You probably already understand the difference between paid and organic traffic. Paid traffic comes from the paid advertising you do with the specific outcome of getting people to download your eBook or visit your website by clicking on the link in the ad. Organic traffic is what finds you naturally due to your ranking on Google, simply being visible in a Google search result, or using social media to showcase what you do without paying for it.
Organic traffic boils down to providing helpful content for your target audience so that they’ll share it with others.
– Neil Patel
What is the value of organic traffic?
The answer to that question depends on WHAT you were hoping to get from producing a website or other marketing content. Did you want to get people to see you as an authority in your niche area? Was the idea to gain leads by having people download a piece of content where you could capture their email address? What did you want to do by producing the content?
Answer that question first, and it will help in determining the value of your organic traffic. If you answered that you want more people to visit your site and to see you as the “authority,” then the value to you will be in the number of visitors you receive to your site on a daily/weekly/monthly/yearly basis. You’ll measure that value by noticing how that organic traffic has grown over time.
You might also place value on the number of sites that have backlinked to your content. Determining what you are hoping to gain from delivering the content is the key to understanding your organic traffic’s value.
What drives organic traffic to your website?
As Neil Patel says, the type of traffic that drives people to your site is content that your audience will share. The craziest thing about content is that the piece that goes viral may be something that you might not have expected. It might be very heartfelt and people connect with it at an emotional level, or it could be a controversial piece that people want to rebuff. Either way, the more people resonate with your content, the more likely people will share it.
Another critical factor is how Google sees you. If in evaluating your site content, Google considers you an authority on the subject that your content is about, you are more likely to rank higher in search results. And that means more people will click on the link to your site. It is worth considering as you develop your SEO strategy what topic you want to be identified as the authority for.
As you will have read in our recent algorithm post, several elements on a website or individual page factor into your page ranking in Google search results. The more you consider those elements and update them based on the changes to the algorithm, the more likely you are to increase your organic traffic.
5 Secrets to Driving Organic Traffic
Here are five different strategies that factor into how your website content is shown to potential visitors and will positively impact your organic reach.
1. Make frequent updates to your website.
Frequently updating your website content is very valuable. There is a mix of responses to the question “How often should I update my website content,” but the most common answer is weekly. Develop at least one new educational blog post a week on a set day. Your website visitors will learn that you post regularly on a Thursday and are more likely to visit the site to see what this week’s post is about. Consistency is the key.
2. Edit post titles.
You may have developed a title for a piece of content, and while it felt okay, it wasn’t a standout heading. Your keyword might be toward the end of the title, for example, rather than at the front. In revisiting and editing page or post titles, you might develop more engaging titles that will rank higher because the title connects with a question or the desired answer from that person searching the web.
So think about revisiting and updating titles on articles and even website pages. SEM Rush suggests doing these simple things:
- Use numbers to stop eyes from wandering away from your content.
- Make sure that the headline is simple and descriptive so readers know exactly what they are getting.
- Include “how,” “why,” or “what” in the title as these words make people click.
- Use the right trigger words and create urgency.
3. Add meta descriptions based on Google search console findings.
Your Google search console will provide you with valuable insights into what your page meta description looks like. One set of advice says you don’t need to change the meta description that Google chose as it knows from its indexing what your page is about, so it pulls together the best meta description of it. The other advice talks about writing your unique meta description to take advantage of keywords or phrases. You might want to try both options to see which gives you the best organic reach.
This video helps you understand the google search console if you haven’t dived into it before.
4. Add extra content to make your posts longer.
Remember that Google now values longer posts of at least 1,000 words. Pages that contain more words provide more valuable content for site visitors by exploring the topics they study. For each of the posts that you have on your website, review them and look at how you can add content to make the post at least 1,000 words.
Where you already have posts that are long enough, consider adding even more content, perhaps another perspective, or a new take or gap that you notice about that topic.
5. Update the media by adding in videos, pictures, and more.
Another way to drive organic traffic to your content is to add other media to your posts. If you have a YouTube channel, make your posts more authoritative to rank higher in Google by adding appropriate YouTube videos to posts you already have. Or create new long-form posts that include a video.
Remember that the key to driving organic traffic to your content is to make it specifically for your target audience and as shareable as it can be.