How To Spy on Wikipedia For More Traffic
One of the most interesting things about Wikipedia is the sheer traffic volume the site gets. There are millions of pages on an almost endless number of topics. The problem is that it's notoriously difficult to get links from the Wiki. Even if you do manage to, you're not guaranteed to get a lion's share of the traffic. Here's how to spy on Wikipedia to make sure the backlinks you do get are well worth the effort.
1) Choose your niche. Make sure it has broad appeal. You can go to Wikipedia and search for your niche to dig up some pages. This might not tell you traffic numbers, or give you an idea of the amount of traffic flowing to each page, but if there are a lot of pages on your area of interest, it's a good bet that there's some traffic there.
2) Go to: http://stats.grok.se/. This is where the rubber meets the road. This site allows you to pull back the curtain on Wikipedia and see exactly what pages get the most traffic. Once you have that information, you can best judge whether or not it's worth pursuing a link.
For example, searching for "dogs" turns up some good results. Let's assume you have a blog about dogs. You want to know if there is any traffic for this topic. You type in: "dogs" into the search engine like so:
Your search for dogs turns up these results:
That's a lot of traffic for this topic. Immediately, you know that you are onto something. The Wikipedia page for dogs (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dogs) is pretty extensive. There's a lot of general information about dogs, and while the traffic is pretty impressive for the last 30 days, we could probably do better. Let's go for one of those fancy "long-tail" keywords.
Suppose you want to see what the market is for Jack Russell Terriers. Type that into your search engine and you get these results:
Wow. That's a lot of page views. Note that the figure here is not the number of searches performed for the keyword "Jack Russell Terrier." It's the number of page views. These people come to Wikipedia after having already performed a search. So, if you can add value to this Wikipedia page, you have a shot at getting your website in front of over 100,000 people who are actively interested in reading about Jack Russell Terriers. The fact that they are on Wikipedia means they are already interested in learning about this breed of dog.
They are doing some type of research. Why would they research this kind of dog? Maybe they want to buy one. Maybe they want to learn how to train one. Maybe they want to learn more about the dog they just got, or they want to know peculiarities about the breed. Not all of the people coming to this page want to buy something yet, but they are still targeted leads. It's a great opportunity for you to add to the page, and provide your site (or a site you're connected to) as a resource.
No, it won't earn you much in the way of Google love. You probably won't see your website's rank improve. However, none of that matters. You don't need better rankings when you've hitched a ride on Wikipedia. The Wiki becomes your source of traffic with this strategy, not Google. Forget Google for a moment. Wikipedia has done the hard work for you. All you need to do is find a popular page, add legitimate value, and hitch a ride. A lot of well-known sites already do this. There's no reason you can't.