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The #1 question we get over, and over, and over again, is “how do I get more traffic to my site?”
Well Noah, Sarah, and I put our heads together, and we came up with every single way we could think of to grow your site.
We went so deep on it, that I’d go so far as to say that you never need to look at another list of ideas for “getting more traffic” ever again.
But as you can imagine, this is a MASSIVE list. There are over 120 ways, and every single way has a short description to help get your ideas flowing.
So here’s what I recommend:
It has every tactic, links to additional info, and rankings on the difficulty, cost, and potential impact for each tactic, plus a guide to help you choose where to start.
And if you can think of a useful traffic generating idea that we DIDN’T think of, leave a comment with the idea and we’ll add it to the list with a link to your site for credit!
Create a Quora profile with a link back to your page or to relevant articles, then start posting answers to questions that people have.
As appropriate, you can include links to your articles in the answers, which will drive even more traffic back to you.
Just be careful not to seem too spammy or self-promotional. Your answers should provide value, with the link to your site being an added bonus.
Getting started: Create a Quora account, follow topics relevant to what you work on or write about, and start engaging! You can also use the Kissmetrics Quora marketing guide for more ideas.
Okay, this one’s obvious, just wanted to remind you of it in case you forgot :)
Aside from your personal Facebook page, create a “brand” Facebook page that links to your site and that shares your new articles.
This lets people follow the content that you’re creating, see what your brand is up to, and is a necessary step if you want to try doing Facebook ads.
The Facebook page can also help your search engine rankings, since it’s another indicator of your digital presence when people are looking for you on Google.
Getting started: This is a big part of getting free traffic from Facebook, so be sure to check out our guide on that!.
On your Twitter profile there’s a space to include a URL-- use it! Include a link to your site, newsletter, or favorite article you’ve written so that when people see you on Twitter they know where they can get more of your content or learn more about your business.
Just like Twitter, Instagram gives you space to add a link out to your site. This is actually the only place on Instagram that you can use a URL, so take advantage of it!
Now when people find your pictures they know where to go to see more of what you have to offer.
Whenever you’re logged in to Skype, have a link to your site in your status. It’s a good reminder to anyone you’ve connected with before to check out your site and see what’s new.
And again, having a link to your site from your social media profiles not only helps people discover you, it also helps you get a bit more SEO juice to your site by pointing more profiles at it.
Find a small podcast that talks about anything related to your business, and then reach out to the host about interviewing you as a guest. Once you’ve done a smaller one, you can use that interview to score bigger and bigger interviews and move up through the podcast ranks!
Just be sure that there’s a mention of your site and business somewhere in the interview, and that they mention it again at the end.
Getting started: Read through Taylor Pearson's guide to getting interviewed on podcasts and get to work!
Or, you can start your own podcast! Think of influencers that you’d want to interview from your target market, and invite them to be guests on your show.
Depending on how big your reach is, it might be harder to get bigger guests, but as your audience grows you’ll be able to get more and more influential people to join you.
Then ask them to promote it to their list. Now with every new guest you have, you’re getting exposed to their audience and growing your number of listeners.
Getting started: Follow Pat Flynn’s guide to starting a podcast, based on how he successfully built the Smart Passive Income one.
Depending on what you’re selling or writing about, videos can be an excellent way to supplement your content.
Create videos of walkthroughs on how to do something your audience is interested in, or of you working on your business, or showcasing new products. Try showing different things and seeing what people resonate with most.
Getting started: Constant Contact has a 10-step guide for helping you get started with YouTube.
Any pictures you’ve taken or made for your site can be submitted to picture sharing sites like Flickr. Then just link those photos back to your site in order to get some traffic from them.
As an added bonus, photos from these image aggregators rank higher in Google, so you could get search traffic from your images as well.
Getting started: Make a Flickr account if you don’t have one, and as you take pictures upload them with links back to your site.
If you use Vine, make sure you have a link to your site from your profile. That way when people watch your videos and want to learn more about you or your product, they can go find you on Vine.
If you’re using YouTube or Periscope as a channel, and even if you’re not, you can post snippets of your content to Vine with a call to action to learn more on your site at the end. If the videos are fun and get shared, you’ll get a new source of traffic to your site.
Getting started: Want to use Vine for traffic? Kissmetrics can help you out.
Include a link to your site or company in your LinkedIn description. And if it’s part of your work, include it as your experience as well. Not only does it get you more traffic from people visiting your LinkedIn, it adds legitimacy to your site since you have it listed there as a business.
Getting started: This is part of getting traffic from LinkedIn, so that resource will help you maximize it!
Join LinkedIn groups related to your target market or readers, and then share your articles there in order to get some free traffic.
Many people in professional LinkedIn groups are also looking for things to share on their sites, so putting your content in front of them this way (as long as it’s related to their interests) can get you more shares as well.
Getting started: This is part of getting traffic from LinkedIn, so that resource will help you maximize it!
