30+ Experts Reveal Best Marketing Channels to Drive Massive Traffic

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30+ Experts Reveal Best Marketing ChannelsWhat are the best marketing channels to drive traffic to your site?

I wanted to know. I had to know.

So, I asked over 30 marketing experts one simple question:

What is the #1 marketing channel sending traffic to your site?

I figured, hell, if I can find what where the experts are getting all their traffic…

I can just skip the time-consuming and soul-sucking channels and get right to what works!

And you can too.

The best part?

You don’t need to be an expert or spend weeks learning a new skill to do it.

To ensure that, I reveal the top three best marketing channels and the best guides on the web to get started using them – at the end of this post.

Now, here are the top digital marketing channels to improve your digital marketing strategy, as recommended by the experts…

Top 3

Best Marketing Channels to Invest In (As Voted by 30+ Online Marketing Experts)
#1: Google (21 Votes)
#2: Social Media (8 Votes)
#3: Email (6 Votes)

At the end of the guide, after our expert panel, I included a list of the best blog posts around the web to teach you how to leverage these three channels. So keep reading!

30+ Marketing Experts Reveal The Best List of Marketing Channels

Here’s a quick index for you to hop right to the expert you’re looking for (there are some real goodies in their answers, so keep reading!):

Here's Our Panel!

Now I'll hand it off to the professionals to give their answers and advice!

1. Sujan Patel, Co-founder of Web Profits

Sujan Patel, Co-founder of Web Profits

“The number #1 channel to my site is traffic from my email list.

I’ve worked on building my email list by offering free ebooks, content promotion checklists, and prompt on my website to sign up for my newsletter. I have also sent two emails weekly to my email list consistently for the past 3 years.

By actively and consistently building and nurturing my email list I’ve been able to grow it to 50k+ subscribers with a 10%+ click-through rate.

2. Brian Dean, Founder of Backlinko

Brian Dean, Founder of Backlinko

“I use my signature skyskraper technique to drive organic traffic from Google.

In fact, using this method I was able to drive over 300,000 search visitors to a single page on my site.”

Total traffic to Backlinko's Ranking Factors page

3. Jaime Masters, Host of Eventual Millionaire Podcast

Jaime Masters, Host of Eventual Millionaire Podcast

“Organic SEO is about 70% of my traffic but the other traffic is direct from my email list or podcast.

For example, one post we wrote in March for the keyword “Think and Grow Rich PDF” has gotten about 3,000 visitors in the 3 months it’s been live.”

4. Michael Brenner, CEO of Marketing Insider Group

Michael Brenner, CEO of Marketing Insider Group

“My #1 channel is organic search. I get more than 50% of my website traffic from organic. The rest are social, direct, email and referrals.

Some marketers spend money on paid promotion of their content or of their landing pages. I chose to spend my money on creating more and better content to help my audience.

I believe that will deliver a better ROI than expensive ads and offers.”

5. Johnathan Dane, Founder & CEO of KlientBoost

Johnathan Dane, CEO & Founder of Klientboost“Google has been the number one traffic driver to our site.

We’ve been working on SEO for over six months now, and KlientBoost sees an average of 65k or more unique visits per month!”

KlientBoost's marketing channel results

6. Jason Quey, Founder of The Storyteller Marketer

Jason Quey, The Storyteller Marketer

“To find your #1 marketing channel, your best bet is NOT to do what everyone else here is doing. You may be in a different niche. You may not have the time, money, skill, or interest to make a channel successful. Instead, read every answer carefully and look for patterns that emerge.

With that in mind, my #1 distribution channel for The Storyteller Marketer is Growth Hackers. I’m fairly active in the community and a lot of what I write fits their site.

For Cofounders With Class, my #1 channel is Reddit. Reddit can be challenging to master because Redditors can hide behind a screen. If you are submitting articles, you need to find the right subreddit, a decent amount of subscribers, and a thick skin.”

7. Brad Smith, Founder of Codeless

Brad Smith

Organic search always sends the most traffic to my site. The results aren’t even close.

You could claim that it’s because I suck at generating referral traffic. And you might have a point.

But over time, I find that there’s no better way to scale traffic than search. You put in the same amount of time and effort, however the results compound over time.

Brad's SEO Traffic

It’s a Catch-22, though. Because it takes A LONG time to get up-and-running. Especially if you don’t have an existing brand to leverage.

So I often find that the most trafficked posts are among the oldest (we’re talking years old). You have to start out with little steps, like super duper long-tail phrases. Try to rank for those over a few months. Then slowly but surely work your way up the keyphrase food chain.

