Do you want to learn how to increase organic traffic to your website? Great! We are more than happy to help you out. There are several ways to grow organic traffic, which makes it both fun and challenging to dig into. In this blog post, we will look at 12 ways to drive organic traffic – and provide you with a shortcut. Additionally, we will explain what organic traffic actually is, and how you can measure it. Are you ready to get started with your strategy to increase organic traffic?
What is Organic Traffic?
Organic traffic is those website visitors that land on your website from unpaid sources, such as search engines like Google, Bing, or Yahoo. In other words, unpaid traffic is organic traffic. For example, imagine that you are running a car company. If someone searches “cars” on Google, ads will appear at the top. Below the ads, organic website suggestions will be displayed. If someone finds your website there and clicks the link, that visitor will land on your website from an unpaid source, meaning that website visit counts as organic traffic.
Essentially, organic traffic is free traffic.
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What is direct traffic?
Direct traffic is any traffic that does not come from a referring source, such as a search engine, website, social media, or a newsletter. Instead, the source is unknown. For example, when someone types your website URL directly into a browser, that is direct traffic. Also, if someone clicks a URL of yours and it is not tagged, this will count as direct traffic. If someone sends a text to their friend with a direct link to your website and the friend clicks on the link, it will not be tagged. Hence, it will count as direct traffic. This means that direct traffic is, just as organic traffic, free traffic.
Why is organic traffic important?
Everyone likes free traffic, right? That is one of the reasons why it is important to increase your organic traffic, as it is not relying on media spend. Another reason is because organic traffic is oftentimes closer to a conversion than paid traffic is. If someone is actively searching for a car using a search engine, they are obviously interested in finding it. If you can provide them with what they are looking for, you can get a free conversion.
How to increase organic traffic to your website?
By now, you are probably eager to start to increase your organic traffic. Great! Focusing on improving organic traffic is called Search Engine Optimization, or SEO.
Working with SEO can be done in many ways, which is why the first step to succeed is to create an SEO strategy. As search engines rank websites based on the quality and content of their pages, continuously improving these will be the overall goal for your SEO efforts. With a strategy in place, you get a better understanding of what to focus on, when, and why, in order to reach your goals.
Do you need help to get started with your strategy? Here are 12 things you can do to increase organic traffic:
Organic traffic growth strategy
1. Create content for users
We all get bombarded with content, such as social posts, emails, ads, and so on. A lot of the time, it is irrelevant to us, and may even annoy us. That is why it is so important to create content for users, that is actually valuable to them. This is done by focusing on their needs, rather than your needs. Before creating content, stop and think of who your audience is, what interests them, what drives them, and how you can help them.
For example, if someone is interested in buying a car, they will probably not search for “I want to buy a car now”. Rather, they may search for “how do I pick the right family car”, “which electric car should I choose”, or “should I lease or buy a car”. In this case, make sure you have content that helps answer their questions – such as “10 things to think about when buying a family car”, “The difference between electric and hybrid cars”, and “The difference between leasing and buying a car”. This increases the chances that these users will click on your content, and you can start connecting with them.
2. Start a blog on your website
As discussed above, creating customer-centric content is key. Naturally, this means you need to host the content somewhere. Content that is meant to solve specific problems for specific audiences, may not be fitting for your website’s main pages, which is what makes a blog so great.
If you start a blog, it can be used to attract your target audience, by providing them with value without asking for anything in return. A blog can also be used to establish authority; to show that your company knows what you are doing and offer information to your audience. This way, you will build trust and credibility. When in need of the latest update on the subject, your blog can be a place your audience to turn to. In the long-term, building this connection will help warm up your audience, nurture them, and later have them convert.
3. Keyword Research – Find your organic traffic potential
We have covered the fact that you need to create content that speaks directly to the user, but how do you do that? Keyword research is a great place to start!
Keywords are what words users type into search engines to find what they are looking for. If someone searches for “best family car”, these are keywords. Some keyword searches are long, while others are short. Either way, keyword research identifies what keywords your audience uses. Therefore, this tells you what keywords you should include in your content. Without relevant keywords, search engines will not know what your business is about, or when to showcase your website. When you include relevant keywords in your content, you will appear higher on a search engine results page (SERP), and therefore increase organic traffic. This is what keyword research is all about!
Remember that keyword research is an ongoing process. Check your keywords and rankings frequently, to understand what your audience is interested in, and thereby, what content you should create.
There are several tools that can help you do keyword research, such as Ahrefs, Semrush and Moz.
4. Identify high potential keywords with low competition
On top of telling you what people search for, keyword research will also help you understand where you rank for keywords, which keywords are easy to rank for, and which keywords your competitors rank for. After you have mapped this out, you may feel unsure of where to start. In that case, try to identify high potential keywords with low competition. Why? They are low hanging fruit!