If you’re a developer and regularly use GitHub, you can include a URL on your profile page to send people to your site.
Then, as you contribute to public repositories or help out with other people’s bugs, you’ll have people clicking back to your profile and on to your site.
If you use any other smaller social networks, include links to your site from your profiles there as well. Sometimes these niche ones will convert even higher since the people there are more dedicated to the community, and if you’re an active member they’ll be interested in seeing more about you.
When you post a new article don’t just share it once, use Buffer to schedule it to share multiple times in the near future. Tweet about it a few times in the next week, post it to Facebook and LinkedIn twice, use whatever schedule you think works best for you audience.
This way anyone who missed the post the first time has the opportunity to see it later.
On top of Buffer, use Edgar to automatically re-share content later.
Edgar adds your content to a library and then shares it out on a schedule so that you don’t have to keep Buffering it in the future. Now you always have good content going out to your Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn audiences, without having to worry about it!
There are a few people hanging out on Google+, so it doesn’t hurt to post your articles there as well. The site also recommends and categorizes content by tags, so make sure you’re applying the right #hashtags to your content!
Getting started: If you haven’t used Google+ much for promotion in the past, check out this interview on Social Media Examiner.
Just like Facebook and Twitter, having a G+ profile with a link to your site not only helps you get traffic from a new audience, it also gives your site more authority in Google’s eyes.
Beyond just sharing your content on your own Google+ page, there are tons of communities within G+ that you can join and share your content to. This is a great option if you don’t have many followers on G+, since members of a community are usually going to be more active than the hundreds of followers you might have who never log on.
Getting started: The same Social Media Examiner interview will help you with G+ communities as well.
If you have strong visuals to go with your products or articles, share them on Pinterest with relevant hashtags. People on Pinterest love anything artsy, visual, or creative, so show that part of your business and site most of all.
Just don’t forget to link back to your site!
Getting started: If you really want to crush it on Pinterest, check out Kissmetric’s ultimate guide.
Include your snapchat username and your “snapcode” on your blog and encourage people to follow you. It’s a good way to engage with your audience, and whenever you publish a new post you can take a few snaps of it telling them to go read it.
Getting started: To leverage Snapchat for your brand, look through this Soldsie piece on how to start building your Snapchat following.
Obviously you can’t share a whole article to Instagram, but you can take one quote or idea from it, use a tool like Canva to make a nice image out of it, then share that picture on Instagram telling people to go to your site and read more.
Getting started: Sproutsocial will help you with building out your Instagram marketing strategy.
Reach out to an Instagram account with a similar audience and size to you and offer to do a share-exchange. You share one of their posts (branded with their URL) and in return, they share one of yours. It’s like guest posting for social media!
Getting started: Make a list of other Instagram accounts in your niche, and then as you gain more followers offer to do share exchanges with ones that are a similar size to you.
Your audience might be more international than you realize. Check your Google Analytics for the location that people are visiting your site from, and if a decent percentage are from outside the US, you could try encouraging them to share articles to their friends through WhatsApp using Share buttons.
It surprised me too, but a lot of sites are getting a good amount of traffic through WhatsApp sharing.
Whenever you have a particularly good piece of content, create a SlideShare of it as an additional way for people to digest and share the most important points.
This also puts you in the SlideShare content network, where you can get discovered by people browsing through SlideShares to learn new things.
Just be sure to include links back to your site!
Getting started: David Gerhardt can show you how to get thousands of visitors from slideshares in this article.
Twitter’s new app, Periscope, allows you to stream live video to your followers. This lets you engage with them directly in a way that no other medium provides, and you can answer questions that they throw out at you as you’re going.
Then, as you’re broadcasting, you can mention articles or products of yours they should look at as they apply to the questions being asked.
Getting started: If you’re not sure where to begin, HubSpot can give you a few fun ideas.
Make exciting and visually appealing infographics out of your best posts and share them on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc. and make sure the infographics has links back to your site in it.
You can also let people reading the original article download the infographic to refer back to later, or to share on social media.
One easy way to encourage other people to share your content (and thus increase your traffic) is to add social sharing buttons (like the ones you see on the left).
If you mention an influencer or brand in your content, shoot them an email or tag them on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. If the content is good and makes them look good, they’ll frequently share it with their audiences.
Getting started: Whenever you post a new piece of epic content, make a list of people you mentioned in it and send them a quick tweet or email with a link to the article! If it's good, they'll likely share it.
Submitted by NicoleMarie
One way to get more targetted traffic from Twitter is to join Twitter chats on topics that are relevant to you.
These chats usually happen at a certain time of the week and are followed by a hashtag (e.g. #sumochat). Any tweet you want to contribute to the chat, you just include the hashtag on.
If someone asks for information on a topic that you know you have an article on, or that's relevant to your brand, you can drop in a link to your site, so long as you don't seem too spammy or self-promotional.
Getting started: This is part of getting more traffic from Twitter, so that guide will help you out!