It’s not fun. Or sexy. Or fast. But years down the line it can’t be beat.

(As long as you’re willing and able to wait that long, of course.)

8. Andy Crestodina, Founder of Orbit Media Studios

Andy Crestodina, founder of Orbit Media Studios - a company dedicated to helping other businesses grow through marketing and SEO

“This answer should be the same for any well-optimized website. The answer is search. No other channel comes close. Here is the breakdown from the channels report. Organic drives 75% of visits…

Organic search traffic to Orbit Media Studios accounting for over 75% of all their website traffic

Here’s the growth in organic over the last few years. You can see it’s a 350% increase in visits over 2.5 years.

Proof that using search engines as a marketing channel provides massive growth over time

If you want results like this, I suggest starting with this technique. It’s the fastest way to increase search traffic.”

9. Sam Hurley, Founder of OPTIM-EYEZ

Sam Hurley, rated #1 Digital Marketer“These are stats from a client of mine (Digital Current), where I have driven traffic to their site via Twitter and LinkedIn:

Sam Hurley's traffic

This was the direct result of my articles (<<< pertinent topic!) and distribution of those pieces via my social channels.

If anybody doubts the power of Social Media as a lucrative traffic source. Think again!

I’m a people enthusiast – interaction is my love and consequently; Social Media has always been my strength.

If you’re not investing sweat and money into this channel right now … It’s time to start!”

10. Aaron Orendorff, Founder of IconiContent

Aaron Orendorff

“Google has been the top traffic source for my blog…

IconiContent traffic breakdown

…However, my strategy has NEVER been about getting traffic to my site or building my email list. As a writer, going the guest post route has been huge.

Way more about getting one or two of the RIGHT visitors to follow me over from a big publication and then pay me to write for them.”

11. Nick Loper, Founder of Side Hustle Nation

Nick Loper, Founder of Side Hustle Nation

“The #1 marketing channel for me this year (and pretty much every year) is Google. Organic search makes up over 60% of Side Hustle Nation’s traffic.

Side Hustle Nations website traffic breakdown

I’m not the world’s savviest SEO expert, but it’s something I do pay attention to for new posts. I used to think of blogging more as an online journal, but now definitely see it as each post being able to stand alone as a piece of content worthy of discovery in the search engines.

In a recent podcast interview, Joseph Hogue made the case for why SEO is still low-hanging fruit for most bloggers and walked through his keyword research process for each new post.”

12. James Norquay, Founder of Prosperity Media

James Norquay, founder of Prosperity Media

“The number one marketing channel for our clients and for our own business is still organic traffic from Google/ Bing.

Organic traffic to Prosperity Media

Followed by other paid channels Google/ Facebook.

A good case study to show this growth can be found here: https://moz.com/blog/increasing-organic-seo-traffic-by-400000-unique-visitors-a-month

You always need a marketing strategy which involves both paid and organic to achieve the best possible results.”

13. Aaron Wall, Founder of SEO Book

Aaron Wall, Founder of SEO book

“I have not pushed on marketing our site much in the past year or so after shutting down our membership site a bit over a year ago.

Thus, most of our traffic is from organic search & brand recognition, which was powered by all the other forms of marketing we did for over a decade (going to conferences, writing for other sites, creating SEO tools, writing thousands of blog posts, participating in other forums, doing interviews, creating infographics, etc.) prior to winding down our membership site.

And while Google owns something like 70% of the domestic US search market they have a higher market share in many foreign markets where SEO is popular, particularly in emerging markets like India, where mobile drives a lot of web usage.”

14. Jignesh Gohel, Founder of OLBUZ

Jignesh Gohel, Founder of OLBUZ

“Generally, we design custom marketing planS for each client, but when it comes to OUR #1 channel, I will give my vote to content marketing for lead generation & service industry websites.

The reason is obvious; after successfully implementing content marketing activities, over 66% of our leads are generated from organic traffic that landed on those content pages.

For eCommerce, the #1 marketing channel is PPC; shopping ads, to be exact. Over 75% of our business in eCommerce websites is generated through shopping ads where we constantly work on feed optimization and creating narrow ad groups with advanced targeting strategies.”

15. Peep Laja, Founder of Conversion XL

Peep Laja, Founder of Conversion XL

“For Conversion XL, our biggest marketing channel is still Google organic – driving about 65% of total traffic.”

16. Violeta Nedkova, Writer and Business Coach

Violeta Nedkova, Writer and Business Coach

“The #1 channel that drove traffic to my site this year was Google.

It was surprising to me as I don’t really preoccupy myself with SEO, but actually, what does the trick is putting out consistent content. Google picks it up, picks up your keywords, and ranks you higher.

