How Not To Depend Much On Search Engines

Traffic without search engines

95% of my writing business depends on search engine traffic. This is a dangerous situation. What if something happens – some change in the ranking algorithms, something that is not liked at my website – and my listings vanish from the search engine result pages? Does this mean I should pack my bags? Although I can start all over again and try to get back into the search engine results but this is a very shaky situation and I am sure many of you too are faced with the same dilemma. What is the best way to deal with such a situation?

Let us accept that the search engines are very powerful promotional tools and they should never be excluded from your Internet marketing effort, but they should never be the sole suppliers of your traffic. With millions of websites scattered all over the Internet it is not too ambitious to try to get some traffic from these websites directly. I will again emphasize that you can get the best traffic from search engines because when people come from search engines they are already looking for a specific search term and this may not happen if they are coming directly from a website. But then the advantage of getting traffic from a website is that a person clicks on your link fully knowing where he or she is heading to. So how can you generate traffic outside of the search engines? Here are a few thoughts; you are welcome to add yours.

Publish a blog

Regularly publishing a blog is the best way of driving high-quality traffic to your website without having to depend on search engines. Although blogs get tons of traffic from search engines due to the way they are published, a lot of traffic also comes from other websites and blogs and this is an advantage not enjoyed by conventional websites. People are constantly linking to blog posts, commenting about them, commenting on them and recommending them to their readers and friends. There are even many social bookmarking websites just to promote blog content among various readers and blog publishers. In few instances some bloggers have been blocked by the search engines (that is, their links didn’t show up on the search result pages) for violating various rules but the blockage didn’t affect them much although they did notice it and wrote about it. The mere act of writing about the blockage got them hundreds of thousands of hits from other blogs and websites. They couldn’t have generated such massive traffic merely from search engines. Once your blog has crossed the popularity threshold you don’t have to worry much about search engine traffic.

Have quality content on your website or blog

Interesting content draws crowds to your blog or website. People not only read the content they also like to link to it whenever possible, and if they are really impressed they put a permanent link to your blog on their blog or website. Quality content also enhances your credibility and people begin to trust you for your opinion. You get tons of repeat traffic. Great content also encourages your visitors to subscribe to your RSS feeds and this also helps you increase and maintain your readership – this readership doesn’t have to depend on search engines to find your blog and consume your content and consequently, generate business for you.

Be active on social media websites, online forums and blogs

We live in a conversation economy; lots of business is generated by encouraging conversation between buyers and sellers. But this is just one small aspect of social media marketing. What you are actually doing is establishing long-lasting relationships with different individuals. You don’t necessarily have to do it for a selfish reason because being social means giving more than taking. Be useful to people and people will be useful to you. Be an interesting person, be a resourceful person and people won’t take you as a business bug. Try to interact with people through Twitter, FaceBook, Tumblr, Digg, StumbleUpon, etc. Often it is not possible to track conversations on all social media websites so just focus on a couple or even a single website but do it thoroughly and establish yourself there as an authority. Network with as many people as possible.

Similarly, constructively interact on various online forums because you can get lots of quality traffic from these forums. Don’t spam and don’t leave meaningless comments just to leave your links because this doesn’t work; people don’t click your link if they don’t like what you have written. You should also leave comments on other blogs to let people know about the existence of your blog or website. But make sure that you add value to the ongoing discussion and this means read the content present on the blog or website carefully, think about it, and only then add your opinion.

Distribute your content to blogs and websites

There are many blogs that would eagerly accept your guest posts provided you have written something really worth reading and captivating. When these bloggers publish your blog post, what is known as guest blog post, they often put a small profile of yours under the post or over it with the link connecting to your blog or website.

Similarly you can submit succinct, useful articles to various websites and article submission websites. These article submission websites draw lots of traffic from search engines; this way you can get indirect traffic from search engines in case your own website or blog vanishes from there.

Include your link in your e-mail signature

This might not look like much but you never know where your e-mail may end up and who might click on the link you have included in your signature. And anyway having a link is a lot better than not having it. This can be really effective if you send out lots of e-mails on a regular basis.

Publish a newsletter

In terms of the Internet this is one of the oldest surviving modes of communicating with your visitors. When they visit your website encourage investors to subscribe to your newsletter so that they can receive regular updates from you. Although this can be same as subscribing to your RSS feeds but your newsletter is a bit different – people don’t need an RSS reader first of all to read your updates, and second, it will be difficult for you to publish everything on your blog; sometimes you need to communicate only through e-mail. Publishing a newsletter is one of the greatest ways of getting tons of highly targeted traffic to your website without having to depend on search engines.

Do share on this blog if you are aware of more methods of generating targeted traffic to your website or blog without search engines.

3 thoughts on “How Not To Depend Much On Search Engines

  1. Adrian

    Nice Amrit – look how many people send a email with no signature – but as you point out – its imperative – and all professional emails have a email signature as standard and any opportunity to share your URL in a non spammy way needs be taken. You can only get out what you put in and you've covered these areas nicely.

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