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5 ways to increase website traffic

The Internet has brought both consumers and businesses countless benefits. People have the ability to conduct product research before they buy and to keep in touch with friends and families, as well as their favorite celebrities and brands. Companies also have this advantage, and they gain an abundance of insight from communicating with their customers. They have expanded to reach their global audience. No longer are they confined to the standard brick-and-mortar store. However, this e-commerce capability also has its obstacles.

"40% of business professionals have trouble driving traffic to their websites."

In a recent ProOpinion survey, 40 percent of business professionals reported they have trouble driving traffic to their websites. Another 17 percent have a similar problem with social media and struggle to create a presence with their accounts. Approximately 14 percent of digital marketers also experience setbacks due to small budgets and the multitude of analytical software on the market today.

However, these bottlenecks don't have to create permanent problems for companies. With the right strategy, businesses can control their technology, instead of allowing their gadgets to reign over them. Here are just a few ways business professionals can drive traffic to their websites.

1. Create posts
It all starts with content. You can have the most compelling insights in the world, but if people can't find them, they aren't helping your business win customers. Establish yourself as a thought leader by developing and sharing expert content, which lets readers know that you are actually able to provide the service that you are offering. 

Content doesn't always mean words. Infographics, videos and pictures are visual ways to solicit interaction, and producing a variety of media allows you to reach the widest possible audience. What types of posts you produce ultimately depends on the nature of your organization, and who your audience is. 

Before you even start writing, however, you should have a clear idea of what it is you would like to accomplish. What is the general theme of the content? Who is the audience? What should they be taking away from this post? How does this fit in with our overall strategy, and am I the right person to be making these claims? Answering these questions before you start will guide what you produce, and help hone your focus. 

Once your platform has developed some clout, you can invite a well-known guest blogger to c

There are various ways you can create successful articles, videos and images, according to Forbes magazine contributor Jayson DeMers. Use search engine optimization to allow your posts to appear in search results whenever someone is looking up keywords. You can also get well-known bloggers to contribute content to your website. Even if you aren't popular among the masses, his or her name will drive traffic to your page.

2. Be active
While occasionally posting to your website may receive some attention, the process doesn't attract nearly as much as attention as it could. To establish a presence on the Internet, you should post often, preferably every day, if not more. According to Neil Patel, the founder of Quicksprout, publishing six posts instead of five each week can increase a website's traffic by 18.6 percent. He believes that uploading content at least three times daily could drive more than 1 million visitors to the page each month.

Don't be afraid to post multiple times a day. While it may seem like a lot, each piece of content will receive different viewers or readers, so you won't overwhelm the same people each time you post. Not every business will receive the same numbers as Patel's, but through experimentation, you'll be able to find which numbers work best for you.

Regularly posting to social media and your website will attract visitors.Regularly posting to social media and your website will attract visitors.

3. Learn the rules
Navigating social media well requires learning the subtleties of each platform. Twitter only allows 140 characters per post, which means that you should craft the things you share there for maximum pith. Abbreviations are more acceptable, and long series of tweets should be prefaced so that a reader knows what is coming. 

On Pinterest, it's all about images. The first thing a user will see is a picture that represents a post, so make sure that your image is captivating. Pinterest is a good choice of social media outlet for visually-based companies, such as design, but loses its value for anything that requires significant explanation. As such, it is a platform more closely directed at a B2C audience than a B2B one.  

One of the main things that differentiates the Facebook experience is that people use their real names, which are often connected to identifying information. Thus, you can create a community of like-minded people, who are connecting on a level that is less anonymous than other networks. 

Each of these sites has slightly different demographics, so it's important to know the audience you want to reach before you decide where to allocate your resources. For example, Pinterest leans more heavily female than other social media sites, while Facebook's median age is older than Twitter's. To ensure maximum coverage, create content that is unique to the medium, but still retains your core brand voice. Sharing posts from your website can generate traffic for both social media and your company's site, Forbes contributor John Rampton explained. Don't forget to use hashtags, which are the SEO for social networking. This will ensure your posts appear whenever someone searches for specific terms.

4. Communicate with your audience
No customer wants to feel ignored. If one contacts you, and doesn't receive an answer, the experience could be so frustrating that they take their business elsewhere. Invest in a team that is dedicated to, and trained in, handling customer feedback. People like knowing that their issues are being heard and addressed, and are likelier to return when that is the case.

"When online, consumers want to talk to other people, not a brand name."

This strategy will also show people that you're human. Consumers want to talk to other people, not a brand name, Rampton claimed. While a brand might be nothing more than a symbol to them, the employees behind it are human, and can forge actual connections. Taking the time to cultivate a genuine interaction shows that you care about the customer, a feeling they're likelier to reciprocate.

As well, having regular interactions means that readers are more likely to return to the site. It is an easy and ready source of content, and creates an emotional investment on their part. If these communications are done via social media, they also function as a symbol to potential customers that, were they to convert, they would receive a high level of service. 

5. Link between pages
The longer it takes a reader to find what they're looking for on your site, the lower your chances of conversion are. Users today aren't interested in a site that is difficult or counterintuitive, so place links to social media profiles in a prominent, easy-to-spot location. Create specialized icons for your accounts, so as to create a deeper connection, and include a link on those accounts to your website itself. That way, no matter how a customer finds you, it's easy to get any additional information that they might need. 

When people have a positive interaction with a company, they'll share their experience with their friends and families, which will encourage them to look up the business. By creating a website and social media accounts that promote you to your audience, you'll be able to drive traffic between your pages.

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