Today’s post is about that most important ingredient of Blogging Success – HOW TO PROMOTE YOUR BLOG.
I am often asked: ‘If you had to start over online, from scratch – what would you do to promote your blog and build up your traffic again as quickly as possible’
A very good question and one I have been giving quite a bit of thought to recently.
I think most people over-complicate traffic. They’re reading too much into all these techniques and spending all their time making sure their blog looks good.
There’s nothing wrong with having a great blog design or doing SEO the right way. But it is a problem when you’re spending so much time on the technical stuff that you forget your site’s purpose: to provide immense value for your visitors.
Extraordinary content is the key to extraordinary traffic.
So assuming you are starting from scratch or your funds are limited here is my Kick Start Strategy For Bloggers:
Step 1) Create Great Content For Your Blog
The number 1 thing you should focus on to get traffic is, great content. Why? because that’s what attracts people to your website.
When I’m writing an article, I have two things in mind. Firstly, I want to make it as simple for someone to understand as possible. Secondly, I want to make it as beneficial to the reader as possible.
So, with that in mind, how much great content do you need to get 1000 visitors a day.
10 articles getting 100 visitors a day.
20 articles getting 50 visitors a day.
100 articles getting 10 visitors a day.
Looking at these numbers, I would say you were best of focusing on less articles, that bring more traffic.
So how do you go about creating content so good that you can get 1000 visitors a day? Here is step by step what I would do:
Brainstorm and research high traffic keywords.
Great content gets linked to a lot, on both social media and blogs, but only if people can find it in the first place.
Links help you rank high in Google.
But none of this matters if you don’t target your blog post for something people are actually searching for in Google.
That’s where keyword research comes in.
Keyword research is all about finding keywords that get the most searches in Google.
To do this, we use SEMRush. This has to be my favorite tool that I have found this year. It’s far better and more user friendly than any other tool similar to it.
Once you signup for an account (they have a free trial), go to their Keywords Explorer tool and type in the topic you want to write a blog post about. You want to find keywords that have a lot of searches but are not so competitive that you can’t rank for them.
SEMRush will tell you how much traffic a search term is getting and how many backlinks you are likely to need to rank for this search term. It will also tell you who is already ranking for it, how much traffic they are getting and what other keywords they rank for on that page.
This is an important point to remember. Your blog posts won’t just rank for 1 keyword, but perhaps 100’s and in some cases, 1000’s of different keywords.
Write a headline to sell people on your article.
A headline is what attracts people to your blog post.
When we write headlines for our posts, we try to include what they will learn, the benefit from learning it and also why they should learn it from us.
A good example of this is: 10 Headlines Examples That Got Us 10 Million Readers
They will learn the best headlines, to get lots of traffic and they should listen to us because we have been successful at it.
Another example could be: 18 Website Optimization Tips For More Traffic and Higher Conversions
They learn website optimization tips, the benefit being more traffic and higher conversions.
Create a top list article around keywords.
Our readers seem to prefer top list articles much more than any other type of post. I think this is because you know exactly what you are going to get.
Not only do you know what you are going to get but you also know how the content is going to be laid out.
I think this is key to their success because people want to skim content. They don’t want to invest time into reading long posts if they don’t know it’s going to be worth it.
One recommendation I would make is, link out to other websites in your blog posts. When we write articles such as 50 Most Influential People In Blogging, we link to each blogger. When they see the post, they often share it and link to it somewhere on their blog.
As mentioned earlier in this post, the more links a website has pointing to it, the higher it ranks in Google.
Make Sure Your Blog Post Looks Amazing
Optimize readability and proof read your blog posts.
We like to write content in a way that people can come to our site and quickly skim an article and figure out if it’s an article they want to read. I think this is a big part of why so many people read our posts.
Think about it this way, if you go to one of our blog posts and it’s just 2000 words, no paragraphs, no headlines, no images, are you going to invest your time reading it? It’s unlikely you would.
When we create a blog post, we make sure we use images, not just to promote our posts, but to split up the content.
Here is an outline of how we display our blog posts on IncomeDiary:
Headline 2 (h2 tag)
Headline 3 (h3 tag)
Headline 4 (h3 tag)
And so on…
Sometimes we include sub-headlines for sub-headlines. It’s important to break up content to make it easy to read.
Step 2) Search Engine Optimization
Now that you have found a good keyword and written a blog post, you need to optimize your post for that keyword.
Optimizing Your Blog Post For a Keyword
Go and download a free WordPress plugin called Yoast SEO. This plugin will ask you what search term you want your blog post to rank for. Then it will tell you everything you need to do to best rank for it.
- Including keyword in headline
- Including keyword is meta description
- Including keyword in first paragraph of post
- Including internal and external links
- Including an image with the name of your keyword
- Add alt attributes with the focus keyword to your images
- Mentioning the keyword enough times
Once you have done this, you should be ready to publish your post.
