Last updated on April 16th, 2017 at 03:37 pm
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Discover how to make money online in Nigeria
Last updated on April 16th, 2017 at 03:37 pm
This post has been moved elsewhere. Click here to read it.
Last updated on May 23rd, 2015 at 05:23 pm
Traffic is one of the most important factors in online business.
The above explains why generating traffic remains the biggest challenge for bloggers and other netpreneurs.
But the bitter truth is, there are no magic bullets when it comes to generating traffic. It requires hard work. In fact, most of the effort you’ll have to invest in your online business will go into traffic generation alone.
Now, if you do a simple web search, you’ll find tons of articles teaching traffic generation tips — both ethical and unethical ones.
But here, I want to teach you the various proven strategies for generating massive traffic to your blog, website, or any other online platform here in Nigeria. Whether you’re just starting out or have been struggling with online business for some time, you’ll learn a lot from this post.
This post is a fairly long one, so take your time to read it carefully.
Are you ready? Now, let’s start!
For you to benefit from the traffic you work so hard to generate, you must provide value.
For example, if you’re trying to generate traffic to your blog, you must offer loads of quality content for free. That’s the only way to gain the trust of your visitors and compel them to take any action that will fetch you profits.
If your blog is just like any other blog out there, with no real value to make it stand it out, you won’t gain much from the traffic you generate.
Similarly, if you’re trying to sell an e-book or an affiliate product, you need to offer something of huge value, so your traffic doesn’t go to waste.
That said, let’s now discuss the various traffic generation strategies.
Generating traffic doesn’t necessarily have to cost you money. There are many ways to generate traffic to your online business without spending a dime. But then, these require lots of time and effort.
This involves participating actively in a high-traffic forum often visited by your target audience, with the aim of attracting attention to your online business.
Nairaland, the biggest online forum in Nigeria, attracts people with varying interests. And chances are high that you’ll find your target audience there.
Attracting traffic from Nairaland is simple. Start by crafting a catchy signature that links to your blog or value product (e-book, etc.). For best results, use bolded text and give people a strong reason to click your link by stating the benefits they’ll gain from doing that.
After creating your signature, your next step is to get it noticed by as many people as possible. How do you achieve this? By creating lots of helpful threads and giving beneficial replies on as many threads as possible.
Focus more on the section that is most closely related to your niche. For example, if you’re looking to drive traffic to a travel blog, focus on the travel section. Similarly, if you’re trying to sell your small business ideas e-book, focus on the business section.
Because the earliest replies on a post get read the most, always try to be among the earliest people to leave replies on threads.
One of the smartest ways to attract massive traffic from Nairaland is to create a really insightful or valuable thread. Chances are such a thread will hit the front page, where several thousands of people will get to read it — and possibly click your signature link.
Avoid posting brief excerpts of posts and asking readers to visit your blog to read the rest. Although this strategy works at times, it usually annoys and repels readers.
Social media remains one of the most widely used avenues for traffic generation.
Generating traffic through social media entails spreading word of your online business through your personal accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and other platforms. It also entails creating dedicated accounts for your online business, such as a Facebook page, Twitter handle, and so on.
Social media generates even more traffic when you involve others. So, always ask your friends to share your updates with their friends and family. In addition, encourage your visitors or audience to share your free content or e-book by providing social media sharing buttons below your blog posts and in the pages of your free e-book.
Leaving comments on high-traffic blogs is a smart way to “snatch” some traffic from such blogs.
Imagine leaving an interesting comment on a post on Linda Ikeji’s blog and getting 200 new visitors to your blog from that one comment.
How can you make that happen? Try to be among the first people to leave a comment, since the first few comments get read the most. Then make sure to leave a comment that is not just relevant to the post, but is also interesting or valuable. Right below your comment, add a free, attention-grabbing description of your blog or one of your posts — alongside a link to it.
Trust me, many people are ready to click any link they see. So, your link will attract some decent traffic. The more of such comments you can leave on high-traffic blogs, the more traffic you’ll generate from the strategy.
