Something I’m focussing on a lot at the moment is making my sites more ‘sticky’. By ‘sticky’ I mean creating content, tools, games etc…that make my sites more interesting and create a good user experience.
This does take more work, but I strongly believe it is well worth the time and energy to do so, as it will help you get more viral traffic as visitors will be more inclined to share your site and it will also create good metrics to show off to Google (more on this later).
Examples of Stickiness (is that a word?)
Every site will be different, so you need to ask yourself, what could I add to my site that would make my site stick out from all the other sites in the niche. Remember your aim should be to have the best site in your niche, as this will win out in the long term.
With that said, I have just had some great tools created for one of my sites, that the visitor can play with and once done can print the results, email them to a friend, or save them! Pretty cool eh…and I hope this will get people naturally linking to the site and also good old referral traffic from social sites.
You don’t have to spend much on this stuff, in fact simple quizzes can do the trick, like what you find over at Snack Tools (thanks to Lisa P for that one) – can work great. The key is to make your sites more interesting than just plain text, as let’s be totally honest here, who really loves reading a page full of just text? I personally don’t myself, and enjoy a site much more, if I can interact or even just watch a video combined with the text.
You could get any number of simple scripts created for very little expense, such as a BMI calculator if you’re in the weight loss niche, or anything that someone in the niche would find helpful, and most likely bookmark your site to come back to.
On that note, simply adding a YouTube video in your content is one of the most basic forms of ‘stickiness’ you can do. I like using YouTube on sites, because what will happen is your video will get more views if it’s embedded on your site, which will help it rank higher in YouTube itself. Over time your YouTube channel will grow in authority, and I think that’s not only a good extra traffic source, but a nice signal to Google that you have a quality site, if you have a quality channel linking to you.
Comparison Tables & Lists
Proper well done comparison tables are quite interesting and can get people not only hanging around on the page, but also linking to it. This can be comparing features of multiple products and their prices, but just make sure the information is accurate, don’t guess it. You could also have a table with latest figures, for example a site on precious metals could have a chart on latest spot prices.
You could also make lists of the best and worse products in the niche and why you think this is the case. For example in the “Online Webinars” niche there are quite a few products, and the price range is massive. So you could break it down and even do demos of yourself using the tools to illustrate the features of each and then compare them.
If you take the time to write a really informative PDF on a topic in your niche, this can be a great tool, as people will hang around to read it and also share it with people, if the quality is good. You could even survey your traffic over a period of time and find out what the most popular questions people have, and then research and answer all of these and create it into a report on your site, and tell people what you did and these are the finding from your research.
Blog with Active Comments
Having a real blog with active comments, by ‘real’ I mean one where there is actually a readership/community like this one, where people will stay around on the site and participate.
Of course you can go the extra mile and consider adding a forum onto your domain. I’m planning on doing this with my ecommerce store eventually, once I gain more momentum with it, as I believe a forum is a great way to get people to stick around, and also share your domain with other people. This has many added benefits if done well, such as adding content to the domain.
I have mentioned this in a previous post, but make sure your site looks nice and is easy to navigate, as if someone gets a bad impression of your site as soon as they arrive, you have to work uphill to try and convince them to stick around for the great content. I don’t even bother read content on sites that look really crappy.
In closing, I think focussing on making sites stickier is very important aspect on online marketing, and again it comes back to improving the user experience. If your visitors hang around on your site, visit multiple pages on the site and share it on the social networks, then you’re in good shape, and Google LOVES to see this kind of activity. This is when I think it’s a good idea to have Google Analytics installed on your domain, as these sort of metrics are awesome to show Google, as it proves to them that you have a high quality site.
Google will see that not all traffic comes from search engines, you get social media recommendations, people stay on the site for a decent amount of time, you have a low bounce rate, and lots of return visitors, what more could Google want!
I would really love to hear what ‘sticky’ ideas you guys know about, as the more ideas we share with each other the better!!
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