To see these benefits, though, you have to combine social media and the content on your website in the right way. If you aren’t implementing the right social media strategies or aren’t creating solid content, you won’t be able to drive traffic reliably to your site and generate sales from it. In this sense, promoting your business with content and social media is a single integrated process, rather than two separate ones. Here are seven of the top tactics and strategies you can use to increase web traffic to your site from social media in an effective way.
Run a Tagging Competition on Facebook
While it may seem horribly cliche’, using a “tag a friend” competition on Facebook to bulk up your social media reach and therefore your potential web traffic is an incredibly effective tactic. Generally speaking, these competitions involve asking the people who see your posts to tag a friend in exchange for a chance to win a prize of some kind. The prize can be your own product or service, or something else generally useful, such as an Amazon gift card. As a rule, it’s a good idea to use your own product, since you may convince some people who see the post to purchase it if they don’t win. Starting up one of these competitions is an extremely easy way to reach more people and get them to join your audience on Facebook. This larger audience can then be directed to your website the next time you post a content or product link. This is one way to increase web traffic.
Integrate Social Media Buttons into Your Website
While you can certainly generate web traffic from your social media audience, you can also turn visitors to your website into social media followers by integrating social media buttons on each page of your website. These buttons not only make it more likely that visitors will follow you on social media but also promote the sharing of content from your site. You can also remind readers to follow you on different social media platforms at the end of your blog posts. The beauty of this system is that it turns visitors who would otherwise view your site one time and then leave forever into audience members you can reach over and over again, making it much more likely that you’ll be able to convert them into paying customers.
Always Share Your Blog Posts
Your blog is the cornerstone of your content marketing strategy, but it’s a mistake to use it only to attract traffic passively from search engines. Every time you write a new blog post, you should share it aggressively on every social media platform you have a presence on. As time goes by, you’ll even build up a large enough reserve of blog posts that you’ll be able to share old posts on an ongoing basis without being too repetitive. By doing this, you can keep old posts useful and relevant by generating additional traffic from them. You’ll no doubt increase web traffic with this social media strategy.
Consistent sharing of your blog posts on social media platforms can be made even more effective by paying to have more people see them. Boosting a post on Facebook, for instance, can help you reach a much larger audience at a relatively low cost. If your business can afford even a modest advertising budget, make sure to earmark part of it to boost social posts. When you do a paid promotion of your social media posts, don’t forget to carefully target the post to your desired audience. Knowing your major audience demographics and their interests is critical when it comes to effectively boosting posts, so be sure you have some idea of who your target customer is before you spend money on paid social media promotions.
Learn to Use Hashtags Effectively
Most people associate social media hashtags exclusively with Twitter, but the truth is that most social media platforms make use of hashtags in some capacity. By learning to use hashtags more effectively, you can target your social media posts to people who are interested in the subject you’re discussing, while at the same time making your posts more likely to reach a larger audience. Each platform is a little different in terms of how its hashtag features work, so be sure that you tailor your tagging strategy to the platform you’re posting on at any given time. To be as effective as possible in your use of hashtags, you should also research them and try to keep an eye on trending hashtags. If a trending hashtag is relevant in some way to your business, creating some posts with that hashtag and a link to your website in them can be a quick and easy way to increase web traffic.
Try to Create Viral Content
What blog post, video or other piece of content may go viral is at best difficult to predict, but when you know you’ve created something that will solve a real problem for people or that is extremely entertaining, there’s a good chance it has at least the potential to become a piece of viral content. Always try to create content that could go viral, then place it on social media. Again, boosting your social media posts can be useful here, since a boosted post can get you the initial surge of views you need to unlock your content’s viral potential.
You should also keep in mind that more types of content than you might expect can go viral. Most of us tend to associate viral content with funny videos or popular memes, but informational blog posts, infographics or even great photographs can become viral, albeit usually on a smaller scale. Realistically, viral content can be anything that people will love to share and engage with.
Optimize Your Posting for Your Audience’s Peak Time
One of the most important aspects of driving web traffic with social media is making sure that you’re posting when your audience is online and active. Otherwise, your posts are likely to end up being seen by only a small fraction of your total audience members. Every platform has a slightly different peak time in general, but as a general rule, it’s a good idea to post later in the afternoon or early evening when people are less likely to be at work or fulfilling some other obligation. Posting at peak platform time also goes hand in hand with optimizing the frequency of your posts, which many experts believe should be 1-2 times per day.
Although each platform may have its own unique peak time, your audience may not necessarily line up with the platform as a whole. As your following begins to grow on various platforms, it’s important that you experiment with posting at different times to see when your engagement is at its highest. In this way, you can tailor your posting times precisely to your audience and ensure that you’re seeing the best possible engagement rates. Go through this process on each social media platform you use, and you’ll start to see much more traffic coming in overall.
Increase Web Traffic from Social Media: Where to Start
The steps you’ll need to take to generate and increase web traffic from social media depend heavily on where you are right now. If you’re brand new to social media marketing, filling out your profiles, populating them with good content and acquiring your first few followers is a great start. If you’ve already got a small social media following, you should use tactics such as the “tag a friend” competition and on-site buttons to expand your audience while improving your engagement. If your following is already fairly large and you know how to keep it growing, your main focus should be optimizing your posts for engagement and continuing to post links to your site’s content on a continual basis.
Learning to increase web traffic with social media will take some time and some experimentation. Once you hit on the formula that works with your unique audience, though, you’ll be amazed at the results you can see. Start improving your social media presence today, and you can begin to see more web traffic, more leads and, in time, more sales as a result of your efforts.
The original version of this article was first published on The Marketing Scope.