Let me guess.
You built your website. You’ve tweaked it to conversion perfection. You post on social media. You’re doing everything right…
But your traffic stats don’t seem to budge.
Sure, you read articles on how to grow your traffic. You try to execute the strategies the pros talk about.
But there seems to be a limitless amount of things you can do to increase your traffic and you’re stuck.
So we’ve done the heavy lifting for you. Over the past few months, we’ve published a series that goes over how to grow a website from ground zero to 10,000 visitors per month in just 30 days.
We covered three of our marketing Sumo’s strategies, and even took on a case study to prove it could be done by anybody - even if you don’t have any special connections.
See the video breakdown here:
But we know you like options.
So we reached out to 35 online marketing pros who have built successful websites in many niches to find out how they have grown websites from scratch to 10,000 visitors per month in 30 days or less.
We’ve even taken their 35 answers and 78 strategies, and ranked them by popularity of method in a spreadsheet. Then, we’ve done the heavy lifting to include pros and cons, a summary, and free resources so you can cash in on each strategy.
These methods work. They have worked for them, and they’ll work for you too. Here’s what the pros said when they were asked:
If you were to grow a brand new site from zero traffic to 10,000 visitors in under 30 days, how would you do it?
1. Find out what's already done well in my space. Every industry is different. Unless you have your ear to the ground, you'll probably publish something that falls flat.
But when you know what types of content performs well already, you can model your content after it.
2. I'd spend the next 15 days working on one piece of amazing content. Now that you know what works, it's time to create something amazing. 10k visitors isn't going to come from 5 mediocre posts. It's going to come from ONE amazing post.
So I'd spend every waking moment for two straight weeks writing something absolutely mind-blowing.
3. Publish. Happy dance!
4. Spend the next 12-15 days promoting the heck out of what I just published. Email people in your field. Get involved in Twitter conversations. Make a Slideshare version.
5. Check my Google Analytics. 10k visits? Nice! Go me! Happy dance part 2.
If I wanted to grow a brand-new site to 10,000 visitors, I'd just write something provocative or offensive. That could accomplish the goal, right? But of course those visitors wouldn't be very valuable to me, since they'd just be pissed off.
So rather than picking an arbitrary number as my goal, I think I'd ask: "Why am I making this site in the first place?" and "Who will be best served with this message?"
I'd base all other decisions on my answers to those two questions.
Quality interviews with influencers is a great way. It saves you time from coming up with fresh content and also promotes the influencer as well.
I'd actually not focus on my site at all (at first). With no traffic, I'd focus on websites that had similar audiences to the one I wanted to build, and pitch them guest articles until I landed a few.
I'd set my own site up as a lead capture to a mailing list, and for each article that was accepted, I'd create a custom landing page with a custom content upgrade (which I'd link to from the guest post). In the onboarding automation, I'd start asking these people questions (what they are working on, what they're struggling with, what they wished they knew more about)—and save their answers into a spreadsheet.
I'd do this over and over again until I had a 1,000-2,000 subscribers. From there, I'd use the spreadsheet to look for patterns or topics that came up over and over, and I'd start writing about those, sending the article intro to the list (linking to my site) and asking for shares at the end of the email and blog post.
Zero to 10,000 in 30 days is ambitious enough as it is — I wouldn’t even think about trying it without the use of some automation!
When a site is brand new and doesn’t necessarily have a ton of content on it right out of the gate, effectively leveraging the content you do add is more important than ever.
I would set up a system of automated social media promotions, so that every time I promote something on social once, it automatically gets promoted again and again over time. This is especially useful for a rapidly-growing audience, because the number of followers who might see a link on social media changes so much from day to day. By automating promotions, you can share links to your site around the clock, all 30 days — and that’s a LOT more effective than just firing off the occasional tweet.
There a couple things you should probably have in place before going after the 10,000 visitors:
1. A reason why you want/need traffic in the first place. What's the goal of your site? Chasing traffic for the sake of traffic is pointless.
2. A way to capture those people so they keep coming back for more. Sumo is great for that.
With those housekeeping issues out of the way, your ticket to 10,000 visitors is pretty straightforward. First, you have to create something remarkable (Seth Godin's Purple Cow, right?), and then tell as many people about it as you can.
