Age old question, how to grow your blog traffic in an increasingly saturated market. This article provides actionable tips that you can use to increase the traffic to your blog immediately. Blog traffic is elusive but adds to a bloggers bottom line. Make money as a blogger with an increase in website visits with these tips.
Ever come across a list like 99 Ways to Get More Traffic to Your Blog and roll your eyes? No? Just me?
The thing about list posts like these is that they stretch to the farthest corners of the WWW to get two clicks when your time could really be better spent on the actual proven ways that bring traffic to your blog. Like, real traffic.
So while there will always be a million tricks and tips to squeeze out more blog traffic or promote your blog, there’s only one of you. Spend your time on solid blog traffic generating techniques and multiply your traffic day-by-day in steady numbers.
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How to Grow Your Blog Traffic
The tips I’m about to share with you are all tips I’ve tried before and know they work. In fact, I share the top 5 tips with video tutorials in my free 5day traffic challenge which you’re welcomed to join! In that challenge I share my top keyword research tricks, my manual Pinterest strategy
Like you, I’m just one blogger juggling it all over here and I run multiple blogs. Who has the time!
So stick with these tips until you’re at the point where you’re blogging only a couple hours a week and can afford to try out those other 99 ways. 😉
1. Write Great Content
It goes without saying that your content needs to knock it out the park. I’ve written extensively on how to write great content here so I won’t belabour this point too much.
I will say that your content needs to be helpful, thorough and engaging.
2. Write Long Content
A large percentage of blogs are still writing posts that are 300-500 words which means their opportunities for ranking high on Google are fewer than those of us who write over 2000 words often. The average number 1 ranking article on Google has 1890 words. Let that sink in.
The longer and more useful your content is, the more people stay and read your post without needing to click back to the search results in search of more information. You don’t want them to do that. Google notices.
3. Write More Content
I am not an advocate of writing every day just for the sake of writing. Again, who has the time! Especially if you’re writing long posts that are well researched, posting every day is simply not gonna happen. But you should have up content regularly, the more the merrier. The more posts, the fresher the content, the more Google has to work with.
The more posts, the more opportunities to rank for more and more keywords and get that traffic avalanche going. The trick here is to write posts based on what people are searching for. Give the people what they want!
This FREE blog traffic guide has three simple tricks to creating this type of content and it was gold for me! Simple ideas that I never thought of before that has exploded my traffic on my lifestyle blog.
4. Update Old Posts Regularly
When you get to the point where you have lots of posts, scale back on the amount of posts you write and instead focus on making your published content better.
This means going through and seeing what type of posts worked well, what keywords they’re ranking for and what content they’re missing.
Check to see what the top performing posts are for your chosen keyword and compare them with your own post. How can you make you post even better than the top ranking competitors?
When you’ve done updating your post, change the date to today’s date and hit publish again! Google loves fresh content and if you’ve significantly updated the post, it deserves a fresh promo schedule.
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5. Use Better Headlines
Those posts that go viral? It’s because of their headlines. Don’t be afraid to use clickbait if your content backs it up. Use headlines that drive deep emotions like curiosity, anger, jealousy, gluttony or something equally outrageous.
Headlines like “See what’s on this insane 3000 calorie burger” appeals to both the curious and the glutton in us. It’s the jealousy reason why we all click through to the blog income reports showing off $20,000 incomes. Use emotions in your headlines as much as possible. When you can’t use facts. Here’s a free tool that analyses your headlines for you.
6. Do Keyword Research
You’re going to write a great piece of content, why not use some keywords that will get you ranked higher on Google to bring in long-term traffic while you’re at it? Use a keyword research tool like KeySearch to find keywords that are easier to rank for and use a combination of them throughout your long posts, giving you a better chance of ranking for more than one keyword.
I use Keysearch (I show you how I use Keysearch here) and it has made a world of a difference, I’m no longer shooting in the dark wondering what keywords to use.
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7. Use Keywords in Alt Tags
This is a mistake I see so many bloggers make! You upload a picture and leave the alt tag section blank and the image name is something like IMG3452.JPG You’re leaving so much traffic on the table when you do that! Google reads the image name and alt tag description to determine what the image is and if it has anything to do with your blog post.
If you place keywords in these two places, you stand a better chance of ranking for the keywords you’ve chosen. I show you exactly how to do this in my free blog traffic challenge.
8. Use Keywords in Headlines
I wanted to just say use headlines because many bloggers aren’t using headlines any at all. If I click through to your post and one of the first things I’m greeted with is a block of text, I’m not sure I’m staying to read all of that. I like to skim first to see if the article will cover exactly what I am looking for and maybe shoot to the section I need.
Use headlines to help your reader do this. Headlines also help to tell Google that your blog post is truly talking about this keyword because look, you’ve even got a whole section dedicated to it.
