Part 24: Getting Your First Visitors
How do you get people to come and visit your website? Without visitors no-one will ever get to read your work and you will not make sales. Understanding traffic is therefore very important to understand.
Internet Marketers refer to visitors as traffic. They simply mean by this the number of visitors who come to your website. When a website is first launched the reality is that no-one knows about it. Over time the search engines will start to look at it (this is called getting indexed) and start to position it in their rankings.
Will that be on the first page of Google? No!
That will not happen quickly or easily. Believe me when I say that can hurt a lot. You have put hours into your website, made it look as good as you can, written some great content and have also bought a domain, hosting and perhaps a theme.
What do you have to show for that? You have a good website that no-one knows about. You will not be earning any commissions from Amazon and there you are contemplating any number of things.
Those thoughts could be “I knew this wouldn’t work,” “That was a waste of my time” and any other number of depressing thoughts. Thousands of people throw in the towel at this stage. I write on many Forums for Amazon Affiliate marketers and I have seen this time after time.
They built websites on lawnmowers, vaccum cleaners, watches, fitness and they didn’t work. When you start to dig beneath the complaints people make here is what you really find.
- They had never written down any goals and stuck to them
- They had posted maybe 7 or 8 articles but they discovered that was in fact a lot of work, and more than they had planned on doing
- They are convinced that they should have been getting visitors by now
- Their content was short and not actually that good
- They had not added any value to the visitor
- There were no internal or external links
- Nothing had been optimised
- Their websites were covered with links and adverts
- They got distracted by something that looked easier and just left their website to wither
Now I could go on with what I call the list of excuses, and in all honesty, that is what these statements are. The good news is that it does not have to be like that.
Organic or Natural Traffic
I am going to start with what is called Organic or natural traffic. It is the best kind because it costs you nothing in terms of trying to attract it. People looking for something on your topic will find your website and then come and read your work.
So this is traffic you can get to your website when Google and the other search engines find your content and start to rank it on their search listings. This does take time and typically can be anything from 6-9 months. Why does it take so long?
There are lots of reasons for this but the main one is that when starting out with a new website it has no authority in the eyes of the search engines. It is after all just another collection of content about a particular topic on the Internet.
That does not mean that it will always be like this. The key to improving this authority is to keep adding content to your website. If you remember at the beginning I asked you to write 20 articles. There was a very good reason for that.
You should have posted 10 of those articles to get your website up and running. That of course means that you should have 10 waiting to be published.
You should publish those one at a time over the next few weeks. You could publish one a day for 10 days, or one every other day. At the same time you should also write some more so as you always have some content waiting to be published.
The more articles you add to your website on a regular basis, the more chances you have of getting your website ranked quicker.
So start doing that and get 20 articles on to your site, then 30, 40 and keep going. That is why I advised you at the start of planning your website to make sure the topic you picked had a lot of potential content to write about.
The key here is to publish as regularly as you can. We all have different amounts of time available so I don’t want to say how often or how much you can publish. That said I would suggest 1 or 2 articles per week for the first 13-15 weeks would be a fantastic way of getting ranked and getting attention.
If you can just publish one good article per day, you would have over 100 in 3 months and that would be a fantastic achievement.
You should make this your number one priority going forward as the more content you have the better your website will be. The better it is the bigger chance you have of getting found for more keywords, getting ranked and making commissions.
There is never really an end to publishing content but when you get to 100 articles you can then reduce this to posting one article a week. It just depends how much work you put into producing and publishing content. The more the better is always the best option.
Other Methods of Traffic
There are many other methods of bringing visitors to your website. Here is a list of some of those:
- Google Plus
- Guest Posting
- Article Marketing
- Blog commenting
- Press Releases
- Linked In
This is not an exhaustive list and there are many more opportunities to drive traffic to your website. The good news is that all of these methods are free but they take time to setup and implement.
As I mentioned earlier when starting out you will get little if any visitors to your website. You may have heard the term “Build it and they will come,” but that is not the case with a new website.