As far as your remarkable content, aim to create something that's 10x more helpful than anything else on the topic. Since you're brand new, it has to be too good to ignore. Case studies, round-ups, and tutorials are all great options.
I'd spend the first 3 weeks creating the content, and the final week marketing it. My best performing posts this year have more than 40 hours in them. The more people you can link to, the better. Why? Because that gives you an excuse to send them a note saying you featured them in your article and (maybe) asking them to share it.
There are lots of ways to get a website to 10,000 visitors. The easiest way I can think of is to collaborate with an influencer (or influencers) who have your target audience. Everybody needs content — especially people with large, hungry audiences.
So figure out what one of the "big names" in your space needs by seeing what type of content they are already producing, then go way over the top and deliver a crazy amount of value with an epic piece of your own and collaborate with them on it. It could be something simple, like asking them to contribute a quote (which is exactly what I'm doing now...and I WILL share this).
Once your project ready to share, they'll feel a bit obligated to help since they helped create the piece. Boom, flood of targeted visitors.
I would post a job on Problogger and commission a few ghost writers to help me create 12 pieces of content.
I would then post six on our site, and find six places to guest blog post. Then I would promote the absolute hell out them, through outreach. I would also utilize Instagram to generate traffic quickly.
It may sound counter-intuitive, but if I wanted to grow a brand new site to 10,000 visitors in under 30 days, the #1 thing I would do is I'd get started doing webinars.
The best way to get visitors to your website consistently and for the long-term is via an email list, and the best way to grow an email list -- that I know of -- is using webinars.
So I'd go around to people in my network, to thought leaders, to companies, software startups, organizations, and universities which are already doing webinars consistently to nurture their own respective audiences and I'd offer to present a relevant, value-packed training webinar to their audience, and I'd use that to grow my email list. Then having a larger email list would allow me to point those new subscribers back to relevant content on my new website.
If wanted to grow a brand new site from 0 to 10,000 visitors, here's what I'd do.
First, I would create an all-encompassing resource that thoroughly covers the subject matter of my niche. This resource can either be a series of videos or a long form blog post spanning 5,000 words or more.
For example, here's a resource I created on podcasting.
Then, I would create a high-quality lead magnet to give to my audience in exchange for an email.
Once these 2 pieces are in place, I would buy Facebook ads and drive traffic to my mega resource, retarget the visitors and then bring them back to a landing page asking them for an email address for my lead magnet.
If your resource is good, traffic and shares on Facebook should be relatively inexpensive and by collecting emails on warm leads, you'll have the ability to bring visitors back for more as you fill out your site.
10k visitors could be worth a lot, or they could be meaningless. I'd rather focus on quality over quantity, especially if your new site is meant to attract potential customers.
To attract potential true fans, I would identify places where those people likely already hang out online, and then figure out how to get in front of them with something irresistible or especially noteworthy.
This could be a special offer, an epic piece of content or something else; the details will vary from topic to topic significantly, which is where the real challenge lies.
How to get 10,000 visitors a month in 30 days from scratch with a great Lead Magnet, guest blogging, a roundup post, and a giveaway.
1. Create an irresistible Lead Magnet freebie that solves just one pain point for your target audience. Create a drool-worthy headline for it. Then set up List Builder in Sumo in "smart mode" so it functions as an exit-intent popup, so you capture email addresses.
2. Do a roundup post. A roundup post is a compilation of expert bloggers answers to a single question (like this one!). Roundups bring in the big traffic because many of the experts will share your post with their audiences. You will also be building ongoing relationships with the experts because you've featured them on your blog.
3. Start asking those same expert bloggers if you can guest post for them. I built my list to 5 figures in my first year by doing roundup posts and guest blogging. Strive for 2 guest posts a month.
4. Have a targeted giveaway that will thrill your readers. I use KingSumo for all my giveaways - it's an easy way to get your audience to share your giveaway and get people not on your list to participate (which gets them on your list!). The first KingSumo giveaway I did brought me 766 new subscribers in 10 days and thousands of website visitors.
This takes time and work, but it will get you the results you want. Set up a schedule to accomplish these 4 steps and get to work.
