January 23, 2015
You put a lot of time and effort into your blog. You take the time to create interesting posts and respond to customer comments. You even publish your posts on Facebook. You swear you are doing everything the ‘right way’ for your blog, but one major problem still remains: your traffic flow stinks.
If you feel like you have tapped out all of your options for naturally boosting your blog traffic, you aren’t alone. Company blogs can fail because their writers don’t have a steady stream of ideas, just don’t have the time, or no one reads their blog. It’s hard to stay motivated when your only feedback is crickets chirping — I get it.
Giving Your Blog a Boost
Whether you have a handful of readers or none at all, you’d really like for a new audience stream to flow into your blog. The problem is that all of the obvious options aren’t working for you, and you aren’t in the game of tricking Google to score some new readers. So, what do you do when you just can’t seem to get those traffic numbers to spike?
You don’t have to give up on tried-and-true methods of naturally increasing your blog traffic. With a bit of creativity, you can breathe new life into old techniques to generate some new traffic. Here are several ways to put a new spin on old blog promotion tricks.
1. Scoring Traffic With Social: Double Your Fun By Recycling
Many small business owners are under the impression that posting your blog on social networks is a one-and-done operation. After you finish writing your blog, you log into several social media profiles, post your link, and watch the magic happen — or not.
To get more reader traffic out of your social media efforts, consider linking to your blog post multiple times. This is not the same idea as spamming; your postings will be strategically timed and relevant for your audience.
This strategy has proven to be effective, with multiple case studies supporting the idea of reposting content. With this technique, you can hit every time zone and even play with headlines. This split testing can help you understand what kind of content clicks with your audience, all while boosting your blog traffic.
Unless your particular blog post is clearly outdated, mostly any blog topic that you create is fair game to share down the road.
2. Don’t Just Share a Link
If you are already posting your link — and only your link — on multiple occasions, this may be part of your problem. While blogs can absolutely drum up engagement, sometimes you need to take a few extra steps to encourage conversation.
When you share a link to your blog post, don’t just copy/paste and go on your way. Encourage your audience to click on your link by:
- Asking questions about your article
- Including a unique teaser line
- Ensuring that a graphic appears with your link
- Tagging relevant people, companies, or keywords
You can score some extra traffic flow on social platforms just by implementing a couple of these quick techniques.
3. Involve Others in The Industry
When it comes to sharing your content, it’s a no-brainer to connect to your general audience. However, don’t forget about other like-minded marketers in your industry. By tagging and tweeting at other industry experts, you can build connections that will help your blog circulate.
Moving Your Efforts Offsite
You might think that generating content for other sources won’t result in any new traffic for your own blog, but hear me out. The idea behind this is to create additional content that is related to your blog, which will encourage an offsite audience to surf to the original source: your blog.
This may take an extra bit of effort, but this tactic is nothing new in terms of content development. This traffic-generating technique is the act of repurposing your content and sharing it on other platforms.
Here are a few examples.
4. Target Your Traffic With Slideshare
Slideshare is a popular slideshow-based community that is perfect for attracting new audiences. Although Slideshare has a heavy concentration of marketing-related content, there is still lots of room to expand on additional niches.
In order to drum up interest and actually generate traffic back to your blog, your slideshow must contain several elements. It should showcase an eye-catching design with relevant and helpful information. Aim to create the high quality content that you would have on your own blog, but spin it in the sense that makes it appropriate for a slideshow presentation.
Another key to remember when designing your slideshow is embedding your link within the slides. This link can send audiences directly to your blog, or you can double dip and embed links throughout the presentation to multiple blog posts.
Either way, this gives your Slideshow audience a direct route to your blog.
5. Increasing Traffic With Infographics
Infographics still remain as popular pieces of content. You can find infographics on almost anything, but the magic happens when they contain high quality content. Staying on trend with content repurposing, create an eye-catching infographic that correlates with a blog post you want to remote. You also have the option of starting from scratch and creating an entirely new infographic; just be sure that it contains compelling content that you can’t get anywhere else.
How and Where to Share Your Infographics
You can start sharing your infographic on your own blog. The trick here is to include a share button for social media platforms, so your audience can easily share and re-distribute your masterpiece. This option takes a little work off of your own shoulders, since you will be relying on your audience for sharing, which links right back to your blog.
Beyond social sharing buttons, be sure that your infographic includes an embed code. This way, like-minded marketers will be able to embed your infographic directly on their website. Not to mention, this is a quick way to earn some inbound links.