These keywords have a high search volume, but do not have that much relevant content that has been created around them. These are more likely long-tail keywords, such as “best family suv car to lease”, or specific questions such as “why is an suv a great car for families?”, rather than less specific keywords such as “best family car”.
5. On page optimization
To increase organic traffic, on page optimization is important. On page SEO refers to everything you do directly within your website to improve SEO. Here are a few tips on what you can do to implement on page optimization:
Make sure the title tag, which appears in search results as a headline, includes important keywords and entices users to increase CTR.
This is the short summary of the page and appears under the title in search results, meaning it should also provide relevant information, include keywords and create interest.
Headings structure your text, which is helpful for SEO as well as your reader. Each page has one H1 heading, which should be the overall description of the page. The H1 on this page is “How to increase your organic traffic”. Use H2 for sub headings, such as “5. On page optimization” and H3 for sub headings such as “Headings”.
Additionally, make sure your headings are informative. If your headings let users know what your text covers, they will help search engines understand your content, too.
Give your images descriptive file names and add image alt tags that include the appropriate keyword. Also, optimize the file size to ensure it loads quickly while maintaining quality, as a faster page load time improves your SEO, too.
6. Reoptimize old content
Content is key to increasing organic traffic to your website, but creating content can be very time-consuming. That is why updating your content is so efficient! It is a great idea to reoptimize old content that is not performing well.
Updated content will improve your SEO, as Google uses publishing date as one of the factors to determine the quality and freshness of a site. By reoptimizing old content, Google will view your content as new content. Also, updated content will improve the user experience for any website visitor. Make sure to add new links to better resources, fix broken links, add internal links, or adjust any information that may be wrong or has changed. This will also improve your click-through rate, which is yet another indication to search engines that your content should rank higher. Why? Imagine seeing an article published last year, compared to an article from 2015. Which one would you click? The newer one, of course!
7. Internal linking between your pages
Without links, neither search engines nor users will find your content, which is why internal linking is essential to increase organic traffic. There are several types of internal links; links on your homepage, menu, and so on, but also links within your content. These links point users as well as search engines to interesting and related content, and help search engines understand how valuable a page is. When a page receives a lot of links, that indicates it is an important page. This can be referred to as link value.
Usually, a website’s homepage has the greatest link value, since it has the most links to it. That link value will be shared between all the links found on that homepage, and the link value passed to the following page will be divided between the links on that page, and so on. Therefore, you can increase the link value of new content by linking to them from your homepage, which means search engines will find that content quicker.
All in all, search engines consider pages that get a lot of valuable links important. Therefore, internal linking will guide users and search engines to your most important pages and can increase page ranking.
8. SEO friendly URLs
A website needs to have SEO-friendly URLs. URLs that are designed to meet the needs of users and searchers. Specifically, URLs optimized for SEO tend to be short and keyword-rich. About 10 years ago, keywords in URLs and in the domain name was an important ranking factor. Although, according to Google:
“Keywords in URLs are overrated for Google SEO. Make URLs for users. Also, on mobile, you usually don’t even see them.”
Just because a website has a keyword in its domain name, does not mean that it is more relevant than other websites for that specific keyword.
This means, you don’t need to put keywords in the domain name. Instead, keep URLs short, with a keyword that is relevant to your content and structure for a better user experience. Avoid numbers and letters that only appear in your own language. Although, if you have very vague URLs, such as:
it could be worth updating the URL.
If you are an E-commerce website with over a thousand products, having article numbers or product numbers in your URL is totally fine. In that case, your updated URL could look like this:
9. Link building from external websites
Link building, or backlinks, are links from one website to another. You can look at backlinks as votes; the more votes you get from credible sources, the higher the trust. As trust helps better your website’s Domain Rating, which in turn improves search engine ranking, backlinks play an important role for SEO.
The more backlinks you have from unique domains, the more trustworthy and valuable you are for a search engine. This is especially true if the backlinks come from high quality domains, as a single quality backlink is more powerful than lots of low-quality backlinks. A quality backlinks comes from a trusted, authoritative website, preferably includes your target keyword in their anchor text, and comes from a website that relates to your content. For example, if you publish an article on cars, search engines will rely more on backlinks that come from websites that focus on cars, vehicles, gas, and such.
In summary, there is a clear positive correlation between the amount of backlinks from unique websites and the effect on organic traffic growth.
10. Mobile first
Designing responsive websites is key to making your website user friendly across devices and browsers. Previously, this has been enough to satisfy mobile users, but that is no longer the case. To take it one step further, many websites are now mobile first, meaning they are designed first and foremost to work great on mobile rather than desktop.
Think about it – mobile is not a passing trend, but a lifestyle. According to CNBC, over two billion people are accessing the internet only through their mobile devices. This equals 51% of the total mobile phone users globally. By 2025, this number is expected to reach 72.5%. With this in mind, designing mobile first websites makes sense. Not only will it satisfy users, but also search engines, as they favour mobile first websites.