Submitted by NicoleMarie
If there's not a good Twitter chat to join, or if you just want to own your own, then consider starting one!
It's a great way to engage with your community and build your Twitter presence, and also to figure out what questions your readers have that you could answer with future content.
Getting started: Pick a topic, hashtag, and a date and time. Let your audience know about the chat by email, then when it starts you can get the discussion going by posting some questions you have for them. Make sure you respond to every tweet to keep people engaged!
Since message boards are mostly for discussion, there’s one golden rule you should follow when using them:
Always give more than you take.
Be an active, contributing member in the community before you ask people to check out your site. Don’t just run in and throw your links around hoping people will click them. They won’t, they’ll get annoyed at you, and you might get banned.
Yahoo Groups are communities of like minded people talking about their interests, and is a perfect place to find people who could be interested in your products or content.
A Facebook Group is a common and popular way to find people who are interested in the niche that you’re targeting. It’s easy to search Facebook for all of the groups related to your field, and then you can pick the ones that have the most people and activity.
One thing to note is that many groups will have rules about when you can post links to your site, and how active you can be in plugging yourself, so make sure you read the sidebar before you share anything!
Getting started: This is a big part of getting free traffic from Facebook, so be sure to check out our guide on that!
Another option if you don’t want to play by the rules of other people’s Facebook groups is to make your own. Create a group for people interested in the kinds of things you talk about or sell on your site, and build a community of like minded people discussing that niche.
Then, when you have new articles or content, you can share as much as you want! Just don’t do it too much or you’ll turn people off from the community and they’ll think you’re using them.
Getting started: This also falls under the umbrella of free traffic from Facebook, so that guide can take care of you.
Similar to Yahoo groups, you can find Google Groups that fit your niche and share articles or ideas there.
If you’re a member of any Slack Teams, you can share your new articles there with people who might be interested in them. Or you can share a link to another place that you’ve posted your article (such as reddit) and suggest they go vote it up and comment on it.
Just like with Facebook, sometimes the best strategy is to just make your own Slack community and share your content there. That way you know you won’t get in trouble with the admins, and you also know that everyone who’s in the Slack team is interested in what you have to share with them.
As an experiment, we created a Slack team to go along with our Traffic1m course, and it ended up getting over 6,000 signups!
Getting started: Buffer has an overview of how you can leverage this kind of message board to grow your site.
Aside from the big chat platforms like Google, Facebook, and Slack, you can find more niche forums on specific topics related to your industry.
With these especially, it’s important to become an active contributing member before you ask for anything from them. Don’t just run in and start promoting yourself, become a respected contributor so that members want to read your stuff.
Find relevant subreddits to your niche and share your content or products with them.
Just be careful! Reddit doesn’t like self promotion, so you don’t want to just throw links to your site up without becoming a member of the community first.
Also, make sure to look at their guidelines for what they allow to be posted. Some subreddits will only let you submit text, others will let links but no personal blog posts, and so on. Follow the rules and you won’t get banned.
Getting started: Eddy Azar explained exactly how to growth hack reddit for massive traffic. Check it out!
If you have some initial audience, and can speak as an expert in your field, try hosting a reddit AMA where you audience and people on reddit can ask you questions.
Do it within a more targeted subreddit than the default AMA one. If you write a lot about carpentry, try doing an AMA on your experience as a carpenter in /r/carpentry.
Getting started: If you’re thinking of doing a reddit AMA, Big Fish PR has 5 things you should keep in mind.
If you have an actual product, book, game, or podcast episode, you can submit it to Product Hunt and be included in their daily list of cool new things for other people on the Internet to find.
If you resonate with their community, you’ll likely get thousands, or tens of thousands, of new site visitors.
Getting started: To make the most out of ProductHunt, check out Bram’s guide to how he launched the #2 most upvoted product ever.
Sharing new articles to these sites can result in a ton of new traffic as well, so long as you don’t come across as spammy and make sure that you’re sharing something worthwhile.
In your email signature, set your name to link to your site, or include a call to action in the signature telling people why they should go look at your site.
If you have a team, make sure that everyone in the company has their email signatures driving traffic back to the site, especially if there’s something specific you want people to do like refer their friends for job openings.
If you go offline for a few days, set up a “vacation” autoresponder that tells people to check out your site while you’re gone.
Or just set one up to go out all the time saying you’re slow at responding to email. A little annoying? Yes, but you’ll get a lot less email and more traffic :)
Submitted by Darren Davis of Link Caffeine.
Before or after you write a post, you can find people who have tweeted about similar topics using BuzzSumo then reach out to them about your upcoming, or posted, article.
Ask them if they'd like an early look, and to possibly be mentioned in it, and then their investment will likely result in them helping a bit with promotion once it's live!
Getting started: Check out this case study from Brian Dean on how this tactic resulted in 17,584 visitors in one day.
