How You Can Get Traffic Without Backlinking

65 replies
  • SEO
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For those of you who don't know me, my name is Fraser Cain, I'm the publisher of Universe Today. I get more than 100,000 search visitors a day, and make more than $20,000 a month purely in Adsense.

And I do it without any backlinking. Although I've got about 500,000 links to my site, they all happened naturally.

For most people, the model for internet marketing is:
articles + backlinks = rank = traffic

I want you to consider another, equally viable strategy, which is:
articles = traffic

Internet marketers obsess over rankings because that's how you make money. If you rank #1 for a keyword, you'll get more traffic than if you're on the second page. And the way they try to push their rankings to #1 is through backlinks. The competition can be fierce, and a savage battle to get to the top of the rankings.

But the reality is that what you're really going for is traffic. Instead of trying to snipe for any one specific keyword, you can blanket an entire marketplace - for the same amount of work. Go after hundreds and eventually thousands of long tail terms, and you'll see a steady rise of search engine traffic to your site.

And as long as you're creating high quality content that matches what your audience is searching for, you can avoid the Panda penalties that seem to be hitting many sites out there. Creating valuable content is what Google wants to do.

So, if you wanted to try this approach:
  1. Choose a niche that you're personally interested in, and want to make into a long term career.
  2. Figure out the big problems in your niche and provide real solutions that help people. Provide as much value as you can.
  3. Be real, open and transparent. Create a branded website that people can trust.
  4. Build up a list of the long tail keywords that relate to your industry. I have 30,000 in my list. :-)
  5. Create high quality valuable articles on your own website that match what people are searching for.

So if you hate backlinking, give this a try as a viable alternative.
#backlinking #traffic
  • Profile picture of the author FraserC
    The Google Adwords Keyword Tool is really all you need. It can give you thousands of long tail terms.
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    • Profile picture of the author bostoncitymass
      Originally Posted by FraserC View Post

      The Google Adwords Keyword Tool is really all you need. It can give you thousands of long tail terms.
      I agree, you can spend a ton of money on keyword tools but in my experience I always go back to the google keyword tool.
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  • Profile picture of the author mosthost
    All your traffic and revenue come from the same source. Although things have been working out well for you, it can all end with one adjustment from Google. Congrats on your success, but definitely save that money and don't ever assume that 'making content' is a safe and permanent way to earn money.
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    • Profile picture of the author kaizerinfo
      Originally Posted by mosthost View Post

      All your traffic and revenue come from the same source. Although things have been working out well for you, it can all end with one adjustment from Google. Congrats on your success, but definitely save that money and don't ever assume that 'making content' is a safe and permanent way to earn money.
      If he have unlmited content,he can get traffic from twtter,facebook etc,and his domain can be even banned.
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  • Profile picture of the author kaizerinfo
    Yes,it's true,and it's possible to automate all of this and already automated. All you need just one keyword and you will get content forever.
    It's autobloging.
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  • Profile picture of the author Joshua Rigley
    Banned
    Fraser, how do you propose getting visitors to your site initially? Obviously, if you're not doing any backlinking yourself and the site is brand new, it's highly unlikely people will find it on their own.

    Myself, I would pursue article syndication as a traffic generation strategy, but I'd be interested in hearing your ideas as well.
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    • Profile picture of the author kaizerinfo
      Originally Posted by Joshua Rigley View Post

      Fraser, how do you propose getting visitors to your site initially? Obviously, if you're not doing any backlinking yourself and the site is brand new, it's highly unlikely people will find it on their own.

      Myself, I would pursue article syndication as a traffic generation strategy, but I'd be interested in hearing your ideas as well.
      The main idea is this
      "Figure out the big problems in your niche and provide real solutions that help people. Provide as much value as you can. "
      Articles mostly have long titles and easy to rank. People find you from searchengines,so all you need is index.
      If domain is old and trusted by google, you can post than go to google and see your article already in the top.
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  • Profile picture of the author E. Brian Rose
    I know this thread isn't about paid traffic, but it is a way of getting "traffic without backlinking". PPC is not only the fastest way to get targeted traffic, but it is also the best way of getting sales.