Now, bear in mind that comments are strictly moderated on most blogs. And comments containing links are usually marked as spam. But from my experience, most Nigerian high-traffic sites allow all types of comments. And a good example is Linda Ikeji’s blog.
Though this strategy is one that most webmasters find hard to implement, it’s insanely effective for traffic generation if done right.
In case you’re a newbie, guest posting simply means having your posts published on other blogs for the purpose of channelling traffic to your blog.
For best results from guest posting, you need to target high-traffic blogs, preferably those within your niche. Better yet, any high-traffic blog that attracts thousands of your target readers would do. In addition, your post must be really valuable and authoritative. And a link to your blog must be prominently placed within the post.
If readers find the post interesting and helpful, they will follow your link down to your blog with the aim of getting more of the same top-quality stuff.
Most blogs will gladly publish your guest post provided it’s helpful, relevant to their niche, and written in line with their guidelines (if they have any).
So, look out for high-traffic blogs that you can have your guest posts published on, and contact their editors about your intent to send them a guest post.
Aside sending huge traffic to your blog over the short term, guest posting also has long-term benefits. First, it helps you to build links, which in turn helps to improve your blog’s ranking in Google. Second, it can continue to send you traffic for a very long term if it ranks high in search engine listings, which is likely if you publish it on a high authority blog.
A good example of Nigerian authority website where you can publish guest posts repeatedly is the Vanguard Online Community.
The trick is to search these websites for questions that are related to the information offered in your blog or free e-book. Then provide the answer and refer readers to get more information from your blog or e-book.
In fact, you can purposely write and publish a new post on your blog, just to provide a detailed answer to a question you found on a Q&A site. That way, you will be able to attract readers from those sites.
Now, here’s a warning: only leave links to your blog if you have relevant, detailed answers. If it’s obvious that you’re only slapping up links to attract traffic, you’ll banned! I was once banned from Yahoo! Answers for that.
Publishing interviews with influential personalities is another smart way to get traffic to your blog. How? When you interview an individual who has achieved success in a field related to your blog topic and publish the interview on your blog, your guest will share the link to that interview on his or her social media accounts.
And the more followers your guest has on these accounts, the more traffic they’ll send down to that interview post. You get it now? I’ve published a number of interviews on this blog, and I’ve gotten decent traffic from that.
Honorary mentions work in the same way. For example, if you publish a post titled, “Top 10 Most Successful Young Entrepreneurs in Nigeria”. Each of the individuals mentioned in that post will be eager to share it with their social media followers. Of course, you’ll need to contact them individually to make them aware of the post, so they can “do the needful.”
If you’re looking to generate traffic to your blog over the long term, then you need to learn about keyword research and search engine optimization. I won’t be going into details of both strategies here, as I’ve already written in-depth posts about each of them:
If you can invest your time in learning search engine optimization and implementing it correctly, you’ll be able to rank high in search engine result pages, which means you’ll generate huge traffic without effort for as long as your posts maintain their top positions.
My blog, NGFR (read about it here) now attracts about 6,000 daily visits and about 500,000 monthly page views — thanks search engine optimization.
If you want quick results without much effort, then you can consider paying for traffic. This involves paying to have your ad banners or links displayed prominently on highly targeted platforms online.
Paid traffic brings the best results when the right platforms are used. Examples of these platforms include Facebook (Facebook ads), Google (Adwords), Nairaland (Nairaland ads — for Nigerian traffic), and high traffic blogs (direct ad slots).
I won’t go into details of how to go about adopting paid traffic in this post, as that’s a whole new topic on its own. But I may come up with a post on that later.
For now, that’s all on the various strategies that you can adopt to generate traffic to your online business, irrespective of the model you favor.
Except for SEO and few others, the strategies explained in this post will fetch you only one-time traffic. That is, after implementing them, you’ll see your traffic go up sharply, and then it comes down again within a few days.
That’s sad, but it’s the truth. And I have to tell you.
However, there’s a trick you can adopt to ensure that the traffic you generate from these techniques keeps coming back to your blog each time you publish a new post. That sounds cool right? I adopt the trick on this blog, and it works like magic.
