How to Increase Search Engine Traffic
For starters, what does “search engine traffic” refer to? Well, it refers to visitors of a website who have arrived at that particular website after having clicked search results leading to it. It is unpaid for traffic, also known as organic. There are Web Analytics programs that can analyze the overall traffic of a website coming from search engines and show the traffic for individual pages or for sections of the website, in percentages. There is also the concept of paid traffic, which is traffic coming from people who have reached a website after having clicked on a sponsored search result or an online ad.
Having high traffic due to the results returned by search engines is a good thing, as it demonstrates that a website has good content that helps get better ranks from engines. The percentage of views due to web searches shows how much a website depends on search engines to get web traffic. If the percentage is high, one must be aware of the fact that any modification in search engine rank will seriously impact the number of visits. That is why constant SEO (search engine optimization) is necessary: so that the ranks are kept high. White-hat SEO practices are essential for websites that depend on search engine traffic.
How to increase traffic coming from search engines?
If you want to increase traffic to your blog or generate website traffic, you must understand how search engines rank pages. Search engines use algorithms that take into account page titles, body content, the number of existing backlinks (links from other websites that lead to yours), social media interaction around your website and others. However, each search engine places emphasis on such aspects differently: some can consider body content more important than the number and quality of backlinks, for example.
Most search engines value backlinks highly when ranking a page. The more quality sites link to you, the better you will rank. However, paying for links is not a good option, as most search engines are against this practice.
Google actually started to penalize services that were charging to create backlinks. It considers that anyone can pay and, therefore, the resulting backlinks are unnatural, they are not relevant to how popular a website actually is. It views link exchange with pretty much the same eyes, so link exchange is not recommended anymore either.
There are several ways to create quality backlinks: writing articles with good content and posting them in article directories; being a guest blogger on other websites; disseminating press releases with newsworthy content; posting on forums; commenting on blogs; interlinking the posts on your own blog or the pages of your own website. Make sure to include links towards your website in the articles/comments, behind anchor texts that are relevant to you.
2. Meta tags
Meta tags are present at the beginning of your HTML code, inside the <head> tag. The visitors cannot see these hidden descriptors; however, the spiders used by search engines can. Meta tags generally consist of a title, a description and a keyword tag. Due to abuse, less emphasis is placed by engines on certain tags, however meta tags are still of high importance. Bloggers can usually change these tags from the control panel of their blog.
3. Getting listed in the search engines’ databases
Search engines have spiders wandering across the web and adding websites to their databases as they stumble upon them. One easy way to get indexed in Google is to have links on a website that is already indexed. Another way is to create an account with Google Webmaster Tools and create a map of your site, and XML map. There are blogging platforms that will do that for you automatically, so if you are a blogger you might not have to worry about this aspect.
Getting indexed by Google may not be difficult, but in order to get more web traffic, you need good ranks from Google. One important thing when aiming for good rankings is to make a proper keyword research. You must choose proper keywords to define your overall content and use them so you have keyword-rich content. Finding less competitive phrases is a way to optimize the search engine traffic you receive. There are online research tools that can help you identify popular search queries specific to your industry, queries that must become your keywords if you want to reach your target audience.
5. Social media networks
Social media evolves more and more and as this is happening, search engines have started to use social media interaction for ranking. For example, you may notice that the search results you are returned by Google can be different when you perform a search while logged on to Google and when you are logged out. This happens because, while logged on, your results can be influenced by the social circles you are part of in the Google Plus Network. Being popular on different social media counts, as shares and links recommending your content can raise you rank.
These are a few of the methods to get noticed by search engines and then to be better ranked by them.