    The key is to have a strong converting landing page. If you can't produce a strong enough page that converts well enough to make a profit using PPC, then what makes you think you are going to get any sales from free traffic?

    So many people spend hours and hours everyday building up more and more content just to get that trickle of free traffic. At the end of the month, calculate your earnings and ask yourself if it was worth all the time you invested.
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    • Profile picture of the author kaizerinfo
      Originally Posted by E. Brian Rose View Post

      I know this thread isn't about paid traffic, but it is a way of getting "traffic without backlinking". PPC is not only the fastest way to get targeted traffic, but it is also the best way of getting sales.

      The key is to have a strong converting landing page. If you can't produce a strong enough page that converts well enough to make a profit using PPC, then what makes you think you are going to get any sales from free traffic?

      So many people spend hours and hours everyday building up more and more content just to get that trickle of free traffic. At the end of the month, calculate your earnings and ask yourself if it was worth all the time you invested.
      Well,people came to ppc ads from the same google search results and most people click to organic results not ads. So,if you have sales with ppc,you will get more sales from top of google,if you can get it.
      PPC just the quick way to get on the first page of google.
      Also,free 100000 visitors dayly much better than paid 100000.
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      • Profile picture of the author E. Brian Rose
        Originally Posted by kaizerinfo View Post


        free 100000 visitors dayly much better than paid 100000.
        And are you getting 1,000,000 free visitors daily from your efforts? That's a good goal to have, but think of all that wasted time and energy you will have put in after you realize that it just isn't happening. Oh, and think of all the sales that you could have had if you chose the other route.
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        • Profile picture of the author kaizerinfo
          Originally Posted by E. Brian Rose View Post

          And are you getting 1,000,000 free visitors daily from your efforts? That's a good goal to have, but think of all that wasted time and energy you will have put in after you realize that it just isn't happening. Oh, and think of all the sales that you could have had if you chose the other route.
          Well, first you need to earn big money to pay for 100000 visitors. Instead,you can hire someone to create sites,the more the better. The ROI will be better.
          10$ spend to ppc =20-50 visitors.
          10$ spend to domain and create the site with unlimited content=unlimited visitors.
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          • Profile picture of the author E. Brian Rose
            Originally Posted by kaizerinfo View Post

            Well, first you need to earn big money to pay for 100000 visitors. Instead,you can hire someone to create sites,the more the better. The ROI will be better.
            10$ spend to ppc =20-50 visitors.
            10$ spend to domain and create the site with unlimited content=unlimited visitors.
            Wow! You have just proved every business that pays for advertising wrong. Clearly, your business must be the most successful business in the world. In just three sentences, you have shown that you know more than every company that spends money on advertising. Amazing.
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            • Profile picture of the author Fraggler
              Originally Posted by E. Brian Rose View Post

              Wow! You have just proved every business that pays for advertising wrong.
              You can be successful off free traffic as well. How much advertising does this forum pay for?

              Not all business models are based on direct sales. Many focus on traffic generation so they can sell advertising space (or create a community marketplace - classifieds) to other businesses who do get a measurable return on their investment. The traffic based models focus on creating quality free content to get the visitors coming back time and time again. The quality content can spread like wildfire which also leads to a strong search engine presence.

              Sure, you could use paid traffic to capture email addresses and the like BUT it is not the only way and not the best way for everyone.

              Fraser said pretty clearly that he couldn't make a positive ROI using paid traffic so he relies on free traffic. Paying for 200,000 visitors/day is super expensive if it costs more than what he makes from them. That's common sense. It doesn't matter if he only starts at $30/day if he only makes $5 off the spend. His business model doesn't support the costs of PPC or CPM advertising. That doesn't mean there is a flaw in the business model.
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  • Profile picture of the author TheInternet
    I think the idea here is to outsource link building to readers by making your content relevant and interesting enough to share.
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    • Profile picture of the author JEasy
      So you just write your articles/content and let google do the rest? Congrats on your success. You've got my attention.
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    • Profile picture of the author snowcloud
      Originally Posted by TheInternet View Post

      I think the idea here is to outsource link building to readers by making your content relevant and interesting enough to share.
      Excellent point
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  • Profile picture of the author FraserC
    No, the traffic comes from many sources, mostly repeat visitors from my readers. For example, I have 70,000 RSS subscribers. I actually get more like 200,000 overall visitors a day, just lots come from search engines.
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  • Profile picture of the author tebor79
    Nothing brings me greater joy than reading about extra-solar planets, I'm already subscribed to the RSS of Universe Today. It's a nice site that provides lots of valuable information and nice pics.

