How publishers can drive more organic traffic to their websites

Building organic traffic isn’t easy. It never has been, but it’s always been necessary for publishers. Even if they’re not selling any actual products or services.

The trickiest part about piping a funnel for organic traffic is the fact that it almost always involves search engine optimization (SEO) tactics — and search engines are always evolving to better suit the user’s Web experience. Therefore, the SEO tactics you were using yesterday won’t necessarily work as well for you today. In other words, you need to evolve as well.

Want to learn what works for driving more organic traffic to your website right now? Keep on reading.

6 ways to drive organic traffic to your website 

While it is important to optimize your content for search engines, you also want to be cautious about over-optimization.

Google recently dropped the Helpful Content Update; their latest ranking algorithm. Its goal is to ​reduce the number of “unhelpful” articles circulating the Web. To accomplish this, it aims to identify and de-rank content that’s curated for search engines.

Now, this doesn’t mean that you should immediately chuck years’ worth of SEO expertise out the window. It’s still applicable when it comes to driving organic traffic, but you should focus on tactics that keep your user’s Web experience in mind.

So, what are the best ways of driving organic traffic to your website? Let’s take a look:

1. Put your visitors first

When we talk about putting your website visitors first, we’re talking about everything from your site’s layout and design, navigation, page load speed, and overall content. You want to make sure that every page on your website has what it takes to make visitors want to stay longer.

The longer a user stays on your pages, the more favorable your bounce rates and click-through rates will be, as well as your conversions (affiliate or otherwise). So, make sure your website caters to the user experience by spending some time on it yourself and tweaking it until it becomes the most seamless and enjoyable experience possible.

For example, you can map your users’ behavioral flow across your website through tools such as Google Analytics to understand the content they find most engaging.

2. Content, Content, Content!

Content is king. It’s the entire reason why we’re here. Having said that, you need to make sure that you’re putting out top-notch content consistently. Usually, the more content you put out each week the better, but it all comes down to your central niche.

Some niches or industries require a lot more content than others. For example, if your central niche is focused on makeup trends, you can get away with putting out three to four pieces of content each week. However, if you’re running a lifestyle blog, you’ll probably want to put out more to cover all of the lifestyle trends to compete with others doing the same.

The main point is to ensure that the content you put out adds value to your visitors’ lives. You want it to be easy to consume and informative enough to really solve their burning pain points and questions. Your content should also be based on user intent, which means you need to have an understanding of who your audience really is and what they’re searching for.

So, your content checklist is as follows:

  • Make sure you’re putting out enough content for your niche or industry area each week.
  • Make sure that content revolves around what your audience is searching for and what’s trending (relative to your niche).
  • Make sure the content is authoritative, relatable, accurate, entertaining, and easy to consume.

Lastly, don’t forget about your old or aging content. Be sure to remove anything that’s irrelevant or audit content to see how you can update it.

3. Use the right keywords

In addition to the above point, you want to ensure that your content is searchable. Keywords are one of the mainstays when it comes to SEO best practices as they allow you to directly target your audience using the actual words they use to search for things on the internet.

More importantly, you want to use a mixture of both long-tail and short-tail keywords when producing your content. It used to be pertinent to grab the best keyword before it becomes “too competitive” and oversaturated for search engines to care about, but now, high search volumes and density aren’t as big a factor as long as you’re catering to user intent.

Additionally, long-tail keywords, such as “which of the following is an organic way of driving traffic to a brand site” aren’t as intimidating as they used to be. They typically end up matching the exact question multiple users are typing in, making them more valuable now than ever before.

Lastly, when it comes to keyword usage, you’ll want to avoid keyword stuffing at all costs. The best way to go about keyword implementation is to choose one primary keyword to base a piece of content around and three to five secondary keywords to sprinkle in if and where they fit.

How to use keywords correctly

Your primary keyword should be used in titles, H2 headers, your meta description, and anywhere else it contextually makes sense — just don’t overdo it, otherwise, search engines will see it as spammy. Also, don’t force your secondary keywords if they’re not working for the content.

Remember, the goal is to optimize your content for the user first and search engines second. If users are exiting your page because you’re keyword stuffing, putting out insufficient content, or even for poor grammar, search engines will pick up on that and drop your rankings.

4. Work on your internal linking

Internal links are simply hyperlinks that navigate your users to various pages while on the same website. Not to be confused with backlinks which are hyperlinks to a different website.

Your website’s internal linking structure provides search engines with a direct path to crawl throughout your site. This allows the search engine in question to make sense of your pages and their relevance, so they can provide users with the best possible answer to their questions. If the search engine has difficulty crawling your website, it’ll assume that your website isn’t trustworthy and push you way down in the SERPs.

The key to internal linking is to ensure that all the hyperlinks throughout your content and web copy make sense contextually. Therefore, you want to start by linking your parent and child pages, and then your content pages wherever it makes sense.

How to use internal linking correctly

For example, you want your landing page to link to your product or services pages and your sales pages. This allows users to see what you’re offering, where they can go for more information, and ultimately, where they can go to make a purchase decision.

You also want to create a sturdy web of linked content or blog pages. For example, let’s say your website’s niche is about user privacy consent and a user lands on a particular blog about a CMP (consent management platform). You’ll want to ensure that you’re contextual linking that blog to other pages that perhaps talk about new privacy legislations, the use of browser cookies, or what’s happening with regard to user privacy in general.

Lastly, ensure that your anchor text matches the subject matter of where the hyperlink will bring users. If you’re linking to another blog page that talks about cookieless identity solutions, but the hyperlinked text reads “third-party cookie deprecation,” it won’t make sense to search engines or your users.

5. Drive organic traffic via social media

Don’t ignore your off-page SEO.

Social media channels are incredibly powerful at reaching further into your audience and motivating them to check out your website — and yes, this works even if you’re not directly selling any products or services.

Social media platforms, like Instagram, allow you to put out more unique content and build a following. They also allow you to engage with your audience directly, making them feel valued and connected to your brand. You can also use them to advertise products or services directly for an affiliate commission or even get users to sign up for subscription services.

Bonus points if you can get them to share your content with others, further extending your reach to new audiences.

6. Track your metrics

Don’t forget to track your visitors and other metrics using tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console.

Being able to see how many more users are visiting your page, where they’re coming from, and what search queries they used to find you allows you to get a better understanding of your audience. It also allows you to tweak your content to better suit their needs and search inquiries.

In summary

A drop in traffic to your content can affect your advertising monetization potential. That’s why it’s imperative to optimize your content for organic search to ensure you have a steady flow of users coming to your website.

We’ve identified 6 simple methods that you can start implementing to drive more organic traffic to your content:

  1. Put your visitors first
  2. Content, Content, Content!
  3. Use the right keywords
  4. Work on your internal linking
  5. Drive organic traffic via social media
  6. Track your metrics

2022 has been a soft year for advertising revenue, so publishers may be looking for new ways to reverse the tide. Focusing on your content and who you’re writing for can be the first step toward recovery.

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