5 Sources of Online Traffic You’ve Never Heard Of

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Traffic as far as the eye can see

Online traffic is one of the key performance indicators for online businesses, as it directly affects the number of leads your business acquires. Most online marketers focus their attention on the most well-known sources like search engines, social media channels, and well-known (high-bandwidth) websites. There is nothing wrong with taking the road well-traveled, but don’t stop there. Take a few extra steps could mean a huge increase in traffic.

The online marketing field is very competitive and any edge you can gain is worth the effort. In this post, I want to share five sources of online traffic you’ve probably never considered for your website or marketing before.

1. Reddit: A Fun and Great Source of Online Traffic

Reddit is a social sharing, news, and entertainment platform, where members can approve (upvote) or disapprove (downvote), link, and comment on submissions. Think of reddit (written without caps) as a community where topics about everything from advanced physics to cute cat pictures are shared and discussed by super engaged individuals. Here are some statistics about Reddit you ought to know:

reddit is fun but also great for traffic

Reddit attracts more than 174 million unique monthly visitors actively looking for news, tips, products, or entertainment, which you are missing out on by not taking part in one or more conversations on Reddit. Reddit is also home to 8000+ active communities where top communities have 1 million or more members.

Obama AMA at reddit

Here’s an example of reddit awesomeness: in August 2012 President Obama used reddit to engage with the American public by starting an “AMA” or “Ask Me Anything” thread that generated 2,987,307 views and 10,000+ comments on the same day. I understand not everybody can attract as much online traffic as President Obama, but the example illustrates the potential of reddit. Here’s the kicker: all external links from reddit are dofollow so when your post goes viral and reddit gets SEO juice from it, it passes a lot of it the linked page.

Honorable mention: Triberr – which is a community of bloggers set up to encourage social sharing.

2. Ask Quora (For Online Traffic)

Quora may not boast the impressive numbers of Reddit but what it does have is a really engaged user base and a set of great features. Quora is a question and answers platform (a lot like Yahoo answers) where users can ask questions or answer them. Other users can follow questions (as a way to approve them) and up vote or down vote answers, where up votes provide the user with Quora credits (a currency that can be used at Quora).

Quora Topics

On Quora questions cannot be closed (unlike Yahoo answers or similar platforms), which means that question pages have a long lifetime. By asking and answering questions you can potentially reach the 1.5M – 3.0M monthly visitors worldwide. Quora also behaves like an online community where you can build a following and display your expertise in a host of different topics by giving great answers.

Quora top question

Aside from asking questions and answering other users questions, you can write blog posts on Quora and publish them. The blog posts will be seen by other users who are interested in the same topic. One cool thing about Quora is that it rewards user engagement and participation through the use of Quora credit, which as I said are rewarded whenever someone follows a question you asked and or when you get up votes for your answers and blog posts. One of the things you can do with Quora credits is promote your blog posts. 

Quora blog post

Here are a few tips for getting the most out of Quora:

  • Follow topics relevant to your industry and actively participate in answering questions
  • When answering questions include links back to your content as appropriate
  • Build a following by up voting others users, following interesting users, and answering questions which other users ask you
  • Write blog posts on Quora and feature your content
  • Use Quora credits to get more views on your blog post.

3. Content Aggregators can be a Great Source of Traffic

An aggregator is any software or web application that aggregates and syndicates web content.

In general, there are mixed feelings about content aggregators in the SEO community. One thing I can tell you is that you don’t want dofollow links from most aggregators except the high authority ones, but what you do want is links that send you online traffic.

Alltop interests

You can essentially multiply your reach by having your content posted at aggregators. Aggregator sites are frequently visited by users who are interested in discovering new content about the topics of their interest.

Alltop statistics by Quantcast

Take Alltop for example, the site attracts around 0.5M unique visitors per month interested in one of the 600 topics featured at Alltop. Say you are in the coffee industry and have created an a guide to making Turkish coffee. Alltop would be a great place to submit such content for getting a boost in online traffic. The visitors that come to your site from interest / topic oriented aggregators will also be more likely to convert as leads since they are interested in the topic.

Alltop coffee

There are many other popular aggregators you should consider for gaining more exposure for your content, such as Huffington Post, Popurls, Google News, Yahoo News, Bing News, Newsvine, and Lockerdome. Aggregators may have an application process for accepting content, some may require you to make an account first, and some will allow you to post a link which the community can approve or disapprove. There is no single strategy for getting your content featured on aggregators. What I can tell you is that it is worth the effort.