Or this case study from Jason Quey which more than tripled the shares when promoting an unsexy article.
If you have a new product or feature that certain blogs or publications would want to tell their readers about, let the writers know! They’re always looking for great stories, and if you know how to pitch, getting picked up isn’t hard.
Getting started: Read Jordan’s article on how to get press coverage and follow his steps to get easy exposure.
If you have a news site, or are putting out a lot of timely content, you should work on getting listed in Google News.
All it requires is a few changes to how your articles are structured, and following some of their content rules, and then you’ll immediately be exposed to hundreds of thousands more people with each article.
Getting started: Read up on the tips to get listed on Google News, and keep putting out good content.
By signing up for HARO (help a reporter out) you have the opportunity to be interviewed by reporters looking for experts in a certain field.
They need people to interview for articles, so they turn to HARO to source them. When you select a few fields that you’re knowledgeable in, you’ll get emails daily from reporters looking for experts on related topics.
Then, if you’re interviewed, you can mention an article or part of your site relevant to the interview.
Reach out to radio stations in your area about bringing you on to talk about any issues or topics relevant to your niche. Making yourself available as an expert makes their life easier since now they know who they need to go to whenever they need a guest to talk about certain areas.
Then during the broadcast make sure there’s a way for you to tactfully mention your site. Ideally, they’ll mention it in the intro and outro of your interview.
Getting started: The site might look a little janky, but these are some great tips to help you start getting radio features.
Similar to radio, if you can be interview for TV segments on topics related to your niche, they’ll usually include mentions of your site which will result in new traffic for you. The easiest way to make this happen is to start small with more local news networks, and then use those interviews to work your way up to the big ones.
Getting started: Take advantage of current events and leverage yourself as an expert along with the guidelines here.
Assuming you still use business cards, make sure they have a link to your site on them.
To be extra aggressive about it, take off your email, phone number, and anything else. Have it just be your name, title, and website. That way they have to go through your site to get to you.
If you have a physical presence (store, booth, etc.) make sure that it has links to your site anywhere that people might see them regularly. Someone could be interested in your business but doesn’t want to buy or engage yet, so they might go to your site instead.
Find conferences and events that are related to your target market, and offer to help sponsor them. People who are interested in the event (whether or not they attend) will see the list of sponsors and potentially visit your site to learn more.
Getting started: Find events in your target niche and offer to sponsor them. The “entry level” sponsorships might only be a few hundred dollars and could drive tons of new eyes to your brand.
Look for experts in your area that could host a workshop related to your target market, then host an event where they give a presentation or work with the audience on the topic.
This lets you network with a local expert, make them look good, and build interest in your business and site at the same time.
Getting started: If you’ve never hosted a workshop and aren’t sure where to start, check out this guide by Scott Berkun.
As you build up your traffic, hosting a conference related to your brand or niche is a great way to spread your reach even further. People who are already engaging with your site will invite their like-minded friends, and the publicity of hosting a large conference will boost your traffic even more.
Getting started: Lloyed wrote an excellent guide to hosting a successful conference with big-name speakers in under three months which should give you some ideas.
Your laptop is an advertising tool just waiting to be taken advantage of. Make some stickers that showcase your website (don’t forget the URL if your SEO is low) and put them front and center on the back of your laptop.
Not only will curious people in coffee shops check it out, they might strike up a conversation with you about it.
Getting started: Check out Sticker Mule to get some seriously nice looking stickers for your brand. Don’t cheapen your brand by getting bad stickers :)
If your site has a physical presence, or talks about physical places, you can put up flyers telling people to “learn more” at your site. Since they’re already invested in the place (by being there) they’re more likely to be interested in checking out your website.
Find Meetups in your area and try to make friends with the hosts and regular attendees. Don’t do it just to get visitors, try to become a part of the community so that they want to learn more about what you’re doing.
Getting started: Whether you’re attending meetups or starting your own, Patch can help you make the most of it.
Another option is to start your own Meetup through their platform. This way you control the community, you can promote to it as much as you want, and you can get better feedback on your content and products.
Getting started: Whether you’re attending meetups or starting your own, Patch can help you make the most of it.
Use a site like Teespring to make t-shirts representing your product or business and give them away to friends, partners, clients, and anyone who works with you.
Just make sure they’re nice shirts and comfortable to wear! People should enjoy putting them on--no cheap fabrics.
Getting started: Sujan Patel explains how he’s used t-shirts to generate $980k in revenue here.
Depending on your content, you might have something that would be useful to university professors. Reach out and introduce yourself (if they aren’t ones you know from college) and let them know that it might help their students.
A big email list is your best asset for getting more traffic. Your email subscribers will be the first ones to read your content and share it with their audiences, giving you that initial boost whenever you publish something.
Or, if you offer products, they’ll be the first ones to buy them and check them out.
Getting started: If you want some ideas on great ways to grow your email list, Robbie explains how he got 2,239 email subscribers from scratch.
