If your site doesn’t load in 2-3 seconds Google will replace you with faster sites. Today we touch on some of the commons aspects of a website that kills your load times.
What’s In This Episode?
- Your Server Host (2:05)
- CMS (3:50)
- Image Size (4:55)
- Heavy & Unused Plugins (6:33)
- Content Heavy Pages (8:35)
- CDN (9:45)
- Heavily Scripted Themes (10:45)
- Caching Plugin (13:10)
- Live Feeds (15:39)
- Google Adsense (17:40)
- Actionable Tips (19:30)
Josh: 2019 is over in 2020 has begun and to celebrate the New Year we want to give away some free and organic ideas to help increase your site traffic in 2020.
Welcome to Creative Juices, the show where we help you feel personally confident about your online presence. I’m your host Josh and today I’m joined by our in-house SEO guru Em.
Emily: Hey Josh!
Josh: How you doing Em?
Emily: I’m good! How are you?
Josh: Good! It is a new year! 2020! And it’s time for you to get excited and prepared for what the online strategy for your business will be for 2020. To cut straight to the point, you need to take organic SEO seriously this year! Don’t just think paid, although definitely don’t cut paid from your strategy, but think long term. Think organic! You see paid is like a band-aid for instant results. Organic strategies are more long-term, more cost effective, and I mean, last year in 2019 we saw massive results for organic SEO. And so we’re going to give you, today on this episode, some free and organic ways that you can increase your site traffic in 2020.
Emily: Yeah! I’m excited!
Josh: Excited! So, Em, how about you get us started on our first tip?
Emily: Yeah! So, firstly for 2020 you should look at getting on board the less saturated social platforms and one of the most underrated platforms that I use all the time is Pinterest. And I’m sure you’ve heard of Pinterest but what you may not know about Pinterest is that it’s actually a search engine not just a social platform. And the great thing about Pinterest is that maybe you just think it’s for travel or baking, but 40% of new signups on Pinterest are actually men.
Emily: So, yeah, it’s a great opportunity to reach a wide audience in a whole bunch of different topic areas.
Josh: That totally changes my thought on it because I thought Pinterest was just for like home décor, cooking…. but it’s more than that.
Emily: It’s so much more than that! You can find whatever you want on Pinterest! And another great thing about it is that you don’t actually have to have heaps of followers on there to make an impact. So, Pinterest isn’t about how many followers you have because it’s got to feed in the way that whatever topic you’re searching for, you can see posts from whoever and whatever. And it’s set up so that once you click through you go straight to someone’s website where that image is hosted. So it’s an amazing platform!
Josh: Oh wow! And that would be really good for internal linking as well on your site.
Emily: Yeah! Absolutely!
Josh: The second, less saturated social platform that I want to quickly mention is the newcomer to the block of social platforms which is Tick Tock. Tick Tock have you got Tick Tock Em?
Emily: I don’t.
Josh: You don’t! See, I have Tick Tock and it’s actually the most downloaded app on the App Store at the moment. Just to give you a few stats, Tick Tock has 500 million users which is not massive in terms of social platforms, but the big thing is that in the last 18 months it has grown by five hundred and fifty percent!
Emily: That is huge!
Josh: Now the reason we’re mentioning Tick Tock and Pinterest is that it’s not as saturated as Facebook and Instagram. And you want to think about social platforms kind of like real estate. If you get in early, if you invest into the real estate of social platforms early, the payoff is massive!
Josh: And so for your business for 2020 one great way to get to get traction is to invest in Pinterest or Tick Tock. Now the differences would be Tick Tock is a very young demographic. There’s a lot more younger people in Tick Tock, so if your businesses is aiming towards a younger demographic, definitely invest in that, but we just recommend in terms of Pinterest, everyone invest in it! Right?
Emily: Yeah! Absolutely! Whatever you’ve got you can put on Pinterest!
Josh: Definitely! So that’s number one. What’s number two?
Emily: Number two. If you haven’t already, for 2020 you should look into starting a blog on your website.
Josh: I thought this was just common knowledge, but why should you start a blog?
Emily: Well, if you don’t know, websites with blogs actually have over 400% higher chance of being ranked higher in Google.
Emily: And google loves content. So the more content, or blog posts you can have on your website, the more opportunity there is for you to show up in Google in an organic way. So, you’ll be getting way more organic traffic to your website if you have a blog.
Josh: Massive! And it’s free!
Emily: Yes, absolutely! All it takes is a little bit of time.
Josh: And if you think about it, Google’s goal is to present the user with relevant information. The more information and the fresher information that you can provide on your website, the more chance that Google is going to rank you.
Josh: So blogs are massive for that! So how would I start a blog? What are some good steps?
Emily: So if you haven’t started a blog yet, maybe you’re wondering where to start. A great place to start is maybe look at the services or the products you offer and see what information you could write about those products and services. Or even ask what questions people, your customers are asking you. What are they consistently asking or what do they want to know about and putting those answers into blog posts.
Josh: I like that! I like that point because so many times were tempted just to write a general kind of blog that appeals to everyone but you’re saying that we should kind of niche down on our customers, right?
