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The Importance of Keywords in Generating Web Traffic

The 2 main ways of generating traffic to a Web site are paid and organic. Paid traffic comes from advertising, eg Google AdSense or Facebook ads (NB: Facebook is particulalrly effective where your target audience falls into a specific demographic). Organic traffic comes from search engines results (or increasingly from social media shares/likes).

Generating Quality Paid Traffic

It is important that paid traffic is of high quality (ie highly relevant to your page/site purpose) in order to maximize return on your expenditure.

The components of a paid traffic generation campaign are:

  • Define purpose of campaign, ie:
    • Who is your target audience?
    • What are you offering them?
    • What do you want them to do?
  • Identify keywords, ie: what is your target audience likely to type into their search box (when they’re most receptive to your campaign)? Your keywords determine where your ad is displayed.
    • Be specific, the aim is to get your ad seen by relevant viewers, but avoid being seen by the non-relevant (this maximizes your click-through rate, potentially gets your ad shown more and for lower cost, reduces cost of irrelevant clicks).
  • Write the ad text (title and body), seek to appeal to the relevant, but filter out the non-relevant
  • Write the landing page (where they go when they click). Given that most viewers should be receptive to your message, your task is to encourage them to complete the process and do what you want them to do.
paid ad optimization

Generating Organic Traffic

Organic traffic is free, but generally results in less targeted traffic than the paid model.

Before writing your page, define its purpose, ie: ideal target audience, what you’re giving them, what you want them to do (buy product, click ad, sign-up for list etc). Existing pages can also be retrospectively optimized for search.

Select target keywords (usually multi-word term) based on what your target audience would likely type into their search box. Each page should target one main key term and possibly a few secondary terms. The main term should form the title and appear in the ‘meta description’ and text body.

Use tools such as Google’s Keyword Planner and the number of results returned by Google search to estimate the demand and supply (competition) for potential key terms. Most people rarely get beyond the first page of search results, so it’s better to target very specific key terms with moderate demand and supply where you have the potential to make the first page of results.

Make sure your page title and meta description appeal to human readers as well as search engines, since these determine the number of clicks your result generates. (The meta description may appear in the serach results page).

Consider adding social ‘share’ buttons to your pages.

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