A giveaway is an excellent tactic to get more traffic to your site as well as get more email subscribers. Just install KingSumo, decide on some prizes related to your niche, and then email your list and promote the giveaway on social media.
Since the giveaway incentivizes people to invite their friends to it, you’ll see a ton of referral traffic from the participants inviting their friends.
Getting started: Done right, a giveaway can result in tens of thousands of new subscribers. Check out Pat Flynn’s guide for more details.
When you share content, do it with a Snip.ly link so that when people go read it there’s also a call to action to go and visit your site. This way when you’re sharing things you’re promoting yourself as well as other people’s sites.
Create a free product related to your site’s content, host it on your site, and then share it with your audience. If the product is good and people are visiting the page, not only will it get picked up by search engines, but the early people you send it to will tell their friends about it and drive more traffic your way.
Getting started: HubSpot created their “Website Grader” to analyze people’s sites, make recommendations, and then upsell them on HubSpot. Is there some sort of related tool you can make for your audience?
Reach out to products and blogs with similar audiences to yours, and suggest doing a product bundle between yourselves.
Then when you launch the bundle, promote it to your audience, and make sure they promote it to their audiences too. All of your will get more traffic, as well as make more sales!
Getting started: We regularly do this with bundles like the AppSumo Marketing Stack. Is there a combination of products that your audience needs that you can partner with?
By interviewing an influencer in your space, and making sure it’s excellent, you lend credibility to your site by having them on it, and you can ask them to share it with their audiences.
This also gives you an opportunity to rank on Google for their name, so that when people are searching for more info on them, your site pops up.
Getting started: Interviewing influencers seems scary, but it doesn’t have to be. Check out this getting started resource from Boost Blog Traffic.
Beyond interviewing just one person to feature them on your site, write an “expert roundup” where you reach out to a number of different experts to get their opinions on a topic.
This has the benefit of potentially getting promotion from a bunch of influencers, as well as lending a lot of credibility to your content from having that many influencers’ names on it.
Getting started: Want to create a killer expert roundup? Check out how Tor got 20,321 visitors from one epic roundup post.
If you write a good, honest review of a company or product, they’ll likely share it with their audience. All you have to do is show it to them so they know to let their audiences know.
Getting started: While you don’t have to create a whole review site, this resource will help you get started with using reviews for traffic.
Put together a free webinar on something that you know your audience will be interested in, and then ask them to invite their friends to join in on it. As long as it’s a truly free, no-sale webinar, people will appreciate the free information and be more willing to invite their friends to join in.
Getting started: Want to host a webinar? Convince and Convert has 14 tips to help you do it successfully.
A job listing is a great way to put your site in front of a new audience. Don’t do this unless you’re actually trying to hire someone, of course, but when you do, make sure that the job listing is also exciting enough that it gets people to visit your site.
If you want to keep people discussing your site on your site, you can use simply plugins like bbPress to add a forum. The benefit to having it on your own site is that then you’re getting a bunch of traffic back to your when people want to have a discussion, and since you’re in charge you can link to your articles as much as you want.
Submitted by Bryan of UpGrow
Depending on the type of content you create, you can publish awards to companies in your industry in order to recognize them for excellence in certain areas.
As the awards gain recognition, the sites that get selected will be more motivated to publish them and brag about winning, driving traffic back to you as the creator of the award
If you present yourself as an expert, other sites could be interested in interviewing you to create good content for their audiences. We did this by interviewing Jules Pieri of The Grommet. She got a bunch of new traffic to her site, and we got a great story for our audience.
Getting started: Reach out to blogs with an audience related to yours and pitch yourself as a good story for their audience. Want to be featured on the SumoMe blog? There’s a form for that.
Fill up your RSS reader (Feedly, for example) with blogs that have audiences similar to yours. Whenever new posts go out that you can add thoughts to, jump in and leave comments that add to the discussion.
Don’t just ham-fistedly promote your site--provide value! Most commenting platforms let you link your name to your site, and that’s more than enough. If you’re writing interesting comments, people will visit your site.
Getting started: Curate a list of blogs related to your niche using Feedly or another RSS manager. Each time you see a new article you know something about, leave a thoughtful comment.
Reach out to sites with large mailing lists and offer to teach something to their subscribers for free. Make it a great webinar, include mentions of your own site, and people who like what you’re teaching will want to visit your site and learn more.
Getting started: Once you’ve found a good audience to do your webinar to, use the same 14 tips from above to make the most of it.
If someone reaches out to you asking for a quote or your opinion for an article, always give them one! Tell them that you just want them to link back to your site with your quote, and they’ll usually be more than happy to do it.
Getting started: The best thing you can do is be an active contributor to communities related to your niche. This way, when other people are looking for experts to interview, your name will be on the top of their minds
Site aggregators like AllTop.com are a good place to submit your site to so that it can be found by people looking for new sites to check out. And if it performs well there, they’ll feature it higher, and the free traffic will increase.