Emily: Yeah! Absolutely! Make your content specific, which leads into our next point which is appealing to a niche market. So obviously the internet is huge and everything’s oversaturated but the more you can appeal to a specific audience the better it’ll be. And actually, it kind of works in reverse. So, the more traffic you’re probably going to get with a niche audience over fighting for really generic kind of traffic.
Josh: Yeah! So for example, if I was writing a blog or if I was targeting how to start a business, I may have a 1% market share in that search and I’ll be competing with all of the massive businesses that have already got blogs of how to start a business. But if I wrote how to start a yoga business in Australia then I’m appealing to more of a niche market. Is that what you mean?
Emily: Yeah! Exactly! It’s more specific and people are looking for really personalized solutions, and things that relate specifically to their situations. So, the better you can answer those things, the more likely or the more traffic you’ll be getting.
Josh: Yeah! So, that’s more of a strategy to appeal to a niche market, but what are some of the, what’s a practical tip on how to appeal to a niche market?
Emily: Yes. So, one thing you can do is focus your blog content on creating longtail keywords. So, you may or may not have heard of long and short tail keywords. Basically, a short tail keyword is just a keyword that might be one to three words long, so it might be one of your services or a product like orthotic thongs but obviously that’s going to be really hard to rank for. So, if you focus on creating long tail keywords, they might be maybe four to six words in a phrase. It’s a lot more specific and you’re going to have a lot higher chance of ranking for those things. Like Josh said just before, how to start a yoga business in Australia. It’s a lot more specific and there’s a lot more opportunity in that.
Josh: Yeah, and in some of our past podcasts we’ve also mentioned a good way to create long tail keywords is to make it local. So, instead of just saying ‘the best netball shoes for 2019’ you could say ‘the best netball shoes in Melbourne for 2019’. And then maybe you can partner with some local businesses to present their netball shoes or something. And so, one of the tools on finding long tail keywords or finding blog ideas for a niche market is a tool that we use which is called SEM Rush. Now SEM Rush is a program that gathers all of the analytics, all of the data of keywords and it uses Google, I think it pulls all of the info from Google, and it can help you in this search, right?
Emily: Yeah! So, basically SEM Rush is a platform that allows you to find out exactly how many people might be searching for your keywords and even how hard they are to rank for. So, it gives you all that incredible data that can help you make choices based off what the opportunity is for a certain keyword.
Josh: Yeah! So we use SEM Rush quite heavily, and we would highly recommend it and so we will provide a link in the show notes to SEM Rush so that you can check it out if you need help with finding those niche markets and keywords.
So, so far, a few tips on how to create more traffic organically and number one, get onboard less saturated social platforms. Number two, start a blog. Number three, appeal to a niche market. Number four, create longtail keywords for your content. And what’s number five?
Emily: So, number five, you might want to consider joining online communities that are based around your area or your industry of expertise. So, some examples could include Facebook groups or even Reddit forums. So Josh, I think you found that Reddit is the third most popular website in the US, even more popular than Facebook!
Josh: More popular than Facebook, and in fact another stat is that half of all Internet users aged between 18 and 24 use Reddit.
Emily: That blows my mind!
Josh: Half! And so, Reddit is not just targeted towards older demographic, but it is also towards younger demographic as well. And so, it’s got a wide range of people on it. And so Reddit works in that Reddit is the platform and then within Reddit there are sub-Reddits which are for specific topics. And so, an example is if you are a physiotherapist it would be really good to create an account on, and subscribe to sub-Reddits about health and about physio and about exercise. And then if you consistently post in there you will start to see many people are getting on board and reading your content and it’s just a great idea. And another on one of the communities is the Facebook groups and Facebook released an algorithm, I think was in 2019. So last year, they released an algorithm that said that pretty much, it favours community. And so, it’s less about likes now. It’s more about comments. It’s less about how many views you get. It’s more about how much engagement you receive and so they favour friends posts rather than businesses. They favour people who are close to you and being involved in Facebook groups is great for that.
Emily: Yeah, and there’s actually a couple of different ways you can use these online communities. So, not only if you start to become a bit of an expert in that community will people be clicking through to your website if you share posts or things from your website but it’s also a great way to gather research for your industry and see what people are talking about, or what people are asking about, and what people want to know.
Josh: Yeah and another one that I almost forgot which is absolutely massive is LinkedIn.
Emily: Oh yeah!
Josh: LinkedIn! Massive, particularly if you are in a B2B business. LinkedIn is the place to be! In fact, one of our very trusted friends has a strategy with LinkedIn in that, every single day he goes on and he makes connections with other people in the industry and messages them straight up. And so, a great strategy is just to ask, not a sales pitch, but it’s ‘Hey, you’re in the industry. What’s something that’s working for you?’ and it’s a really great way to spark a conversation to grow your network. And for B2B businesses, networking is really the thing to grow your business.
Josh: And so, the next point that leads on from joining online communities is collaboration.
