The world of organic search rankings has changed dramatically over the past decade and continues to do so. Knowing how to rank highly on search engines is a vital part of the success of your website and therefore your business. Today a large portion of your traffic depends on organic search traffic. Let’s explore the question, “What is organic search traffic?” and how to get more of it for your website.
What is Organic Search Traffic?
Organic search traffic is traffic that comes to your site through a keyword search in Google or another search engine such as Yahoo, Bing, or others. For example, if you go to Google and perform a search, the search engine will give you a list of results relevant to the keywords you entered. Typically at the top you may find some paid ads, suggested videos or images, and possibly some local map listings. Below these will be the actual organic search results (local maps listings are also a kind of organic listing as well). The websites presented will be ranked based on hundreds of different factors that search engines consider important such as the relevance to the keywords entered, how important one website is over another, how popular the website is, social media activity and signals, how authoritative the website is and even how many clicks one website gets over another. The ones toward the top of the page naturally get the most clicks while listings two or three pages in don’t get many clicks.
Organic search traffic differs from other traffic in that it is not:
- Traffic from clicking a paid ad.
- Traffic from another site link such as through social media, email, or a link in a blog.
- Traffic by the user directly entering your address in the address bar or a bookmarked click to your site.
Why Should You Care About Organic Search Traffic?
There are several reasons why you should care about organic search traffic. In order for your business to grow you need to market your brand to new customers on a continual basis. Being found in a major search engine is vital to attracting new visitors to your website which can cause significant business growth by attracting thousands of highly qualified prospects every month.
Another reason is that organic search traffic represents a form of business equity. It is earned over time, grows into a very valuable business asset, and can be valued and measured. However, earning organic search traffic is much like embarking on an exercise program. Results do not come quickly or easily, but little by little and over longer periods of time results are achieved. As your website gain traction, results tend to grow and then snowball, attracting more and more fresh visitors over time.
With a focus on putting out great content continually and making your website a desirable resource, your content becomes “evergreen”, continually attracting visitors whether it’s from Google, Bing or some other new search engine. Such content will keep visitors coming back and referring their friends and associates month after month.
How To Increase Organic Search Traffic
Now that we’ve addressed the question, “What is organic search traffic?” and we know why it is so important, let’s look at some ways to increase it:
1. Create Relevant Engaging Content
In order to increase organic search traffic you must create original, relevant, engaging content that users are interested in reading and sharing. This may be in the form of a blog on your site or by continually creating web pages with relevant content that addresses users’ various needs. It’s not just about search engine optimization (SEO), it’s about catering to the people who will read what you’ve written. If it matters to them, they will read it and share it and come back to learn more.
2. Work Content Around SEO Rules
In order to drive organic search traffic you have to follow SEO rules. Search engine optimization means that the elements that comprise the page itself such as
- Page title
- Page text
- Even your page’s underlying code
All of these are designed and crafted to adhere to certain SEO rules that will give it the best shot of obtaining better search engine rankings.
The content on your pages should be focused around a few targeted keywords and these keywords should be included in your title, subheadings, and conclusion paragraph, as well as sprinkled naturally throughout your post. You should also use synonyms for the targeted keywords as well. These keywords should also be included in your meta-description which winds up showing up under the title of your post in the search engine listings.
3. Focus On Long-Tail Keywords
One big mistake entrepreneurs make is thinking they can go after the big, broad and highly competitive keywords in their industry. When they don’t succeed they wonder why they aren’t getting traffic. After all, maybe they’re creating really great content with those keywords, but the keywords are simply too competitive for up and coming businesses to make any progress within search engine rankings.
The way to combat this is to focus on long-tail keywords: three or more word phrases that are specific to your business, service, product, industry and location. For example a highly competitive keyword might be “jewelry”. An example of long-tail keywords might be “best Rolex jeweler”. Your page has a much better shot at getting a high rank when you make it more specific, and focus on a niche phrase rather than a general one. You may get less traffic overall, but it will be higher quality traffic because users will be finding results that are exactly what they are searching for.
4. Optimize for Local Searches
In line with long tail keywords, an excellent strategy is to optimize your keywords for local searches whenever possible. To do this you include the city and/or state of your business with the long tail keywords to create a gem for local searches. For example, to elaborate on the previous example, we could extend the keyword with a city and now we’ve got a highly relevant long tail keyword: “best Rolex jeweler in Tampa”.
5. Optimize for Map Searches
More and more customers are using maps to find businesses around them. Having an optimized map listing can help ensure your map listing shows up for all the available and related searches. You can update your map listing in the various map listing provider websites.
Ensure all your map listings across all the different providers use the same NAP (name, address and phone, etc.) This helps build trust with your listing and eliminates consumer confusions. Be sure to upload photos to your map listing, write a great description with your keywords and also completely fill out your map listing profile. Then ensure your customers are writing reviews on your business which will show up in your map listing.
6. Optimize Your Title and Meta Description
When your page shows up on a search results list, people will see the title of your page and a description underneath, called your meta description. This is their first interaction with you so it’s vital to get it right. After all, if you get it wrong, it may be their last interaction with you. Your title and meta description must be engaging enough to catch their attention and cause them to click through to read more. You are actively competing for attention and eyeballs at this stage, so make your meta description compelling.
When crafting your meta description, you don’t want your description to be cut off with the “…” at the end showing an unfinished sentence, so keep it under 155 characters. Make sure your title also fits by keeping it under 60 characters in length, and make sure both use action oriented language that tell visitors what your article is about and how it can help them. (Learn more about how to write a meta description.) Finally, you should review your search engine result for the newly created page by doing your own search, to make sure everything fits and is engaging to your audience.
7. Answer Specific Questions Users Ask
Another great use of long-tail keywords is to answer specific questions users might ask using Siri or other intelligent assistants. Just like someone might ask, “What’s the weather like today?” they might also ask something specific to your business such as “Where can I find a naturopathic doctor in Tampa, FL?” or “What is organic search traffic?” Think of questions you might ask as you search to meet your own needs, and then tailor them to questions people might ask about your business.
How to Review Your Organic Search Traffic Stats
Now that you know what organic search traffic is, you need to learn how to track your results with it. Google Analytics is one free way to monitor your organic search traffic stats, and probably the most popular. Most websites should have it installed already if the website was created professionally. If not, get it installed right away so that you can track your organic traffic, see where it’s coming from, find out which articles, keywords and traffic sources are driving visitors and learn more about your website visitor behavior.
Building organic search traffic is a process that takes time and is considered a longer-term strategy. Think about it in the same you would approach improving your health. Getting healthy requires you do a lot of little things consistently over longer periods of time. It’s not going to happen overnight, and there are no shortcuts for putting in the hard work. If you work at it and continue to create great content consistently over time, and focus on strategies like long-tail keywords, and others discussed above, you will reap the benefits of your labor and increase your organic search traffic.
Interested in Increasing Your Organic Search Traffic?
At ClearTech Interactive we specialize in helping you build out your business idea from the ground up. We know how to help you succeed in creating and maintaining traffic for your web project.
Do you have a business idea you’d like to discuss? We offer a free 30 minute consultation to discuss your ideas. Request a Call or contact us at 727-562-5161 to find out what we can do for you. We offer full digital solutions to power and grow your business.