Email the marketing team at a product you love and tell them how you’ve used their product to make your life better.
If it’s a good story, they might want to write about it and feature it on their site including links back to yours.
Use marketplaces like Craigslist, Etsy, eBay, Shopify, Amazon, and more to give your product more reach. When shipping it, include notes with links back to your site to convince them to buy directly from you in the future.
Take some of your best content that fits under a certain theme, compile it into an eBook, and then sell it or give it away for free on Amazon’s Kindle platform.
Amazon will also let you list your book as free for a limited time if it’s normally paid, and during that period you can feature it as a freebie on deals sites to get more downloads.
Just make sure to include lots of links back to your site in the ebook!
Getting started: If you want to take some of your content and turn it into an ebook, Zapier has a walkthrough that will help you.
If you have a physical location, make sure that it’s listed on discovery and rating platforms like Foursquare and Yelp. Not only will this help people find your business, but you’ll get more traffic to your site when people are looking for more information.
Reach out to sites in the same niche as you and suggest content that their audience might be interested in. Then just include a few tactful links back to your site and products, without making it seem like you’re just trying to promote yourself.
Getting started: Find sites in a similar space to you, then follow John’s steps to doing a great guest post.
Email companies like AppSumo about your product and offer to do a deal for their audience. If the product is good and they think it’ll sell well, you could be promoted to hundreds of thousands of people.
You might find a site that’s no longer active, but that has a large email list built up. Reach out to whoever used to run it and offer to purchase their email list and pitch them on your own site. This could results in thousands of new regular visitors, as well as a sizeable boost to your newsletter.
Getting started: If you find a site that’s no longer active, reach out to the authors about acquiring their email list.
Find another site in the same space as you and offer to promote them to your audience in exchange for them promoting you to theirs, either through linking out in blog posts or through mentioning each other in your newsletters. This way you know that you’re getting qualified traffic, and if you both benefit from it you can keep the relationship going.
If you don’t have as much time for guest posting, another option is to let other aggregator sites republish your content to their audiences. As long as you include links to your other articles in the post, it’s a great way to get in front of a new audience and drive more traffic to your site. As a bonus, this also helps with SEO.
Getting started: Check out Sarah's epic guide to easily republishing your content on big sites for a massive increase in traffic!
In-between syndicating and guest posting, you can also repurpose your content into smaller pieces (with links to your site, of course) and publish it on Medium.
Since Medium has publications with thousands of readers, if you can get your piece picked up by one you’ll get a ton of new readers that you never would have otherwise reached.
Getting started: Try Cathryn and Allen’s “Medium Hack” to gain a ton of quick exposure.
Create a Tumblr, Medium blog, Squarespace blog, Quora blog, or any other “secondary” blog platform and republish all of your content on it with links back to your site.
You can also publish the content as “posts” to social sites like reddit and LinkedIn, as long form content meant to spark discussion.
Getting started: Set up blogs on other platforms, and then use services like IFTTT to automatically republish to them, or quickly do it manually with tools like Medium’s story importer.
If you already have some impact and reach, you can submit for a Wikipedia page to be made about yourself or your business. Then within the page you can link back to your own site to drive more traffic to it.
Getting started: Check out Wikipedia’s own guide to creating your first article.
Find Wikipedia articles about topics that you’re written about or have content around, and then suggest that parts of Wikipedia pages be linked back to your site as a reference. It’s a nofollow link, but it can still help send some traffic your way.
Submitted by Sid of Personal Trainers London
Get other people to sell your product by sending you qualified leads. If they buy, you give the affiliate a percentage. Even if the visitors don’t buy, they’ll hopefully share your content, or sign up to your list.
Getting started: There are lots of Wordpress plugins, such as AffiliateWP that will manage the technical aspects of tracking who came from where for you.
Submitted by Bryan of UpGrow
To capitalize on search engine rankings, and to give your audience other places to find you, you can create a micro-site based on a certain aspect of what you're already talking about or selling on your main site.
Submitted by Darren Davis of Link Caffeine.
If you’re not familiar with them, link roundups are curated posts (or a "roundup”) of great blog content from the past week. The best part is roundups are found in almost every niche.
Roundup curators Have a tough job to find quality content to showcase in their roundup every week. When you suggest your new post, you deliver content FOR them.
Getting started: An easy way to find a roundup is to use this search string on Google: intitle:keyword roundup. Just replace "keyword" with the topic you really want to search for. After you find a roundup that's a good fit, send them an email pitching them on your article!
If you have a series of content that performs particularly well, you could create an app that helps people take action on the content in it. It could be as simple as a reference for a how-to guide.
For example, we could make an app for this post that’s a “Random Traffic Generation Idea Generator” to help you find ideas in this massive list :)
You might have a product that people need quick access to when they’re on other sites, so making a browser extension that helps them use your product easier will not only increase retention, but also remind them of your site and help bring them back in the future.
