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Milin Enterprises
Chapter 6 Section D

Building and Tracking Traffic
Made Easy!


“Build it and they will come.”
-Field of Dreams (1989)

Talk about a field of dreams! If you just simply build it, your site might as well be a corn field in Iowa, visited only by ghosts!

Yes, it’s true. This discussion has shown you how to develop a strong Theme- Based Content site, completely loaded with high profitability Keyword- Focused Content Pages. These pages overdeliver to your human readers, and at the same time, satisfy the Search Engines.

So you’re way ahead of 99% of e-business people on the Net. You have created a diamond, shining with terrific content. Does that guarantee you success? Sorry to say, no! Why not? Because it’s just sitting there, buried in the middle of that huge corn field, that field of dreams.

What’s missing in your quest to build income through content, to turn that field of dreams into reality? Traffic. Visitors who read your content, click on your links, and then do something (buy, complete a form, etc.).

In the last section, we focused more on content. Now we begin to focus on building traffic to your content.

Here’s the secret to building traffic. It’s really the secret of traffic-building experts. Do something. See how it works. Do something else. See how that works. And then, try something else again. And see how that works.

That means you need traffic-building tools to keep doing things to build traffic. And then you need the traffic-tracking tools to tell you what’s working. A feedback loop from building to tracking is critical. One of the keys to success, any kind of success, is feedback. Good results tell you what’s going right and give you something to build upon. Poor outcomes show you what needs to be fixed.

Without tracking (feedback), you’re shooting in the dark. Without the ability to take traffic-building action and increase or change what you’re doing (depending on the traffic-tracking feedback), you’re not even shooting!

Two more important principles to add, the best traffic-building techniques are high-yielding and sustained. In other words, you must get a big traffic-return for your time and/or money, and it must deliver traffic in an ongoing fashion, not just be a one-shot deal.

Let’s give you an example. When you “get it right” at the Search Engines, they’ll deliver you traffic for months, even years, without you ever having to tweak your pages again, if you’ve done everything correctly.

Compare that with making a post in an e-mail mailing list, even a high-profile one. It takes some time to prepare a good post, with great content, great enough to wow people into visiting your site. Consider what happens within two days of that post, your traffic falls back to where it was.

So what are the best sustained high yielding traffic building opportunities on the Net?

  1. The Free Major Search Engines
  2. Pay-Per-Click Search Engines
  3. The Major Directories
  4. Word of Mouth
  5. Your Own Opt-in E-zine
Of course, there are other ways to build traffic
  • buying ads in, and writing articles for, e-zines
  • making posts in forums, discussion groups, mailing lists, newsgroups (depending on your niche and other circumstances, these can be fairly effective or totally useless)
  • link exchanging
  • your sig file!
These lesser techniques, however, don’t deliver both big and sustained results. Sure, using a sig file is something you should do. And it’s sustained. At best, though, you send 40 or so e-mails per day, mostly to people who know you. Not much super traffic building potential there. Buying ads or writing articles in e-zines will bring you a 1-2 day pulse of traffic (that is, if you choose well and write an effective ad or article). But then traffic falls right back down.

Same reality goes with posts in forums, etc. Some Web-based forums remain on the Net and could be spidered, thereby counting that page as a link to your site. But we’re talking thin here. Your best large and sustained traffic returns will come from the BIG 5 above. Since your time is limited, don’t try to do it all. Begin directly with the BIG 5. 

I am not saying that you should not use the lesser traffic-building techniques.Depending on your situation, some will work very well for you. But start first with the BIG 5. As you do, three things will happen

  • you’ll establish a strong, sustained traffic base
  • you’ll start to feel comfortable with what you’re doing, and will view the whole concept of building traffic as a very do-able project
  • you’ll come across perfect fits for the above, lesser traffic building techniques (a perfect vehicle for a link exchange, or an excellent e-zine that reaches your target market, etc.)
It is at this point that you can then start using the secondary techniques effectively.

Let’s open the discussion with a look at BIG TECHNIQUES #4 and #5

BIG TECHNIQUE #4: Word of Mouth
How do you get word-of-mouth? First piece of advice, don’t bother with those recommend-a-friend scripts. Less than one visitor in a thousand fills them in. There’s a far simpler way to get word of mouth, deliver great content. That’s it.

Want an example? Let’s say that you have a wonderful theme based site about succulent plants (cactus, euphorbia, etc.). You have a terrific page about all the tricks you have developed for propagating them. Other aficionados find that page at the engines. Do you think they won’t tell friends, or forums, or cactus associations, about this terrific info? Sure they will. Just one more huge benefit of overdelivering!

BIG TECHNIQUE #5: Your Own Opt-in E-zine
Publish your own e-zine? Yes, it’s extremely important. But not right now. There’s only so much that you can do in a day, so you have to do things in their proper order. Remember, at this stage, your site is up, but there’s no traffic yet. So no one is there to sign up for your e-zine. Here’s the correct To Do order after you build your site.

First, get your site up and running. Then work on the first three of the BIG 5 traffic-building techniques. It will take a while for traffic to start building. But once you have some decent numbers, it only takes a day to get an e-zine up and running. Not surprisingly, you can go the free route, or you can pay for list hosting (services that take care of all the technology of e-zine publishing).

As usual, I recommend that you pay for it. Because nothing’s really free. Yahoo!Groups does a great, and free, job.  But they only insert a little ad for you in every mailing. Do you know what people think when they see that? Small fry.

Your image is worth more than the few dollars per month that a quality list host will charge you. You’ll never see e-zine publishers like Ralph Wilson using anything but a top-notch service like SparkList

Or consider Topica

Either way, paid or free, from the time you decide to do an e-zine, you can be taking subscriptions in less than a day. So there’s no rush to publish your e-zine. Put up your subscription form during the lag period, when you see the first fruit of your traffic-building efforts.

Which brings us back to the first 3 of the BIG 5 traffic building techniques. We’ll cover these all-important strategies in chapters 8 and 9

  1. The Free Major Search Engines
  2. Pay-Per-Click Search Engines
  3. The Major Directories


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