When I started my online business, I spent lots of money on online advertising. I still believe that if you have no resources, advertising is the fastest and cheapest (in terms of opportunity cost) way to get lots of traffic.
But advertising costs you ‘time’ to set up the ad, ‘effort’ to monitor the progress and ‘money’ to post the ad. While I was heavily advertising, I was at the same time using 4 other tools to create traffic to my websites, and these are the 4 tools we’re going to discuss……
1) Referral And Reward System
The first tool to create traffic to a website is a referral and reward system.
I think most of you understand the importance of having a referral system for your website. But having a referral system for your website is not good enough. You need to have a reward system that can motivate your affiliates to recommend other people to your website.
Most rewards come in the form of money. But that is not good enough, especially when you are in the internet marketing industry where everyone is paying good money to affiliates. In addition to money, you have to think of other tangible and intangible rewards.
Many social networking sites don’t pay a dime to their users for referrals, yet their users are enthusiastically bringing their friends in. Observe the tricks these sites deploy. You’ll get some good ideas that you can use for your business.
2) Tell-A-Friend Script
I’m sure you are familiar with a tell-a-friend script. Nowadays, when you sign up a social networking site, the first thing you’re asked to do is to grab all the emails in your contact list and send an invitation to all of them.
Tell-a-friend script is a powerful tool to create traffic to a website. But you have to use it with care. This tool can easily be used to send spam invitation and the end result is your website becomes blacklisted by some mail-filtering services.
This was an annoying problem I faced in my early years.
Here’s a little story to share with you. Hope it’s not too boring…
I still remembered a time when I wrote to one of such mail-filtering services requesting for a removal of my website from their blacklist. I explained that the spam email was sent via a tell-a-friend script, not from us. But they didn’t buy my reason. I then argued that similar tools are available for websites like Facebook and I too receive tons of spam invitations from unknown individuals. Guess what, they replied and said they are Facebook, but we are not. When you’re small, you are bullied. Anyway, I continued to argue and I think they were tired of my persistence and eventually got my website removed from their blacklist.
Some of you may wonder why LeadsLeap doesn’t have a tell-a-friend script. That’s because I cannot afford to have this website and our mail server blacklisted. But we are in the process of developing a tell-a-friend script that can possibly minimize this problem… and the best part is we will make this script available to all our members when it’s ready. A programmer is working on it and it’s premature to say when it can be accomplished.
Till then, if you want a simple tell-a-friend script, you can find some free scripts at hotscripts.com.
3) Viral Tools
As online marketers, we should always think “viral marketing” because that’s one main advantage of the internet over the brick and mortar world.
Typical viral tools include:
– viral ebooks such as rebrandable ebooks and MRR ebook,
– viral software such as our rebrandable ID manager, and
– providing free online tools on your website, such as a free mortgage calculator or free keyword research tools.
Talking about providing free online tools as a form of viral marketing, the best example we can learn from is Google. Besides being a free search engine, Google provides free services such as map, keyword research tool, traffic tracking services etc. The idea is to provide useful tools to the world so that the world will come to you without you spending a dime in advertising.
4) SEOd Content
Last but not least, a must-have tool to create traffic to a website is SEOd Content – Search Engine Optimized Content.
I hope by now you know there is a difference between writing and writing for SEO. SEOd content is capable of attracting traffic from the search engines 24/7, without much effort from you, other than the initial effort of preparing the content.
This is where ‘blog’ comes into play because blog is a good content management platform. A blog is capable of creating thousands and thousands of traffic on 2 conditions:
– The backlinks to the website are well established.
– The individual article is well optimized for search engines.
Take LeadsLeap blog for example. As LeadsLeap.com is well linked from thousands of other websites, posting an SEOd content in its blog will easily get the article to the top search result and that will translate into free traffic from the search engines.
Same thing is happening to established article directories such as ezinearticles.com and buzzle.com.