Customer journeys are increasingly taking place online. In fact, 49% of shoppers have indicated they use Google to find new products. The data points to the importance of having an online presence — but just creating a site isn’t enough.
If you want to effectively compete online and increase your search traffic, you need a cohesive marketing strategy that aligns with your business goals. Here we’ll take a look at how you can increase your organic traffic in 2020.
1. Define a Content Strategy
The first step to increase organic traffic is to define a content strategy — a marketing blueprint that focuses on the planning and development of content for your business. It defines your marketing goals and identifies who your target audience is.
A well-defined content strategy puts a solid marketing plan in place for your business. It establishes the types of content you’ll create and the channels you’ll publish them on. Most importantly, a content strategy also helps you maintain a consistent marketing message across all your digital assets.
A content strategy isn’t set in stone, so be sure to regularly revisit it and revise it when necessary. For example, if a particular channel isn’t delivering results or engagement rates are lower than expected, consider removing it entirely.
2. Publish Relevant Content to Your Blog
Publishing quality content helps to establish your business as an industry authority. Each post is also an opportunity to rank in Google for your target keywords.
A common challenge for many businesses starting a blog is knowing what to write about. This is where a content strategy comes in handy. Start with your target audience. What questions are they asking? What problems are they struggling with? These are great starting points to share your expertise.
Optimize on-page factors like your page titles and headers to help Google better understand your content. If you prefer to write your content in Google Docs, use a tool like Wordable to upload directly to WordPress and save time on formatting.
3. Build Topic Clusters
Take your content creation efforts even further with topic clusters — a group of interlinked pages that offer an in-depth overview of a subject.
Topic clusters boost your organic traffic because they don’t focus solely on keywords. The pillar page acts as the main hub with an overarching topic. Then, the cluster content targets related topics and links back to the pillar page.
This kind of linking signals to search engines that the pillar page is an authority, which leads to better rankings over time. Visitors on your pages benefit too, as they’re able to learn more about a topic in-depth. Creating a topic cluster isn’t easy, but it can provide a massive boost to your site. Be sure to use a plagiarism checker to ensure your content is completely unique.
4. Start Guest Posting
Guest posting is the process of writing content and getting it published on sites that are relevant to yours. It’s a powerful marketing strategy that can drive referral traffic to your pages and build quality backlinks in the process.
Backlinks are important because each one acts as a vote of confidence. A link signals to Google that a site vouches for yours. But simply spamming your pages with low-quality links just doesn’t work. That’s likely to lead to a penalty thanks to Google’s ranking algorithms.
Guest posting works when you contribute a quality piece of content to a reputable site. Look for relevant sites that accept guest posts (search on Google for “your niche” + guest blogging to compile a list). Then start reaching out to each site with a pitch. Be sure to read their editorial guides before writing your content.
5. Invite Others to Guest Post
Guest posting isn’t just a one-way street. Inviting other people in your niche to submit content can add unique perspectives to your blog. And they’re likely to share their guest content with their own audience, which in turn can bring new visitors to your site.
It’s important to establish a guest posting guideline before you invite others. This ensures you maintain a high standard of quality for your blog without any spammy links.
6. Revisit Old Content on Your Site
Publishing new content is the foundation of a content marketing strategy. But there’s one area of your site you may be overlooking — your old blog posts.
Your archive likely consists of tons of content that have seen better days. Updating them can lead to better rankings and increase your organic traffic. Google tends to prioritize up-to-date content over stale content. This makes sense as users not only want the most relevant information, but also the most recent.
Look through your site archive and look for pages that are worth updating. Add more content to each with the aim of making them more comprehensive. Don’t forget to optimize each post for your target keywords. Then change the publish date on your updated post, so it reflects in the search results.
7. Build a Content Writing Team
You can’t do everything yourself. Creating even a single blog post can take an entire day (sometimes even longer) once you factor in the time to research and write the content. If you want to increase your organic search traffic, it’s time to think about building a content team.
A content team is responsible for planning and executing your content strategy across multiple channels. They can also help you scale your content in a way that just isn’t possible on your own. Use platforms like Upwork or Toptal to find writers and editors who can help you implement your content strategy. If you use a number of tools to manage projects and optimize your content, use password managers like LastPass to easily share access with your team.
The digital landscape is more competitive than ever. You can’t just sit back and expect traffic to come flooding to your site. You have to take a more proactive approach to reach your prospects online. Start by implementing the tips here to increase your organic traffic and grow your business.