Discover lets you add “you might also like…” articles to the ends of your posts. Then, when people are on other Discover users sites, they’ll see links back to your content as well. It’s a quick way to increase traffic to your site based on the amount of traffic you’re already getting.
Because you have a site, there’s at least one thing that you’re able to teach to the world. Udemy makes it easy to host a video course and promote it to your audience, while also being featured in their library and promoted to their audience.
Then, when you have new relevant content that your audience would be interested in, you can promote it to your Udemy audience through their platform and drive some traffic back to your site.
Getting started: If you want to make a Udemy course, check out Udemy’s free course on getting started.
Or you can go more advanced and host a course on your own site using Teachable. Teachable lets you keep much more of your profits, and keep everything on your own site, but you don’t have another library to promote in so you need to do more legwork getting the word out about your course.
Getting started: Find out how to create an online course to drive more traffic and take your blog to six figures in just 30 days.
A third option for online courseware is to teach a course on CreativeLive. These courses are seen as very high quality and will lend a lot of authority to your brand. As a bonus, they promote their courses to their audience, so it will drive more traffic back to your own site.
Getting started: CreativeLive is a little harder to teach on since they do more curation than Udemy or Teachable, but this guide will help.
If you have an email list (and you should) then make sure you’re emailing out to people whenever you have a new article or piece of content up. That will provide your initial surge of traffic and hopefully your first shares.
Getting started: Read our guide to the 15 types of emails you should be sending to your list to see how to maximize the traffic from your emails.
In your next email out to your subscribers, ask them to forward the email to one friend that they think might be interested in your site or product. Every single one of your followers will know at least one likeminded person who could be interested, so take advantage of it!
One way to figure out where you should be guest posting, syndicating, etc. is to ask your current readers what else they’re reading. You might discover some new sites that you’ve never heard of and get new ideas for where else to promote your content.
One effective way to get more traffic is to work with people who have email lists around the same size as yours. This functions like a blog swap, but you’re email list swapping instead. Each of you email out about a piece of content to drive traffic to one another’s websites.
Getting started: Find similar sized sites to yours, and offer to promote a piece of their content to your list if they promote one of yours to theirs as well!
By adding meta names to your images, you can make sure that they get picked up on Google Images and drive people to your site. This can add a lot to your traffic beyond just the articles themselves linking, since each article might have 10-20 images in it. That’s another 10-20 things you could be ranking for, beyond just the one article.
Getting started: Shopify has 10 tips to help you make sure that your images are properly optimized.
Read a site like Backlinko on how to rank your content on Google, then start implementing it! SEO takes a while to fully kick in so the sooner you start the better.
Invite writers who get Googled a lot to write a guest post on your site. They’ll get exposed to a new audience, you’ll get easy content, and you’ll likely rank for searches for their name in the future.
In each blog post, include links to your other blog posts. This helps your SEO rankings, and also helps people stay on your site longer by going down the rabbit hole of your content.
Getting started: Every time you publish something new, go back through your old posts (or just the most popular ones) and see how they can link to your newest one.
Twitter ads are emerging as a new way to pay to promote your website. Since they don’t have nearly the popularity of Facebook or Google ads, there’s still an opportunity to take advantage of them early and get some inexpensive traffic.
Getting started: Check out Melissa Mackey’s guide to Twitter ads here.
If you have a business or website that helps people professionally, LinkedIn ads could be the ideal place to reach them.
People usually go to LinkedIn when they’re looking for content related to their jobs or industry, so if you promote something relevant to them when they’re in that mindset you’ll likely convert better than on Facebook or Twitter.
Getting started: Kristi Hines’s resource on Unbounce will help you to set up your first LinkedIn ads.
Facebook is like one of the first places you thought of when I said “ads,” and for good reason.
It gives you a bit more flexibility than other ad networks since you can focus on right side vs. newsfeed, you can do easy retargeting, and you can boost articles or posts that you put on your page. Or just opt for likes.
Getting started: The social media pros at Buffer have a useful resource to help you get up and running.
With Google Search Ads, you don’t have to wait for SEO to kick in: you can skip straight to the top of Google results.
The downside is that depending on the niche you’re going after, they can get expensive quickly. But if you’re promoting something that most people aren’t paying to feature, then you can quickly get cheap traffic.
Getting started: Kissmetrics can help you setup your first profitable adwords campaign.
The other option through Google’s ad network is to create Display Ads. These are the ads you see in banners on other people’s sites, letting you target products or services to people who are reading relevant content that other people have published.
In a high-competition field, you’ll have to pay a TON for placement. But with something more niche that fewer people are promoting, you could get inexpensive traffic from other people’s content.
Getting started: Wordstream has a useful walkthrough that will get you started.
Pinterest recently started rolling out its ad network to the public. If you have highly visual content (clothing, food, crafts) that would normally perform well on Pinterest’s highly visual platform, then it’s a prime place to promote your content.
