Increasing traffic to your blog isn’t the “cure all” some people make it out to be. Without a solid strategy, you might attract users – but not be able to keep them coming back.
But as long as you’re clear-eyed about what traffic-building efforts can and cannot accomplish, there is a lot gained by getting exposed to new (and different) people. You truly can never know when one of those new visitors might play a very important role in your online “ecosystem.”
With that thought in mind, here are a few tactics to help you attract and convert new visitors:
Improving Your Search Engine Optimization
It goes without saying that any successful blog needs to produce “remarkable content.” But until that content gets found no one can “remark” about it. So why not write SEO-friendly copy that allows a wider audience to find and appreciate you’ve written?
- With CopyBlogger’s Scribe plugin (for WordPress), you can easily learn to produce content that is optimized for your keywords.
- Another useful SEO tool is InboundWriter, which helps you optimize content by discovering the keywords your prospects are using when sharing social content or searching the web. (Note: In addition to its web-based service, the company recently announced a plugin, InboundWriter for WordPress.)
Widening Your Distribution
Once your copy has been written and optimized, put on your marketing hat.
- Sign up for Ping.fm — and also take advantage of Pingoat or Pingomatic to automatically distribute your post across a wide variety of relevant outlets.
- Next, increase exposure for the post by featuring it in multiple status updates on your social profiles. Guy Kawasaki has remarked that he sends each of his tweets four times during a 32-hour period. Try this – change the wording, and vary the time-of-day when each is distributed. Free services such as Timely and Buffer are helpful in distributing this “portfolio” of updates according to your followers’ prime times for social media participation.
Making Your Users Comfortable
When all that social media marketing attracts visitors to your blog, address them in the language of the social platform where they found your link.
- The WP Greet Box plugin (for WordPress) allows you to easily provide a customized greeting page that adapts its message according to the referring URL. Build rapport and make it easy for new visitors to connect with your other social profiles — right from the start.
- If you’ve installed WordPress Related Posts or the YARPP plugin, your blog will display similar content links and attractive thumbnail images that can hardly be missed. Remember: If a visitor is interested enough to read one of your posts in its entirety, s/he is a prime target for many more.
Tools For Retention
With “findable” content that’s widely promoted, you’re likely to be attracting relevant visitors and making a positive first impression. But your real interest is in repeat traffic: relationships, not one-night stands. Help those relationships grow, by immediately giving visitors something valuable and then capturing their contact information via well-designed landing pages. Two landing page tools worth considering:
- Copyblogger’s “Premise” plugin — a set of templates for custom integration with existing WordPress themes.
- Unbounce – a cloud-based subscription that works with any blogging platform.
Both products provide educational materials that help newbies learn best practices in copywriting, design and split-testing.
Just Put More Into It.
More thought. More content. More interaction. And more of the tactics described above. With an infrastructure in place to create and market optimized content, you can turn your attention to guest posting, e-zine articles and other link-building tactics – confident that the traffic you generate just might stick around for a long time.
- Should Your Blog Sound Professional or Personal? (contently.com)
- The Ultimate Cheat Sheet for Creating Awesome Landing Pages (hubspot.com)
- How Modesty On The Internet Can Actually Build Your Following (contently.com)
- 15 Must-Have Tools For Better Blogging (contently.com)