4. LinkedIn is Not Just a Professional Network Anymore

With the advent of “Create a Post” feature in LinkedIn it has crossed the border between a professional network and a blogging platform. The most well-known ways of generating online traffic from LinkedIn revolve around the professional network LinkedIn and not the blogging platform LinkedIn. In this tip, I want to highlight benefits of blogging on LinkedIn.

LinkedIn Create a Post

Why should you write an article on LinkedIn?

  • LinkedIn has 330M active users from all over the world viewing an average of 8.5B pages per month which means that on average a user views 25.7 pages per month.
  • You already have subscribers (your connections) who will see the your post in their news feed.
  • Your connections are very likely to share, like, and comment on your content. Each share, like and comment expands your content’s reach by the number connections your connection has.
  • You don’t need to come up with original content, as LinkedIn is a great platform for repurposing old blog posts to reach new audiences.

1211-LinkedIn-Repurposed-Posts

 

5. Blog Commenting

I know what you’re thinking “blog commenting for getting online traffic? Tell me something I don’t know, Karan”. So instead of making a case of why you should comment on blog posts, I want to let you in on a few strategies that I’ve noticed to work well.

  • Just like the results in SERPs the top five comments get the bulk of the online traffic, so subscribe to RSS feeds of key blogs in your industry and make sure you comment soon after the post is published.
  • Comments to which the author replies positively are more likely have a higher CTR than those where the author doesn’t reply or replies negatively. So make sure you add to the conversation.
  • Short comments, compliments, and thank you’s are not going to get you any online traffic. Read the article make an insightful comment. One good comment is better than 10 short, hollow, or complimentary comments.
  • Try to leave a link in the body of the text, but make sure it’s relevant and tell the reader what they will find on the linked page. For example: “…. I’ve had the same experience. If you want to check what we did, you can find it here:….”
  • Not all blogs are created equally when it comes to sending you online traffic. Focus on specialist websites which published content about the topics of your audience’s interests. Sites which have several categories like Forbes, Wired, and Mashable are great for generating online traffic but will be less effective for generating leads.
  • The commenting format matters, for instance blogs with Disqus are much less likely to send you online traffic then the ones who use the comment form format. On the other hand, you can build a following with your audience by using Disqus.
  • Finally, commenting on your own guest posts (tip from Mark Traphagen) is really important as it accomplishes two things: 1) you show your readers you are not just writing to gain exposure or back links but actually want to engage with them. 2) By interacting with your readers you increase the likelihood that they check out your website.

There you have it, the five sources of online traffic that you haven’t considered but definitely should. What other sources of online traffic do you recommend?

 

Image Credits

Featured Image: Steve Jurvetson via Flickr
All screenshots taken December 2014

Karan Sharma

Karan Sharma

Inbound Marketing Manager at linkbird
Karan is online editor and inbound marketing manager at linkbird - an SaaS tool for online marketers to efficiently increase the online visibility of their brand or company through SEO, content marketing and online PR. When Karan is not creating content or researching the SEO industry, he enjoys foreign cultures, learning new things and awesome quotes.
Karan Sharma
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  • http://www.thebusinessseed.com Tom

    If you do it right, Reddit is amazing for traffic … but beware the Reddit Hug O’ Death, which can bring down your site with a torrent of viral traffic. Always have a plan to deal with surges when you promote through them!

    • Manish

      I agree with you Tom, Sometime unexpected traffic from reddit can drop your site speed. Always prepare for bulk traffic from reddit.

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Thanks for the tip Tom.

  • http://thebirdmarketing.com Erick

    Awesome post! Most of these are new to me, and I’ll definitely be keeping this article in my traffic building arsenal 😉

    Thanks Karan!

    Best,
    Erick

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Hi Erick,
      Thanks! I’m glad you can use the points I made in this post.
      Best,
      Karan

  • http://www.mattantonino.com Matt Antonino

    Never heard of? I had to check the date on this post – it would’ve been very topical about … 3 yrs ago?

    I love all these sources – but they’re not new. The blog comment strategies are pretty good as well.

    • http://www.socialmediaslant.com Cendrine Marrouat

      Exactly!

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Thanks for your thoughts Matt.

      Not everyone is aware of these sources, and what worked 2-3 years ago may not work today. So things that work or may have been forgotten are worth being mentioned again.

      Feel free to share any sources you’d recommend.

      • Edith

        Yes, Karan. I agree with you. Any old or new sources that works for SEO, gotta be mentioned now and all the time. I just landed here from a linkedin post and I`m glad that I choosed to spend my time reading your article!

    • http://www.myoptimind.com Jeric

      Exactly what I’m thinking! The title of this post really caught my attention and made me read it.

