Did you know you can increase your online traffic by tapping into your offline network? In-person relationship building can have a tremendous impact on your ability to reach people online. Even introverts can find a way to connect with a community and increase visibility and number of visits to their site. Here are four tried and true methods, from easiest to hardest:
There is a lot of power in just showing up. Get out of the office and rub shoulders with other people that do what you do. This is a great place to start if you don’t have much of a network. Find out where your people congregate. Meetup.com is a great place to start. WordPress meetups are also a great source of new friends, mentors, and strategic partners.
What if you aren’t a networking superstar? You can distinguish yourself with your helpfulness. The meeting organizer always notices the person that shows up early and stays late to help set up and break down. Guess who knows everyone and can make high-impact introductions? That same organizer.
Most community organizations have plenty of volunteer opportunities. My website traffic (and subsequently, my rankings) steadily increased once I started volunteering in the WordPress community. I worked my first WordCamp Atlanta in 2015. When I became an organizer in 2016, I also got a link back from the site. People who didn’t get my card that weekend, but wanted to follow up, looked me up on the campsite and followed the link. The traffic I received from the event was small but very targeted. I picked up new clients and developed some fantastic strategic partners.
Are there membership opportunities in your community? I bet there is. Some may be free and some may require payment. But, both will probably have a member’s directory of some sort where you display your contact information, including a link to your site. In addition to the link I have from the camps I’ve volunteered at, I also have a link from a (paid) membership at a local coworking space.
Authority and trust are key elements of both ranking well with the search engines and developing a following of people that will return to your site again and again. There are few offline activities that establish authority and trust like public speaking. While it is scary, the more you do it, the easier it gets. The increased visibility can not only open you up to your target market but to new opportunities.
I first interacted with SiteGround as a volunteer at WordCamp Atlanta and later as a customer. But, it was my talk at WordCamp Phoenix in 2018 that opened the door to become a SiteGround WP Ambassador. And, here we are. I love the team here and am honored to be a part of such a great program.
One of the added benefits of this partnership is an increase in my website’s traffic. I can look at my analytics and see a definite jump in visits and the number of keywords I’m ranking for after the ambassador program was announced. This would have never happened had I stayed in my office and not engaged my community. It all starts with showing up. I’d love to hear other ideas for growing your website traffic by engaging your community. What have you done that has worked?