If you're here, I'm sure you're looking for creative and proven methods to get new visitors to your website while utilizing the already existing ones.
And as with every marketing goal, trying to increase returning visitors or building a loyal reader base is no easy task, but it's worth it.
New leads are always important to a website, seeing as a new visitor can become a new email list subscriber. However, a unique visitor is more expensive and challenging to come up.
On the contrary, returning visitors are loyal readers, loyal commenters, and all in all, willing to spread the word around when it comes to your blog and authority.
Getting visitors to return to your website has more benefits than focusing your efforts on growing your email list with unique subscribers:
- The more a visitor returns to your website, the more they trust your blog and the products or services you may recommend as a niche publisher.
- Returning visitors often share and comment on blog posts. That way, they boost engagement and help a piece of content go viral.
- Returning visitors can help a publisher establish authority in their niche.
- An increase in returning visitors means valuable, quality content.
When a visitor returns, it goes without saying that they remember the blog's name, the type of content, and how to find it. All of the above means that the visitors are already interested when they go back.
Not using CTAs that will make them do what your retention strategy pinpoints is like leaving money on the table.
But to achieve the above goals, retain your audience, and increase your growth and revenue, you may need the strategies I am going to present below.
7 ways to improve your returning visitor count
Getting visitors to come back to your website when there is a plethora of other websites talking about the same thing out there is no easy task. But it’s not impossible either.
Creating content that is original, authoritative and using means like email marketing and push notifications will make a difference to your website’s traffic and your conversion rate as a whole.
Here’s 7 surefire ways to achieve that:
1. Establish yourself as a topical expert
Common sense dictates that a website or a blog with a wide variety of topics can attract more visitors and get them to spend more time on their website.
This may be true, but only partly. A broader audience doesn't mean a better chance of returning visitors for one main reason:
More topics automatically mean less authority in your niche.
Publishers need to establish themselves as topical experts in their niche by focusing all of their efforts on a specific topic. But how is a publisher going to find this particular topic?
This answer lies in a blog's or website's analytics and target audience. By utilizing the analytics, a publisher can see what the "topic of discussion" across their target audience already is and take advantage of it.
By using pieces of information found in their analytics, publishers can see the recommended niches that can help them grow the number of returning visitors. But it's not just that.
After finding the area they need to focus on, publishers can look into their data again and find the content that converts better when it comes to their readers. If your readers love webinars, create a webinar that will be addressing specific pain points that interest your readers.
The more interesting the content’s form, the better the engagement rate:
2. Improve User Experience On Your Website
An accurate look at your data is the best way to make accurate decisions when it comes to improving your users’ experience; therefore, your data should be your primary source of information, dictating each step.
Check your website, your landing pages or subscription forms, or your social media pages. These are great places to find information that will help you understand a user's behavior on your website and what makes them not come back.
Maybe there are some broken elements, an internal server error, or links that won't work.
Or maybe your welcome-mat-style subscription form looks a little too much.
Recurring visitors will recommend your website to a friend or relative, so the first thing you need to sort out is to match your readers' intent and meet their requirements. And you can only do that by analyzing your data.
3. Always Create Original Content
No website has increased returning visitors just because the UX is impressive. Impressive UX won't entice them enough to build trust relationships with you, let alone refer your website or blog to their circle.
On the other hand, if you "train" your visitors into expecting new content on a specific day of the week, you will automatically create a loyal audience that will be willing to return to your website to check for new material.
In the form of new blog posts, videos, or infographics, original content can increase organic traffic, authority, email newsletter subscribers - more on that in a second- and boost brand awareness.
Tackle that issue by repurposing old content. For example, an old blog post that hasn't done much for your traffic and your recurring visitors can be repurposed into a series of social media posts that will link back to your website.
Likewise, an old infographic can be the inspiration behind a brand new video.
If you're not sure where to start, create a questionnaire asking your audience what they'd like to see. That way, you'll know the hot topics they talk about and what they prefer, in terms of posts.
Suppose your audience is younger, for example. In that case, you might want to look into some video marketing tools and use video marketing on your blog or as a medium to drive traffic to your blog through your email marketing campaigns.
The same idea goes for blog posts that can be broken down into parts. A series of blog posts promoted through your newsletters is a guaranteed way to get more returning visitors to your website.
At this point, I'd like to point out the importance of your unique tone that needs to be present through your content.
The best example of a consistent tone through a blog would be that of Neil Patel.