If you don’t happen to have an audience that’s in the sharing spirit, or if you don’t have an audience at all, there are several sources that are specifically dedicated to infographic sharing. These sources include:
- Daily Infographic
- com (paid submission)
These infographic directories and social media platforms can help generate traffic to your blog.
6. Understand Your Target Audience
When it comes to increasing traffic to your blog, your audience holds the decision for choosing to click your links. When you understand who your audience is and where they spend time online, it will raise your chances of generating additional traffic.
Not to mention, your core audience are the people who are most likely going to share your content. Your core audience can help reach outlying people who may be interested in your product or service.
7. Do Your (Keyword) Research
Another option to increasing your blog traffic naturally is through the search engines. In order to achieve this, you want to make sure that your keywords are actually being searched for in the first place.
Using a top-notch keyword research tool such as SEMRush can give you an overview of what your customers are searching for. While your content strategy should never be based around keyword research on its own, knowing your top keywords can give you ideas of what kind of content to create.
Above all else, be sure to implement your keywords in the most natural way possible. Not only does this establish a better connection with your audience, but it also ensures that your efforts will not be penalized by frequent Google updates.
8. Offer Your Expertise
Opportunities to promote yourself without paying a dime are everywhere, especially when it comes to offering your expertise. Search around on social community websites such as Quora or Reddit and discover a few topics in your niche.
From there, offer your best advice and expertise for those asking questions. The key here is providing a link back that points to your blog. Linking to specific blog posts is best; the more relevant the data, the better chance that you will have click-throughs from potential readers.
9. A Little Bit of Link Loving
Circling back to SEO-based opportunities for increasing your blog’s traffic flow, building a series of solid inbound links can help naturally drive traffic to your blog. However, there is an art to building links that matter, and it all boils down to quality content.
In order to build the most natural links possible, offer content that is valuable in the eyes of your readers. Content that stands as educational, entertaining, and engaging is easy for your audience to link (and like).
A bonus to creating this kind of content is that it scores on social media as well. If your content is good enough to generate some inbound links, you can bet that it is good enough to be shared on social networks.
10. Leverage Your E-mail List
Does your website have a newsletter? If not, it’s time to get the ball rolling and connect to your audiences’ inboxes. While spamming is never a recommended technique, most people appreciate free tips and advice straight to their e-mail inbox.
However, you can also leverage your e-mail list to highlight your blog and drive additional traffic. Newsletters are perfect for this, especially when they contain helpful and high quality content.
11. Curate Your Way to More Traffic
Curating content is all about finding the best quality content on the web. You share the content of others to help establish leadership status, build new relationships, and enhance the image of your brand. While your curation efforts might send traffic to your curated content initially, the benefits of curating content will give you a boost in traffic further down the line.
How does this work? Easy. You will catch the attention of your industry’s thought leaders, who may eventually return the favor and link back to your blog content. New relationships will form, which gives you the opportunity of further link building. Finally, you will build your brand, which naturally gets new traffic streaming to your blog. What more could you ask for?
12. Do What Works
If you have been in the blogging game for quite some time now, chances are that you have an idea of what drives traffic and what doesn’t. Think back to your most popular blog posts and strategize how to create spin offs of those topics. Not only that, but you can generate even more buzz from popular topics by consistently sharing on social media, just like we mentioned before.
13. Give Your Two Cents
Is there a hot trending topic in your industry that’s buzzing right now? Take this opportunity to craft a response post. Whether your opinion is positive or negative, popular topic posts naturally draw attention.
14. Offer Free Downloads
Free downloads aren’t just for building e-mail lists. Downloads such as eBooks and guides will help educate your audience and help with branding. Not to mention, you can always embed links in your documents that go straight back to your blog.
15. Create More Content More Often
In 2013, Quicksprout analyzed their website traffic flow patterns for KISSMetrics against the number of blog topics posted per week. What they found is that it took posting 5 blogs per week to notice a significant increase in web traffic. When the website went from 5 blogs per week to 6 blogs per week, they noticed an increase in traffic of over 18 percent. Not too shabby.
Building a successful blog takes a lot of time and effort. However, these shortcuts can get traffic flowing in your direction, and help your blog reach never before imagined heights.
Julia McCoy is a bestselling author of So You Think You Can Write, podcaster and an expert content marketer. She’s also the founder and CEO of Express Writers, a leading online content creation agency, with more than 60 content writers and strategists. Julia leads her team to serve hundreds of worldwide businesses with the highest-quality content for their online presence. Follow Julia's blog.