  • http://www.trafficattic.com Sophia

    We find Quora a great source of information, however never used it as a traffic source. We would definitely recommend signing up to receive their emails.

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      In my experience Quora is great for generating really relevant traffic. By providing insightful answers you can build a name for yourself on Quora. Try it 🙂

  • http://www.ravindermalik.com ravinder

    Awesome Post. Reddit, quora and commenting is very helpful techniques. thanks Karan

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Hi Ravinder,
      Thanks! Glad you found it useful.

  • Musharib Akhter

    Reddit’s example’s second last para has a grammar mistake 🙂
    Awesome sources of branding and online votes though.. . Good “educative” read!

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Thanks for your comment Musharib! I’m glad you found the article educative.

  • http://singapore.fortune-softtech.com Jacelyn Richards

    Obviously sounds informative and innovative. So far I had not thought of Linkedin as such a source of traffic. Thanks a lot Karan for giving me that information. Definitely I am going to use that as a source of traffic as mentioned above

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      LinkedIn recently became interesting as a source of traffic after it rolled out the “create a post” function for all users. You can easily repurpose your blog posts on LinkedIn to reach a bigger and more engaged audience.

  • SAJID

    Many people praise reddit for the traffic we can gain from it… But i have tried it a lot of times without any success.. 🙁

    • http://www.moxiedot.com Kelsey Jones

      It definitely doesn’t work for everyone!

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      True Sajid. There are some users who accumulate a lot of upvotes and comments. Find them in your targeted subreddits and look at what they post and what kind of headlines they use.
      Hope it helps.

  • Ish Laos

    As someone who spends a lot of time with SEO, getting traffic is high priority. Your article definitely gave me some ideas. Specifically I’m interested in trying Quora.

    As far as the commenting techniques, very insightful advice. I have found that this plays a huge roll in how much traffic websites get, including my competition, so I really appreciate the tips.

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Thanks for your comment Ish. For my company linkbird, I was able to get a lot of traffic from Quora through thoughtfully answering the questions. It does take some time but I would recommend to try and answer one question per day for a month.
      Hope it helps.

  • John Martin

    Great article, reddit will bring a high traffic, if we use this in wrong way this will hurt you too. I am using this reddit and it works for me. Thanks for sharing this informative article.

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Thanks for your comment John.

      Can you share some of your experience with the other readers?

  • Nasrin Akter

    I agree with you Tom. Reddit is amazing for traffic. Which can bring down your site with a torrent of viral traffic. Always have a plan to deal with surges when you promote through them!

    I love all these sources – but they’re not new. The blog comment strategies are pretty good as well.

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Thanks for your comment Nasrin.

  • Jeff

    Hi Karan,
    Many of our clients are building content and want to know where best to promote their articles to influence search engine traffic. We have shared your post; thanks for the great tips!
    Sincerely,
    Jeff

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      I’m glad you found the article useful, Jeff. Thanks for your comment and for sharing the article with your clients.
      Best,
      Karan

  • Laxmi Tomer

    Hi Karan
    Quora is really a good source of traffic and worthwhile for affiliates as their job is to drive traffic on their websites. Thanks for suggesting Reddit and Alltop!

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Hi Laxmi,
      Thanks for your comment. I’m glad you found the article useful.

  • http://mihaipintilie.com Mihai Pintilie

    Already used LinkedIn and Alltop. Great ways for generating organic traffic. I think I will also give a chance, or more, to Reddit. Blog commenting is already a classic and a must-do.

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Thanks for your comment Mihai.

  • Guilherme Ostrock

    Linkedin posts is great toll for visibility but how google see if a reporpouse my blog posts? It will bee seen as duplicated content? Or the best stratety is post only fresh content on linkedin?

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Hi Guilherme,

      It’s okay to repurpose content, just don’t copy paste it. A long blog post on your website can be summarized into a short one on linkedin or vice versa. Collect the takeaways from different blog posts on your site belonging to the same category and write a list of takeaways post on LinkedIn.

      Hope this helps.

  • http://www.location3.com Crystal Ware

    We love using Reddit as an awareness builder. We can usually find the exact audience we’re looking for since it’s so diverse. We have to set expectations though – people have to be prepared for some potentially snarky comments and dialogue. If you can handle that and prepare for Tom’s “Hug O’ Death,” it’s a great source.

    Haven’t worked with LinkedIn as much. Will have to explore that option more. And I love your thoughts on blog comments. Seeing that the author is engaging is more likely to keep people coming back.

