Are you looking to increase blog traffic?
In the 4th installment of our Blogging 101 series, we tackle an issue facing most bloggers these days…. how to increase blog traffic. The key to blogging success is to have an audience. But before you can sell your ideas or services, you need someone to sell it to first.
So how do you attract an audience when so many others are vying for that same attention? By focusing on these 5 key elements, you can stand out from the crowd and increase blog traffic all the while gaining a loyal following.
1. Create Great Headlines
If your blog’s content is a store, then your blog’s headline is the sign outside trying to attract the attention of everyone that walks by. Its job is to catch the eye and convince the people outside to come in and browse around. So how do you create a great storefront sign for your blog? Our previous post looked at what it takes to create a clickable headline, but here are some additional tips to make your headlines great:
On average, search engines ignore anything past 62 characters. If your blog title runs over this length, you run the risk of your clever headline being cut off on the search engine results pages (SERPs). Since you have worked hard to come up with that great title, don’t let the search engines truncate it by going over this length.
Title length can also be dictated by your social media activity. If you are sharing your posts on social media (which you should), the platform you post on will affect how long your title should be. Studies found that titles between 8 to 12 words received the most shares on Twitter, while titles between 12-14 words received the most Facebook Likes. Since blogs are sometimes suited for some social media platforms more than others, its best to decide first which sites you will use, then work backwards to craft your title to ensure optimization.
Use numbers in your title
Have you ever noticed that sites like BuzzFeed are filled with articles titled “7 ways to become a millionaire overnight” or “5 little secrets that will change your life forever”? These headlines are dominated by numerical values and it’s not a coincidence. Studies found that headlines with numbers generate 73% more social shares and engagement than those that don’t. So, if you want to catch your reader’s attention, try adding in numbers where appropriate.
If you want to stand out from the crowd, make sure your title is one-of-a-kind. You not only want your readers to know that you are giving them something new, but you also want search engines to know that you are creating unique original content.
If you want to stand out from the crowd, make sure your blog title is one-of-a-kind. Click To Tweet
2. Write Great Content
Blogging is all about sharing ideas and passions with the rest of the world. Its about reaching out to the readers and letting them know you have the solutions to their problems. The best way you as a blogger can convey this is by having great content to share with your readers.
Before you put pen to paper, you should first consider what problems your readers may be facing in your subject area. Once you have determined what those problems are, your job is to then create ways to solve those problems. For example, your readers may be faltering with their New Year’s fitness resolutions, so you as a fitness blogger should blog about how to stay motivated and kept your resolutions. You have identified a problem and you are offering your readers a solution. This is the secret formula to writing great content.
3. Build Your Network
Another way to increase blog traffic is to build your network. Going online and joining forums or Facebook groups will connect you with people in your industry. This will not only give you an idea of current issues facing your fellow bloggers but it also allows you to get advice from veteran bloggers. You can also use these groups to start establishing yourself as a go-to resource for others by helping to answer questions posed to the group.
While connecting with individuals within your industry is valuable, you should also join groups that contain your target market. In this strategy, you can interact directly with your prospects and help answer questions they may have. Each time you answer a question and help solve the reader’s problem, you have gained authority in your subject matter. Now, when the reader has a new question, they may come to you and your blog first to find the answer. And a bonus to you, these forums are great for coming up with new ideas on what to blog about in the future.
4. Become a Guest Blogger
If you want to get your name out there, you need to move beyond your circles and interact with new groups. One way to do this is to be a guest blogger on another site. When you are guest writing, you are probably writing for someone else in either the same or a related field. Therefore, it’s very likely that the host’s audience are potential prospects to join your audience. By providing well-researched and thoughtful content, you can earn that audience’s trust and gain new followers in the process.
5. Offer the Reader an Incentive
A common marketing technique that translates well to blogging is to offer the readers something for their time. If a new restaurant opens in your neighborhood, you might receive a flyer in the mail that offers an incentive for coming to try them out, such as a 10% discount or a free dessert. You can offer this same type of incentive to your readers for checking you out.
The trick to a good incentive is to offer something of genuine value that will make the reader want to cash in. For example, a food blogger focusing on nutrition might offer a free 5-day meal plan or a mommy blogger might offer a handout on 10 road trip hacks for parents travelling with toddlers. By offering something of value to your readers, they learn you have valuable information to share and if you are willing to offer them something of value, they may consider signing up to learn more from you.
Are you ready to increase blog traffic to your site?
Each of these tips can help you increase your rate of traffic in their own right, but combined they can propel you to the next level. However, the key point to remember is to treat your readers with respect. If you use snake oil to drum up new traffic, the reader will catch on quickly and you will lose them and their trust. If you offer them valuable content in a fresh new way, however, you will have just earned a loyal subscriber.
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