Optimizing Your Website For Search Engines
A big part of how Google decides on where your blog post will rank in it’s search engine is based on how much it likes your website.
Here is a list of ways to achieve this:
- Have a contact page with address and phone number
- Get HTTPS in your website URL
- Add a sitemap to your website
- Always fix broken links
- Improve your page speed
- Make sure you have no duplicated content
Remember, you can optimize your blog posts as much as you like, but if the content isn’t amazing, it’s not going to get linked to, which means it’s not going to rank well in Google.
Related: A Free Copywriting Course – That is BETTER than the BEST ever.
Step 3) Optimize Your Blog Marketing
Now that your blog post is published and it’s optimized for Google, the next important thing I recommend you do, is to make it easy for people to find your content.
You want as many people as possible, all coming to your website at the same time to view your new post. Not just because you want lot’s of traffic but because it gives you a better chance of getting even more traffic.
Think about it this way, if someone sees one person share your article, they often won’t look at it. But if they see 10 people sharing your article, they start to think, WOW, this must be good.
If you’re creating great content, you’re bound to eventually get some big spikes in traffic.
When starting out with a website, we could be getting about 400 visitors a day. Then one day we post an interesting article that does well on social media and it gets about 4,000 visitors that day. That’s 10 times the amount of traffic.
The only problem with spikes in traffic is that they can be gone as quickly as they come. The spike of a successful article goes down after two or three days.
But a good website is designed to turn one-time traffic into recurring traffic. After jumping from 400 visitors a day to 4,000 visitors a day, it goes back down to 600 or 700. That’s a big increase from where it was before.
We turn traffic spikes into long-term traffic by asking people to subscribe to our email list. You’ll notice we have a popup and an opt-in box in the footer of this web page which offer exclusive content for people who subscribe by email. Email is the most direct way to let people know that you’ve published a great new article.
Another way to get first-time visitors to come back to your site is through social media. These communities bring a consistent social buzz to each new post.
Every time we do a new blog posts, we have all these new fans, all these new people. So every time we do something it’s just going to get bigger, and bigger. That’s real momentum.
Here are my top tips for getting lots of traffic to a brand new blog post:
Email Your Subscribers
Like I just mentioned, one of the best way to instantly get a lot of people to visit your website is to email subscribers.
Every time we email our list about a new post, 1000’s of people visit our site. Some of them share it on social media, some link to it on their blog.
This gets us backlinks to our blog post and gives our search engine optimization a good boost.
This is an important part to the success of any post.
Share Your Post On Social Media
Similar to having an email list, you can Tweet/Facebook your article and a whole load of people will visit it. If the article is amazing, people will share it.
We don’t put a lot of effort into building our social media accounts because we know if we write great posts, our readers will do the sharing for us. Having said this, social media has been one of our best traffic sources. One of the reasons for our success with social media is we signed up and started using it way earlier then the majority of other people.
When I launched IncomeDiary, something that was going really well right then was Twitter. Twitter was the in-thing. Everyone was jumping on board.
Since Twitter was new, the make money online niche wasn’t yet saturated.
I was getting huge amounts of traffic — literally 100,000 visitors in a month from Twitter. And I could take advantage of it so easily by just following thousands of Twitter users a day. Thousands of people would come to my profile to see who has followed them and follow me back, click my profile link, my updates, and so on.
With Pinterest, we were able to do the same thing.
We have found that often in business, we are able to achieve huge amounts of success by acting quickly and not waiting to see how things work out. Some bloggers may of looked at Twitter and thought it won’t last and decided not to join until a lot later.
Getting People On Your Blog To Read Your New Posts
This is also an important step in your blog promotion. One of the easiest way to keep website traffic high, is to keep people visiting page after page and coming back to your website. A few ways you can do this:
- Add a link to your top navigation bar. If people enjoy your content, they will want to look for more.
- Add a link to the top of your sidebar.
- Make sure the post is featured on the home and category pages.
- Make sure the post is featured in related/popular posts.
Ask Friends to Comment and Share (read why)
When I first started blogging, I would often ask friends in the industry to comment and share my posts. Most of them didn’t have any traffic, but that wasn’t important.
What was important, was if I was getting lots of comments and shares, other people coming to the site would be a lot more likely to comment and share.
Remember, it’s about momentum.
The Last Word: Getting Website Traffic is a Marathon, Not a Sprint.
People get excited at the beginning.
They are writing blog posts left, right, and center. But then after a few months, they haven’t made any money and they just give up. That’s why people fail.
Even if you’re doing everything right, it’s unrealistic to expect to have a ton of traffic and income right away. Building large amounts of traffic takes time!
My brother didn’t make any money with Expert Photography the first few months. But he kept at it because he’d seen exactly how long it had taken me to grow my websites in the past. Eventually, he was making $100 per month, then $1000 per month, and now he makes $1000’s a day.