As a reader, I always know what I'm going to encounter when reading one of his posts or watching one of his videos. As a returning visitor, I can see where the value lies, and I can safely say that I consider that blog to be a high authority one.
The consistency in tone played a vital role. A consistent tone increases awareness, trust, visibility, and makes a blog more recognizable.
All in all, posting new content and keeping a consistent posting schedule is vital if you're wondering how to get returning visitors to your website.
4. Create An Email Newsletter
Email newsletters - and email marketing in general - are a great way to keep visitors coming back to your website, as emails are one of the most surefire ways to increase engagement and see an increase in returning visitors for your website.
Let's assume that a first-timer finds themselves on your website and finds it educational and overall pleasant. That first-timer would love to come back. Creating a subscription form with actionable verbs and a clear CTA that will lead them to subscribe to your newsletter would be ideal.
Some tips on creating the email newsletter would be:
- Include snippets of your latest posts in the newsletters
- Use links
- Use compelling videos and visuals
A high Click-Through-Rate (CTR) will increase returning visitors to your website.
Emails can engage both repeaters and first-timers, as email marketing creates an open dialogue between the recipient and the website.
Of course, the content of the email will need to be personalized and satisfy user intent, if you want your email campaigns to have a high CTR and your website to have more returning visitors:
And urge your users to share your email with their family and loved ones if they find your blog interesting or useful. That way, you won't only attract returning visitors, you will also increase the number of organic visitors in general and get some new leads cost-free.
5. Reduce Bounce Rate with Accurate Content
A factor that you may not have considered that can drive visitors away from your website rather than back to it would be a misleading headline or title.
We've all been there. We have clicked on a link because the title looked interesting, only to be disappointed because the content had nothing to do with the headline.
Creating expectations and disappointing your readers and visitors in such a way is what drives them away from your website, while you want them to keep coming back.
Knowing how to start a blog may not always be easy, but knowing not to deliver something that doesn't meet expectations is common sense. So, make sure that your title meets the expectations set.
The problem with this is not just the loss of recurring visitors, though. SERPs are known to be affected by bounces. Imagine a visitor spending a total of one minute on your website and then hitting the "back" button. It will mess with your ratings as well.
6. Use Push Notifications to Engage And Retain Your Audience
Let's assume that some of your visitors don't love the idea of being sent an email newsletter, and they want to access your website at their leisure.
While this is not unheard of, it may make things a little more complicated. This is why push notifications are something that may be of interest in the end.
Push notifications appear on a prospect's screen, either a mobile device or laptop/desktop. They will look like this:
This practice aims to let users know that you're still there and that you have some new content coming up that may be of interest to them.
Push notifications are discreet, doesn't take up the whole screen as a pop-up would, and, most importantly, doesn't require the visitor's contact information.
Using push notifications is a great way to ease your visitors' safety concerns while solving the problem of how to get them to return to your website. Now, as with emails, if you want push notifications to help you pretty much make money through your blog, you will need to take some things in mind:
- Craft an interesting message that will make people click on the notification and visit your website.
- Take note of the visitor's past activity and promote blog posts or content relevant to the one they've already interacted with.
- Personalize the notifications as much as you can, implementing elements such as emojis.
Push notifications have an impressive CTR, especially when they're personalized, as evident by the statistic below:
And now, onto the last step, that will show you how to get returning visitors to your website.
7. Create A Strong Community
Whether it's on social media or a forum, a strong community can be a real lifeline when it comes to driving returning visitors to your website.
Encourage your already existing email newsletter subscribers to follow you on social media as a first step. Make it possible by including social media buttons at the end of each newsletter.
That way, your visitors will know exactly where to find you and follow you.
Creating a community that will drive visitors back to your website takes some time, but it is gratifying. Members of your community can share your post around, give their input, and even urge their social circle to engage with your website or blog.
A strong social media community will drive more traffic to your website and attract more leads. But there is a bonus to it, apart from helping you increase returning visitors.
Strong social media communities and organized, helpful forums can help increase a website's or blog's authority and help you create meaningful messages and, eventually, a deeper connection through the messages that will resonate with your readers.
Making visitors return back to your website is not always easy. But it holds a lot of value and means that, in the end, you will have loyal visitors and readers willing to get the word out and show your content to your loved ones.
And loyalty is all that matters, as your website's authority will be built based on that and not the number of new leads you may have.
This is a guest post from Moosend, an email marketing software company