9. Use Relevant Images
Let me backtrack and state the obvious but every post should have at least one image. It helps to break up the text, it helps to rank in Google image search as well as the regular search and it helps for social media sharing.
Make sure your images are sized for the various social channels you want it to be shared on and try to compress all your images (you can use a plugin to do this) so that it doesn’t slow down your site.
10. Create Video Content for Your Posts
Whether you’re creating new content or you’re updating an old post, it’s time to start considering adding video content to your blog.
Video is taking over as the way people consume content online more and more and you don’t want to miss out on all the available traffic.
If you’re not comfortable being on video yet, (start practicing this, get out of your comfort zone) then learn how to make simple explainer videos from Powerpoint slides. They’re super easy to do and will boost your blog traffic in a number of ways.
Video helps people to stay on your page longer which helps your bounce rate and time on page and it also gives you more avenues on which to share your blog post links.
When you upload your video to Youtube, you’ll add your link in the description box potentially driving more traffic to your blog.
11. Make Posts Shareable
Is it that free WordPress sites are not allowed to add other share plugins? The options on these sites are always so limited. I’m rarely able to share posts to Pinterest from these sites. One of the reasons I advocate for self-hosting because free sites are very limiting. Anyway it goes without saying that it should be stupidly easy to share your posts.
I should be able to click one button and share it to any platform I want with all the fields already populated for me. This will ensure all the information that you want shared is shared. If I choose to share your post to Pinterest and the description populates to IMG589.JPG instead of an intentionally keyworded description already filled out, this helps your traffic none at all.
12. Optimise Images for Sharing
Since we’re adding images to our posts, I’d also recommend sizing them for optimal sharing to the different social media channels. There should be one that’s sized for Pinterest and one that’s sized for Facebook at least. The FB one may work well for Twitter but by all means, go ahead and add one specific for Twitter as well.
Canva has all the sizes preset so you can use them for free to create your post graphics. I’m pained when I go to share a post to Pinterest and no long pretty pins are found to share. Include at least one image that’s a minimum of 600×900 so that this will work well on Pinterest.
13. Share To Twitter Smarter
I have a plugin installed called Revive Old Post that sends out a random post from my archives every 4 hours on Twitter. Think that’s too much? Well the lifespan of a tweet is only around 18 minutes so it’s guaranteed that each time the tweet goes out, it finds a new audience. The only people who will even notice that the tweet is a repeat are people who are on Twitter all day long and those people are few and far between.
My followers and engagement climb each day on the platform with very little interaction from me because even though I love Twitter, I mainly use my personal profile manually and automate my business profile (the one for this blog) with this plugin and other automation methods (like Buffer and Hootsuite) entirely.
I get lots of feedback from clients whenever I do blog audits that they would rather concentrate on Facebook and Instagram than try to be everywhere. That is sound advice however Twitter, when set up properly, requires very little manual engagement from you and can bring in good traffic with the right hashtags and automation.
The misconception is that Twitter requires you to be on the platform all day every day to get any real traction from it. I get enough traffic from Twitter with this bare minimum method to recommend it to bloggers. Take a couple hours at the beginning of the month to schedule some “organic” tweets and then automate your blog posts on a recurring basis and that’s enough. (Revive Old Posts will also send out your posts to your Facebook page on a separate schedule!)
14. Share to Facebook Smarter
Facebook can be a huge time suck if you don’t monitor your time spent there. The method that has worked for me is to note blog share days, blog comment days and social media share/follow days on my Facebook Groups Spreadsheet and stick to engaging only on these days at these times.
For instance in my group Help a Blogger Out, I have social media Tuesdays and blog share on Fridays. Therefore if you’re a member of my group, you’ll be ready with your links on those days and be in and out quickly once you’ve reciprocated by sharing the posts of other members.
Threads fill up quickly on these days. On the other days we ask questions and share various resources found around the web but these posts are much more leisurely and you can feel the whole vibe of the group change. Find a schedule you can work with based around your favourite groups and be in and out quickly, back to things with greater returns.
15. Go Live
People have noticed that Facebook pages aren’t where it’s at anymore unless you’re willing to pay for ads because your reach is only around 2% of the likes on your page. One way to increase reach and engagement is to go live. Facebook is encouraging the use of live video more on their platform so they will actually notify more people on your page that you’re live,
The more your viewers engage with you during the video, the more they’re likely to see the page’s updates in their timeline in the future. Use these live videos to build awareness around your newest piece of content in engaging and interesting ways.
Tell people what it’s about and what they stand to gain from it if they check it out. Ask them thought-provoking questions so they’ll leave comments and interact with the video.
This works well for Instagram Live too. It gets your page at the front of the IG stories list and will help to boost your engagement which is a plus when working with brands.
16. Use Pinterest Keywords
Did you know that Pinterest is a search engine as well with its own algorithm and keyword optimization? When you go to Pinterest and begin to type anything in the search bar, it starts to suggest things to you similar to Google. These things are keywords that you can use to get your own pins to show up in the smart feed.