What trick am I talking about? I’ll be leaking it in the next post (click here to read it now).
Do you have any comments, questions, or objections? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment. As usual, I’ll reply.
And…don’t forget to share this with your friends on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and what have you (you can use the share buttons below).
I started this blog in April 2013, purposely for sharing practical tips on how to make money online in Nigeria. Now — one year after — I decided to analyze various aspects of the blog to know how much progress I’ve made and how close I am to achieving my goal.
After playing with my Google Analytics reports for about 30 minutes, I was able to retrieve some vital statistics about the blog that will help me figure out where I’ve done well so far and where I’ve under-performed.
I’ll be showing you these statistics because I want you see the practical manifestations of many of the tips I’ve shared on this blog. And I want you to learn from my findings, mistakes, and progress.
Now, let me start by showing you my findings. I’ll try to comment on each and explain why I think I got those figures. Later in the post, I’ll share 10 lessons you should learn from these findings.
The screenshot above shows the traffic reports for the 30-day period between April 4 and May 4, 2014. Over this period, the blog attracted 2,155 visits from 1,512 users. Based on that, I deduced that the blog presently attracts about 70 daily visits. To me, that’s rather low for a one-year old blog.
In addition, there were 4,317 page views over the last 30 days, which means the average visitor reads at two pages before leaving the blog.
Now, what about all-time traffic? I checked that, too. I found out that the blog had attracted 13,627 visits from 9,007 users since the time of its launch. And there had been 24,660 page views. See the screenshot below for the figures.
Of course, my traffic fluctuates. It goes up particularly on days when I publish new posts because I notify my email subscribers and Facebook fans after publishing a new post. I observed that the traffic also spikes whenever I publish an interview.
In addition to the traffic from my email subscribers and Facebook fans, my guests also send traffic to the interview by sharing the link with their mailing list subscribers or on social media.
Having discussed the number of visits, let’s now see where the traffic has been coming from and why.
The screenshot above shows the traffic sources over the past 30 days. Of the 2,155 total visits, 757 were from direct visits, 733 were referral visits (that is, they were sent from other sites), 483 came from search engines — mainly Google, and 171 came from social media.
Now, let’s see the all-time reports.
The above screenshot shows the all-time sources of traffic to the blog. Of the 13,627 total visits to the blog since its launch, 5,639 visits (41%) came from other sites (referral visits), 3,441 were direct visits (25%), 2,567 (19%) came from Google, 580 (4%) came from social media, and 50 visits came from my email campaigns.
Looking at the 50 visits from email campaigns, I asked myself, “Does that mean only 50 visits have come from my email subscribers, despite sending them notifications each time I publish a new post?” But I quickly found the answer to be “No.”
Most of my subscribers, instead of clicking the link to the new post in the email I sent to them, visit the blog directly, and this explains why there is a huge number of direct visits.
Since referral visits made up the largest fraction of my traffic, I decided to probe further into where these visits were coming from – I mean, the referring sites. Below is a screenshot of my finding.
From the screenshot, you can see that a whopping 4,711 visits came from my other blog (URL obscured deliberately). Why? Because I linked to Web Income Plus in a post on that blog. The post ranks number one on Google for a keyphrase commonly used by Nigerians who want to transact business online. So, due to the high SEO ranking, that post on my other blog attracts lots of visits, and sends down visitors to this blog through the embedded link.
The report also revealed that Google sent 2,649 visits to this blog. This is because the blog ranks prominently in Google for keywords related to PayPal alternatives for Nigerians, hottest blogging niches in Nigeria, how to make money online in Nigeria, and hundreds more.
Nairaland, the most popular online forum in Nigeria, had also sent me 904 visits so far. This is because my signature contains a link to this blog anchored by a very catchy line of text. So, each time I open a thread or reply to one, other users will get to see my signature, and those interested will click on it.
Next is MyTopBusinessIdeas.com. This blog, owned by Ajaero Tony Martins, had sent me 127 referral visits. Why? Because I once interviewed Mr Martins on this blog, and he shared a link to the interview on his blog.
