If a tree falls in a forest but nobody is there to see it, did it really fall? By that logic, if you launch a stunning website packed with brilliant copy and unique products but nobody clicks on it, did it really launch?

With so much online content competing for your audience’s attention these days, increasing your website traffic sustainably feels like an uphill battle. Unfortunately, there’s no secret formula for guaranteed growth. We’ve listed our top 12 and most important ways to drive traffic to your website. Some are slow burners, while others are super quick wins that can make a difference in no time.

What is website traffic and why should you care?

Stripping it back to basics, website traffic is the number of people who have visited your website, measured by tools like Google Analytics. You can break this number down further to get an idea of who your guests are, including:

  • How they found your website
  • How long they visited for
  • The pages they clicked on – invaluable data for understanding your conversion rate
  • How many people viewed a particular page on your website
  • … And more!

The good news (or bad, depending on how you look at it) is that the internet doesn’t discriminate. Whether you’re trying to entice your 1st or 1000th visitor over the threshold, everyone has to work just as hard as each other to grow traffic.

Before going full steam ahead on fast growth, it's a good idea to check that your website can handle high traffic in the first place.

How to increase your website traffic

Although we can’t wave a magic wand to miraculously boost your site visitors, we can give you the spell-book with a few hints. Below are our top 12 ways to boost traffic to your website – most of which are free, too!

1. Find the right keywords

The website visitors you’re most likely to convert to customers are those who have intentionally searched for a solution to their problem – a problem your product or service can hopefully answer. This is why finding the best, most effective keywords to focus on throughout your website is a must. Here are some top tips to bear in mind when doing keyword research:

  • Use a keyword planning tool, like ahrefs, Google Ads or Keywords Everywhere, to narrow down the search terms that are most relevant to your brand and likely to rank for SEO
  • If you’ve just launched your site, go for long-tail phrases that have less than 10,000 searches a month. Gradually increase this as you add more and more content to your website, blog, or online store.

2. Crawl your site

If you’re primarily focusing on SEO, submit your website to a search engine for crawling – we promise it’s not as creepy as it sounds! This means that a bot can analyse your website and index information to increase your odds of ranking for relevant search queries. You can do it easily for Google using Search Console.

Need a quick way to check the health of your webpage? Chrome extensions like SEOquake are fantastic for giving you a top-line view of your site health such as whether the page is indexed, meta title and description length, alt text on imagery, schemas and much more.

3. Run a paid media campaign

The fastest way to see significant traffic growth is by implementing a paid media campaign. Also known as pay-per-click (PPC), this strategy could see your business ranking among the big dogs on Google in no time. However, it’s important to keep an eye on your budget as PPC costs can rack up quickly.

Another form of paid media is paid social. You may see these as “Sponsored” posts on the likes of TikTok, Facebook and Instagram. All this means is that they’ve had some budget behind them to reach a target audience. If this is going way over your head, you can study the Meta advertising course for free to gain an understanding of how paid advertising works on Meta platforms. Alternatively, you may wish to enlist the help of a paid media expert to run adverts for you.

When you link to another site, or they link to you, you’re essentially telling the search engines that you trust them. The more backlinks, the more trustworthy you are and the higher you rank.

Our tips:

  • Earning backlinks – Create good quality content so people find your website organically and link to your page as a useful resource on their website.
  • Creating backlinks – Comment on other websites, forums, or blogs.
  • Building backlinks – Reach out to other website owners and encourage them to share your site.

5. Keep an eye on your competitors

Whatever industry you’re in, there will always be competition – unless you’re doing something extremely niche like a Pet Psychic Agency (but hey, there might be more than one of you out there). A surefire way to come out on top is to outrank them.

Once you’ve chosen your keywords, try searching for them yourself to see where other companies rank and adjust your keyword bids accordingly. The bigger the business, the higher its marketing budget is likely to be. So compare apples for apples and look at similarly sized companies to get a fair representation of the keywords to compete for.

It doesn't stop there. Spy on your competitors’ ads, social media, and other channels that drive traffic. Note what works and what doesn’t and take the good bits to use in your own strategy.

6. Work with influencers

Influencer marketing involves getting endorsement from people on social media who have an engaged audience. Engaged is the keyword here, as thousands and millions of followers on a social media account don’t necessarily mean that the influencer’s audience is engaged! Influencers are likely to do as their name says if their audience is receptive to their posts through engagement factors such as commenting and sharing.

