website owners complain that despite generating traffic, they can’t
keep their visitors long enough on their sites to generate any income or
build a relationship with them. Others keep their visitors long enough,
make them interested in the content and still cannot earn any decent
money. Many times, the problem lies in the website's layout and design,
which lacks features enabling your visitors to feel safe and in control.
With hundreds of sites to choose from, it’s really easy for people just
to navigate to a second site if they don’t like yours. That’s why you
should do your best to make them stay on your site after that first
impression. Below you’ll find a few things that every website owner
should take care of when it comes to preparing a site for traffic.
1. Create a plan and understand your goal and your visitor
Treat your website as a business from the
very beginning. Create a plan with clear goals on what you want to
achieve. Create everything with your audience in mind – it’s your
visitors that buy your products and click your affiliate links, don’t
forget that. Set yourself milestones – some easy, to keep you going,
other much harder to make you motivated. Stick to the plan but stay
flexible - adjust your blueprint as you go, including everything that
2. Make the website layout responsive and clear and let your visitors navigate easily
You have very little time to show that
your site is genuine and that what you are presenting is actually worth
reading. Even the best content will generate a huge bounce rate if
served on an ugly or cluttered website. Make sure that your site is easy
to navigate and don’t put too many ads on it – everyone wants to earn
money but cluttering your site with banners will only make your visitors
blind to them and more eager to leave immediately after entering your
site. Avoid distractions such as music, auto-playing videos or too many
colors. Start building a professional image from the very first second.
There’s no point in mentioning responsiveness because you already are
3. Make sure your visitors can buy whatever you are offering
The Internet is a business. Most people
create their websites in order to earn money so sooner or later they
will offer their own products or generate income through affiliate
sales. Make sure that you have clear call to actions, encouraging people
to buy. Make them click the links that you want. Sometimes a good
anchor text can double or triple your sales. Other time it’s the whole
article that has to presale them on a product, but even then you should
have a good call to action here and there, to make sure they are
actually clicking your offer and pulling out their credit cards for you.
4. Don’t let them run away – collect their emails and build a relationship
So you’ve been working hard to generate
visitors? That’s great, but only a small percentage of them will ever
come back. Most of them will never visit your website again, even if
your content is top-notch; they will simply forget about you. Make sure
that you have the option to remind them about your site – collect their
emails, ask them to like your Facebook page or to follow you on Twitter.
Remember that while social media marketing is great, nothing can top
email – you don’t own the likes on your fan page, but you have full
control over the emails that you collect.
5. Where are they coming from? Focus your efforts on your best visitors
With a good website analytics, it’s easy
to find out where your visitors are coming from. Make sure that you
measure the results of your marketing efforts; this way you know where
to invest more time and resources. Some website analytics even allow you
to generate heatmaps and watch recordings of your visitors on your site
– that way you can optimize not only your marketing campaign but your
website as a whole. While the top analytics can be quite expensive, all
of the mentioned functions can be found in free options, such as Yandex
6. Let your readers contact you
Do you ever contact website owners of the
sites that you visit? Unless you have a business to do with them, it’s
highly unlikely you’ll ever do that. But that’s exactly why you should
make sure that it’s easy to contact you – so that others can send you
business proposals. The best way is to create a contact form on your
site as it keeps your email address private and protects you from being
spammed. While many people will still use the contact form to spam you,
if your website becomes big enough you may start receiving paid guest
post offers and joint venture offers. Some may even be interested in
buying your site.
Interact with your readers – give them some control over what is created
on the site and listen to their ideas and utilize them
Do you know how to generate the best
ideas? Ask others for them. No business can be successful when you are
working alone. The same applies to websites – you should ask your
readers what it is that they want to read about. What’s annoying them on
the site? Let them ask questions on the topic of your site and give
them real answers, listen to what they are looking for – this may give
you some good ideas and put your site on the path to success and flood
of new visitors. Don’t hesitate to ask your readers to share your site
with others – it can be in a form of incentive, where you give them
something back, or you can just casually mention that in some of your
posts or emails. Just don’t overdo it.
8. Build social proof
Let your visitors see your
professionalism. Show your knowledge and experience. Become a guest
blogger and link to those posts from within your site so that your
readers can see your work. Write everything about yourself that can
prove your professionalism. Start networking with others to build your
social proof – even if you don’t get any instant profits from such move,
your image will benefit greatly.
9. Give more than your visitors expect
Surprise your readers on your site by
always giving them more. It’s easiest to do so when they are signed up
to your email – to keep them hooked, make sure that you overdeliver.
Always go one step further with your content, find some excellent
information on the topic and excel your competition. People who receive
more are more satisfied and eager to buy your product or click your
affiliate links following your recommendation.
10. Have a separate schedule for your content
Make sure that you have a good content
plan. While the significance of having a good, step by step plan has
already been mention in #1, having a separate content schedule is
similarly important. Review your plan frequently to keep your content
fresh and up to date with the news in the niche in which you are
operating thrown in between more thorough articles. Let your readers
leave you feedback in the comments and learn from it. Of course not
everything will be positive but don’t run from it – it’s a great way to
learn the needs of your audience.
11. Optimize your website’s speed
Keeping your website fast is important both for your audience and for SEO. Use a good web host
that is suitable for the amount of traffic your site generates. Make
sure that you optimize the code of your website – you can use GtMetrix
to test the site and learn what it is that you can optimize (both on the
website and server side). If you have visitors from international
locations on various continents, and you have a lot of static content,
you may consider using Content Delivery Network (CDN). Use asynchronous
loading for Java or other scripts so that they don’t delay the loading
of the whole site. Similarly, you should gzip and minify your images.
Some of the above can be done in a few clicks using special plugins such
as WP Rocket if you are using WordPress. Some other changes will
require changing settings of your server - contact your host if you need
any help optimizing it.
12. Take care of your site’s security
Make sure that you protect your website
from hackers and server failures. Even though most hosts offer automatic
backups, it’s good to keep a backup of your site on a separate server.
You can use Amazon S3 for that, and there are WordPress plugins (such as
BackupBuddy; again, a great tool if you are using WordPress) that can
automatically send your files there. Don’t be naïve and don’t think that
no one is going to hack your site – there will be attempts to do so,
sooner or later, and if you don’t secure it, it will get compromised.
Take care of the basics, hide your WordPress panel admin and limit login
attempts. One of the best security options for WordPress is iThemes
Security plugin - the free version will significantly strengthen the
security of your site and it won't cost you anything.
course, you will need much more to succeed than the above 12 points –
the content is still the king, and what you serve your readers is the
most important part of your site. But if you make the plate on which you
serve it – your website – a fast, clean and secure environment, your
readers will enjoy whatever you offer them even more. And if you build a
relationship with them – they will keep coming back for more bringing
their friends along!