There is one hard and fast rule in generating income for your website: A steady flow of website traffic. If no one goes to your site, it doesn’t stand a chance of generating an income. Many sites have tried and failed in doing so, and this results in the sites’ demise. It takes money to maintain an income generating site; it also takes money to make money.BUT, it doesn’t take a lot of money to generate website traffic for your site.

Ever wonder how big hit sites drive traffic to their site? Most of them are spending tons of money to drive the traffic to their sites, investing in many advertising campaigns and different forms of marketing schemes and gimmicks. This is all worthwhile because, well, they are what they are now, high earning, big hitting websites.

You don’t have to do this if you don’t really have their resources. There are many ways to generate low cost website traffic without having to spend what you don’t have or can’t afford. Many people have banked on high cost methods and have ended up losing their shirt over it.

Here are the top five low cost ways to generate traffic to your website. Even if you only get a small percentage of successful visitors in. To client ratio it still works, especially if you get a high number of website traffic.

Exchange Links
This is a sure and proven method. Rarely do you see a site where there is no link to another site. Many webmasters are willing to exchange links with one another so that they could produce more public awareness about their sites. You’ll soon see and feel the sudden upsurge of the traffic coming in to your site from other websites.

A major prerequisite in exchanging links with other sites is having the same niche or content as the other site. They should share a common subject so that there is continuity in the providing of service and information to what is interesting to your target traffic.

Exchanging links also boosts your chances of getting a high ranking in search engine results. It’s common knowledge that search engines rank high sites that have inbound and outbound theme-related links. With a good ranking position in the search engines, you will generate more traffic in your website without the high costs.

Traffic Exchanges
This is like exchanging links but on a higher level. This may cost a bit more than exchanging or trading links but could be made cheaper because you get to earn credits. You can use those credits when viewing other sites, while you earn credits when someone views yours.

Traffic exchange services are the viewing of another’s website or page. You both benefit from each others efforts to generate traffic. The other site’s visitors can go to your pages and know more about your site as well as theirs. Once again the public awareness of your website’s existence is boosted.

Write and Submit Articles
There are many ezines and online encyclopedias on the internet which provide free space for articles to be submitted. If you want to save costs, you can do the articles yourself. There are many freelance writers who are willing to write for you, for a small fee, but to save money, it would be wise to do those articles yourself.

Write articles that are themed along with the niche of your site. Write something that you have expertise on so that when people read it, they can feel your knowledge about the subject and will be eager to go to your site. Write articles that produce tips and guidelines of the subject or niche your site has.

Include a resource box at the end of your article that can link them to your site. Write a little about yourself and your site. If you provide a light, information-laden and interesting article, they will go to your site for more.

Newsletters
This may sound like hard work because of all the articles you may need to use to build a newsletter but on the contrary, this is not so. There are many writers and sites that are willing to provide free articles as long as they can get their name in your newsletter. This will also provide free advertising for them as well.

As your newsletter gets passed around, you can widen your public awareness and build an opt-in list that can regularly visit your site.

Join Online Communities and Forums
This only requires your time and nothing else. You can share your knowledge and expertise with many online communities as well as your website. You can get free advertising when you go to forums that have the same subject or niche with your site.

Ask a question or answer someone else’s question and they will soon recognize you as being knowledgeable with the subject. As you build your reputation, you also build the reputation of your site, making it a reputable and honest business that could be frequented and trusted by many people.

Now you can be a confident expert on traffic. OK, maybe not an expert. But you should have something to bring to the table next time you join a discussion on traffic.

Shelby Carr is a well-known Internet Marketer. She is a 25 year veteran Bookkeeper and due to Corporate downsizing she turned her attention to Internet Marketing. Shelby is webmaster of several websites, an Associate Editor of Ratingshub.com and a committed member of 2plr.com.