Eventually, people start finding you this way instead of just through social media and other channels. A couple of targeted guest posts and mentions also help.

17. Venchito Tampon, Founder of SharpRocket

Venchito Tampon, Founder of SharpRocket

“It’s undoubtedly organic. Since we were able to produce top-notch content in the area of link building and content marketing, we were able to earn links from relevant sites/blogs in the digital marketing space that allows our pages to rank for several targeted search terms.

Here’s a screenshot of what we’ve got from organic (very targeted visitors – those who are looking for link building information, that are potentially converting to leads):

Organic Google traffic to SharpRocket

18. Harris Schachter, Founder of OptimizePrime

Harris Schachter of Optimize Prime

“The #1 marketing channel for my own site this year has been SEO by far. I find SEO produces the highest quality traffic, and not to mention, it is free.

I’ve always enjoyed the science of SEO and started my career focused on it, and it will always be my favorite child. A few months ago I got lucky with a particular high-traffic query set which the intended post started ranking for, and it exploded site traffic (see graph).”

OptimizePrime's SEO Growth

19. Dave Schneider, CEO of Ninja Outreach

Dave Schneider, CEO of Ninja Outreach
“We hit a little more than half a million total sessions, counting back from the present to June of last year. Most of what contributed to that are pretty fairly distributed across a combination of the marketing channels we use, though.

But if I were to nitpick, I’d say our top four drivers would be our recent blog acquisitions, push notifications, referral traffic from Moz.com, and our Facebook ads.

20. Hans Van Gent, Founder of Inbound Rocket

Hans Van Gent, Founder of Inbound Rocket

“My biggest traffic driver is a dedicated Flipboard magazine that I’ve been running for the last couple of years around the subject. I just started to bring value for people around marketing, growth, conversion and all the subjects I write about.

That magazine slowly grew with a steady base of followers, and every time I publish something, I add it to that magazine it brings a big bunch of traffic.”

21. Jordan Kasteler, Speaker and Marketing Consultant

Jordan Kasteler, Speaker and Marketing Consultant

“Aside from Google organic, Facebook has been a top traffic driver channel in the past few years.

List of Marketing Channels

Prior to Facebook though, in 2010-2014 StumbleUpon beat out both Facebook and Google combined.

However, that’s trickled off as the company seems to have internal issues.

A lot of effort has been put into Facebook though. When you look at the amount of effort that’s been put into Reddit, which is practically none, there’s the biggest return on time investment there.

YouTube video views are solid but referral traffic is low. There is also a good amount of time put into Twitter, but the traffic return there is also low compared to the time investment.”

22. Sol Orwell, Co-Founder of Examine.com

Sol Orwell

“Organic SEO. Still the most reliable and cheapest and not too hard to get going!”

23. William Harris, Ecommerce Growth Consultant at Elumynt

William Harris

“Organic is still my favorite channel. I go back and forth between organic and paid advertising because both are so effective – but if you put in the time and energy, and invest in organic, it can outperform paid channels almost every time.

The screenshot below isn’t from my own site, it’s from my client’s site – I like bragging about them instead. They wish to remain anonymous, but you can clearly see that the organic channel is the main source of traffic as well as revenue.

It’s not easy, and most people aren’t willing to invest that much money and time in their SEO strategy, but the ones that do will almost always profit from it.”

Elumynt's client traffic

24. Jason Falls, Speaker, Author, and Digital Strategist

Jason Falls

“The top channel that has always driven traffic to my site (and most of my client’s sites) is organic search. This is why search engine optimization is still such a prevalent marketing focus for companies today.

It is also why blogging is always a solid strategy to drive website traffic. Without loads of content for your site to attract searchers, it’s harder for you to get as much traffic.

So blog. Optimize for key search terms your prospective customers are looking for.

And don’t stop. Consistency counts for something, both with search engines and with people reading. That is the fundamental foundation of building website traffic today.”

25. Chirag Kulkarni, Co-Founder of Medly and Taco Agency

Chirag Kulkarni

“The best channel that has driven traffic to my site has been guest blogging and personal branding opportunities.

I’ve been guest blogging fairly consistently for the past 2 years and the link juice along with the knowledge I’ve been able to deliver has helped drive the most qualified traffic to my blog.”

26. Brian Fanzo, Change Evangelist and Founder iSocialFanz

Brian Fanzo

“Live Video to Twitter has been the best for me as people are looking for real and raw content which drives them to live streaming apps like Facebook Live and Periscope but giving a call to action or dropping a link in live video feels forced.

