Online traffic from Articles is related to the quality of your information
by Goleft, Window Shopper
- Created: March 30, 2010, 8:42 am
I was reading one of the other posts in this great site about the things to increase online volumes BUT it seems to me many forum posts (on other sites) are simply a way of some scammers doing cheap self promotion. A one paragraph answer with platitudes and a six line signature with various URLs (often from the kind of sites I get spammed from) does not provide anyone with good service.
Rather than copying and pasting known;how t- do SEO tidbits etc, I think some of the best practical advice is to provide SPECIFIC information on what to avoid and how to fix problems. In particular, in reference to a previous posts on great traffic generators, I would like to use the following caveats and see if anyone agrees.
1 Ezine Advertising: can be good, but you need verifiable traffic and demographic information for that site. Is it any more targeted than Google adwords? Is it reputable? Sometimes it just better to go with the boss- ie, If you use something like Google adwords, refine your quality score and target long tail'your site specifi' keyword strings, you can get extremely well qualified click-throughs for low investment, rather than ezine advertising which can be more akin to mass advertising (pointless for most folk here).
For'one of' special offers, ezine articles may work, but your offer or discount has to be genuine and you will have to track your weekly campaigns. Unless you want to end up a discount store with low branding and all your customers'price shopper' ezine advertising of specials can do more harm than good.
2. Article Writing: I agree this is one of the greatest things you can do for your site and traffic. It is great to give you expert status, provide content, generate traffic etc. But here is the ugly truth: Your article should be VERY good if you want to appear as an expert. And you have to pick wisely as to which article sites you submit it to so you do't sit beside gonzo authors.
When I write articles I can spend a day or so researching and refining topics, when you look at'high ranking' author 'tips and tricks' articles some say they write as many as 20 to 40 articles a day! I may be a little picky, but you can guarantee that at this volume, the other authors are not saying anything new, not being an expert, rarely providing over 500 words and basically just spamming sites, knowing that the law of averages means that some of his articles will be picked up somewhere (often due to clever arrangement of keyword mixes), this is all they care about.
Other sites pay Indian and Pakistani authors $5 or less per article and give them little guidance except the deadline. All of this adds up to a great deal of cheap content, some traffic, but little value to your brand or your integrity. 'Trust with your customer' means that you have provided them something unique, just not a 'stream of consciousness' whipped up to serve your SEO needs.
This 'grey hat' machine has reached saturation point on many article sites, so I limit my article submission to less than ten, quality sites. I provide as much original research and analysis per topic as I can. I don't run 10 'abs in ten minutes' sites at a time and spam the internet with irrelevant information. I am not after the quick buck, close down the site, start again method. This is your choice, but grey hat and article rubbish can turn around to bite you.
I implore article and forum writers to use some thought and pass on some real expert advice if they want to be there for the long haul. Just like google, visitors value quality sites with quality content, not just volume.
3. Search Engines: One article suggests that 'Search engine traffic is the secret to your super success'. Well yes and no. Traffic driven from Organic search depends on your ranking on a search engine results page. Before we get into 'actual traffic' I want you to consider keyword planning limitations. I have found that many of the keywords that I have optimized sites for, because of potential massive monthly search volumes, have not materialized when we have high rankings on search pages.
I think that when you find that a keyword is said to get 100,000 visits, that they may not all be unique, many of them are SEO companies checking ranking, search robots and site owners checking their positioning. By the time you get to SERP 3, you are down to 10% of the effective volume. That is, your 100,000 potential visitors might mean 30,000 genuine unique visitors. And if you rank as search result number three, you may get 3,000 visits, if you are lucky.
Your page title and description (should your search engine decide to display it rather than scrapped text off your page) are your advert. If the user doesn't like what appears in the search result, your site will also be skipped over. Juggling keywords and writing compelling copy is a real art. You may need to experiment with this on many landing pages on a continual basis.
EVEN IF you get high volume traffic to your site, what is the time spent on your landing page and the bounce rate? Can they find what they want in ten seconds before they leave? Do they like the layout and all the other aesthetic choices you have made? We have found out the hard way that 'promised search traffic (keyword tools) and actual traffic that lands on our pages can quickly dwindle down to little commercial value if you don't get the mix right on page AND give them a reason to return. Finding your reason for repeat business on an online site is vital and something that we continue to search for. Forums, new products, articles, games may not be what our visitor niche value. Loyalty is vital in online and offline worlds.
These are some of the hard questions and caveats I think are vital for any online business to address if it wants to survive and flourish. Getting the mix right (traffic generators and customer loyalty) isn't as simple as simple article writers sometimes suggest.
Please let me know of your views on these topics and what I might have missed ...
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