5 DIY Tips for Driving Traffic to Your Website

Drving Traffic to Your Site

http://www.flickr.com/photos/honou/

You’ve just launched a beautiful, functional, sharable website and the first question you ask yourself is: “Now how am I going to get people to visit it?”

Once this question has been asked, it never stops being asked. Marketers all around the globe are all constantly asking themselves: “How can we get more eyeballs on our website? What will drive more traffic?” Well, the short answer is easy: Create something valuable and interesting, put it on your site–then tell people about it. The hard part is figuring out what is interesting to your audience and how to persuade them to check it out.

Here are 5 simple tips to get you started:

 1. Post Content Regularly

Not everything on your site will appeal to everybody. Sometimes your content will flop. Heck, it might flop most of the time. But getting traffic to your site is all about “failing until you succeed.” The only way to do this is by posting content consistently. It doesn’t even need to be your own content! It just needs to be consistent. Post something on your blog every week. That blog post could be a song, a poem, a picture, a video–anything. Announce the content on your social networks (Facebook, Twitter, Google+ etc). Don’t be disheartened if it doesn’t send traffic the first time. Keep at it.

When something does resonate, pay attention. How do you know it worked? People will leave comments and share your content with friends. When this happens, it’s important to figure out what resonated with your audience so you can do it again. Adjust your strategy accordingly. This is a surefire method towards increased traffic.

2. Encourage Your Audience to Share and Participate

You need to tell your audience what to do. Teach them how to interact with your website. You need to be clear. Ask your audience a question in every blog post and encourage them to answer in the comments section. Show your audience where your share buttons are. Ask them to share your content on their social networks. Sometimes people just need a nudge.

3. Get Involved in Online Communities

Find communities online that share your interests and tastes. Google Blog search is a good place to start. Are you a folk musician? Search for “folk music blogs.” Are you a hip-hop artist? Search for “hip-hop blogs.” Seek out good blogs and then follow the writers on Facebook and Twitter. Join the email lists and subscribe to newsletters.

Once you have joined a community, first listen and learn, then ask questions and participate. Don’t try to drive traffic to your site right away. It will come naturally as you get more involved. Promoting yourself too quickly can turn people off.

4. Promote Your Site in the Real World

Believe it or not, we don’t all live and breathe online. Make sure that you promote your website in the real world. All your promotional materials should be printed with your web address. Make sure to mention your site at live events. Pass out business cards or hand bills with your web address. Also use incentives: “Visit my website this weekend and download a free copy of my latest…”

5. Get Links to Your Site

The more that people link to you, the better your website will rank in search engines. Think of “link building” as “relationship building.” As you build relationships with bloggers, fans, reporters, and like-minded artists, don’t be afraid to trade links. Give something and you will probably get something. Here are a few link-building ideas, but there are many more out there:

  • Offer to do a guest post on another site that contains a link back to your own website.
  • Give a blogger’s audience a 30% discount on your new album or eBook as a limited-time promotion
  • Do a Facebook trade where you promote someone’s site, and in exchange, they promote yours.
  • Offer a video contest and then post all the videos on your website. Contestants will undoubtedly share and link to that page.
  • Weigh in on forums and in blog comments and link back to your own site when the conversation is relevant

Do you have any tips for driving traffic to your website? Tell us your ideas in the comments below.

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29 comments to 5 DIY Tips for Driving Traffic to Your Website

  • Steven Cravis

    It’s really interesting how much things can be cross promoted, and tie different sites, including our own, together. I had composed the music for an app developed by Fallen Tree Games. Today a fan alerted me that Amazon had the app (Quell 
    http://www.amazon.com/Fallen-Tree-Games-Quell/dp/B0055SWM08/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1334101537&sr=8-1  ) as the free app of the day. So I promoted the link at Amazon on my facebook page 
    http://www.facebook.com/stevencravismusic  and announced it to my 
    http://www.hostbaby.com/features/listbaby/  email list simultaneously. The app was getting great reviews which was also driving fans to my site for the soundtrack 
    http://www.stevencravis.com/quell/ 

  • Steven Cravis

    Great article. Thank you, Chris. Sites can work really well together. A fan of my music alerted me that the app Quell, which I wrote music for, was being promoted by Amazon as a free Android app of the day today (April 10, 2012) at 
    http://www.amazon.com/Fallen-Tree-Games-Quell/dp/B0055SWM08/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1334101537&sr=8-1 so on my facebook page 
    http://www.facebook.com/stevencravismusic and through my hostbaby email list ( 
    http://www.hostbaby.com/features/listbaby/ ) I promoted the Amazon link. Meanwhile many new Android users discovering the app and my music for the first time, came to purchase my soundtrack at 
    http://www.stevencravis.com/quell/  Another thing I constantly see artists under-utilizing is the description field of their own youtube videos which allows you to put a hyperlink to your main site.

  • Alien Skin

    Having a HostBaby music site, in my experience, I have found that people are constantly put off commenting on my blogs because the verification system being used is extremely awkward & frustrating to use. People have to try it a number of times before they are able to successfully post their comment. In the end they never attempt to use it again. I have been told this over and over.

    I know we need spam protection, but this is overkill in my opinion. I have expressed this concern to HostBaby before, with no resolution. I again ask if HostBaby can please make the process less painful. Our blogs do not need that level of protection. Thank you.

  • Sarah

     I whole heartedly agree with you on this one.

  • Johnny

    I couldn’t agree with this guy any more, he is soo right. Its a right pain and needs addressing right away, you can’t read some of the wording and it gets very frustrating and will definately put people off.