11. Page Speed & Core Web Vitals
In 2021, Google started to include page experience as one of the factors to determine ranking. This means that page experience has become more important than ever to get a good ranking.
Google has a set of specific factors that are important to determine a website’s overall user experience. These are called Core Web Vitals, and consist of specific page speed and user interaction measurements: largest contentful paint (LCP), first input delay, and cumulative layout shift.
Three things you can do to improve your site for Core Web vitals:
- Remove any unnecessarily third-party scripts
- Upgrade your web host
- Remove large page elements
Click here to learn more about Core Web Vitals
12. Send your website (sitemap) to Google
When creating a new website, it will definitely be found by search engines at some point, as they constantly search through the web. With that being said, to speed up that process, there are a few things you can do. The first step is to let Google know that you exist, by actually submitting your website to Google. You can do this by submitting your Sitemap to Google Search Console.
How to submit your sitemap to Google Search Console in 4 easy steps:
- Sign in to Google Search Console.
In the sidebar, select your website.
- Click on ‘Sitemaps’.
The ‘Sitemaps’ menu is under the ‘Index’ section. If you do not see ‘Sitemaps’, click on ‘Index’ to expand the section.
- Remove outdated or invalid sitemaps (if any) like sitemap.xml
Enter ‘sitemap_index.xml’ in the ‘Add a new sitemap’ field to complete the sitemap URL.
- Click Submit.
Is there a shortcut for better organic rankings?
Everyone loves shortcuts that actually work! Domain Rating and Domain Authority can be those shortcuts. Domain Rating (DR) shows the strength of a website’s backlink profile compared to the others on a 100-point scale. Meanwhile, Domain Authority (DA) is a search engine ranking score developed by Moz that predicts how likely a website is to rank in search engine result pages (SERPs). Domain Authority scores range from one to 100, with higher scores corresponding to greater likelihood of ranking.
Domain Rating and Domain Authority can really help boost your organic traffic. However, it takes time to get a good DR and DA. You might think: then how are these shortcuts? Well, if you work with Mynewsdesk, they are!
Mynewsdesk has a DR of 89 and a DA of 91, which is extremely high. Publishing content on Mynewsdesk will give you the opportunity to rank for high competitive keywords that you wouldn’t be able to rank for with your own website. In other words, if you want to increase your organic visibility fast and increase your brand awareness, Mynewsdesk is a great option.
How to measure your website’s organic traffic?
There are several ways of measuring organic traffic, and different tools will focus on different metrics. By using several sources to measure traffic, you can not only get an understanding of the volume of traffic, but also how that traffic engages with your website. That is why we will look deeper into three ways of measuring organic traffic; Google Analytics, Google Search Console and rank tracking. It may sound like a lot, but using all of these tools will give you a more holistic view of the data. That way, you will be able to make more informed decisions. Let’s get started!
Use Google Analytics to track website activity and help identify user trends and patterns. One of the things that Google Analytics tracks is source, meaning you can look into organic traffic specifically. That way, you can look at activity such as session duration, pages per session, bounce rate and so forth, that is related solely to organic traffic. This helps you understand not only if your organic traffic has increased, but also if this traffic is qualitative, and what content they are interested in. The same goes for other traffic sources, of course.
Also, using Google Analytics, you can add, delete, and reorder the list of recognized search engines to adjust how organic search traffic is attributed in your account and how the data looks like in your reports. To make your data easy to understand, you can also visualize it with a dashboard either in Google Analytics, or using Google Data Studio.
Google Search Console
While Google Analytics focuses on website visitors, Google Search Console focuses on how search engines view your website. For example, are all pages being crawled? Are there any broken links or other errors? Is the website configured correctly for search engines? Google Search Console helps answering these questions, which means it first and foremost provides insights related to the performance of your website through organic search. These insights can be used to improve visibility in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
The practice of tracking where URLs rank on the SERPs for selected keywords is called rank tracking. This is done over time, to spot trends and see how SEO optimization impacts ranking. As keyword rankings is one of the most important KPIs for SEO, rank tracking is vital. With rank tracking, you can see:
- Keywords that are used on your website
- Keywords you necessarily don’t optimize for, but might want to start including
- Keywords that your competitor rank for
Thereby, rank tracking helps you understand how well your website performs organically compared to competitors. To easily track rankings, using a rank tracker is the way to go. There are several options on the market – do some research to find out which one works the best for you.
There are several ways to increase organic traffic, and in the long run, you want to try to implement all of them. To get you started, ensure you have the basics in place. If your Domain Rating and Domain Authority is low (under 40), there is a possibility that you will not even be able to rank for your primary keywords. Therefore, to get both fast and long term SEO results, this is a high priority. That is why Mynewsdesk PR Platform is such a great choice to use as your publication tool, as Mynewsdesk has a DR of 89 and a DA of 91. This way, you can easily improve your SEO impact, with a low effort.
Intrigued? Read more on how our customer Minitool used our platform to improve SEO.