I would spend the first day thinking up a "blue ocean strategy," trying to find a topic that is unique and fairly low on competition.
Then I would spend the next four days writing four articles of 10x content.
I'd spend the next three weeks publishing and promoting that content, working to repurpose it as guest posts, Slideshares, videos, infographics. Promote on social media, through email, in communities, etc.
If at any point something sticks (say, I find that communities are a great traction channel), then I'd consider writing a lot more content quickly to double-down on what I've found to work.
Identify the key pain points and challenges people in that space are struggling with and start creating topic-specific and value-packed blog posts that dive deep into each pain point and offer a solution.
From there we'd place our FB ad pixel on those key pages, start driving FB ads to those individual blog posts and retarget with relevant lead magnets to start building up our list.
Then to top it off we'd look for relevant podcasts, web TV shows and sites we could write guest posts for to further increase our reach and build our traffic!
One of the most effective techniques I used to drive 20K visitors (plus over 6 DA 50+ backlinks) to one article was a top 100 post.
Now, doing a top experts article like this is nothing new. The difference compared to other article was two-fold:
1. I gave justification why they made the list and where they ranked.
2. I included helpful resources from each of the experts to provide more value to the readers and backlinks to the experts.
By providing them value to all involved, it was a win-win for everyone.
I'd use the community content promotion strategy.
Find groups of people online that already have your target audience in them, then share your content in relevant groups.
For example, let's say you sell a mobile development software services - search Linkedin, Facebook and Google+ for product development, product design, mobile development groups, etc. and start engaging with the community. Get a sense of the culture of the group, and once you feel like you're part of the community, start sharing your content in the groups. It's an easy way to get traffic when you're starting from 0.
1. I'd create a free resource guide (25 top-converting checkout elements, 25 best Twitter bootstrap templates, etc.) and launch that guide as its own URL on Product Hunt, Reddit and Hacker News.
2. I'd then create a free email course that taught a valuable, hard-to-learn skill on a topic my audience cared about. Then I would promote that via Facebook and Reddit and have a few content partners email their list about the free email course. In the email course, I'd have bonus content that students could unlock by sharing lessons on Facebook and Twitter.
3. I'd co-create an infographic with someone who has a large audience - fund it, design it, manage it - under the condition that they'd co-promote it with me once the infographic was finished, and that it'd include links back to my site.
Organic and referral are two sources that have brought in significant traffic to Venngage.
To build up organic traffic, we research the type of content and keywords that people are actually searching for and produce infographics on those subjects. We repurpose the infographics and pitch them to sites with high domain authorities and build back high-quality links to our site. We have seen results in as little as two weeks but typically this method is a long-term strategy.
Another method is to create editorial or trending content.
When Game of Thrones Season 6 came out, that's all a lot of the major publications were talking about. So we created a data visualization that highlighted all the betrayals that had taken place in previous seasons.
We pitched the graphic to sites like Fast Company, Distractify, and GoT specific fan sites. The next day our site crashed because we got over 50k unique views in a night after the article was shared by George Takei on Facebook. Although this particular situation is a rare one, on average referral traffic from other sites that get a lot of traffic has proven extremely useful.
The exact strategies would depend on the niche, but I'd first get a custom tracking pixel setup ready for when I'd got budget to play with. Then I would:
1. Guest post on high traffic, niche blogs - For this to work you need to find very specific blogs. They should be blogs that publish few posts but drive huge amounts of traffic. A good indicator would be blogs that get huge numbers of comments and large email lists to aid with content promotion.
2. Go big with content and outreach. Start off by finding which pieces of content are earning huge amounts of links, and shares. Create something better and support it with outreach to mid-tier influencers in your niche. If you can get them to contribute quotes, even better. You could take this a step further and build broken link building into the process, to add another angle to the outreach process.
Another consideration at this point would be keyword research. Within the first 30 days of a website, search engine rankings likely won't move the needle - but it will later on. So strategic keyword research would be critical for any big content pieces or guest posts.
3. Leverage viral quizzes and social - In the right niche, these are crazy effective. You'll need some initial traffic to get the ball rolling (that's where points #1 and #2 come in), then get a quiz plugin + add some creativity.
