If you build it, they will come. Except to a website.
‘Award winning’ websites are built every day, often times by an enthusatic entrepreneur, who often learns this exception the hard and disappointing way.
If that’s you, whether you’re an entrepreneur or blogger, let’s get into practical reasons why your site isn’t getting traffic!
This all comes from my 15 years of experience in the ‘online business’ world, and also using digital marketing to propel to growth of my offline home service businesses.
For the purpose of this article we’re going to assume that you want to get traffic from Google Search. I’ll talk more about this and other ways to get traffic towards the end of the article.
1. There are indexing issues.
Bots from Google and other search engines scour the web by the second looking for new sites and not content on sites. If your site is not able to be crawled by the bot, or the content cannot be indexed, you won’t get any traffic.
To fix this, first add your site to Google search console. This is a really a prerequisite for any website owner. This will connect Google to your site and the crawl bot will regularly crawl your site.
2nd check pages for no index tags. You can check the code for the word ‘noindex’ or you could use this free tool.
In your research of ‘getting traffic’ you may run into mentions of ‘web page speed’. To be clear page speed does matter, but it won’t prevent your site from indexing and getting some traction. So unless you are aggressively investing in SEO, or have hired a ‘web person’ to help you, it’s not an important factor.
2. You have not published content on topics that people are searching for.
For Google to show your website in the search results and drive traffic to your site, you must publish content that satisfies search intent.
‘Writers’ are notorious for making this mistake. They set up a blog website and publish hundreds of blog posts randomly about their topic only to get no traffic. BECAUSE they’re topics do not satisfy search it.
This is where keyword research comes in.
If you want people to find your website from Google search, you have to do keyword research and publish content on topics people are searching for. For example, this post is not a topic I just felt like writing. I discovered the keyword ‘why isn’t my website getting any traffic’ and am creating this piece with my insight to satisfy search intent for that audience.
3. Your website has no topical authority.
This happens when website owners go too broad on content planning and publish a wide array of ‘not tightly connected’ content or do not publish enough valuable content.
Google needs to see your website as an authority resource to determine it is valuable and worthy to show in search results for that topic. Let’s consider you’re a manufacturer of truck parts and you have 100 EXCELLENT blog posts broadly about all kinds of things ‘trucks’. To Google you are just a ‘jack of all trades, master of none’. The proper course of action would likely be to focus in on a particular sub niche like ‘truck tires’ or model like ‘Toyota Tacoma’ and cover it in depth, so you are viewed as a topical authority.
It would also be advisable to have them published by someone who has verifiable expertise in that field for example someone who has a Youtube channel documenting their off-road truck adventures.
Note on the 100 posts: that high of count is mostly applicable to a business that wants to grow content in organic search. Publishing blog posts to satisfy search intent improves SEO and web traffic for all types of businesses of all types but it may not be optimal for some businesses such as a local epoxy flooring business (I own one of these businesses ) only serves a small local area and doesn’t have 100 topics to provide value. This type of business would achieve better advertising ROI with direct response ads, but still should publish 10-20 posts just to establish topical relevance.
4. Your content is not formatted for properly SEO.
One critical reason your website may not be attracting the traffic it deserves is that your content is not properly formatted for SEO. Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of optimizing your website and its content to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). If your content isn’t optimized, it may be virtually invisible to potential visitors.
To address these issues, start by conducting thorough keyword research to identify the terms and phrases your audience uses to find content related to your topic. Integrate these keywords naturally into your content, including the title, headings, and body. Create high-quality, informative, and valuable content that addresses the needs and questions of your target audience. Structure your content with clear headings (H1, H2, H3, etc.) to make it more scannable and reader-friendly, as search engines use headings to understand the hierarchy and importance of content.
5. You haven’t been patient enough.
If you’re doing all of the above…
in other words your website is indexable, and you’ve published 100 blog posts that satisfy search intent or a concise topic…
…you just need to wait.
In my experience it takes content at least 7-12 months on an aged site to nearly peak in search ranking. That is an aged site. 12+ months is realistic for a new site.
I know it sucks, but that is what it is. If you want faster traffic that is scalable, you need to use paid ads to drive leads and sales.
6. Your site does not have enough backlinks, social signals, or branded traffic.
Natural back links and social signals from real people are like a ‘vote’ to the search algorithms. You want to get as many of these NATURALLY as possible.
Some ideas to help in this area:
- If you’re a local business sign up to Google Local (and get reviews!)
- Joining the Better Business Bureau
- Getting a link of any of your supplier or brands that you sell
- Sponsor events and offline organization
- Ask writers and/or employees to share your content.
I elaborate more in depth on branded traffic, the impact it has on SEO and how to build it with paid traffic in this post.
Other Ways To Get Traffic
While SEO is undoubtedly a powerful strategy for driving organic traffic to your website, it’s not the only approach at your disposal. Diversifying your traffic sources can enhance your online presence, mitigate the risk of relying too heavily on a single method and bring you scalable customer acquisition.
Paid advertising is another viable option for boosting website traffic. Platforms like Google Ads and social media advertising (e.g., Facebook Ads) allow you to target specific demographics, interests, and search queries to reach potential customers directly. While there’s a cost associated with paid advertising, it can yield quick results and provide valuable data to optimize your marketing efforts.
Organic social can also bring traffic, but inexperience these audiences are a low converting subset. This downside is further exacerbated by the trend of social media platforms to reduce the reach of content from businesses as they know business are likely to pay (advertise) to reach their audience on the platform.
It’s essential to strike a balance between paid and organic strategies, as a well-rounded approach can help you navigate fluctuations in search engine rankings and changes in algorithms. By exploring these other avenues to attract traffic, you can create a resilient and sustainable online presence for your website.
If you can take corrective address and address these 6 points, your traffic will grow! The most difficult aspect is patience.
That said growing website traffic can often seem like a fruitless task, and even at that you’re at the mercy of search engine algorithm and can (will) experience extreme swings in traffic. For that reason it is important to develop as scalable customer acquisition model with paid advertising in addition to SEO traffic.