When looking for influencers to advertise your products and/or services, ask for their media pack. This should include figures on their following and engagement rate, as well as any past campaigns they’ve worked on that have been successful. Alternatively, if your budget is low, you may wish to work on a gifting basis, particularly for smaller/micro-influencers who may be new to working on influencer marketing campaigns.

Ensure you state in your influencer marketing brief that you aim to drive traffic to your website. This can be done by adding links to their social media channels, and even providing exclusive codes for their audiences to use.

7. Run a newsletter

If you have an existing customer base (even if it’s small!), you should consider email marketing as part of your efforts to drive traffic to your website. Email marketing can serve different purposes, such as providing informational content, sales content, or a combination of the two! It’s a fantastic way to keep your audience informed of the latest happenings with your business.

Be sure to use strong CTAs like “Shop now” and create a sense of urgency – particularly on limited-time offers you may be running.

8. Optimise your website

Your SEO efforts should be an ongoing process. Things like updating your meta titles and descriptions, adding alt-text to your imagery and updating your products and services should be standard practice. This is so you maintain (and improve) your position in SERPs – particularly as search engine algorithms change regularly and if more competition surfaces in your niche.

Here are some other tips to optimise and drive traffic to your website:

  • Creating blog posts can enhance your visibility on search engines. Ensure your content is meaningful and answers readers' questions effectively, rather than just adding filler for the sake of length. Using long-tail keywords, “People Also Ask” questions when your query is searched on Google and terms that come through Google Search Console.
    • Note: Blog posts will also support your commercial content, particularly if they are linked correctly!
  • Ensure you keep your content fresh, as search engines prefer up-to-date web pages. Review your commercial and editorial content regularly by updating or merging them if necessary, to maintain good rankings. Incorporate internal links to clarify the structure of your site to search engines and drive extra traffic to linked pages.
  • Ensure you have a mix of trending, topical and evergreen content that stays relevant throughout the year. The latter is particularly important, as it ensures steady traffic to your site – regardless of what time of year it is.

Unsure of where to begin? Our beginner SEO guide is perfect if you’re new to the world of SEO!

9. Engage in digital PR

Linking back to our point of boosting backlinks, digital PR is a way of getting your site linked (or mentioned) on other platforms, namely, publications. If this is something you may struggle to do alone, then it’s worth enlisting the help of a digital PR expert.

If you want to have a stab at it yourself, sign up for sites such as ResponseSource and Newswire to distribute press releases online. This could potentially provide a backlink, subsequently driving more traffic to your website and positively impacting your SEO. Alternatively, you may wish to dabble in digital journalism by pitching your own story to journalists who cover topics in your niche. This involves seeking out journalists online – a great (and free) way of doing this is on X (Twitter) – simply search for the tag #journorequests to see what other journalists are seeking too.

10. Repurpose existing content

Wrote a ton of blog posts but they’re losing traction? Besides updating them with new info, you could try repurposing your content into different media types such as social media posts, newsletters, podcasts and other forms of online media.

Why? Increasing the reach and diversifying your content types can reach different audiences. Afterall, someone may not be signed up to your newsletter, but may follow your socials. Plus, some people just prefer more digestible content and may not want to read a 1000+ word blog post. So by diversifying your content types and promoting them regularly, you can expand your reach and drive traffic to your website.

11. Set up a Google Business Profile

Simply having a Google Business Profile has seen some sites skyrocket traffic to their website. By having your business listed, people who’re searching for a particular product or service can see your name pop up if it’s related to their search term. Plus, by having positive reviews, you can raise your listing on map searches and increase trust signals to the likes of Google.

Plus, it’s free, and only takes a few minutes to get set up! Combine this with your newsletter and social media efforts – so you can incentivise getting some reviews for your Google Business Profile.

12. Respond to your audience

Relating to our points on social media and blogging – you need to be active and receptive when people do engage with your posts. After all, you’re providing value to your audience, and they need to know they’re being heard!

You can start actioning this tip right now by responding to comments left on your social media pages, contributing to discussions on your business LinkedIn pages and even posting stories on Instagram that encourage users to interact through polls, questions and much more.

With our online marketing tools, you can keep an eye on everything in one place. And you don’t have to be an expert to understand it. From generating ad ideas to real-time insights on who’s saying what about your brand. Say ‘hello’ to hassle-free marketing!