Effectively marketing your website to spread the word and build traffic isn’t just about external activities like building links, content marketing, and advertising. It’s also about how you approach creating content on your own site.
It is of course a lot easier attracting (and keeping) traffic to a site that’s worthy of their attention. Content that engages and excites, and encourages your visitors to stick around will continue to work hard for you long after its initial creation.
The more effective your sticky content is, the more chance you get to convert them into leads and customers for your business.
Attract More VisitorsSticky content also serves to attract more visitors to your site in the first place:
- The amount of time visitors spend on your site when clicking through from the search engine results pages provides a quality indicator to Google:
- If a visitor clicks through to your site, and almost immediately clicks back again, it effectively tells Google the page in question didn’t match what the user was looking for. This has negative implications for the future ranking of the page under that keyword.
- On the other hand, if a visitor clicks through and sticks around, it’s a positive indication that the result matched the user’s intention. The ranking of the site in question will consequently be reinforced or increased. That means content that keeps visitors on your site for longer boosts your rankings and thereby attracts more visitors over the long-term.
- Content that holds the interest of the visitor is far more likely to be shared. You not only reach the initial visitor to your site, but potentially their social networks as well. And of course these additional visitors are more likely to share your content too. Every now and again, the result can be a viral explosion of quality traffic.
Sticky Content = Increased Profits
The better your content, the stronger the relationship you’ll be building with your visitors. And it’s this sense of connection that will enable you to more easily convert your visitors and leads into sales for your business.
Think about it. Do you like to shop with someone with whom you have no prior relationship? Or with someone you’ve come to know and trust and already have a relationship with?
The implication is as follows. Visitors who have an existing relationship with you via the content you produce are far more likely to purchase something from you. They are also far less likely to shop around and spend their money with a competitor.
Your content not only brings you increasing amounts of traffic, but also gives you a strong competitive edge.
I’ve said it 1,000 times and I’ll say it 100,000 more; great content is the greatest sales tool in the world … period. Marcus Sheridan, The Sales Lion
You Can Also Watch This Information On YouTube – Continued Below …
Six Ways To Make Your Content More “Sticky”
1. Publish Via A Blog (If You Don’t Already!)
A blog such as WordPress is one of the easiest self-publishing platforms available. It also incorporates a number of features that encourage visitors to stick around your site:
- Commenting capability. This encourages interactivity, both with the author of the post and other commentators. This also helps build a sense of community, and relationship with the blog in question – communication is now two-way.
- Links to other posts. Links are easily provided to related posts (for example, through categories), and archived posts via the sidebar. It goes without saying that the easier you make it for visitors to click through to other items of interest on your site, the longer they’re going to stick around.
- Easy to navigate. Users who experience difficulty in navigating your site are far more likely to click away. Blogging platforms provide easy and familiar navigational structures that help hold onto your visitors for as long as possible.
- Plugins. Using WordPress gives you access to thousands of free plugins that improve the user experience, build interaction, and increase the stickiness of your content. For example, there are plugins for polls and surveys, navigational improvements, social media interaction, and so on.
- Themes. Just as with plugins, there are thousands of ready-made themes available for WordPress. Themes control how your blog will look and feel. To help make your content more sticky, make sure you choose one that is compatible with people reading your content on different devices like tablets and smartphones. This is referred to as responsive web design. For example, try accessing this blog on a different device. You’ll find it is formatted to suit the device you’re reading it on.
2. Write For The Reader, Not The Search Engine
The days of keyword stuffing are long-since passed. Now, it’s essential to produce content that predominantly has the reader in mind, not the search engines.
It’s fine to focus on keyword(s) in your content to help keep your content in line with what your target market is looking for, and provide for potential ranking opportunities in the search engines.
However, you shouldn’t do so at the expense of readability. Avoid odd-sounding sentences written just so you can incorporate an awkward keyword in it. Poorly written content will not rank well long-term. And you’ll lose authority and credibility, along with potential new leads and customers.
To hold your visitor’s attention, your content also has to flow well and not cause distraction or difficulty. Avoid spelling and grammar errors. Proof-read carefully prior to publication. If possible use a second pair of eyes to review it for you and point out parts that confused them or caused a stumble. Find out where they lost interest.
It can also be useful to check the Flesch-Kincaid readability score for your content. This uses a basic algorithm to determine the reading ease (or difficulty) of your content.
You could use an online tool such as read-able.com. However, if you’re using WordPress, you’ll find it easier to install Yoast’s SEO Plugin. When writing a post, use the plugin’s Page Analysis feature to give you the readability score.
3. Meet Expectations
How often do you click away again after clicking through to some content that is not in line with what you’d anticipated? Fairly often, right?
It’s therefore important to match the expectations of people clicking through to your content from the search engines and elsewhere. Above all, ensure your content delivers on the promise of the title.
4. Provide Real Value
All fluff and no real substance to your content will lend little credibility and encourage visitors to go elsewhere. It’s not enough to just throw together some quick content to meet your keyword needs.
Instead, your content should provide real value to your readership.
Think about the following:
- Provide information that’s not available elsewhere.
- Create content that plays to your unique experiences and strengths.
- What content can you create that uniquely defines you and your business within your own marketplace?
5. Use Social Proof
While it’s more difficult with a newer blog, over time aim to build a thriving community of people who look forward to and interact with your content.
This gives you the ability to provide increasing levels of social proof to your content. Social proof come in the form of comments, social media stats and levels of interactivity, and even testimonials.
Multiple comments after each post not only provides additional material to read, and more reason to stick around, but also more reasons to interact.
As your levels of social proof grows, so will the levels at which your content is shared. This of course will also bring you increasing levels of referral traffic. There’s more incentive to share content on a lively blog than a site that looks like a ghost town and lacks social proof and credibility.
Ensure you sign up with Google+, and activate Google Authorship for your content. Doing so results in your profile picture displaying next to content you’ve authored in the search results. This encourages higher click-throughs and therefore more traffic to your site. It also boosts your authority levels.
By gaining authority and credibility before the potential visitor even clicks-through, they will be inclined to:
- Take your content more seriously.
- Stick around your site for longer.
- Share your content with their social networks.
6. Use Multimedia
Where possible, use a variety of media in the content you create. To hold the attention of a visitor who’s no doubt got plenty of other things vying for their attention, your content needs to continually stimulate their interest.
Not every post has to be textual. Make use of videos, include images to break up textual content, add Slideshare presentations, refer to podcasts, and so on.
Use the strategies shared above to make your content (and your website as a whole) more sticky. In so doing, you will not only get more value out of the visitors you attract. You’ll also attract more traffic to your site through higher rankings and increased social sharing activity.