How to Get Blog Traffic – 11 Steps to Growing Readership

Posted on January 23, 2009 @ 3:02 am
by Alice Seba

Blogging for a living can be hard work, and to be honest it gets very frustrating when we don’t obtain the traffic we need to keep the blog thriving. You see, simply working hard can’t always guarantee that you will receive the traffic you want, while on the other hand, not working at it is a sure fire way to never receive traffic at all. For us bloggers that work too hard at this game, here are 11 successful techniques to help you get all the traffic you need.

1. Make your blog remarkable: There is a good reason this is first in the queue, that is because being remarkable can make all the other concerns fall into line. Everything else on a blog could be missing, but with this at its core it could still be a success.

Be remarkable by:

Delight and indulge – Stimulate your readers minds, give them some brain food to get their minds working. Build rapport – understand your readers personalities, address their worries and concerns. Be outlandish – sometimes controversy can also bring good publicity, even if not everyone agrees with what you’re saying. Enlighten your readers – Be honest with your readers and tell them exactly what they want to hear, in a way they would appreciate.

This may be seen as a “build it and they will come” attitude, which is usually advised against in internet marketing, which may be true in some respects. Of course, this doesn’t mean giving up manual traffic building, but the more “out there” or a controversial your blog is, the higher the chance is that your efforts become noticed.

2. RSS: Some may say RSS old news, but there are still many blogs that haven’t thought to use a feed. If it is not something you have come across, an RSS feed is simply something that allows readers to stay updated without constantly visiting the blog. The RSS feed alerts readers to every new post via their feed reader or e-mail account. Using a service like FeedBurner.com will make this process a lot easier.

3. Blog and ping: Set up your blog with a list of other websites and services to ping to. This is now possible with most blogging platforms and server software. Building a good big ping list will enable other sites and search engines to spider your site every time there is an update.

4. Blog commenting: Offer to comment or publish content on other blogs or sites related to the same niche. The owner will usually allow you to link back to your own site, providing the comment you have provided is respectful and useful to the site itself. Be as courteous as possible! Make sure your comment is relevant, and don’t make it a big advertisement for your own site.

5. Do Trackbacks: Many blogs allow you to make commentary about their posts on your own blog. When you link to their particular blog post, a link to your own blog post appears in the comments area on their blog. For trackbacks between WordPress blogs, all you need to do is link to a blog post and it’s automatically set up. BE RESPECTFUL: If you’re going to trackback, have something useful to say. Just summarizing and linking to someone’s post does NOT add to the discussion.

6. Keep Your Email List Up-to-Date: You probably already know that your mailing list is a valuable asset. Use this asset to the fullest by sending them to your blog to read the posts you think they will find helpful, enjoy, etc.

#7 Content Distribution: Your content does not have to be 100% contained on the blog. Remember the many other ways there are to distribute content, like article marketing, guest posting on other blogs, audio content and videos. The more content you have out there, the more likely you will be noticed.

8. Affiliate linking: You may have set up your own affiliate program, enabling your affiliates to link back to any page on your site. Try to encourage your affiliates to link to, and write about your blog posts. A recommended system to use is quicksales.com – which is a private label 1shoppingCart solution, enabling affiliates to direct traffic to any page they please.

Traffic from your affiliates are cookied, so any purchases made on the day or at a later date will be attributed to the affiliates, and commission will be sent. Conversions on blog posts aren’t going to be as good as the sales page, but it gives your affiliates the chance to provide great content to their readers, and benefit from any purchases made.

9. Social Networks: You can use various social networks (Twitter, Facebook, MySpace) to drive traffic to a blog. People you connect with socially are likely to be interested in what you have to say on your blog. Make sure you follow proper etiquette and use your common sense. Also, don’t overdo it and get lost in your social networks all dayyou’ve got WORK and other important things to do. Plus, if you are remarkable, those who use social networks will be doing the work for you and talking about you.

#10 Social Bookmarking: Social bookmarking is different to social networks. Social bookmarking is a little like bookmarking your favorite websites in your browser, except the list will be published for everybody else to see, including the search engines. Some people bookmark their own sites, but do understand that the networks do not like this and may ban your account for “self promotion”, so be sure to read the rules. Another technique is to pay others or work in a cooperative scheme. But again, if you are remarkable enough, your site will be book marked thoroughly by the internet public.

11. SEO (Search Engine Optimization): I put this one last, where I know a lot of people tend to put it first. If your goal is repeat visitors who become faithful fans, put SEO on the backburner and SEO your other content pages where you are looking for first-time or drive-by visitors.

The problem with trying to optimize all your blog pages is that it takes away from you being remarkable. A remarkable blog is written with interesting subject lines (rather than boring keyword phrases) and isn’t always on topics that people use a search engine to find. Of course, you can combine the two (SEO and being remarkable) in some ways, but don’t let SEO take anything away from the interest and word-of-mouth your blog creates.

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