I like to engage on live video and make sure people are commenting and sharing my videos to Twitter and then following up with a ‘thank you” and letting them know they can find additional value on my website.

This is much more personalized and yes takes a little bit of time but these community members have already taken the time to watch and share my video, therefore, the little bit of effort to message them pays off with a very high click through rate.

Live video is powerful but you must connect live video with the social networks where the community is engaging when you aren’t on live video.”

27. Brittany Berger, Content Writer for Mention

Brittany Berger

For Mention, the #1 source of traffic this year has been organic search. SEO was a big focus for us in 2016, primarily dealing with that we had a ton of great content but had just never put enough effort into optimizing it (our case study’s here: https://mention.com/blog/seo-tips/).

We saw great results right away, but as we continue to implement our new process and go back and update and optimize old content created before this strategy, the gains keep coming. Right now SEO is bringing in about 47% of our traffic.

28. Aaron Agius, Founder of Louder Online

Aaron Agius

Definitely referral traffic from all of the guest posting and contributions I’ve been doing.

I’ve been writing regularly for Forbes, Entrepreneur, Hubspot, Content Marketing Institute and other publications, as well as appearing as a guest on podcasts like the Eventual Millionaire and Mixergy.

Both of those have been driving a lot of awareness and referral traffic back to the Louder.Online website – and the nice thing is that it’s typically been high-quality, relevant visitors. I’ll be continuing to focus on these strategies for the rest of 2017, for sure.

29. Nadya Khoja, Head of Marketing at Venngage

Nadya Khoja

“Organic!

We noticed that it was not only the channel sending the most traffic, but we were getting a lot of conversions at a higher LTV. Mainly because the users coming in through organic search are high purchase intent users. So we decided to double down on our efforts to build quality backlinks to high converting landing pages.

We also created a lot of original research type content which helped us get a lot of great editorial mentions back to our site. This not only helped with our initial rankings but also boosted our domain authority from DA41 when we start focusing on SEO and content marketing, to DA73!

Meaning, our content naturally ranks higher on its own accord.”

Venngage is a tool that helps people make their own infographics.

30. Joei Chan, Content & Growth at Mention

Joei Chan

“SEO sends us the most traffic. Around 33% of our web visits come from people searching for “competitive analytics tools,” “social media listening,” or “influencer marketing strategy,” which aren’t always the first use cases people would associate with our tool. That’s because our marketing is very content-focused.

We work hard to create lots of content around business challenges that our target audience faces, and we’re happy that we rank well for these keywords. And through content and SEO we attract a new audience looking for solutions and help, which most of the time we can provide them with.”

31. Zack McCullock, Co-founder and Chief Blogger at Free Up

Zack from Free Up

“My personal finance blog is only three months old but my analytics tell the story effectively about what’s working right now.

My three biggest traffic drivers have been social, my email list (direct), and guest posting on other niche expert websites to drive referrals.

The big spikes below indicate our features in Forbes or U.S. World News and the traffic we gained from that.”

Free Up Analytics

Free Up's List of Marketing Channels

32. Heath & Alyssa Padgett, Founders of The RV Entrepreneur Podcast

Heath and Alyssa, Founders of The RV Entrepreneur Podcast

“Our number one traffic driver has easily been our email list. We’ve built a relationship with these people, and many of them have joined our Facebook group and become part of a community!”

34. Derric Haynie, Founder of Vulpine Interactive

Derric Haynie

“Organic search is by far my best channel. (Note: I switched sites in May, hence the traffic drop off.)”

Derric's site traffic

35. Bill Widmer, Content Marketing & SEO Expert

Bill Widmer, Content Marketing & SEO Consultant

“Aside from Google, I’ve found the best marketing channels to be Facebook and Pinterest.

In fact, I used these two channels – along with cold email outreach – to drive nearly 15,000 visitors in one month to a brand new site with less than 100 followers and no email list.

Driving traffic to a new website

The traffic spike from Pinterest came without me even pinning anything – it was all automated with BoardBooster.

If that sounds good to you, I highly recommend you check out Side Hustle Nation’s guide to Pinterest traffic.”

Guides For the Top 3 Best Marketing Channels

You were patient to get here! (Unless you skipped ahead. 😉)

Either way, I know what you want: results. You want traffic to your website. You want to stop spinning your wheels with marketing campaigns that don’t work.

Well, you’ve already seen that these types of marketing channels can drive hundreds of thousands of visitors to your site. And if you read the responses, you know they can do it even if you have a brand new site with zero traffic and no followers.

All you need to do is learn how to make these distribution channels work for you. That’s what these guides are for.