    It' nice to get a little insight into the success of the site.
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  • Profile picture of the author NicholasCarter
    Hi my friend,

    thank you for that post. Have a question for you. I completely agree with what your saying in a sense what you are doing is creating an authority site. I was reading about interlinking a.k.a linking articles to other articles within your website as a way to create a kind of linkwheel and also making sure that the keywords are related. By doing that technique it increases the likelihood that you will rank for a major keyword provided your article that is being linked to is properly set up for that major keyword.
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  • Profile picture of the author BillyBacklinks
    @FraserFc, do you write all your own content?
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  • Profile picture of the author FraserC
    @Joshua Rigley - I know it sounds surprising, but you can just start creating useful content that matches what people are looking for. The search engines will start to give you long tail visitors. Over time, as your site builds authority, your traffic per article will grow. You bake in the quality from the beginning, and then build up the quality over time.

    Remember that the time spend building links is still time. So instead of creating one article with 99 backlinks, just create 100 articles.

    @E. Brian Rose - Sure, paid traffic is a solution, but it's super expensive. There's no way I could afford that kind of traffic to Universe Today. It would be millions of dollars a day.

    @TheInternet - Exactly right. I'm not saying avoid links, I'm saying don't put any effort into getting links.

    @JEasy - That's right. It sounds simple. The hard part, of course, is to be willing to work really, really hard. :-) I've got 15,000 articles in my website, which I built up over the last 11 years.
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    • Profile picture of the author E. Brian Rose
      Originally Posted by FraserC View Post


      @E. Brian Rose - Sure, paid traffic is a solution, but it's super expensive. There's no way I could afford that kind of traffic to Universe Today. It would be millions of dollars a day.
      I started a company on a $30 PPC budget and used the profits to continuously ramp up my adwords buys. Within a couple of weeks, I was spending upwards of a thousand a day. I sold that company a few months later for six figures... all starting with a $30 pay per click budget and nothing else. Don't tell me paid traffic is "super expensive".
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  • Profile picture of the author FraserC
    @tebor79 - Thanks for the kind words. This is the point. People are genuine fans of my website. I even get people offering to donate money, because they appreciate the service.

    Here's a question you should ask yourself. Would people buy a T-Shirt with your logo on it?

    @NicholasCarter - Internal linking is a huge boost to your traffic. You can rank for competitive keywords purely on your internal linking strategy. While Google hates artificial backlinks, they love internal linking and encourage you to do it.

    @BillyBacklinks - I used to write my own content, now I've got a big team working with me. I do write all the content on Keyword Strategy, though.
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  • Profile picture of the author BillyBacklinks
    Nice work. I'm actually building my own personal interest website (in addition to those micro niche sitesk) and im outsourcing most of the content creation, hiring a fair few writers but adding my own now and then.

    Im still working on my longer term plan/strategy, the idea is to get where you are and have this as my main blog/brand etc.

    great thread btw
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  • Profile picture of the author Trent Brownrigg
    I've seen a lot of people talking about the "Fraser Method" in recent months. And from what I have gathered it is all about writing, writing, and writing some more without doing any backlinking. So I assume you are the Fraser they are talking about. Seems a lot of people are having success from your teachings. So good job to you!
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    • Profile picture of the author FraserC
      Yeah, I've encouraged people to suggest another name, but the "Fraser method" seems to be sticking. I'd love to get it called the Keyword Strategy method. :-)
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  • Profile picture of the author marcuslim
    Thank you for the article. It sounds like if we work with Google rather than against it, then Google will reward us for it. The lesson is this, a backlink has to be EARNED, not FORCED. Good quality articles will naturally get linked to!
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  • Profile picture of the author FraserC
    @marcuslim - That's right. Google is the ecosystem, so it makes sense to align your business with their preferences. You can go against the stream, but it's totally effective to make a Google-oriented website and succeed. Although Google has short-term problems distinguishing content, they've made their long-term objectives perfectly clear. :-)
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  • Profile picture of the author alerio
    Thats an excellent way to rank your website actually. However, it has its drawbacks. The major is the time it will take you to rank.

