Three of the best free traffic generation methods I love using to promote my websites are…
1) Exchanging Traffic
Exchanging or swapping traffic is an easy way to multiply your traffic especially if you’re just starting out and aren’t getting a lot to begin with.
The most simple method that comes to mind is to link swap with other website owners. But this same technique can be used in any form of ad swapping.
Email ad swaps, banner ad swaps, autoresponder follow up email swaps, blog post swaps, jv giveaway events.. the list goes on.
A lot of this traffic exchanging is done manually, i.e contacting and setting up swaps with other marketers, but there are some systems out there which help automate some of the traffic swapping process.
Safeswaps.com is a well known online source for finding email ad swap and integration marketing partners.
Number 2 on my list is getting free traffic from the search engines. And to do this, you need to get involved in SEO (search engine optimization).
SEO is all about making your site optimized for keywords that people are searching for on Google. Yes, there are other search engines like Yahoo, MSN and Bing, but usually what works for one will work for all.
There are basically two elements to work on to win at the SEO game.
The first being “on-site” optimization (e.g. placing your keywords on your page, in your title tags, meta tags, etc).
The second being “off-site” optimization which is mainly made up of getting backlinks.
Backlinks are hyperlinks that are coming from other web sites and are pointing to your website, preferably with your keyword as the anchor text in the hyperlink.
Backlink quality comes in all shapes and sizes. Preferred backlinks are one-way links, .gov and .edu domain backlinks and links coming from a web page with a high Google page rank.
Now for some low competition keywords, just a few of these backlinks is all you need for high ranking.
But for really competitive keywords, it can take thousands of backlinks to get any decent listing in the SERPS.
Most marketers don’t want to spend all their time getting backlinks so they use special automated backlink services or hire outsource people to get backlinks for them.
Having affiliates send you free traffic is one of the easiest ways to get a good flow of traffic to your site.
But in order to have affiliates send you traffic, you must have an affiliate program, which means you must have something to sell.
This method is not really possible for all marketers at the moment if you don’t have your own product, but when you do have your own product, an affiliate program is a must.
The key to getting affiliates to promote is to have a product that converts and makes them a decent commission. No affiliate will promote a product that won’t make them any money.
100% commissions is a great incentive for affiliates, but make sure you are collecting the customers details and perhaps have an upsell where you keep or share the profits.
The next important things for a successful affiliate program is to help your affiliates as much as you can so their job is as easy as possible. Having pre-made promotional tools is a big help.i.e. email swipe copy, banner ads, rebrandable reports, various landing pages etc.
The down side of running an affiliate program is that usually a system to manage it is costly. For example the RAP script is brilliant and pays 100% commissions, is relatively easy to use and quite reliable, but costs around $250.
The other options is to use an online affiliate program like Clickbank or Payspree which manages everything for you but you have to pay fees for product listings (Clickbank) and when sales are made or both.
So although affiliates will get you free traffic, there are some expenses to get the system set up and running.
But once the traffic comes, generating sales and having a customer database will pay for it and is a great way to build your business.