You’ve got a website, but without any traffic (visitors) it will never be worth anything. It certainly won’t make you any money! So we need to figure out how to get people to our site. Most importantly, at least at the beginning, is getting them there for free! That is what we call “organic traffic”.
Now, you might be thinking that all we’ve built so far is a rough framework. There is really nothing there to see. Why would anyone want to visit an empty site? Don’t we need to add stuff to our site before we worry about traffic?
Well, kind of. It’s a little like that age-old question, “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?”
Yes, we need more stuff on our site before we will get any traffic.
But we need to understand who our visitors are and how we get that traffic before we can put the stuff on our site.
It may sound like a confusing cycle, so let me clear it up.
There are 3 things to understand about adding content to our site that will lead to traffic:
- Content Creation
Each of these will be their own lessons following this one. Right now what we need to go over is how each one relates to the organic traffic we hope to get to our site.
Our path to getting organic traffic begins with keywords, because organic traffic comes from keywords.
A Google search is the primary means of how we will get organic traffic to our site. To perform a Google search we type words into the search bar. That could be a single word, or a ten-word question. Either way, it is a keyword.
That’s right. Anything that can be searched for in Google is a keyword. So we have to find good keywords that people are searching for in order for them to find our site.
But what do we do with those keywords?
SEO, or search engine optimization, is how we help Google (or Yahoo!, Bing, MSN Search, etc.) understand what our pages are about.
And SEO begins with keywords.
We find our keyword and strategically place it on our pages.
This helps our pages rank higher in the search results, and increases the chance of people visiting our site.
But a simple keyword on a page doesn’t do anything.
Our keyword, used properly for SEO, is the basis of our content. That keyword is the topic, the content about that keyword is why people visit our site.
Our job is to create quality, informative content about things that people are looking for. When we do that, we build up their trust in us. When they trust us, they are more likely to buy from us.
And that is the goal of business. Turning a visitor into a customer.
Turning Visitors Into Customers
To make things a little clearer, think of a real store. Walmart. A grocery store. A hardware store. They all have products they want to sell (just like our website).
In order for them to sell their products, they need people to come in the front door (like our website traffic).
To turn a visitor into a customer, they need to provide the product they advertise. You wouldn’t buy a gallon of milk at the hardware store. You wouldn’t expect the grocery store to sell you a new kitchen faucet.
Providing the advertised product is like us providing content related to our keyword.
We can’t advertise a site about winter sports gear, then provide content about car parts.
That’s Why We’re Talking About Traffic Before Content
If we don’t understand how content creation attracts traffic first, our content creation efforts will be wasted.
So, as we move through the next three lessons, remember that our organic (free) traffic starts with a search.
That’s our keyword.
We need to use that keyword according to the rules of SEO.
This will get us noticed in the search results.
Then we need to provide the content that our visitors are looking for.
That’s how we turn a visitor into a customer.
Now that we understand the steps we will have to take to get traffic to our site, we want to define the type of traffic that we want. And that is the type that is ready to buy.
Our goal in our online business is to sell stuff. Whether that is a physical product like a book or a Crock Pot, or a training program, or a service, we need to sell it to make money.
In order to do that we target traffic through specific keywords (more on this in the next lesson).
We know that we want to write content related to our keywords. By providing information, we build trust.
Well, we can offer a wide range of information. We can have lots of pages about what something is, what it does, and how it works. This is the kind of information that people look for every day, and the type of content that will bring lots of people to our site.
We can also offer information on which brand of a particular type of product is the best. These types of comparison and review pages help people decide what to buy.
Then we can give our visitors information on where to buy that product.
All of these types of posts are good for getting traffic. But the last one is the type that will allow us to make money online.
In fact, that is the basis of affiliate marketing. We tell people the best place to buy something, provide a link to the product, and get a commission if they buy (more on this in lesson 9).
So we only want to target the customers who are ready to buy, right?
If you went to a site looking for information, and every page was covered with “Buy Now!” and “Buy Here!” or “Purchase This!”, how long would you stick around?
Not very long, right?
What if you went to a site that told you about an item, and then explained the differences between the various options, and went on to offer advice on the best place to buy and get the best price?
You’d probably spend more time at that second site, right?
And since they were so helpful, you’d feel better about clicking on one of the few “Buy Here” buttons they showed you than you would the hundreds of “Buy Now!” buttons the first site offered.
We want to be that second site. When we can capture visitors at every stage of that cycle, be win.
The Customer Purchase Lifecycle
What we just looked at is the Customer Purchase Lifecycle. It’s the steps that every customer naturally goes through before making a purchase.
The general “about” posts give customers an idea of what the product is. This helps them decide IF they want to buy it.
The comparison and review posts give customers an idea of which type or brand they want to buy.
The “best place to buy” or “lowest price” posts help customers decide where to buy.
The about posts should be just that: Information.
But the comparison and review posts, and of course the “buy here” posts, are great places for you to advertise the product so you can earn a commission.
When you provide a site that helps in all these stages of the customer purchase lifecycle, you become an authority in your visitors’ eyes, and they will come back and tell their friends about you.
That means return traffic and free word-of-mouth advertising for you!
Now that we know what traffic is and where it comes from, our next lesson will delve into keyword research, and how we can get those customers to our site.
It would be great if you could rate this article, and let me know what you thought in the comments below. Ask questions. Tell me what you would like to see added to the site!
As always, thanks for reading, and the best of luck on your journey to financial independence,
If you ever have any questions, you can contact me here.
P.S. For the best affiliate marketing training in the industry, and detailed instructions on keywords, SEO, and content creation, take a look at my Wealthy Affiliate Review. It is the training I received there that made this site possible. I am still an active member in the community, and learn new things every time I log in. You could too! I hope to see you there.