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Thanks for your comment Crystal. The hug o death is definitely a promotion killer but luckily most users on reddit are against trolling. Moreover, reddit is also a great tool to validate your marketing approach. Try it out in a small subreddit first if it’s successful you know that it will more likely succeed somewhere else.

  • Rob

    You don’t Try it for free now!
    You try it free now.

    If you are indifferent about grammar, how can you be trusted with SEO, something more valued?!

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Not sure what you’re referring to Rob. These words are not present in the article. And yes, grammar is important!
      Best,
      Karan

  • Max

    While we did hear about them before… they are indeed good sources of traffic. They all come down to being able to offer good content though.

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Thanks for your comment Max. You have indeed hit the nail on the head. Bottom line is to provide good content regardless the channel.
      Best
      Karan

  • http://www.techtoucan.com Richard

    5 sources of traffic we’ve never heard of? SERIOUSLY?

    I don’t think I’ve ever been so disappointed after clicking a headline. LinkedIn? Reddit? Blog commenting? Come on!

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Thanks for your comment Richard. Sorry to hear you’re disappointed.

      Silver-lining: there isn’t much you don’t know about getting traffic to your site.

      While there are plenty of people who did benefit from this post. Feel free to suggest additional approaches.

  • Postober

    Thanks a lot for the great list. How can one submit link to AllTop?

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      1. Bottom right of the AllTop pages have a link to submissions page.
      2. You will need to make an account before you can make submissions.

      Hope it helps.

  • Earnistan

    Never thought Quora can be used that way. Useful info!

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Thanks for your comment! It takes some time to build a following on Quora but once done it will send a steady stream of relevant traffic that converts better than search.

  • http://www.cantswingacat.co.uk Jenni

    I’ve used reddit before to share a link to my blog and while it certainly helped to give me a sudden boost in traffic, it’s not without its difficulties. Reddit moderators are often a but touchy when it comes to ‘self promotion’ and so they’ll often take down links that were posted by the content creator, even if the link is valuable to users and relevant to the thread. (You can share links to other people’s content though, so I guess there’s nothing to stop you asking a friend to share it). I’d recommend spending time answering other people’s questions on the site first and doing your fair share of upvoting etc so that if the mods call you out on your link, you have proof that you aren’t just some spammer

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      SEO and Content Marketing are converging with online PR, the same applies on reddit.
      – build relationships
      – build track record
      – comment on other people submissions etc

      reddit is not supposed to be easy, nothing good is. 🙂

      Thanks for your comment.

  • http://spellboundwords.com Rahul Krishnan

    Hi Karan,
    Awesome piece of content.
    Everyone needs traffic. A blog is meant for it, right??
    I have an account on Reddit. But never took it seriously.
    Quora is something I heard a lot. Never tasted it yet.
    Thank you so much for the awesome info bro.
    Recently I happened to know about Triberr. Is it possible to get readers from that platform?
    As you have said, it is important to give to comments under our guest posts. But unfortunately many a one forget this.
    Anyway nice article. Keep going.
    Regards,
    Rahul

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Hi Rahul,

      Thanks for your comment!

      A blog is quintessential in today’s online marketing environment, so it should definitely be your starting point.

      I haven’t had experience with Triberr but I’ve come across authoritative articles about it’s uses, based on these articles, I would recommend a trying out Triberr.

      Hope it helps.
      Karan

  • http://www.twotreesmarketing.com Two trees marketing

    Hey Karan,

    Not just Reddit and Quora but forum posting on niche relevant, and potential customer relevant work wonders.
    IE if you run marketing, growth hackers is great etc but small business advice bureaus or government help pages/forums are also incredibly powerful!

    We use this extensively and after just a week of focus on it, 28% of our traffic comes from referrals like this!

    We also use a set list of content outreach and I cant believe we forgot Triberr!

    Keep up the great work Karan,

    Regards

    Daniel Daines-Hutt

    • https://www.linkbird.com Karan Sharma

      Hi Daniel,

      You are absolutely right about forums, do keep in mind that these aren’t forums that allow do-follow links.

      Local and specialist websites like advice bureaus and government websites are great for both traffic and SEO ranking juice – a great to reason to boost up your online PR activities and build relationships with these kind of sites.

      Thanks for your comment.
      Karan

  • John

    One thing which confuse me about reddit is that reddit traffic effect on the bounce rate of website because I heard so many time that visit time of reddit traffic is not so good.

  • http://sociofab.com Musharib Akhter

    The QUORA traffic numbers are of 2011 or 2012..
    I’m still looking forward to the latest number of visitors to this site! 😉