If one of your goals this year is to create a website, it goes without saying that you want it to attract visitors. Whether you started the new year with a new business venture or got around to kicking off a blog in 2018, finally getting your idea out into the world is a wonderful feeling.

Many people struggle with driving traffic to their websites once they’ve taken all the steps necessary to build them. At GoDaddy, we’ve analyzed thousands of websites created using our GoCentral website builder to determine what these sites have in common. We discovered some key takeaways up-and-coming entrepreneurs and digital marketers like you can use to be successful in establishing and growing your customer base. 

Show Up in Search

Take some extra time at the start of the year to make sure that the keywords on your site are really working for you and are maximizing site traffic. Use a tool like Google AdWords to do research into the keywords that customers actually use to find your website and then make sure those are well represented. Put yourself in the mind of potential customers.

Your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts should align with what people are already searching. Doing so can pay off by increasing the number of visitors--and potential customers--to your website. GoDaddy found that website owners who’ve optimized their sites for search receive four to five times more traffic from Google compared to those who do not. 

Again, keep in mind the places your customers are most likely to look for you, for example on Google, Facebook, and Yelp. Make sure your company appears on these websites and that all your information is up to date.

A great way to show up more frequently in search is to have an secure sockets layer (SSL) certificate, as leading search engines are known to rank secure sites higher. Additionally, avoid being blacklisted from search engines, make sure your site is free of malware by using an online website scanner such as Site Check from Sucuri.

Publish Great Content

Once you’ve developed a website, the best way to drive traffic is to have compelling content. In addition to sharing information about your business and what your unique offerings are, a blog is great way to use content to drive traffic, share your point of view, and develop a relationship with your customers. 

Research what people in your industry are talking about, and use these topics as a guide when creating posts. Also include a mix of evergreen topics, such as how-to guides and tips.

Drive Traffic with Email Marketing

Communicating with customers through emails is a key component to driving new customers to your website and keeping customers loyal after their first visit.

Ensure that anything you send to customers adds value -- whether it’s an exclusive discount, updated events and offerings, or professional insights and recommendations based on your own experiences. After you’ve crafted the perfect message, craft a catchy and concise subject line, and you’re ready to go.

GoDaddy Email Marketing makes it simple to send beautiful emails to your database in a matter of minutes. You can have fun with marketing emails to customers by using emojis in the subject line, which can increase open rates by at least 20 percent. 

Keep Social Media Front and Center

If you’re not yet using social media, you’re missing out on an important way to drive traffic, capture new customers, and keep current customers informed. Be sure to include links to your website across all of your social sites. GoDaddy found that 61 percent of its high-traffic sites had an attached Facebook page, while 34 percent of low-traffic sites had a Facebook page linked to their website.

The visual nature of Instagram is a great way to show off products and menu items. Going a step further and including a link to your website in the bio section of your company’s Instagram profile is key to driving additional traffic to your site for customers who might be seeking out additional info. Similarly, utilizing the location feature is a useful way to increase foot traffic to brick-and-mortar locations and capture Instagram users who may be using the Explore tab to search for nearby businesses. 

If you’ve started posting regularly on social media--keep it up! An easy way to do this is to create a social media calendar and use social scheduling tool like Sprinklr or Hootsuite. Then, you can schedule a steady flow of content and remain top-of-mind for potential customers.

Take It Offline

You’ve made a great website, come up with smart and relevant content, and are communicating with customers to drive more traffic than ever to your website--now what? It’s crucial to not underestimate the potential impact of word-of-mouth and a real-world presence in connecting with potential customers. 

While many people are researching and finding companies to do business with through search and social media, you can still leverage the power of in-person connections to establish relationships and encourage people to go to your website in the future. Research events in your community--these could include craft fairs, farmers’ markets, city council meetings, and more. Making an effort to network with people nearby can go a long way toward increasing sales. Make sure that your business cards, including your website domain, are current and that you always have them handy. 

Whether your website is brand new, or you’re a seasoned pro, there’s always room to drive more people to your site. What are you waiting for?

Published on: Feb 14, 2018