We talk with local businesses 24/7. And the one thing that they are all working toward is capturing a share of web traffic, which has risen to an all-time high. So how can you drive some of the flood to your website? More importantly, how can you drive the right people to your website? Because boosting traffic to your website isn’t the goal—you want traffic that converts. 

To that end, we’ve gathered a list of the 12 most effective ways to increase targeted website traffic—and keep leads coming back for more. 



1. NAP

To direct traffic, you need your business to be at the top of the Google Map Pack. When someone googles tire shops ‘near me’, yours should be the first one they see. Google has a number of ranking factors, but a key one is keeping NAP (name, address, phone number) consistent across all of your directory listings. Make your listings as accurate and clear as possible, and be sure to update them immediately after any changes such as moving, changing a brand name, etc. 

2. Reviews

Reviews have a huge impact on SEO. Online review signals such as review quantity, velocity, and diversity account for about 10% of the total weight of the over 200+ ranking factors in Google’s search engine algorithm for local businesses. On a local SEO level, small businesses have the advantage over national chains if they can consistently get new and authentic reviews. Reviews can take you to the top of the Google Map Pack, or leave you completely undiscovered. More importantly, 97% of people read reviews for local businesses before choosing to engage with them. To effectively manage and generate reviews, check out our Complete Guide to Online Reviews

3. Review response

Just as important as reviews are your responses to those reviews. In fact, 89% of users read responses to reviews. Your business should respond enthusiastically to positive reviews (best practice is within 24 hours) and quickly and proactively to negative ones (best practice is within 2 hours). If you do this, potential leads will be much more likely to engage with your website because they will know that you are responsive, proactive, and considerate of your customers. 

4. Rating

Did you know that most consumers won’t engage with a business that has a star rating below 3.3? If you want to get found, and more importantly convert, increasing your online rating is key. You can do this by increasing your review quality and quantity, following the steps outlined above. 

5. Long-tail keywords

Long-tail keywords are the few highly specific search phrases that people use when looking for exactly what they are wanting to buy. Targeting these phrases with your content will bring your product or service to the top of the search when someone is looking for what you sell. Long-tail keywords are especially important nowadays because they account for the majority of web searches. Make sure to also include popular keywords and phrases associated with your service or product, along with your local city or region

6. Irresistible headlines

Without a headline that hooks, even the best blogpost will go unread. Your headline should be dynamic, concise, and irresistible. And this takes effort. Writers at BuzzFeed write upwards of 20 headlines before picking one that will drive the most traffic. Take time to really work, and rework, your headlines to land on the ones that potential leads won’t be able to help clicking. You can even research which words and phrases are gaining most traction on the web and capitalize on them. This will help your content to be the first thing potential leads see in their online search. 

7. Insatiable content

Your content should be so good that it’s almost addictive. If your content quality is high, leads will convert and keep coming back. They will also share your content, which means free marketing for you. Make sure your content is relevant and varied, appealing to all different sectors in your audience. Include short and long form, news-oriented and high-level pieces, and great graphs, images, graphics, and videos. 

8. Backlinks

Implementing quality backlinks is a great way to drive the right people to your website. Major search engines such as Google consider backlinks “votes” for a specific page in their algorithm; so the more backlinks you have, the more likely your page will rank higher in terms of SEO. Your content will also come across as credible and resourceful.

9. High quality images

Google has found that listings with feature photos receive 42% more requests for driving directions from Google Maps and 35% more clicks through to a website. That’s straight gold. Stock your website with high quality, relevant, and appealing images. Each should be chosen intentionally, load quickly, and serve a clear purpose. 

10. Live chat

Live chat is a feature that 41% of customers expect to see when they land on your website; and this kind of convenience pays. A recent survey reported that live chat leads to a 48% increase in revenue per chat hour and a 40% increase in conversion rate. And with a live chat feature that can seamlessly move from desktop to mobile interfaces and back, those percentages increase. You can learn more about live chat features and options with our webchat breakdown

11. Website responsivity

Another major factor is how responsive your site iswhether it transitions easily to mobile interfaces and back is not only important to building a quality site, but is a major Google ranking factor. Your website should also be fasteach page should be technically optimized so that it will load as quickly as possible. Take stock of images and videos to ensure that they are optimized and not slowing your customers down.

12. Simplicity

According to digital marketing expert Neil Patel, effective websites obey the law of pithiness. They capitalize on clarity and concision while avoiding complex ideas. Simplicity is an extremely powerful (often under-utilized) tool that can have a big impact on converting leads. Consider capitalizing on white space, concise wording, and a very simple link flow to attract visitors and keep them coming back. 

Driving traffic to your website isn’t an exact science, but there is a proven formula. With the above tips, you’ll drive the right kind of visitors to your website so you can connect remotely, close deals, and keep customers coming back for life.

Want to know if it’s working? Try conducting an A/B test, or split test, on your homepage. Make two versions of either content or website design that differ on a single variable. These can be simple things, like the words of your CTA, the image on your landing page, or the subject line of an email. Test these two versions to see which performs better in terms of CRO over a specific period of time. If your website gets lots of daily traffic, a few hours might be enough. If not, you might need a couple of weeks to find out which works best. Conducting effective A/B tests regularly will help you to determine the most productive ways for you to optimize your website to convert, based on actual market research. To learn more about converting leads, check out our eBook, The Definitive Guide to Converting More Leads.

Nico Dato
Nico Dato Executive Vice President of Marketing

Nico Dato is the EVP of Marketing at Podium, the premiere messaging platform that connects local businesses with their customers. He fuses his passion for statistics, design, and digital marketing to produce measurable results.

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