    With proper backlinking & good content on brand new domain I usually get 200-300 uniques a day after 2 weeks. Without backlinking that might take a year.
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    • Profile picture of the author FraserC
      I'm not saying it's the fast way. There are lots of short-term methods that will work to get you traffic. But if you want to still be running your website in 10 years, you'll want to create a high quality site that can stand the test of time. But if you put your head down and work, you'll start to see some serious momentum after about a year.
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  • Profile picture of the author TheInternet
    I've been taking a hybrid approach. Build a good content and reader focused site for long-term traffic (see signature), and keyphrase-focused sites to fund the initial costs.

    Works if you want to focus on the former but lack the funds to make the process go faster.
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  • Profile picture of the author art72
    Great Post!

    Definitely sheds some light on how the whole system revolves around quality content.

    Jeesh... I look forward to the day, I can post some numbers like those. Great job!

    The site looks cool, I may have to subscribe to that one myself.

    All the Best,

    Art
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  • Profile picture of the author SheSeo
    Fancy meeting you here, Fraser ;-) I normally only lurk around at the WF forum. But as I published a review on the Keyword Strategy Tool on my blog hospitalera.com (latest post, rofl shows what a lurker I am that I haven't even reached the minimum post count to be able to post a link ;-) today on my blog somebody in a Facebook group alerted me to the fact that you posted here! I am a member of KST since beta and can really confirm that the method not only works but also makes so much more sense then other approaches. In the end, why contributing to somebody else's site if you can put the content on your own site?
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  • Profile picture of the author keepgoin
    Fantastic thread to read, thanks Fraser for sharing!

    I'm off to write an article

    Andy
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    • Profile picture of the author SheSeo
      Eh, article about what??? If it is about a relevant keyword on your own site, good on you, it will pay out big time - especially if you do it regularly like every day or so!
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  • Profile picture of the author sitemarketer
    Thanks for the post. This is the strategy that I would suggest as well for anyone looking to make a career out of a niche, for instance, as my GF plans to.

    I've got 15,000 articles in my website, which I built up over the last 11 years.
    That's almost 4 articles per day on average, which is a lot of content if you're also full-time employed and trying to write quality articles. Though I see on your site that you posted 11 articles so far today, 12 yesterday, so I assume you started with a lot less and built it up slowly until you could hire writers.

    It would be very cool to see a graph over the last 11 years that showed the number of articles published each month along with new vs repeat visitors.

    Thanks,
    John.
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  • Profile picture of the author FraserC
    @E. Brian Rose - Paid advertising makes sense if you can earn more revenue than you spend in advertising. And if you do, it's a beautiful, virtuous circle. Paid advertising also focuses the mind like a laser on the things that really matter: headlines, conversion rates, ad copy. The best paid search people are like brain surgeons, in my opinion.

    But if your spending more money than you're earning, then it's like burning with gasoline. You might burn your whole house down. :-)

    @sitemarketer - That's right. You just have to put a priority on writing articles. If a great articles takes you a few hours, then you just have to set that time aside. As soon as you're earning some money, you can expand your team and build up your content even faster.
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  • Profile picture of the author jcmilligan
    I also mostly lurk around here instead of posting. I've been following Fraser now for about two years. In January this year I decided to focus my entire online business on the Keyword Strategy Method (a.k.a Fraser Method). I picked one of my sites that I was passionate about. Here is how the analytics played out:

    January 2011

    1500 - 2000 unique visitors

    October 2011

    Just topped 60,000+ unique visitors

    No back linking just selecting keywords and writing high value content.

    I've already seen similar results in two other sites of mine.

    By the way, someone said how can you expect to get any traffic in the short-term?

