If done right, using forums to gain traffic to your website can be one of the most rewarding efforts. However, the wrong approach to doing so can do nothing but get your IP on a permanent blacklist. So how exactly do you go about it?
Back in the day, posting on forums did wonders in terms of SEO. After all, there’d be hundreds of links from a single website linking to you, providing you backlinks. Simply posting in forums could get you ranked highly in Google. This obviously became a problem, so what did Google do?
They made the value for the links in forums worth less and less, specifically for signatures which appear over and over again. Now a days, they’re almost worthless in terms of SEO. So what do you gain from knowing this?
Write For Humans, Not For Robots
The main reason for writing on forums now a days is not to try and boost your search engine rankings through links, but rather, to appeal to the actual people on the forum you are posting on. This is more easily done if you post on forums where people are already interested in your website’s topic. For example, if you owned a blog about iPhones, it would be a smart idea to go post on other people’s iPhone forums, as you can be sure the people there will be interested in your websites topic. So what happens? More people actually click on the link you leave when they see it.
Grab Readers Attention With Your Signature
Most people do not spend time reading every user’s signature, especially if they are active on the forum. Your signature should do something to grab the readers attention, and get them to read all of your signature, down to the link. They can’t click on the link you leave if they never see it, right?
The links you should leave should be subtle, and should be mixed in with valuable posts you contribute to on the forum. Posting a spam thread asking the forum users to visit your website will not only get you no visits, it may also get you banned. Worst case scenario, your IP is added to a blacklist of spammers, and you’ll be unable to sign up for other forums on other websites. Wouldn’t that suck!
Demonstrate Your Expertise
Forums are an extremely common place for people to ask questions on the website’s topic. This is your chance to answer those questions and demonstrate your expertise! I’ve found that some of my top referring posts have came from threads in which I’ve answered a question and demonstrated my expertise to not only to the asker, but to the entire community.
Always Be Positive
When you go to a forum to post in attempt to attract visitors, you should do so with a business mindset. Obviously, it’s not very proper for a cashier to argue with and fight with the store’s customers, so likewise, you shouldn’t be doing so over the internet. Not only will it make your website look bad, but nobody would want to visit your website after doing that.
The number one way to get members on other forums to actually go through and check out your website is to become recognizable within the community. And what’s the best way to become recognizable? Be active within the community, become well known for helping people out. Almost like becoming an authority, isn’t it. After all, would you rather be known as “the link spammer who won’t go away”, or, “that really cool person I see all the time, who really seems to know what they’re talking about”? The latter, right?
And surely, the list doesn’t end here. Have you ever went to forums in search for traffic? What tips can you share that have helped you out in the past? Share with us in the comments!