High-velocity testing, which means moving through the growth process at a rapid pace, is the key to major growth. It's about shifting the focus from testing program outputs (wins and case studies) to inputs (speed and quality).
You have to commit to...
Answer targeted questions on Quora to drive traffic to your website. Hire a virtual assistant on fiverr.com or onlinejobs.ph to create a list of followed Quora questions in the niche your website focuses on.
Once you have time, open the URLs to questions from that list and focus on providing high-quality long-form answers while linking back to your website at the end of each answer.
If you consistently follow this method daily, you'll easily be able to drive 10k+ visitors in 30 days or less from Quora to your website.
1. There are very few things that can beat paying for traffic if you have the budget. It doesn't matter how new your company is, as long as you've got a website that is set up to convert that traffic. It depends on the type of product/service you're selling, but I often start with Facebook ads because you can get very granular with the audience that you're targeting. The best part about this is that it scales as much as you want it to and it validates your assumptions (or challenges them). If you wait for 10K organic visitors, you might not realize that there's a whole in your conversion funnel for a while, but with paid you can figure that out in 1 week.
2. Content still works wonders but it takes a bit more effort. I've found that the secret to helping content really take off is combining a really well-written article with great promotion, a little paid spend as a catalyst, and building quality links to the post. For promotion, if you're in the marketing niche, sites like Inbound and GrowthHackers can help, but if the content isn't amazing, no amount of "friend votes" will help you climb your way to the top.
Promotion goes way beyond that too, by finding pockets of your ideal audience all across the web, utilizing your email lists, and even tapping into other's email lists by creating something worthwhile for them to share.
And lastly, you can optimize the post for keywords, and that's helpful, but unless you're reaching out to get some solid backlinks, you're unlikely to rank #1-#10 for almost any keywords that are worthwhile. Longtail is great, but it takes a lot of longtail keywords to drive 10K visitors to a new website in 30 days.
1. Find the accounts -- brands, people, newspapers -- that your target audience follows, and incorporate them into your content. Stroke their ego. If you only have 30 days, you need to be hunting whales. Then message them on Facebook. This tends to get you directly to their social media manager.
2. Join relevant Facebook groups, post regularly to build up edgerank, then share your content in the group. You may get flagged (oh well), but if you're adding value, you'll get a ton of shares and traffic. Ask people who like or comment on your post to share.
1. Referral networks
2. Outreach to commenters.
Find the places that your target audience loves the most. Always make a note of engagement in these communities and try to make friends with active members. They’ll support you whenever they see your blog posts.
I only have four posts on my blog. On average, each post gets me 5,000 visitors, 300 new subscribers, 90 comments, and 1.3k social shares. And that’s all because I contacted my target audience that needed my content.
1. Commit to a guide of ~10 posts on a specific topic relevant to your business. Publish an index of those posts with an intro. The future posts can be grayed out saying 'coming soon.' Ask for email addresses in the intro for those that want future posts.
2. Find communities relevant to yours and promote your blog posts there...promote links to your post in that community via social media and friends in the space.
3. Answer relevant questions to what you're blogging about on Quora. Give the best possible answer you can give and ask a few contacts with influence for support there.
This is exactly what we did at Appcues in our early days with The User Onboarding Academy (which has since evolved).
1. The Monster Post. An epic 5000+ word blog post designed to blow people's minds and generate a ton of traffic and social shares. Add in quotes from influencers to get them to share the post around.
2. Joint Venture Partnerships. Partner with influencers and businesses in your industry to drive traffic back to your site via webinars and email swaps.
3. Online Summits. Put together a lineup of top speakers in your industry for a week-long online summit.
Leverage an existing personal and business network. I'd start by using queueat.com to build a really simple viral promotional campaign.
Then I'd lean on some friends of mine that are influencers and have large Facebook or Slack groups to help share and really promote it. Then I'd take it a step further and ask them to blast their email list. Sometimes, in exchange for that favor, you may have to promise some sort of list swap or promotional email on your side, which is usually fine.
The number one rule of hyper-growth is "leverage existing networks" because you cannot afford to create your own... Actually the number one rule is "provide immense value," if you aren't doing that, then no one cares to begin with.