    The answer is simple: guest posting, my friend
    (and not for the links but for the promotion and adding value to people who share your passion)

    Fraser knows what he is talking about....
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    • Profile picture of the author AlphaWarrior
      Originally Posted by jcmilligan View Post

      I also mostly lurk around here instead of posting. I've been following Fraser now for about two years. In January this year I decided to focus my entire online business on the Keyword Strategy Method (a.k.a Fraser Method). I picked one of my sites that I was passionate about. Here is how the analytics played out:

      January 2011

      1500 - 2000 unique visitors

      October 2011

      Just topped 60,000+ unique visitors

      No back linking just selecting keywords and writing high value content.

      I've already seen similar results in two other sites of mine.

      By the way, someone said how can you expect to get any traffic in the short-term?

      The answer is simple: guest posting, my friend
      (and not for the links but for the promotion and adding value to people who share your passion)

      Fraser knows what he is talking about....
      jcmilligan, congradualtions on your success.

      I am curious, how much of your daily traffic is from new viewers and how much is from repeat viewers? And how much of your new daily viewers is from search engines and how much is from the sites where you have made a guest post?

      How many pages did you add between January 2011 and October 2011? How many pages do you have it total now?

      Thanks!
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      • Profile picture of the author CatherineMay
        Hmmm.....I was just about to spend money for the first time for a monthly subscription to Build My Rank....now I'm wondering if I should be paying for writers instead.

        Catherine
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        • Profile picture of the author mosthost
          Originally Posted by CatherineMay View Post

          Hmmm.....I was just about to spend money for the first time for a monthly subscription to Build My Rank....now I'm wondering if I should be paying for writers instead.

          Catherine
          High-quality articles are what you need. You also need pictures and video. Then you need strong social signals (sharable content).

          What you probably don't need is links from 'spun articles' from unloved blogs.
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          • Profile picture of the author aygabtu
            What happens with a brand new URL? No one would find your site without link building or adwords PPC.
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  • Profile picture of the author TheHotChick
    Banned
    SEO & you can also pay for a solo ad to another marketer's email list of tens of thousands.
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  • Profile picture of the author nadavs
    Those are impressive figures there! If conversion rates remain as they are now, I can make a fortune with 100K daily visitors. All I need now is visitors.

    Great job on that site. My goal is to have a site with similar statistics and power.

    nadavs
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  • Profile picture of the author FraserC
    @nadavs - Absolutely, once you have traffic, you can make money with it.
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  • Profile picture of the author ldfreeman
    FraserC, thanks for starting this post! It's good to know that good content beats fancy tricks any day!

    I have my own niche website in a market of my interest and just by using the google keyword tool and writing good content, i'm getting a steady stream of traffic. I'm doing about 50 visits/day in my first month! And I only have a fraction of the content I intent to make-up the core of my website!!!

    People spend so much time trying to "trick" google, when they can spend that SAME time just giving google what they want - GOOD CONTENT!
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  • Profile picture of the author lovboa
    Banned
    This is how SEO should be...and what I initially thought it to be when I built my first website..... only to discover that it was actually made up of manual backlinking, scraping, spam commenting nonsense.
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  • Profile picture of the author AlphaWarrior
    Fraser, this is a great thread and I am intrigued by your method.

    Your site, Universe Today, strikes me as a "hobby" site. By that I mean that if "space" was my hobby, I would bookmark your site and check it every day. However, my site is an information site and people only look at it when they have a problem. Once the problem is solved, they will never see my site again because they simply do not need to see it.

    Questions:

    How much of your daily traffic is from search engines and how much is from repeat viewers?

    Do you think that your method would work with an information site focused on solving a problem versus a site that has an ongoing interest?

    There are a number of different keywords that searchers search for the same information such as "how to", "a way to", "what method", etc. Even though the answer is the same regardless of the keyword searched, would you make a post on each keyword? In other words, even though the information is the same would you make a post for "How To ...", "A Way To ...", and "What Method Is Best To ..."?

    Thanks!
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  • Profile picture of the author Marketing Fool
    Fraser...been subscribed to your RSS feed for a while, love it.

