With the Google Panda update, most of the SEO techniques have gone sour and there is a lot of importance on unique content and originality. Every blogger understands that even though Content is the king, it is proper SEO mechanisms that drive traffic to even make the content noticeable. There have been many posts related to SEO and what a blogger must do to make his blog well indexed and make it’s way up the pages on any SERP. In this article, I would like to list the top 3 ways to generate Free Traffic to your website and also would like to mention some of the strategies that did not work for me, so you can avoid such mistakes in your early days of blogging.
1. Guest Posts – I was unaware of the amount of traffic a guest post generates to your website until I had my first post published on a fellow blogger’s site. This has an immense potential and every blogger has to dig deep into this concept and utilize it’s full advantage.
I know that writing a post and moreover to another website is a time consuming process, but I can assure you that it is all worth it. The best way you can search for a website where you can submit your articles is by searching your niche with the words “submit a guest post” or “write for us“. For eg, if your niche is photography, you may search like
digital photography, submit a guest post
p.s. If you are interested in writing guest posts about Blogging , Affiliate Marketing, Making Money Online or SEO, you can visit the “Write for DMC” page on my website for more details.
2. Video Marketing – Many a times, you may feel that recording a video will be more effective than writing an article, like when you wish to write a review on a product or service. You may want to create your own video of how to use the product and show the various features. This always works well, but there is something more that you can do with a video to attract more visitors and thus generate free traffic.
Instead of just uploading the video to your YouTube account, have you tried to do any of the below:
– Have you thought of searching YouTube for a similar video which is very popular and copied the tags of that video to your clip. This gives your video a fair chance to appear on the “related videos” when someone watches the other popular video. This always increases the probability that your video will be watched after the user is done with the previous video.
– Have you thought of submitting a “video response“? A popular video will have many comments but not as many video responses, you may want to think in those lines to submit your video as a response to an already popular video, which will definitely improve the number of hits on yours and thus draw more free traffic.
3. Link Roundups – It is a good practice to submit a “RoundUp Post” every so often on your blog. A link roundup post is a collection of links to your favorite blogs, similar to a blogroll. What this will do is send a “PingBack” to the author of the post who will immediately approve and try to promote your post among his networks.
When the authors see that there is a pinback from your website, they always tend to read and see what you had to say about them or their post and also may end up linking your posts in their blogroll, all the better for you to get more visibility.
A good practice might be to have a “Top 10 Blogs” post in your site where you link all your “related” blogs and write a summary about why you think they are noticeable. (See a similar RoundUp article here) The authors will be immediately notified and they will also try to promote your post by saying that they got identified in the Top 10 list. This really works like magic and you can never fail in this attempt to get more visitors to your website.
Having listed out the top 3 ways to generate free traffic to your website, I would now like to take you back in time when I first started out my first blog (on blogger.com). I started out a very generic blog where I wrote about incidents from life and work, and at the time I never gave much importance to SEO and valid techniques to index my blog and attract visitors other than my known friends and relatives.
These were some of the ways I employed to promote my ill-formed blog at the time which affected me so adversely that I had to kill my blog to avoid a ban from google. I learnt a lesson the hard way and I would like to mention here what I did which should never be practiced by anyone.
1. Link Exchanges – This is a forum where you link others in return for them linking your site, purely based on traffic generation motives. Google was more relaxed at the time, but with the new updates to it’s index bots, this is no longer legal in “Google Terms”. Once those spiders index the links and uses the algorithms to identify the exchange, both parties will be banned for ever and there is no way you can approach them to lift the ban. It is better you stay away from such websites and forums.
2. Borrowed Tweets – This is similar to a link exchange except that all the exchanges happen on twitter via re-tweets and mentions in exchange for similar favors. Having your posts re-tweeted a number of times does bring many visitors to your site, but again this is considered against the “legal” practices as defined by search engines and may result in a permanent ban.
3. Orkut Adsense Groups – Orkut is a popular social networking site in the Asian countries and I was looking at groups in Orkut when I came across ‘Adsense‘ groups which were purely clicks-exchange groups where people come and click on your adsense ads in exchange for the same help from you. I thought this was an “intelligent” way to increase the number of clicks and thus earn some fast bucks. I subscribed to these groups and in no time, I got several requests via email and IM which had subjects like “Refresh my page and click on ads” or something similar. Some of these people didn’t even realize that Orkut is a Google product and it is even more easy for them to identify such click exchanges and ban them from earning anything from adsense.
I strongly advise all bloggers to stay away from such exchanges and try to get more traffic by creating unique content and writing interesting articles which will surely lead to good results. Dedication and Patience will always be rewarded with success in the long run, keep writing those awesome posts, readers will flock without you having to try explicitly. All you need to do is follow these 3 ways to generate free traffic to your blog and you can see considerable difference.
Great tips you’ve mentioned for the three above. I’ve only written two guest posts so far but they did receive a lot of comments and some traffic back to my site although not as much as I had initially hoped. I’m not complaining though, not at all.
Videos will always be powerful I believe. I mean who doesn’t enjoy watching videos?
The link roundups like you mentioned work really well. I’ve done a few of those posts myself now where I point my readers to blogs I have thought worthy of some recognition. I’m just so appreciative that you mentioned my place in your last roundup. Great way to get your information out there for new readers.
Thanks for sharing, really great tips.
Adrienne – Thanks a lot for the positive comment on this one. I had this post for quite a while thinking it will make a good guest post, but somehow never made it out.
I am sure you will make a good author for a post on any blog, and as I have already mentioned, I will be honored to have you as a guest author on my site without a wink.
Yea, the link roundups are always good, i lost a few weeks time this month with another website, but will surely come back to writing one for the month of November.
I do have read many interesting articles in the past few days which i am sure will be of help to my readers.
The one area that I am lacking in is guest-posts. I have only written a couple of them so far but I need to really get on the ball here.
Justin – I have seen a huge impact with my traffic as and when I started writing my articles to other blogs. I think you need to start thinking in those lines for sure. Make a start with my blog 🙂
Pure gold dust to a new blogger like me, thankyou. I will get one of them implemented quickly, the guest posts and visitors may take a little longer but I shall work on that.
Could I add another one to your list, and that is to ensure you have a good working RSS feed, meaning you will get indexed quicker.
I use a pinging service too, but am not really sure if it is helpful or not.
Barry – Glad you liked the post and you could make use of some of the points mentioned.
Yes, having a valid RSS feed does get your blog indexed and there are several other small tweaks that you can do to your theme keywords and meta tags to achieve the same.
But I considered those outside the scope of “getting free traffic” and hence left them unsaid. Thanks for bringing them up to add more value to the post.