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What works for you?

One of the most basic issues that anyone involved in a media website faces is what on earth they can do to drive up traffic.
Obviously a bloody good story or perhaps more precisely a story involving either a UFO sighting or a man marrying a goat will create a nice spike in the unique users stats, but what can we do to keep the numbers climbing from one month to the next?
One of the pleasures of editing websites is that you can uses stats to pinpoint what’s working on your site and what’s proving to be a bit of a flop. You can have an idea one day and then the next week can see that it added 20,000 to your page impressions.
So what works for you? Are there ideas we can share that have proved to be winners? I’ll get the ball rolling…
Amid the scramble to get video on to websites it’s worth remembering the power of the humble photograph. We have always found that photo galleries have been the surest way to increase traffic. A few hundred pictures from a local fun run or a gallery of pictures of freshers’ week at the Uni would add tens of thousands of hits to the site.
Our most popular galleries are our nightlife pictures which show snaps we’ve taken of Carlisle’s bright young things at nightclubs around town and encourage readers to send in their pictures via mobile.
Each one of those pictures is being viewed an average of 1,000 each in a month. The gallery index page has around 10,000 hits in a month. Clearly people like to browse through to see who’s been snapped or who’s making a prat of themselves.
And, no, it’s not just lecherous men ogling teenage girls because the most popular picture in the gallery is this one.
We’ve also managed to monetise the idea by getting the galleries sponsored.
See the gallery of pictures we take here and the gallery of submitted pictures here.
Any other bright ideas, anyone? Please post your comments or questions.


Craig said…
One thing I rarely see on a newspaper website is a simple newsletter.

Most e-commerce sites push a newsletter relentlessly as they know how effective it is for both getting in front of site visitors on a regular basis, but also as a way to market new products.

Just a request for an email address would suffice, and maybe offer an ebook compiled together from past articles about the area as a thank you.

Then promote it on every page of the site and start measuring.

Craig McGinty
Iain O'Neil said…
We send a newsletter every day to our 'registered users' and we can track them using Dotmailer.
We know precisely how many clicks have come from the email alerts.
The regular daily mails are popular but not as popular as the 'Breaking News' which we send as and when.
These really boost our numbers.
Iain O'Neil said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Obat Asma said…
thanks for the information is very useful for me, as well as add new insight and knowledge..