1. Waitlist: Using a waitlist captures an e-mail address to re-engage with the customer later.
2. Hang out where they hang out: Determine your target customer and try to provide value in places they are online (join the conversation, provide content, etc)
3. Smart paid advertising: Using broad assumptions of who your customer is, use ad platforms with targeting (eg; Facebook) to continue to build the right type of traffic.
The first thing I would do is a huge round of PR. I would get on everyone's podcast I could and subscribe to HARO and start replying to tips daily to start building backlinks to our site.
Then I'd create two 10x pieces of content. Instead of trying to create a bunch of content, I would break down the 10k into two articles or guides and try to get 5k visitors from each. I would identify two keywords with high traffic and low keyword difficulty (in Ahrefs) and create the single best piece of content on the web about that topic.
Then I'd go backlink hunting. I would find related topics using BuzzSumo and Ahrefs and build a massive list of influencers and people who have shared related content to tell them about my article (and can post the job on UpWork and easily have someone go and find hundreds of email addresses for outreach). I would also plug in competitors URLs to find related content and find everyone who linked back to those posts. And then the last thing I would do is use BuzzSumo for backlink reclamation - find everyone who mentioned our business but did not link back and reach out.
Facebook Mobile Audience Network ads. They're very cheap, send about the same quality traffic as other content distribution networks like Outbrain, and drive organic shares that can increase your reach outside of paid advertising.
Hustle for a spot on an influencer's newsletter. This requires a genuine relationship with an influencer, which takes time, but it's one of the best way to get a serious spike in traffic, get your product or content in front of a brand new, relevant audience, and collect email addresses to turn it into sustained traffic.
Post to forums and communities. Unless you're in an especially niche area, there are probably large, active communities around your niche. Find them, contribute to them, and share your own content or product in them. Places like Reddit can drive thousands of visitors if you have the right article/product/giveaway, and it doesn't cost a dime.
One of the methods that works for me right now is what I call Rally Points.
A Rally Point is a point in the marketing funnel where someone is enticed or encouraged to spread the word. It's a form of viral marketing that, if done strategically, can drive 10,000 visitors in 30 days all by itself.
An example of a strategic Rally Point is a "pay with a tweet" offer for exclusive content after someone opts-in for free content. Another is a refer-a-friend offer to someone who just had a high-quality experience. The mistake most people make with this method is they don't consider what they're offering, to who they're offering it to, and the level of affinity that prospect/customer has for your product at that point.
Towards the beginning of the Presidential primaries the Promoter.io team created a new website called NetPresidentialScore.com to leverage our technology to measure voter sentiment. We had a very similar goal within the first 30 days. Here's what we did to reach it:
1. Posted within targeted communities. If you're a tech-focused product, both Product Hunt and HackerNews are excellent places to gain potentially 1000's of visitors within just a day or two. Beyond those, we posted within LinkedIn and Facebook groups as well.
2. Media attention. With a new website, you undoubtedly have a new story to share. Very few publications do profile pieces nowadays, so you really need to craft a story that isn't just interesting to journalists but will ultimately attract the attention of your ideal visitor.
3. Fresh and continual content. Ideally you have a database of some kind to promote it to, if not, really work on focusing your content to current trends. These are quick-hitting pieces to drive immediate traffic, you can work on evergreen content once you've established your base. Expand your reach by syndicating it elsewhere — Medium, LinkedIn, Slideshare, etc.
We’ve just given you 13 different strategies for growing your website traffic rapidly - voted on over 78 times by 35 online marketing vets who have actually done it.
If you’ve been struggling to get more traffic to your website…
Or, hell, if you’ve just launched your website, these strategies will help you grow.
But you might be wondering how to choose which strategy is best for you.
First, give the strategies a quick read-through and make note of any that jump out at you as particularly doable or exciting.
Then, Click here to get the FREE spreadsheet to find out how each strategy ranks - as well as more detail about what each is and how to execute them.
Next, choose no more than three strategies to follow to grow your site to your next 10,000 visitors in 30 days.
Finally, read the resources for each strategy from the spreadsheet and article, and execute.
And when you reach 10,000 visitors? Don’t forget to send us a screenshot.
Go forth and conquer.