There are more than 60 million websites using WordPress today.
And it’s not just regular websites using WordPress.
Over 23% of the top 10 million sites on the web use WordPress.
WordPress started as a blogging platform, but has grown to become much more. It’s still a wonderful platform for starting and managing a blog, but now WordPress can be used to manage websites of all kinds.
WordPress has made if very easy to launch your own website.
You can launch one for no cost with WordPress.com.
Or you can purchase a domain and hosting and use WordPress.org to manage your website.
But let’s say that you’ve already taken the steps to launch a website. That’s the easy part.
The hard part, as you probably know, is driving traffic to your WordPress website.
Here are some of my favorite ways to increase the traffic to WordPress (or really any) website.
1. Lists & Directories
This is a blog post that lists productized services. The post includes a link to Ghost Blog Writers as an example. This came about naturally. I had never heard of the site before, but it sends traffic to the GBW website.
If you’re in business long enough you can build a reputation that will get you the occasion inclusion in a list or directory like that one.
But you can be proactive about getting included on lists as well.
You can reach out to site owners with existing lists and work on getting added. Ways you can do that would be to offer to have a quick call to discuss your services. You can point people to case studies showing your abilities.
Or you can take it a step further with an offer to showcase your work to the person as something they might be interested.
It can take some work to get included on these types of lists, but even getting on one or two can create a little snowball effect. People often create their own lists that are similar to others and they’ll use existing lists as examples and inspiration.
2. Podcast Guesting
I was a guest on this podcast and it leads to some regular traffic to the Ghost Blog Writers website.
Podcast guesting is an opportunity to expose your brand to potential clients, partners and more, but it’s also a good way to increase traffic to your website.
When you’re a guest on a podcast the podcast host usually is very generous with their description and linking to your website. If you give them an entertaining and valuable interview they have no problem helping to promote your website.
It takes work to be a guest on podcasts. You have to dedicate time every week to researching podcasts: finding, listening, etc. And then you have to create a good pitch to each podcast that presents what value you can bring to the show.
3. Partnerships (Partner Listings)
Business partnerships can be great in many ways for helping to grow your company. If you partner with the right company, together you can offer something better to your target clients than you would be able to do individually.
But partnerships can also lead to some great traffic opportunities.
Here is an example of recommended companies on the Moz website.
Many businesses get asked for related services. When you work with a business you get to know them and trust them and if you need a service you’ll ask the business you trust to provide a recommended company.
It takes work to build these partnerships and to get to the point where a business will trust you enough to recommend you to their clients.
But if you can identify businesses that share your ideal customers and if you can establish a trust with that business they will recommend you and often include you on their partners or recommended companies page.
Don’t jump right into it. Build the trust. Get to know the business and find ways to show your worth.
4. Article Interviews, Quotes
Like podcast guesting, you can search for article interviews. It’s the same as an interview on a podcast, but you can do an interview for a text article via email or in a few other ways.
It takes finding site that do interviews in this style and presenting a pitch to them that lets them know that you can add value for their readers.
You can also look to get simple quotes in articles. A great resource for doing this is Help A Reporter Out (HARO). Make it a habit to respond to the queries every day.
Over time you can build up a strong number of quotes in articles and even full interviews that can lead to traffic to your WordPress site.
I like to include StumbleUpon in a list of potential traffic sources for WordPress sites and really for any website. Well maybe not any website because I think it takes a certain type of content to do well on StumbleUpon.
I looked at the stats for Country Music Life recently and nearly every day that site gets traffic from StumbleUpon. 3-5 years ago I would regularly submit posts from CML to SU and they still bring traffic to the site.
Not all the posts do, but the lists posts seem to do well and I think it’s also because the content is about something people really care about: music.
If you can find the right niche on StumbleUpon you can build some really strong long-term traffic to your site.
6. Ego-Bait Blog Posts, Podcasts, etc.
Earlier we touched on how it can be great to be included on lists.
You can also create your own lists to get introduced to other blog owners or those that have influence.
Ego-Bait posts are posts that showcase others and the wonderful things they do. And they don’t have to be posts. You can do this with podcasts or videos on your WordPress blog too.
You can create lists, review products and services and do other things where you mention others that wold want to share your post with their audience.
I do this on my personal website, Country Music Life. Every time I publish a song review I include the artist’s Twitter handle in the title. This automatically mentions the artist when the post is shared on Twitter and the artists often retweet the post to their followers, sending traffic to the post.
7. Committed, Regular Blogging
You can try to blog on occasion with your WordPress site. Some go into their WordPress site expecting that creating a few blogs or simply putting up a site will lead to instant organic search or SEO traffic.
That’s not the case. Even the best sites won’t get much or any organic search traffic for several months.
It takes a committed, habitual effort to create organic traffic to your WordPress website from all the organic traffic channels including search and social.
Go into it with a long-term outlook. Focus on 3-5 years down the road. It takes that commitment to start seeing the results.
It’s a challenge, but it’s also an opportunity because you know that if you commit that others will quit and that leaves only you to benefit.
There are a number of good ways to build traffic to your WordPress website. Most people go in to building a website thinking that once the site is up that traffic will start to come in.
And it’s easy to think that simply being on social media will get you traffic.
Those are long-term efforts and they’re not the only ways to build traffic. The list above includes some really great ways to build both short and long-term traffic to your WordPress website.