    I love how people complain that they've spent so much time writing a great set of product reviews (for instance)...and how they therefore have great content. Then they can't understand why they aren't getting the traffic...

    Rehashing the same specs for products that everyone else does is not "Great content"...just because an article is 1,000 words, does not make it "great content".

    Being original...writing about things people truly want to read about...building up an audience...THAT'S great content...

    It's really easy to understand...but most people just don't get it...
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  • Profile picture of the author dagaul101
    Nice tips, having a vested interest in your niche as opposed to the monetary reason will stand you in good stead
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  • Profile picture of the author FraserC
    @Alphawarrior - It's about 50/50. So I get half of my visitors from the search engines, and half from social traffic and repeat visitors. But this is a recent thing. I've focused on my SEO in the last 3 years, boosting the traffic from 1,500 visitors a day to 100,000 a day.

    The trick is to be both things: a hobby site and a reference for searchers. So, most of the people who come to the site have never been here before, and they're looking for a specific thing and leaving. But the hobby side helps build my authority and relevance in the industry, which feeds my rankings in the search engines.

    @FBGuy - I think you're exactly right. I know people who are killing it with Twitter or Facebook, or paid search. I just went after SEO. You find a model that works, and then you grind away until you're enjoying some success. It's all about scale.
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  • Profile picture of the author seolearner09
    OP

    Sorry to burst the bubble (or whatever you call it), you have Adsense on your Privacy policy pages. I think that is against Adsense TOS, unless I am mistaken.
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  • Profile picture of the author James P
    I hear what your saying Fraser, especially with all the Panda activity out there. However I think that it is now becoming more obvious that quality traffic on it's own is no guarentee of a 'put down' by the mighty G. On a new site that needs to get some traffic quickly I would personally mix your advice with some ppc, backlinks and good old on-page SEO, all mixed in with hard graft
    There's no getting away with sloppy work these days ...sadly!
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  • Profile picture of the author FraserC
    @aygabtu - Even with a brand new website, you can build up longtail traffic. I've tested this out several times now, and it works.

    @James P - I think it's a mixture of quality content and the social signals that define your site as a useful resource.
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    I'm the publisher of Universe Today and co-founder of the Keyword Strategy content marketing tool.

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  • Profile picture of the author ahmedb
    Dear can you provide as with some exemple of your sites ? also is wordpress good for doing authentic content ?
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  • Profile picture of the author FraserC
    @ahmebd - Universe Today is the site. Universe Today
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    I'm the publisher of Universe Today and co-founder of the Keyword Strategy content marketing tool.

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  • Profile picture of the author Targeted Traffic
    The thing is...a number of the remarkably effective strategies in driving traffic can very easily fit under the umbrella-term "linkbait". Link growth as brand awareness is key...
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  • Profile picture of the author ceilbleu
    hello mr fraser.. how much money you spent each month for this website?
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  • Profile picture of the author ceilbleu
    "I've focused on my SEO in the last 3 years, boosting the traffic from 1,500 visitors a day to 100,000 a day."

    what SEO actually you did to burst your traffic?
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  • Profile picture of the author mosthost
    Originally Posted by revion View Post

    if you able to produced 100 articles per day whole unique and creative there no need such as SEO for a website. good luck!
    Who can produce 100 articles per day?
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    • Profile picture of the author DGFletcher
      Originally Posted by mosthost View Post

      Who can produce 100 articles per day?
      Wouldn't Google snap at you for doing that anyway? If you put up 100 articles every single day, wouldn't that get Google hating you?
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    • Profile picture of the author ceilbleu
      Originally Posted by revion View Post

      i can do as i have strength of 50 guys content writers.
      wow.. you must be spent a lot of money. how much is it?
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  • Profile picture of the author powerofschool
    Social media sites are best to get traffic without back links.

    You can create fan page for your business with targetted keyword and can get more fans ..

    And good Traffic to your site.
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  • Profile picture of the author elrae
    the title says "with out backlinking".....that would imply that you have no backlinks. 9 out of 10 articles out there on link building begins with "create great content that people will want to link to". so you are still link building, just not in the traditional sense of the term.
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