  • Hi Alien,

    Nobody likes Captchas (the hard to read letters you have to copy), but right now they are the safest way to prevent spammers (and hackers) from causing problems with your site.

    An alternative we’ve seen is using a social login as some sites do these days, ie using a Facebook verify or login, but then users get worried about privacy concerns and linking their Facebook page to your site, etc.

  • Alien Skin

    Chris, thank you for your response. You misunderstood my point, I am not against Captchas but ask that the HostBaby Captcha be simplified in line with standard Captchas on other major social sites.  The complexity and therefore difficulty in reading the HostBaby captcha is I believe unnecessary and overkill. I’m repeatedly told by people that it frustrates them after a number of attempts and they give up and don’t bother to return.

    I agree we need Captchas to ensure that it’s human input but simply ask that they be more legible and logical. Thank you:)

  • Ah gotcha. I’ll pass along your feedback to the dev team. I’m not sure what other options might be available.

  • Leahbrookeconway

    I’ve been so hands off with my website and social networking – thanks for the tips.  I will make a genuine effort to put this advice to good use! 
    -Leah of Lourah
    http://www.lourah.com    :)

  • This almost sounds like an anti-copyright statement!
    “””Steven
    Pressfield, an American novelist, said, “Creative work is not a selfish
    act or a bid for attention on the part of the actor. It’s a gift to the
    world and every being in it. Don’t cheat us of your contribution.”””

  • My first author website was created from scratch by yousr truly. It did okay. With the publication of my second novel, I decided to step it up a bit and used HostBaby to get my website updated. I am willing to work hard to promote it but there is only so much one can do. Can anyone recommend a marketing company for the promotion of books and websites? http://www.michaelaltieriauthor.com/index/

  • Hmm. I’m not sure why it didn’t post automatically. I usually only moderate posts with links in them. I white listed your email, so you should be able to post immediately from know on.

  • Makes perfect sense, I think I’ve got some of these elements in play. Will see how this works.

  • Praverb Dot Net

    I think that the hardest thing is getting people to comment. Last month everything started clicking for my website due to following tips from here, Copyblogger and Problogger.

    People started sharing the material and comments are slowing increasing. The key is presenting headlines that build interest.

  • Great stuff as always from these blog posts.

    I have found that Blog-Twitter-FB (in that order) are my most important tools to drive/create traffic.

    Write good content on your blog, share that link (and other great stuff/ReTweets) on Twitter/FB, then make sure your blog has links to your personal/music site (as well as social links to complete the circle).

    Effective!

    EC

  • Following Rule #5 
    Get links to your Site:

    http://www.jamclouds.com

    Sorry you can delete me now, but I like you pointers! Thanx!

  • Now follow rule #1. Put SOME kind of content on your page!!!!!

  • Enjoyed your post. It prompted me to post a new blog about a song I wrote: http://reflectworship.com/2012/05/struggle-depression-there/

  • blogs are great, makes interacting easy with people and response and curiosity, like i am sure you are going to click on this link to find out whats its about  http://www.starplus.ca/mytunes 

  • Enndee2003

    Presumably, everyone who has posted a message here has read the tips? Incredibly then, why have quite a few people failed to included any links to their blog/twitter/facebook/website? Shameful!!!!!
    http://www.ginstreetband.com

  • Dave

    what about live shows? people see you live, they get true content … want to know more so they visit your website in a day or two… or am i old school?

  • Ahartfeltllife

    Great great information and thank you for sharing and caring.. 

  • Larry Densmore

    very helpful for the post war generation
    like myself (Born In The  USA! i mean Canada
    and without a computer) larry densmore,
    inspirational poet since the 1960s.

  • You are correct Larry. That is a great way to drive traffic.

  • My husband and I have our website since 2010 and have done a lot of work to publish our sheet music as well as the 5 CDs .We neither tour nor have much else beside my FB . We decided to give away our songs and sheet music through free download. We write Christian music, if you are interested, please feel free to visit us at http://www.teresaofsong.com . We are grateful to get a lot of help through CD Baby to set up our website. The staff are always so cheerful and helpful.Thanks to everyone at CD Baby. TV 

  • Donald

    QR codes are good. One great  way I discovered for one of my acts was to write piece about the history of the song, especially if a cover and why you choose to do it and link to your version at the stores.

    Here is interesting statistic this acts most downloaded track was never released as a single , has no video or YouTube presence and no audio on the site, is a cover and all from one article about the song and talking 5K downloads + 
    Just thought worth sharing. Great article.

  • I definitely agree with the ‘real-world’ networking! As difficult as it is to understand sometimes, especially when you’re a musician being sucked into (what seems like) a new social networking site every 12 hours, it really does make a big difference… ya know… meeting people the ‘old fashioned way,’ in real life! I recently made some extremely simple business cards for free at Vista Print (a good way to get cards, you just pay for shipping on select designs) and I have noticed traffic on my website, blog, and social media sites increasing the more cards I give out to people. Engaging people is a critical step, and we’re still social animals made for face-to-face interaction. If you have even a 2-minute conversation with someone in person, and then hand them a card with your website on it, you’ve done more than a lot of online advertising can do. They will be more likely to visit your site because…. surprise surprise… they *know* you already! Now that I’m doing freelance work from home, I’m reminded of this a lot. I miss working in my old coffee shop because my co-workers and regular clients were always asking about my music, when my next shows were, what kind of music I made, etc., and I definitely miss having those opportunities as often as I used to.

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