Building traffic is obviously essential to any website or blog. Traffic can come in one of three ways: organically, through referrals, or directly. Let’s discuss the differences of each of these shall we?
Organic traffic. Organic traffic comes from search engines. This is usually considered the most valuable traffic. This is because if a user is searching for something, they are more likely to read about it, buy it, or sign up for it. Otherwise why search?
Referral traffic. Referral traffic is traffic referred from another site. This can be as useful as organic traffic, except that the user is only going off what another website has to say. They might not exactly be looking for what you have to offer, but you have no control over what the other website linking to you says.
Direct traffic. Direct traffic is from users directly inputting your url into their browser. Or possibly traffic coming from a bookmark a user has saved. Either way they must already know of your website.
Back to the matter at hand, alternative traffic sources. It is vital to the success of your website or blog to have multiple sources of traffic. Never put all your eggs in one basket so to speak. You never know when one source is going to collapse or become less reliable. Things like Google updates and ad networks shutting down happen all the time.
Prime example, I had a few articles on HubPages. One article in particular ranked pretty well on Google, I believe its ranking fluctuated between the first three spots for a specific keyword. The others didn’t do too bad either. Either way, each article had a link at the end pointing to my site. The account was then banned for “over promoting.” Not much I could do about it, their website, their rules. If i relied solely on HubPages for traffic, I would’ve been out of luck.
This is why you should build traffic sources from all over. Work on SEO for organic traffic and link building for referral traffic. It’s kind of difficult to build direct traffic, but you shouldn’t worry too much about it anyway.
If you need help thinking of alternative traffic methods, here are a few ideas. Some may be obvious, some may not be so much:
- Search Engine Optimization
- Paid Search Advertising
- Banner Ads On Sites In Your Niche
- Guest Blogging
- Paid Reviews
- StumbleUpon <–Read This Article
- Yahoo Answers
I’m sure there are more sources that I haven’t identified. If there’s anything I’ve missed that you would like to add, please comment below.