Getting started: Pinterest’s own getting started guide is going to be your best bet.
Stumbleupon lets you quickly jump from website to website to find something interesting to read or do. By promoting yourself on their ad network, you get preferred placement in their recommendations, and more traffic to your site as a direct result.
Stumbleupon ads are worth trying if you have catchy, exciting headlines that will make people want to stick around. Stumbleupon users are jumping from one article to the next at a higher speed than in most other mediums, so make sure you have something on your page to grab their attention.
Getting started: Todaymade can help you out with trying this channel.
There are two ways you can do advertising on Instagram. You can buy advertisements that show up in people’s image feeds through the Instagram partner program, or you can pay Instagram users with a high number of followers to use and promote your product.
Getting started: For typical Instagram ads, Social Media Examiner will get you going.
For finding users to advertise for you, sites like Boomopolis help find influencers that would be good for promoting your product.
Reddit, the popular article-indexing and discussion site, also offers an advertising platform.
One of the main benefits to advertising on reddit is that you can focus your ads on people reading certain “subreddits” or sections of the site that revolve around a certain theme.
Getting started: To try out reddit ads for yourself, check out the marketer’s guide to reddit.
Believe it or not, people actually use Bing, and since it’s in such lower demand than Google, you can compete for keywords at a lower price.
The downside is that you’ll have less traffic to go after. But if you’re in a highly competitive space and are having a hard time affording traffic from Google, Bing ads could be a good place to experiment.
Getting started: Microsoft has an in-depth tutorial to help get you rolling.
Just like Bing, since Yahoo is a less popular search engine than Google, you can usually get cheaper ad placement. Try going to the Yahoo Ads platform and seeing how much traffic you can get!
Getting started: Social Media Ad Genius has you covered.
For most of the platforms mentioned above (especially Google, Facebook, and Twitter) you can use a “retargeting pixel” to send people back to your site after they’ve already visited.
These prospects already recognize your brand, and are usually much cheaper to get clicks from than entirely new people. To get really advanced, you can try showing them ads of specific products they were looking at to try to get them to come back and follow through on buying them.
Getting started: Hubspot has a powerful guide to help you get going with retargeting.
If you have an app, or a mobile-optimized landing page, then mobile ads could be a good way to drive more traffic to your site. This is especially true if you’re promoting a game, since so many ads are also served in games, you can easily reach people in that mindset.
Within your niche, there are likely a number of blogs and smaller sites that create content related to yours or your products.
By reaching out to them, you can negotiate ad placement on their site outside of Google’s Display network, which means you get a better price and a more direct relationship with the site owner.
In turn, they benefit because they know that they’re showing relevant content to their readers, instead of hoping that Google shows good ads.
Getting started: Pat Flynn has a breakdown of why you might want to try this channel and how to get started in his “Niche site private advertisements experiment.”
Similar to #14, you can reach out to writers who have a large number of email subscribers and offer to pay them to promote your product in one of their next emails.
These promotions are highly targeted because they’re going out to people who see this person as an authority, and typically have much higher conversion rates than just doing a display ad or sidebar promotion.
Getting started: See what blogs you read and newsletters you follow, then ask them if they’d be willing to promote your site or do a co-promotion where you feature them as well.
A third way to sponsor sites that are related to your target market is to promote yourself on the thank-you page that they serve visitors after they sign up.
When people arrive on this page, they’re already in a “yes” mindset and are more likely to be interested in anything that the author of the newsletter they’ve just joined is promoting there. By having one of your ads in this space, you guarantee that it’s only being seen by a highly-qualified audience.
Getting started: Similar to above, see what sites you regularly read and share a readership with, and ask if you can buy promo space on their thank-you page when people opt in.
Just because it’s not on the Internet doesn’t mean it can’t work.
Depending on what kind of traffic you want to your site, you can use services to find inexpensive billboards or physical promotion space where you can give people a reason to visit your site.
It’s not the first thing you’d think of, but it just might work.
Getting started: Browse through a site like Outdoor Billboards and see if there are good deals on ad space in a location you want to target.
If you’re selling a product or offering a service, there’s almost certainly a magazine that’s read by your target niche.
You can reach out to the magazine (there’s usually a contact number online or in the back) about advertising opportunities, and do a trial run with their next issue.
Depending on how well targeted and exciting your advertisement is, this can be magnitudes cheaper than web advertising--mostly because so few people are doing it!
Getting started: Pick 3 magazines related to your niche. Find their contact info, then reach out about the price of ad placement. Be sure to ask if there are any last minute deals on unused ad space in upcoming issues.
There you have it, every way that we could come up with to get more traffic to your site!
If that felt like a lot, then make sure you
It has every tactic, bonus info, and different rankings to help you pick the best channel and always have something to refer back to.
Oh, and don’t forget: If you can think of a good traffic-generating tactic that we missed, leave a comment with it and we’ll add it to the article with a link back to your site.