SEO is the be-all-and-end-all of traffic generation. Experiment with the other techniques highlighted here, many of which we can help you with, and start generating targeted traffic from more sources.