Build it properly and they will eventually come would be a more appropriate description.
That is why it is a good idea, and especially in the early weeks of your website to use other methods to get traffic to your website. A simpler way of thinking about this is to think of promoting your website. In other words let people know, who may be interested in your topic, that you have a very good website that may help them out.
The danger with so many different methods of getting traffic is to try and do all of them. I did that in my early days and found it to be a complete waste of time. Each method that I have shown above works really well as long as you know how to do it properly. That takes time to learn and also time to get it done right.
A much better idea is to pick one method, learn it well, get it working and then start on the next one. For most websites there are three methods that I would recommend:
- Google Plus
It is easy to setup a page for each of these networks. When you do that you can then publish information on each of them and link those pages back to your website.
The use of video is something you may or maybe will not do. It does divide people a lot. The bottom line is that if you are not making videos for your website then you are losing out on two important elements:
- Your own videos will bring you a lot of traffic
- Making your own videos is great for your credibility, good for your website and great for your visitors
People shy away from making their own videos for a whole variety of reasons. They do no want to use their own voice, show their own face, don’t have the right equipment, don’t know how to do it and are generally just afraid of taking this step.
Millions of people upload videos every day to YouTube, Vimeo and many other video websites. Some use the very best of equipment but the majority are made with a Smart Phone and just published.
If you decide that video is just not for you, then you are losing out on a lot of potential traffic. I would strongly recommend that you give it a try. A video can be made in a whole number of different ways.
My advice is to research that online, learn how to do these and start publishing them on your YouTube channel for free. All you need to set up a channel like that is a free gmail address and then you have a great marketing tool to use.
When you set up a YouTube channel a Google My Business page (Google +) is automatically created.
This is a link to the YouTube channel I have set up for this case study website: www.youtube.com/channel/UCgtxPjn3_wFt_exvi4enb8w
It is a good idea to set up a Facebook page for your website. This is the one that I have done for The Perfect Grind website: www.facebook.com/The-Perfect-Grind-931015486985945/
When you get 25 likes on your page you can then set what is called a Facebook URL and that is basically a simpler URL to remember. I always change to that once I get my first 25 likes. It will be similar to the one above but I can leave off all of the numbers.
If the perfect grind is available I will use that, and if not may slightly adapt it to fit into something very similar.
The reason to have a Facebook page is for two main reasons. A lot of people visit this social website and also search for pages and groups that have information on a subject. If you get found there then it can result in clicks back to your website.
When you build your page then simply share it with your friends on Facebook and that should get you quickly to 25 likes. Then set your URL and when you post an article on your website, then post the link on your Facebook page with a little commentary.
That will help a lot in bring you early traffic and start getting some visitors to your website.
Google + Page
This was Google’s attempt at a Facebook equivelant. It probably has not taken off they way they would have liked. However if you set up a Google Plus page using a free gmail account, again you have quickly created a great marketing tool.
All you need to do then is when you publish an article on your website is to share that article on your Google + page. These rank really quickly and will get a lot of traffic to your website over time.
Here is a link to my Google + Page: plus.google.com/+TheperfectgrindUkcoffee
Again this is a free method and does not take a long time to do.
Other Traffic Methods
As I mentioned earlier, there are many other ways to bring traffic to your website. It is outside the scope of this case study to go into all of these in detail. The three that I have mentioned seem to work the best for me.
All the various methods will eventually start working together and then you start to get visitors and you start to get sales and commissions. So going forward the process becomes very simple to do.
- Set up a simple Facebook page
- Set up a Google Plus page
- Create a YouTube channel
Write a good article and apply all of the article rules that I have covered in this case study. Then share that article on your Facebook Page and your Google + page. I would recommend doing videos and also embed those into your website and share those on the Facebook and Google page.
You should also share the articles that you have already published and link back to those.
It is also a good idea to share other people’s content on your Facebook & Google page as well just to add some variety. Adding a video, even a simple image helps build up the authority of your social pages.
Then start to add another traffic source such as Twitter or Pinterest and continue to build out your social network like this.