You can have the most beautiful website event, but if no one finds your page, it doesn’t really matter. Social media can help to increase your traffic, but this article does not necessarily focus on doubling or tripling your numbers, but mainly tries to give you a few tips on how to attract better traffic, higher quality leads and visitors who really have an impact on your bottom line.
1. Do basic SEO on your landing page
Search engine optimisation (“SEO”) has been around for quite some time and while sometimes it seems more like magic than based on real strategy, your website needs to respect the basic technical standards of today to avoid being penalized by search engines. SEO today means not only optimizing for Google keywords, but also for social media search engines like Facebook or Twitter search.
This is true especially for landing pages, optimized to catch a specific audience and encourage shares and engagement by its visitors. Mobile optimization is key if you want to increase your traffic via social media: no one is going to share your website on social media if it’s not viewable on mobile. Responsive design or a special mobile version is a must and if you start developing a website today, go mobile-first!
2. Add open graph metadata to your website
The Open Graph protocol enables any web page to become a rich object in a social graph. For instance, this is used on Facebook to allow any web page to have the same functionality as any other object on Facebook.
You probably encountered the problem already: you have a great article to share, paste the link to Facebook and have to manually edit the title, description and image preview because no one would click on the automatically created, non-optimized preview. OG tags can help you to take control of link previews on social media platforms. As such you can include clear call to actions in the headlines, optimized visuals and better descriptions to encourage clicks and website visits.
Facebook debugger tool can be a great help to set and reset OG tags and link previews.
3. Add Twitter cards to your website
It is no secret that tweets with images or videos get more views and engagement. You can improve your website’s or blog’s display on Twitter by implementing Twitter cards – and automatically Twitter will show a teaser text as well as a teaser image when you share your link online and gives your followers a much bigger incentive to click on the link.
Everything you need to know about the Amazon Fire Phone http://t.co/uULA47di9M
— TechCrunch (@TechCrunch) July 23, 2014
The cards are particularly effective on mobile as you don’t even have to click on the tweet for the cards to show, but all info is directly displayed in the timeline. Add that to dedicated analytics and there really is no reason for your website not to include Twitter cards.
4. Share your content more than once
Sharing the same website, article, blog post or link more than once has a bad reputation, and with good cause: spammers are annoying all community-driven digital ecosystems. However you are not a spammer, just because you share the same content more than once, on the contrary you can increase the likelihood of your audience getting in contact with the content they want.
When reposting your link on social media, make sure not to use the same message, adapt each publication to the platform and publish the posts at different times.
(Visual by kissmetrics.com)
5. Add social sharing & comment tools to your blog
Most website already use social sharing tool to make it as easy as possible for visitors to share the article they are reading. However the usability of these plugins is not always great and some don’t work correctly on mobile.
There are a few options to increase the likelihood of visitors sharing your website or blog article on social media. You can f.ex. include tweetable quotes or directly embed the Facebook post or Tweet you send out to promote the post at the end of the article to enable fast and reliable shares.
CRMs and blogging tool usually include a comment section. If you target a public inclined to visit several blogs or use Facebook to share their opinion, think about using Disqus or Facebook comments as you discussion platform. Especially the Facebook comments can create more shares and subsequently more traffic to your blog with automatic posting of the comments to the users’ wall.
6. Learn about writing good headlines
Whatever you do to technically impact website traffic, your headline (and to some extend the teaser text) still play a major role in convincing users to click on your link and visit your website. Good headlines create curiosity and encourage clicking on the link to read more. Bad headlines are easily identified as clickbait and get you on spam and block-lists faster than you can say “number 12 really blew my mind”.
7. Ask your target audience to share your content
One of the most effective tactics to increase your traffic is to directly ask your target group to visit and share your website. Here is where good community management is key: if you have a running Facebook group, have a decent LinkedIn Pulse following or Twitter community, you will know who to tag and ask to share and view your article. Mention people who you think are particularly interested in you article in your social media shares, send individual e-mails or use your newsletter(s) to feed your articles to specific audiences. If your website or articles are well written, your contacts won’t mind the mention, but gladly accept the help to find great content.
8. Experiment with retargeting
Paid advertising is always an option if you want to increase your reach and traffic. As previously noted however, ads can quickly become expensive if they are not executed smartly. Retargeting is not a tactic to implement if you want to gain massive traffic to your website, but a great tool to increase the quality of the visitors you get. Facebook and Twitter already let you set tacking pixels to your website which help them identify visitors of your website and display them targeted ads in the social networks. Retargeting is the perfect way to increase your conversion rate and optimize you ad investments!
As always: if you have any questions or comments, please leave a note in the comments section!