I’ve been submitting articles to online article directories for almost a year now, and as a result, I’ve seen a tremendous increase in my website traffic. Increasingly, what I’m seeing is visitors coming to my site because of searches for keywords that also happen to be the same as topics of articles that I’ve written. Additionally, my articles have been published in several high profile ezines that have very large subscriber lists, which have driven even more traffic to my website.
How can you write article that increase traffic to your website? Here are 10 strategies I am successfully using:
1. Short but valuable content. Based on all of my research of various article directories, articles should be between 450 -1000 words, with an optimal length of 700-800 words. Most of my articles are 1000-1200 words, so even though I’m a great violator of this rule, article marketing has still been a successful strategy for me.
2. Curb your submissions. Many article submission services as well as article directories permit you to submit an unlimited number of articles on a weekly basis. Consequently, I’ve heard that some of these services have been blacklisted by the more reputable directories (not the service I’m using, Submit Your Article, however). In my opinion, article directories permitting unlimited article submissions are great wastelands of poorly written articles, unless they have some type of article approval process attached to the submission. The reputable article banks (those that have great credibility with ezine publishers for having content-rich articles) usually limit article submissions to no more than 2 per week.
3. Captivating title. Creating a compelling title to an article is key in attracting a great readership. Most of my articles are "How to" articles, or they are some type of tips article that solves a problem. For example, "Top 10 Strategies to…", "5 Secrets to Creating..", "The 3 Key Ingredients to…", or "7 Mistakes to Avoid". The general formula that I use is a number and a problem that most of my target market has or a number and a solution to a problem that they have.
4. Include your keywords. In order to drive traffic to your site, you’ll need to include the keywords by which you want to be found in the title of the article. To maximize the effectiveness of the article, you’ll want to use that same keyword 3-7 times in the content of the article.
5. Short paragraphs are best. You junior high English teach might cringe, but when you’re writing online content, your paragraphs need to be no more than about 3 sentences each, and your sentences need to be rather simply constructed. Keep in mind that people are looking at light, not paper, when they’re reading online. That means that stress on the eyes is different in this medium than reading a hard copy of something. Because many readers tend to scan online content rather than thoroughly read it, divide your article content into numbered bullet points for easier reading and comprehension.
6. Valuable content. I read an incredible amount of drivel in online articles. I really resent wasting my time when an article has a wonderful title that solves a problem that I have, but when I click on the full content, it fails to deliver any valuable information. It’s even more annoying when the article is simply an advertorial of sorts for a product or service. I always strive to deliver the best information that I have about a topic to my readers. Don’t be afraid of giving away what you know! It’s a great way to establish your expertise so that your target market will confidently buy from you when they’re ready.
7. Have a beginning, middle and an end. Your article should have an introductory paragraph to tell your readers what you’re going to tell them in the article, the body of your article with your prime content, and then an ending that summarizes what you said in the article. If you write tips articles with numbered points like I do, it’s important to end with a summary paragraph rather than your last tip, as many directory editors will refuse to publish your article because it’s considered incomplete.
8. Limit your URLs. Most article publishers will refuse to list your article if you have more than 3 URLs in the body of your article. Stricter publishers will refuse to publish any article containing affiliate links in the body, or links back to one of your websites in the body.
9. Compelling resource box. The resource box is the "commercial" that appears at the end of the article to tell the reader what you do. Typically, this commercial is 1-2 sentences containing your catchy "tag line" and the URL of your website (preferably on a separate line to make it stand out better). A resource box that makes a reader take action and visit your site is one that contains a short description of a free offer you’re making to the reader, usually for a downloadable audio file, ebook, special report, or ecourse if they sign up for that product on your website.
10. Place your articles on your website. Search engines love valuable and relevant content, so the more of this type of content that you have on your site, the higher your search engine rankings. I would estimate that at least 50% of my weekly traffic comes from searches on keywords I have placed in my article titles. I just recently reorganized my articles by topic and created an individual page for each topic, with each page containing the full listing of articles that I have that relate to that topic. I have the full listing of topics on the left-hand side of every page of my site. I’m observing an increasing amount of traffic to my site coming from search terms like, "Internet marketing articles" or "time management articles", as I have both pages as article listing pages on my site.
Your target market needs your expertise! If you use the strategies I’ve outlined to write your articles, you’ll start to see the traffic to your website increase in short order.
Best-selling author Donna Gunter works with successful business owners who are experts in their fields and established in their industry and are seeking a way to stand out from their competitors. Using her Ideal Clients on Autopilot System©, she helps them determine the exact strategies to generate more qualified leads and better-paying clients with automated systems. This proven system makes all their marketing easier and more effective and they find themselves positioned as the only choice for their clients.