Want to Build Your Blog Traffic?

by maureen on February 16, 2013

blogging graphicThe easiest way to explain how to get a bigger blog following is to point out that if you provide your readers with value, they will come back.  That’s only part of developing an audience but it’s the basis upon which you build.

Useful posts will last the test of time as they will be shared by more bloggers, will remain relevant and most importantly, they’ll continue to attract new readers.  It’s unrealistic to think you can write a truly useful AND timely post every time you come to bat.    So post about what you know, what you’re passionate about and do it often.

Post Frequently

The times I’ve taken a blog vacation, my readership has crashed to the ground, my Alexa ranking has raised by 30,000 to 50,000 points and I get mail from my readers asking if I’m ill.  Not a good look but we all need to take care of real life issues.  Family always comes first.

If you want to grow your blog, post frequently.  The huge blogs post more than once a day.  Big blogs post every day.  Good blogs post 3 times a week.  Okay blogs post once a week but they back that up with frequent Twitter and Facebook posts.  Less than once a week posting and you’re not a serious blogger.

Use Photographs or Graphics

I can’t emphasize this enough.  Humans are visual people and many of us are lazy and it’s easy to look at the pictures.  It breaks up the text on the screen and makes the text easier to read.  Keep your paragraphs to 2 to 3 sentences or it will look like a daunting job to read it.

If you can’t find a good photograph to illustrate your point of view, create a graphic.  A background of some sort and some text and BAM,  you’ve got something to put in  your post that’s relevant.

Title and Headlines

I have a friend with a food blog and it drives me nuts that she doesn’t use the recipe name as her post title.  People are not going to search her blog for her son’s swimming carnival but they will search for her fig tart.  They won’t find it because it’s not in her title and she doesn’t have a headline with that recipe name either.

Catchy titles are the hook you’ll use to get people to read on.   Let’s say you’re blogging about blogging and you want to write about how tough it is to get motivated during tough times.  You could use a title like, “Stay Motivated” or you could use, “The #1 Tip for Blogging During Difficult Times.”  Which would you read?  I’d want to know that #1 tip, wouldn’t you?

If your post has several different points of view, use a bold headline.  At a glance your readers will know what’s in the section and it will make the post easier to read.

Use Gimmicks

You can engage your readers by effectively using polls, contests, interviews, how-to articles or controversial topics.  There’s also the ever popular top-ten lists that other bloggers love to see.  Interspersing these elements throughout your blog’s life will keep your readers ready for more.  As for the controversial topics, don’t use this unless you’re either passionate about it or really good at putting your point across.  You’ll pick up trolls who’ll really piss you off.

Engage with Other Bloggers

The best way to get new good traffic is from a link on another blogger’s site.  How do you do that?  First you have to meet them so if there’s a blogging event that you can get to — go to it.  Get some business cards and pass them to anyone who’ll take one.  Ask for a card in return and follow up.  Follow that person’s blog, like them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter and Pinterest.  It works.  You’ll find that they’ll be linking to you in return.

Blog Length

I intentionally wrote a long post to show you how difficult it is to get people to read the whole thing.  People will stick around for 300-500 words if you have photos or graphics but a 700 word post is pushing the limit.  If you got to the end, leave a comment and let me know.  It will burst my bubble but it will be good feedback.

 

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