When you complete your search, there will be more keywords at the top of the results with suggestions to finetune your search even more. These are more keywords. Take note of them and use them in your pin descriptions to get more eyeballs on your pins. Here’s further reading on all the ways I get traffic from Pinterest.
If you’re serious about blog traffic, invest in a good Pinterest strategy like my Everything Pinterest ebook that will teach you Pinterest strategies to quickly grow your blog into an income earner. If you’re struggling with blog traffic, you NEED this book.
17. Use Google+
It’s easy to think that Google+ is dead and has no bearing on our traffic however we must remember that Google+ is owned by Google, the search-engine we’re trying so hard to rank on. I’m not ready to give up yet on the fact that my links shared to Google+ do that much better than others that aren’t.
I take comfort in the fact that the much bigger bloggers than myself who are all eyeballs deep into SEO and have multiple number 1 ranking posts are for the most part all still using Google+. I picked up this trick in the Traffic Transformation course I took to increase my blog’s traffic. The course breaks down how to get the most out of Google+ for blog traffic.
18. Create Opt-Ins for Blog Posts to Build Your Email List
Every blogger needs an email list. I’m always disheartened when I hear bloggers say it’s not bringing them any returns or they don’t know what to send to their list or they will start when they’re more established.
The email list you build is the only solid communication channel that you own between you and readers who liked your content enough to sign up for your list.
Every piece of content should have a relevant opt-in accompanying the post so people can decide if they want to opt-in to your email marketing. Make it compelling enough where the decision isn’t very hard but more like they’re clamouring to download your freebie or get whatever it is you’re offering.
I wrote extensively about why you need an email list and even have a free list-building course which you can sign up for here which will teach you how to build compelling opt-ins (and add you to my email list).
19. Schedule Regular Newsletters
Those people who signed up to be on your email list did it because they liked your content enough to opt-in for more. Give them what they want. Every time you publish a new blog post, send an email out to your list letting them know about what you wrote and WHY they should go check it out.
Unless you publish more than once per week, then send them a weekly newsletter that includes all the updates. Try not to totally bombard your list. Once a week is pretty good.
Don’t send them the blog post in an RSS style newsletter. Give a small personal update on why you wrote the post and how it will benefit them if they clicked through to check it out. Get that click through!
20. Guest Posting
Building solid backlinks to your blog
It doesn’t have to be blogs though, are there any local websites that you can write an article for on and ask them to link to your blog? Any authority sites, magazines, publications that you can submit an article for? Get creative here and build some backlinks to your blog.
21. Comment On Other Blogs
This is another way to build backlinks to your blog. Unfortunately most of these links will be nofollow links which aren’t as strong as getting a good dofollow link but it’s still worth the effort. (Nofollow links tell Google to not follow the link onward, meaning you technically get no link love from Google)
You don’t have to comment more than once so make an effort to comment on other blogs that are much bigger than yours at least once a week.
22.SEO Your Posts
Several of the methods mentioned so far are parts of your search engine optimization methods. If you’re a beginner blogger on WordPress then simply install the Yoast plugin and it will help you to optimize all your posts so you stand a chance of ranking on Google.
23. Blogger Outreach
If you’re a new blog then it can be hard to get some of the bigger bloggers to accept guest posts from you. One of the ways you can do this is to reach out to them asking them to comment on a question you’re planning to post about and would like their expert opinion.
Then when you publish the post, let them know it’s live and they probably will at least share it with their social media channels. Do this in expert roundup type posts.
For example, if you’re a mommy blogger and wanted to know how other moms got their kids to eat healthily, ask 10 of the bigger bloggers this question and then put all of their responses in one post about getting kids to eat healthily and link back to their blogs.
They will probably share it with their thousands of followers, getting you loads of traffic. Make sure your email list is set up and ready to go to capture the influx of new traffic!
24. Tune Into Trending and Holiday Topics
There’s always a new trend, meme or hot topic you can use to generate traffic to your blog. There’s also an art to turning this type of content into evergreen content but for now I suggest simply jumping on the latest hot topic in a creative way on your blog. This can be a great way to get instant heavy traffic to your blog from people searching for the latest trend.
For instance, when I wrote about Usain Bolt’s last race on my lifestyle blog, I got a ton of traffic from sports fanatics on my blog. I connected the content to some helpful personal development takeaways that are relevant to everyday life and so that post lives on even though the event has long passed because it wa keyworded well.
I’m gonna pause here and publish this post because even though I said that posts with 99 ways to get traffic are a stretch, I can probably think of at least another 21 off the top of my head.
Up for a challenge? Join the 5-Day Blog Traffic Growth Challenge and put the best of these tips to the test on your blog. It’s an intensive week of blog growth where I show you HOW to do the best of these tips through a 5-day course with step-by-step instructions plus video to help clear up everything.