Your traffic — no matter how much — is useless if visitors don’t engage with your blog before “bouncing.”
Engagement is a measure of how helpful your blog is to your visitors, and how interesting or relevant they find your content.
With that in mind, I analyzed user engagement on Web Income Plus using the two most suitable metrics: average session duration and bounce rate.
As you can see in the first screenshot in this post, the average session duration is 3 minutes and 57 seconds, which means the average visitor spends about 4 minutes on the blog before leaving.
I think that’s good enough. Getting the attention of internet users isn’t easy. So, holding them down on my blog for a whopping 240 seconds is no small feat — not necessarily the best, though.
Looking at the same screenshot, you’d see that the bounce rate is 62.92%, which shows that visitors spend some time on the blog before leaving. (A lower bounce rate indicates longer visit duration.)
Overall, I’d grade myself 7/10 in this aspect.
So far, I’ve published 36 posts on this blog (you can see all of them here). Now, I don’t need anyone to tell me that I performed very badly in this aspect. Yet, I preach consistency and the like. Well, do as I say…because I’ve not led by example with regard to my posting frequency. I have my excuses, though. And I think they’re strong enough.
The poor posting frequency notwithstanding, I try to put in my best when writing a new post. In fact, one of the reasons I don’t post often is that I always wait for the time I can concentrate fully on writing a detailed, unique, and helpful post.
If you read this blog often, you’d have observed that most of my posts are quite long. Most of them exceed 1,000 words. The longest so far is the tutorial on how to set up a WordPress blog, which exceeds 2,000 words. Do you know why my posts are long? I try to include every necessary detail to ensure that the reader has few or no questions to ask after reading. Any post that leaves you asking too many questions — despite reading it to the end — is a useless post!
I tried to find out which posts on this blog have attracted the most visits. I observed that the post titled, “Online Payment Methods for Nigerians: 5 Ways to Receive Payment from Foreigners (Aside PayPal)“ has been read 7,866 times (and that’s why you’ll see it always topping the list of popular posts). This is partly because it is the post to which I linked from that article on my other blog.
Here is the list of the top 5 most viewed posts on this blog since its launch in April 2013:
Interestingly, the longest post on the blog didn’t make the list.
In the aspect of content, I grade myself 8/10. Or do you disagree?
In terms of interaction, I can say the blog has been active to a good extent. Readers have left comments on most of the posts, and I replied almost every comment on the blog.
As of the time I’m writing this post, the blog has 552 comments — including those left by me. And the most viewed post on the blog happens to have generated the most comments — about 80 comments at the moment.
When I launched this blog, I was using the Graphene theme. (Remember that old, orange color design?) I love that theme because it is highly customizable and simple (I love simplicity). But the theme has one downside — it’s not responsive — and this is why I ditched it.
I recently switched to another theme that looks great on mobile devices (responsive, I mean). After tweaking for several minutes and getting my hands dirty with some coding, I ended up with a design I like.
And since I switched to this new theme, I’ve received a number of positive feedback about it from my readers. Even Muhammed Abdullahi Tosin described it as “seductive.”
I have two main assets for driving traffic to this blog from my own end: a mailing list and a Facebook page.
Presently, my mailing list has over 450 subscribers, while the Facebook page for the blog presently has about 215 likes.
I’m growing both assets organically. So far, all subscribers and followers have joined on their own, and I’ve not tried to attract blog subscribers or Facebook followers with paid advertising.
This probably is the part that interests you the most. But, well, I’ve not made a dime from this blog so far. And I’m not in a hurry (after all, I have other blogs that fetch me money).
When the time’s right, the money will start flowing in. I don’t mind if that would take additional one or two years. I’ve always known that online business isn’t a get-rich-quick thing.
What other lessons did you learn from my findings other than the 10 I listed? Do you disagree with any point I raised in the article? Do you have any question or contribution? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment.
And don’t forget to share this post on Facebook and Twitter. I’ll greatly appreciate.