Emily: Yeah! Absolutely! So, collaborations will almost always have mutual benefits. for both parties. So, if you’re a business, you might want to collaborate with another business in your industry or another similar business. Maybe two businesses in the health industry or a hairdresser and a beauty salon could collaborate. Basically, the way it works is that you’re tapping into the other businesses audience which is mutually beneficial and your audience is also going to be already interested in what you have to offer and what the other person has to offer.
Josh: And so, you have, actually experienced this and utilized this for Dossier Blog. Correct?
Emily: Yes! So, I’ve done this on my personal blog a few times. So, there’s a bunch of different ways that you can collab with other businesses. Some things that I’ve done is doing guest posts. So, on other blog’s websites I’ve participated in, or given them a post to put on their site, and then I get traffic from their site and they get an extra piece of content for their website. I’ve done giveaways. So, on Instagram which is a great platform for giveaways, you can give away something together or you’re basically just reaching into each other’s audiences for something that’s mutually beneficial. It’s a really great way for both businesses to see results from that.
Josh: Yeah and one of the biggest marketing strategies that took off in 2019, last year, was influencer marketing. And influencer marketing is pretty much you just get onto Instagram, you go onto Facebook, you go to the explore page, type in your area. So, for us it would be Newcastle. So, type in Newcastle and just check out some of the top posts and then go through to that user’s account. See how many followers they have. If they have like 15,000 or over 15,000 followers it may be worth just reaching out and saying hey I was wondering if you’d be able to do a takeover of my Instagram stories and I will give you this in return? Whether it’s like a free month of physio appointments, if it’s someone in the health industry or something like that. Great way to have access to someone else’s audience.
Josh: Another more practical thing that I saw the other day was an online forum for men’s fashion partnered with one of their local podiatrists to create the perfect running shoe that was both fashionable and very good for your foot support.
Emily: Sounds awesome!
Josh: Awesome! What a great way to collaborate! And so, collaboration is a big one.
The next point that we have, what’s our next point?
Emily: So, in terms of the Internet and your website, and even maybe your email marketing, something you can do to get more traffic is write great headlines that invoke action. So, when you’re writing your blog posts or even on social media, think about writing headlines that are going to entice someone to click through to your website. And there’s a few proven ways that you can do that. So certain words or certain phrases actually have more click throughs than others. So consider using things like ‘how to’s’ in your headlines or lists and even facts and figures. So, using headlines that use numbers are shown to get more click throughs than if you don’t use numbers. Maybe you want to write about 10 ways to do something or 10 benefits of one of your services things like that. Think about how you craft your headlines and really put a bit more emphasis on working on getting a really good headline.
Josh: Yeah, and good headlines show Google, hey this is the information that I will be providing to the user. Then Google goes great! The user will love that. Let’s show that more.
Emily: Yeah! We don’t want clickbait. Just describe exactly what you’re going to tell people.
Josh: Yes, and you alluded to it before, but the last point that we have to organically grow your site traffic is email marketing.
Emily: Yes! So you may have already a bit of a customer email list or maybe you want to consider growing your email marketing in 2020. In terms of the online world, emails are like gold! So you actually don’t own anything on your social media platforms and you’re kind of at the mercy of if they do an update or maybe they might disappear one day or change their algorithm or maybe Facebook dies out and a new platform pops up, and then you lose your audience. But with email marketing you have that list and it’s like a direct line to your customer’s or potential customer’s inbox and it’s a great place to invest into for 2020.
Josh: Definitely! And so, some free and organic ways that you can increase your site traffic in 2020, we want you to implement one of these at least for 2020. Number one, get on board less saturated social platforms, whether that’s Pinterest or Tick-Tock for a younger audience. Number two, start a blog. You have over four hundred percent chance of being ranked higher on Google for starting a blog. Number three, appeal to a niche market. People are looking for personalized solutions. Number four, focus on creating longtail keywords for your content which we use SEM Rush for which will link in the show notes. Number five, join online communities that are based around your area of expertise whether that’s a Facebook group, Reddit forum or on LinkedIn. Number six, collaboration. Collab with someone whether that’s a local business or someone online with a bigger reach than you. Number seven, write headlines that invoke action. Get specific and actually tell people what they’re going to click on. And number eight, email marketing, email marketing.
And so in 2020 why wouldn’t you implement that?
Emily: Absolutely! It’s a great opportunity to increase traffic to your website.
Josh: Yeah. And so, we will link in the show notes a link to SEM Rush like I mentioned.
And then the other thing that I do want to mention is coming up in the next few weeks in February we are releasing a course for SEO. SEO is one of those ambiguous things that no one really understands but is massive. And if you leverage it correctly, your website will grow and reach more people, therefore leading to more conversions, therefore leading to more money and then you’re a winner!
Emily: Yeah exactly!
Josh: So keep your eye out for our brand new SEO course releasing in February. But in the meantime, we do have a 7-day SEO challenge where every single day we will send you an email with the challenge that you can easily implement into your website to improve your website’s SEO.
So, thank you so much for listening to this episode. Next week we are going to give away some more free tips, this time in relation to the technical side of your website. Did you know that if it takes more than three seconds to load you will lose over half of your visitors? So next week we talked about the reasons why the website is slow and how to fix it. Thanks Em!
Emily: Chat soon!