The best site in the world is worthless if no one visits it. Getting traffic and keeping it coming is therefore the top priority for any business that depends on site visitors to make sales and get leads. Fortunately, there are many things businesses can do to accomplish this goal.
- Use SEO to bring in visitors. Search engine optimization (SEO) is the first key, no matter what current “conventional wisdom” says. Great content and a great UX only matter when people can find it. In the absence of a multi-million dollar TV advertising budget, you’re going to need to show up high in the search engines for people to do that finding.
- Have useful content. Once the visitors arrive, there needs to be something for them to see. When your site exists to sell things, though, you don’t want to distract vistors with reams’ worth of articles and remotely related talk. Instead, make your content directly relevant to the product on the page. Add demonstration videos, reviews, usage instructions and other material. Content should be a part of your sales process—not in the way of it.
- Keep it fresh. In most cases, it’s not a good idea to put in a totally new web design just for the sake of freshness. Instead, make changes that are also improvements. The exception is if your site looks like it was coded in 1999. In that case, throwing out the old design just to look fresher is a great idea. If you don’t have anyone in your organization who’s proficient, look to outsource your web design.
- Add new content regularly. A common conundrum for retailers is the fact that information about stable products simply doesn’t change. If this problem affects your site, try adding a blog. Keep putting new posts on the blog to keep the search engines’ interests. Make sure to add plenty of links to the business end of your site so the blog visitors can find what’s important to you: the products.
- Don’t mess with what works! If you have a site design or sales pitch that highly converts, leave it alone. Change minor things instead.
- Never use your personal tastes to dictate your web design. You’re trying to sell things or get leads, not win Web design awards. Test several designs and use what accomplishes your real objectives.
- Make sure your site is easy to navigate. Visitors won’t return to a site that takes effort to figure out. A popular suggestion for this is to sit your grandmother in front of the computer and see if she can use your site. If she can’t, simplify it.
- Add “trust” seals to your site. People are more prone to return to sites that look legitimate. Your payment processor, your secure certificate provider and the trade organizations you belong to are great sources for the types of seals you need.
- Use social media to inform people of updates. Whenever you run a sale on your site, add an article to your blog and then update social media sites. Facebook posts and tweets are great for giving a little snippet about the sale and the URL you want people to see. The bonus is that your customers will appreciate knowing about your discounted products.
These are just a few ways to get traffic to your site and keep it coming back. Be creative and you’re sure to think of several more. Start today, and you may be amazed at how many return visitors you get!