Launching a brand new website and being disappointed by the amount of traffic can be disheartening, and sometimes even make you doubt what you're doing. For any business with an online presence, website views are vital to keep the business running smoothly; more traffic means more sales, more opportunities for networking, and more brand recognition. Not seeing the traffic pour in as you expected can be a huge blow, but there may be something that you can do to change it. Below, I am going to list 5 of the most common reasons that your website may not be getting the traffic it deserves.
1. Poor Search Engine Optimisation
You may have a beautifully designed website, but if your customers can't find it, then you're never going to see the amount of traffic that you need to grow. SEO (you can read more about SEO here) is a vital part of having an website, and you can't have one without the other. Thankfully, there are a few things that you can do without breaking the bank to beat the competition.
Using your keywords naturally throughout your website will optimise your pages for SEO. To find the best keywords for your niche, you can use a tool such as Keyword Planner to find the search volume for the keywords that are related to your business, and find suggestions for others that would work well.
The most important places on your website that you should optimise for keywords are;
Titles and headings
Descriptions and metadescriptions
Optimising these sections of your pages (without stuffing them with keywords unnaturally!) will help Google to crawl your website, knowing exactly where to place your site in search results. The easier that it is for Google to crawl your site, the better they will be able to place you. If you're coming up for the right search results related to your niche, your customers will be better able to find your site and your traffic should see an increase.
Backlinks are one of the biggest ranking factors when it comes to Google. It is a link from one website to another, and they serve as 'votes' from other websites, telling Google that website A believes that website B is a trustworthy and credible source.
So essentially, the more backlinks that your website has, the more credible your website will be, and the higher you will rank, right?
Not all backlinks are created equal. Google also takes into account the domain authority of the site giving the backlink. This means that if the website linking to yours has a low domain authority, or isn't very credible, it won't have much impact and may even harm your backlink profile. It might give the impression that you are using black-hat SEO methods to gain these backlinks. So the methods that you use to gain backlinks must be completely natural and organic, such as;
Adding links to your site on your social media profiles
Writing a blog that people will want to share
Contacting journalists and asking them to share your work or quote you in an article
You can use a tool such as Google Search Console to help you to keep track of your backlink profile, and ensure that all of your inbound links are affecting your website in a positive way, and helping your growth.
2. A Bad User Experience
If you went to a restaurant and the menu was confusing and difficult to follow, the food took a while to arrive and was cold when it got there, and wasn't what you ordered, you wouldn't stick around for long, would you? Websites can work in the same way. If people viewing your website don't enjoy their time there, or find it difficult to navigate, they won't want to come back. Luckily, there are a few things that you can do to ensure that your UX isn't affecting your ranking.
Ensure your website is responsive
Having a responsive website is becoming more and more imperative, as mobile web traffic accounts for over half of the traffic worldwide. Ensuring that your website is easily navigated, as well as giving direction to where you want the viewer to go next, is incredibly important to ensuring that your bounce rate stays low.
Not only is having a responsive website important for User Experience, but also to ensure that you rank highly. At the end of 2017, Google announced their newest approach; Mobile-first indexing. This means that the mobile version of your site will be the starting point for Google's crawlers, making it more important than ever to ensure that your website is mobile friendly. Not having a mobile-friendly version of your site can negatively affect your ranking, and potentially cause you to lose out on traffic to your website.
Make sure that your website loads quickly
It's become common knowledge now, that the speed in which your page loads is a crucial part of user experience. But did you know that Google monitors how fast your page loads, and ranks you accordingly? In fact, studies have shown that 53% of mobile site visits are abandoned if pages take longer than 3 seconds to load. Google recommends that your website load speed should be under 2 seconds. Some ways of reducing the time it takes to load your website are;
Optimise and compress images
Reduce the redirects on your page
Enable browser caching
Reducing the amount of time that it takes to load your website can make a huge impact on both User Experience and your ranking with Google.
3. Not Creating Meaningful Content
In our last blog, we spoke about how content is king. Creating content that is valuable to your audience is incredibly important to drive traffic to your website, but to do this you must be targeting the right audience. Creating a 'buyer persona' is a great way to ensure that you focus your time on prospects that will be more likely to use your company, rather than targeting the wrong audience and missing out on your actual market. Hubspot have a great free template to create your buyer persona here.
Do your research
Learning about what your customers are actually searching for is another great way to ensure that you are writing content that is meaningful and worthwhile to your audience. You can do this by conducting SEO research into the most searched terms/questions within your industry, and answering them in a blog. Your customers may be searching questions related to your industry, and if you have the answers, that puts you in a great position to gain trust and recognition for your work.
Diversify your approach
Rather than funnelling your efforts into one method and hoping that it will work, you should change your approach to the content that you are creating to ensure that you are covering all bases. We suggest that you publish a mix of high-quality content and blogs such as;
Listicles (like this one!)
Case studies of projects that you've worked on
Behind the scenes of your company
Discussions of any awards that you've won
Opinion pieces (eg. Our Favourite Web Design Trends in 2021)
Use your headline to draw in the readers, and write something worthwhile. A great rule of thumb is to search for the article that you want to write, and do it better than your competitors for top spot have. Maintain consistency throughout the blog, and people will want to see what you have to say. Keeping it original, optimising it for SEO, and sharing it everywhere will keep Google happy too.
4. Lacking a Social Media Presence
Social media marketing is one of the best ways to bring in traffic to your website. With roughly 2.89 billion monthly active users on Facebook, you could be missing out on a very large market if your social media presence is lacking. Sharing regular posts on social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter has the opportunity to send hundreds if not thousands of viewers to your website, so taking the time to interact with your followers makes all of the difference.
We recommend that your social media posts are about engaging and educating your audience about what you do, as well as entertaining them! This humanises your company, builds trust and increases brand awareness. We would suggest that only 20% of your posts are promoting sales, because people are less likely to engage with a sales post. Focus more on posting things such as;
Contests and competitions
Posting content that people can engage with could really help to drive traffic to your site in a natural way, making people more likely to purchase what you're selling.
Another really important factor to consider into your social media strategy is engaging with your followers. Staying active within the community and replying to comments is a great way to humanise your business, and make your followers feel valued too!
5. No Content Promotion
So, you've written a really great blog, full of valuable information that you know people would love to share and talk about. So why aren't they sharing it?
A big reason could be content promotion. Optimising your blogs for SEO will help to bring in more traffic, and promoting your work will make a big difference. We recommend the 80/20 rule - 20% of your time should be content creation, and 80% should be sharing that great content. Some great ways of promoting your content are;
Sharing on social media
Sharing to journalists
Sending out a newsletter
Writing guest blogs
Networking with others who write similar content
By promoting the high-quality content that you have created, you are able to expand your reach, and get your content seen by more of your target audience.
Using a combination of these tips should really help to increase traffic to your website. Ultimately, the best way to increase traffic to your website is to give your customers what they want - Content, engagement, credibility, and a positive experience.
To get help with your website traffic, or to find out more about what we do, check out our website!