1. How to Get Organic Traffic From Google

As you’ve seen, search engine optimization is responsible for driving several hundred thousand visitors every month to our experts’ sites. And as you’ll learn, even a non-SEO-expert can drive a few thousand visitors fairly quickly.

If you’re ready to reap the rewards of SEO, get started with these amazing guides:

Want help with content marketing and SEO? Get in touch with me!

2. Social Media Marketing That Works

Social media marketing has been a staple marketing strategy in every online business since Facebook first launched.

The problem is, most people are doing it all wrong. They spend so much time posting things but only get a few likes… probably from mom and her girlfriends.

Your mom likes this

If that’s you, take some time to dive into these detailed guides:

Paid social ads can also drive massive traffic – especially to your blog, since content is easier to promote than products.

3. How to Make Money on Autopilot With Email Marketing

Don’t let the low vote count fool you. Many of the people who voted for SEO only did so because they were forced to choose the one channel that drove the most traffic to their site.

(Although, as you’ll see, some still couldn’t stick to that rule. 😉)

A lot of the people I spoke with told me that while it didn’t drive the most traffic, their email list drove the highest converting traffic.

Email should be a top priority from the get-go, hands down. Here are a few guides worth checking out to help you get started today:

That’s a wrap!

A big thanks to everyone who shared their most powerful types of marketing channels. Please share if you found it useful!

And, just to recap, here are the results one more time…

Top 3

Best Marketing Channels to Invest In (As Voted by 30+ Online Marketing Experts)
#1: Google (21 Votes)
#2: Social Media (8 Votes)
#3: Email (6 Votes)

If you could only use one marketing channel, which one would you choose?

Let me know in the comments below...

  • Undoubtedly great learning points from the blogging experts. Hats off to the Bill, who manage to contribute such an insightful article for the readers ! Keep sharing knowledgeable articles 😉

    • Bill Widmer

      Thanks, Neeraj! Glad you found it useful. 🙂

  • Hal Hoadley

    Great stuff Bill. Glad to see the experts agree on organic. My new clients can’t believe how important social media is to their businesses. My new niche is booming right now.

    • Bill Widmer

      Thanks, Hal! What’s your new niche?

      • Hal Hoadley

        Bill, I had a problem getting on disqus. To answer your question my niches are the automotive field and recently entered the medical field using social media and rep mgmt.

        • Bill Widmer

          No worries. 🙂

          That’s awesome! Let me know how it goes as you progress.

  • Hey Bill,

    Looks like organic traffic wins here! It’s great to see what sources gives each of their sites the most traffic.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Hey, Sherman!

      By a long shot! Organic is a massive driver these days. And, imo, the easiest to really ramp up.

      My pleasure! Glad you enjoyed it.

  • Hi Bill, what a great roundup. I love the variety of different answers. It really shows us that what works for one may not work as well for another. Nice to see so many different ways to drive traffic to websites today.

    • Thank you, Lisa! There’s definitely not just one way to do anything. That’s one of the great things about the world – you can think your way to a solution for almost any problem. 😉

  • Hi Bill great share.
    Good to read the experts tip and their experiences.
    Great Roundup.
    Well done.
    Keep sharing,
    Best
    ~ Philip

    • They’ve got great insights! I’m glad you enjoyed it.

  • Bill, this is really awesome round up and I enjoyed reading experiences of top players.

    Thank you for sharing my views.

    This is really a great wealth of knowledge.

    • Thank you, Jignesh! I appreciate your insights. Glad you enjoyed the post!

  • Hey this is awesome, excellent round-up. Good to know that the most of the experts are getting the huge organic traffic. Thanks for the great sources that you have linked here.

    • My pleasure, Nirmala! Thanks for reading! 🙂

  • Bill! You rock, my friend! #Respect

    Cheers for the awesome wealth of ideas here and thanks for including me — along with so many top players!

    #Legend

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/e749859b4a28332f73f6c9531b324b294e8a0d6d38cf64ec98f2b449d324563a.png

    • Hahaha, my man Sam! You rock, brotha! Thanks for dropping some knowledge – much appreciated! 😉

  • James Hepple

    Huge post Bill – clearly practicing what you are preaching 🙂 Congrats!

    • What kind of guy would I be otherwise? 😉 Thanks, James!

  • Amie Botes

    Awesome article with a great list of experts! Also has a lot of interesting insights from the different marketers. Well done Bill, keep it up!

    • Thank, Amie! Really appreciate that. 🙂

  • Mícheál Brennan

    Great post Bill!

    • Thanks, Mícheál! Glad you liked it! 🙂