Over the past 30-days, HookAgency.com has gotten 11,000 visitors that weren’t from Google.
Although I’m dissatisfied with that number – some folks might be curious how we were able to achieve that. I certainly would have been a few years ago.
So here they are – 11 ways to get traffic to your website besides Google.
Curate or share your best visual content on Pinterest
One of the biggest ways we’ve received so much traffic is by curating content like ‘inspirational designs’ and then re-sharing those to Pinterest. In some cases, it’s our design work, and in some cases, we credit the designer – but either way, the clicks come back to our site.
Try this habit: Every month create one ‘inspirational’ or very visual post and pin all of the images from it onto Pinterest and make sure to describe the image.
Take Bing ‘semi’ seriously – and make sure you’re set up to get traffic there.
While Google dominates search – the 5% of our traffic we’re getting from Bing doesn’t seem that important, but it doesn’t hurt to make sure you’ve submitted your sitemap there, and have claimed your local listing on Bing as well.
Try this one-time action: Make sure you’ve submitted your sitemap, and have claimed your map listing on Bing.
Have a strategy around sharing content regularly on LinkedIn
Particularly if you are a company that serves other businesses – you should be on Linkedin. If you can add a Linkedin video to the mix, that’s one huge opportunity to get eyeballs. Pair engaging content with must-see resources back on your site, and you have another avenue to bring people back.
Just don’t get caught in the trap that everyone has to visit your site for them to be affected. You can get leads directly on Linkedin, sometimes it’s not only about traffic but about real connection.
Try this habit: Pop on Linkedin for 10 minutes each morning, comment thoughtfully on 3 people’s posts and share your best content.
Dust off that e-mail newsletter, and get your best content into the hands of more people
Just because you don’t want to ‘spam’ people on your newsletter, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be keeping it fresh by at least sending once a month. They signed up for a reason, right? Take your best 3-4 blog articles, write an intro and spend 10 minutes coming up with a spicy/provocative/or interesting headline for the e-mail and send away.
Try this habit: Repackage your blog content for e-mail and send it to your list every month.
Write guest articles on sites with traffic
I normally don’t think as the main function of writing for other sites – though we do it, our main function usually is to get links back to our site, as each counts as a vote for our site in Google’s algorithm.
But perhaps it’s time we think a little differently – as, in the end, we don’t want to be solely beholden to a giant corporation with its own interests squarely in the middle of its business model.
How will this change our strategy? Well, we need to find bigger and better blogs to be a part of and to write for when possible. Ideally, they are in our niche, and the people who read them could actually be our customers.
Try this habit: Reach out to one larger publication serving your ideal customers weekly and see if they’d be open to you writing an article for them. Spend time on your pitch, and understand they get these all the time, so the more targeted you can be, the better.
Answer questions on Quora
Quora has been around for a long time. It can be used as keyword research and can help you assess demand for different content as well as being a place you can answer questions directly, and occasionally tastefully link back to your site.
Try this habit: Go on Quora once a week and answer 3 questions. In every 1 out of 3, leave a tasteful link to a more full answer or resource on your site.
Re-invest in your YouTube strategy
Make sure your thumbnails are on-point, get keyword research down to a science on Youtube. Is this going to generate crazy traffic? Not necessarily – but always link back to your site as appropriate in the descriptions, and when you have content that’s doing well on your site, make a Youtube video for it, and vice versa.
Try this habit: Every month, make a video for at least one top-ranking blog post and link back to it on Youtube.
Actually engage with other blogs and comment
They say you’re a combination of the top 10 people you hang out with, and out should “always be the dumbest person in the room”, but it is hard getting around super-smart people as much as we want to. That’s why I suggest coming up with a list of 10-20 people you really want to be like in your industry, maybe just outside of your niche, so if you really do get to network with them, they aren’t scared to share their secrets.
- Get them on a list on Twitter and engage regularly.
- Follow them on Instagram, Linkedin, and even Tik Tok if they have it.
- Keep their blogs in a note on your phone and engage with 2-3 every morning.
- Engage with them every time they post on Linkedin.
- Try to get a phone call with them if you can and do your best to be useful to them. This goes beyond ‘traffic’ but being well-connected and human, sometimes blends into the metrics as well.
Try this habit: Leave 3 Comments a day, maybe on people’s blogs that you’d want in your ideal ‘Mastermind’
Find forums that actually interest you and get involved
This is one I’ve struggled with, but many other lists that tout ‘ways to get more traffic without Google’ – have mentioned this one. As close as I come currently is being involved in Facebook groups for professionals in my industry.
Try this action: Join 5 Forums and 5 Facebook groups and introduce yourself today. Don’t push traffic yet, but try to engage weekly or even daily.
Content Aggregators like GrowthHackers, AllTop, and BizSugar
AllTop is a content aggregator that lets you add your site and dynamically pulls in new articles, and GrowthHackers is a place where you submit your best content.
Try this action – and habit: Add your site to AllTop, and take 5 minutes each week to submit your best post to GrowthHackers or a similar aggregator in your industry.
HARO – Help a Reporter Out
I spent a year pitching reporters – 365 times on HARO, and I absolutely loved the experience.
It’s not just about the PR that you may or may not get (I landed 1 out of every 5 pitches) – but it’s also about hearing what’s interesting to PR professionals, journalists, and professional writers. This can help you sharpen your pitching skills quickly, but also help you identify new trends and topics to write about for your own blog.
In Conclusion: Getting traffic without Google
Let’s be honest, Google is currently the biggest way to get traffic at the moment for most websites.
Until that changes, these avenues may seem a little less exciting – but we should always be polishing our skills from different angles, and never relying too much on one traffic source. Just as business development people don’t want to rely on 1 source for their leads, lest it go away and they find themselves in a pickle.
Keep your skills sharp, and your eyes peeled, my friends – and thanks for reading!