Photo by NisonCo PR and SEO on Unsplash
Are you tired of wondering why your website isn’t getting enough traffic, and then being told that you need to learn SEO to find out why your website isn’t doing well in organic search?
Isn’t it the SEO consultant’s job to do that for you anyway? What if you can’t quite afford to pay an agency or freelancer to do SEO for you, and then wait months to see results?
Some articles out there just tell you that you aren’t doing enough SEO work. But what if there was an easier way to quickly find out the cause of your poor website traffic?
You’ll learn that here today if you want to keep reading. If you already understand what organic traffic is and why it’s important, skip the next two sections. No time to read? Skip to the tools.
First, what is organic traffic?
Organic traffic is, simply put, unpaid search traffic. It comes from people visiting your website after typing in a phrase in a search engine and clicking your link.
People generally like to start their website marketing efforts by trying to get organic traffic because it allows you to get traffic without having to pay for ads with Google or Bing.
This is because they are already looking for something you provide on your site, and search engines provide your page to them via a search results page.
Why is organic traffic important?
Generally, you want organic traffic not only because it is free, but because people are actively researching online at a point in their buyer’s journey prior to having made up their mind. Paid search ads, on the other hand, usually target people who are closer to being ready to purchase something.
This doesn’t mean that ads are exclusively for bottom of the funnel or purchase-ready individuals, just that most companies can’t afford to spend a lot of money on traffic only, so they split up their efforts this way.
More free traffic can lead to more customers at a lower cost per acquisition, or what we know as CPA in the marketing world. While it does take a larger time and work investment, organic traffic really is cheaper to get than paid search traffic.
However, you don’t have to learn SEO to find out why your website is suffering from a lack of visitors.
Let me explain.
Why should a business person have to learn SEO at all?
If you want to go straight to the tools, skip to the tools. Or, if you want to learn more, feel free to keep reading!
You really shouldn’t have to learn SEO. Which is the point of this article, because I want to save you from having to learn SEO just to find out why your website is hurting for non-paid traffic.
The reason business people shouldn’t have to learn SEO is because they aren’t usually good at it. It takes a particular type of person to be good at it, with particular God-given natural talents.
Some business people may be able to learn the basics of SEO and get their website working fine on their own, but many business people don’t want to bother with that, and the statistics prove it.
So, how are business people to find out why their organic traffic is suffering?
My answer is that you don’t need to know specific technical reasons why your website traffic is doing poorly.
You only need to know what is possible, how is your site performing, and easy tools to check on the health of your site’s traffic.
1. What is possible with SEO?
Really, you don’t even need to do SEO at all if your content is incredibly viral.
If you share your link to your recent blog post on social media and immediately get tens of thousands of visitors to your site, and you have to always bump up your hosting plan before you post anything on Instagram, then SEO is not really that high a priority for you.
You probably want to make sure your site and hosting can handle people visiting in those numbers, but otherwise, you are fine.
SEO is for those of us who are competing for traffic with other companies that do something similar as we do.
There are a few categories of performance for most websites, so take a look to see which one yours falls into:
- Your site is not on Google, so it isn’t getting any traffic. Therefore, you either need to do some serious promoting on social media, do some basic SEO work, or hire someone to help you with one of those two options.
- Your site is on Google but not ranking well. Either your content isn’t valuable to your target audience or you are not promoting it well. Try sharing it with your target audience on social media or on blogs that your target audience reads regularly.
- Your site is on Google and ranking well, but you aren’t getting targeted traffic. The content on your site may be more about you than your target audience. You may be getting a lot of professional traffic from other professionals like yourself, but not from people like your potential customers.
2. How is my site performing?
To see if your site is on Google, try a
site:mydomain.com search, and you’ll find out if your site is in Google’s index.
The problem here is that people think they can just type in their target keywords on Google and find out how their site is doing. If this is you, please read my other blog post Why Not to Search for Yourself on Google.
Instead of searching Google for the terms and phrases you want to rank for, try searching on Google’s Anonymous Ad Preview Tool.
If you just search for your product, like “hearing aids” or service, “hearing tests”, then you will be competing against national brands like Costco and Walmart or WebMD.
Instead, try searching for “hearing aids [your_city]” and you’ll see if your site is able to compete in your local area for your product. Some people try “near me” instead of the city name, but I’ve seen mixed results with that phrase, since it seems that more people sometimes in some areas use the city name more.
To be continued…