There are at least 400 million blogs out there on the world wide web, although it’s safe to say not all are active.
In fact, many bloggers are quick to call it quits after getting discouraged from seeing nonexistent traffic.
That’s why we’ve rounded up the top eight ways to get more traffic to your blog. Whether you’re a new face in the blogosphere or an experienced influencer looking for more readers, check out these strategies for growing your blog’s visitors.
1. Make your posts SEO-friendly
Search engine optimization (SEO) is key to driving your blog’s visibility, as having an optimized blog means it’ll more readily appear on search engine results pages. This is so important that there’s a whole industry dedicated to finding out what websites Google likes best.
Unfortunately, this also means that SEO is too complex to be boiled down into a couple of bullet points. However, for starters, you can follow these basic principles for making your blog SEO-friendly:
- Don’t just write your blog posts according to your whim—identify major keyword phrases your target audience is interested in and build your content around them.
- Make your target keyword a part of your post’s URL.
- Structure your posts using headers and subheaders, which help search engines better understand what your content is about.
- Write eye-catching meta titles and descriptions that will help your posts stand out on search engine results pages.
- Link to quality websites related to your blog, which will indicate to Google that your content isn’t spam.
Tools like Yoast SEO on WordPress can help with basic on-page optimization, but it’s also helpful to keep tabs on changes within the SEO industry.
2. Focus on a niche
Trying to cover a dozen topics on your blog is a scattershot approach that’ll turn away readers. How so?
Consider this scenario: you publish an awesome post about paying off credit card debt. Interested readers bookmark your blog, and eager for more content of a similar nature, return in a few weeks. To their dismay, your next piece is on something completely unrelated—gardening tips.
When you choose to create a niche blog, however, returning readers will be pleased to see more updates on your chosen subject matter. Not only that, but writing consistently on one topic will help build your authority about it.
To determine what to focus your blog on, ask yourself:
- What are you knowledgeable about?
- What topics interest you most?
And, if you’re looking to monetize your future blog…
- Does this niche have revenue potential?
- If so, how competitive is this niche?
Research what content already exists in your target niches to get an idea of what gaps you can fill. From there, you can begin building your blog’s content strategy.
3. Create quality content
“Content is king,” said Bill Gates, and just about every other guru in content marketing. But there’s a reason why this saying has been repeated so often—it’s true.
Lackluster content rife with typos isn’t going to make anyone want to click on your website more than once. Quality content that’s informative, free of errors, and easy to read, on the other hand, will.
But what exactly makes content good?
Really, this means making your content better than your competition's. When it comes to blogging, you can up the quality of your posts by following these tips:
- Find a unique angle or something new your competitors haven’t done before.
- Always proofread and use spell check.
- Make blog posts easy to read by using bullet points and lists.
- Give actionable tips and advice.
- Include images, videos, and other forms of multimedia in your content.
4. Write compelling headlines for your blog posts
A blog post’s headline is the first thing readers see, meaning it can either make or break your traffic results. After all, if it sounds dry or boring, who’s going to click?
To write a compelling blog post title, remember to:
- Be honest—don’t lie to readers about what your blog posts are about.
- Use vivid and descriptive language.
- Avoid making it too long. It’s best to aim for under 70 characters so that search engines don’t trim your title.
- Appeal to readers’ emotions.
On top of these tips, there are several approaches you can take when it comes to formatting your blog post titles. Try one of these the next time you’re feeling stumped about your blog post headline:
- Listicle - “Top 15 Outdoor Vacation Destinations in the World”
- How-to Guide - “How to Get Your First Freelance Gig”
- Question - “Is Getting Lasik Worth It?”
- Negative Angle - “Why You Shouldn’t Eat Meat”
- Shocking Fact - “Climate Change is Making Social Inequality Worse”
- Controversial Statement - “Standing Desks are Overrated”
- Secret - “The #1 Way to Teach Your Dog New Tricks”
5. Share posts on social media
An estimated 2.77 billion people use social media around the world—that’s over a third of the world’s population. As a result, social media makes for a powerful outreach tool to drive more viewers to your blog.
The more you share your posts on different social media networks, the more people are likely to come across it.
With that in mind, it’s a no-brainer to promote your content across networks like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. To increase your posts’ outreach, be sure to:
- Include relevant hashtags
- Mention influencers in your industry
- Share your content at the right time
- Make your posts short, catchy, and engaging
Be sure to cater your social media posts to their respective networks—that is, don’t recycle the same social media post on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. Tailoring your posts for each network will help make your content resonate more with their respective audiences.
6. Participate in your niche’s community
The blogging world functions much like real-life society in that it’s built of communities of people who regularly interact with one another.
Though they may appear to be competitors at first glance, other bloggers in your niche have the potential to become your biggest supporters, even friends. Getting them on your side could mean more shares and thus more traffic in the long run.
Get active in your blogging community by:
- Posting on subreddits, Facebook groups, and forums that your target audience uses
- Commenting on other blogs
- Responding to comments on your own blog
- Retweeting or replying to other bloggers’ tweets
- Attending conferences and get-togethers, whether in real life or virtually
Don’t be that blogger who only promotes their own content. You’ll find that when you meaningfully engage with your niche’s community, others will be more open to sharing your work and may even invite you to contribute to their blogs.
Did you know that the way you organize your blog can affect how readers view it?
For instance, if your blog has poor navigation and zero links to anywhere else on your site, your readers are effectively trapped on any page they land on.
That’s why you need to interlink.
That means linking to your other blog content, or even designing your website to have a sidebar of related posts. By providing links to other parts of your blog, you’ll make it easier for interested readers to stick around and further explore your site—earning you more page views in the long run.
8. Guest post for other sites
You can think of guest posting as guest starring on another website. This involves writing an article for another blog, which may or may not allow you to link back to one or more posts on your own site. By doing this, you’ll build up your blog’s backlink profile—what is essentially a portfolio of websites that link to yours.
Why do backlinks even matter?
- Backlinks from quality websites tell search engines that your website is also of quality; this, in turn, will increase your blog’s chances of ranking higher on search engine page results.
- Links on other websites help to draw in new readers who might not otherwise see your blog.
Contributing to other blogs in your niche is best for guest posting, as it’ll be easier to link to your content than if you were writing for an entirely different niche.
You can find blogs that are open to guest posts by searching for your target niche in Google and keyword strings like “write for us”. For instance, let’s say you wanted to start a gardening niche blog. You could use the following searches in Google to find guest posting opportunities:
- gardening “write for us”
- gardening “submit guest post”
- gardening “contributors”
- gardening “guest post”
Just replace “gardening” with the niche your blog is in, and you’ll find guest posting opportunities in no time.
Increasing traffic to your blog won’t happen overnight. It’ll take strategy, effort, and time before you see measurable results. Sometimes, it may even require redoing your work, like rewriting a blog post in order to better optimize it.
But don’t get discouraged. It takes months, even years, before some blogs see momentum in their traffic. Continue experimenting with the strategies above to see what works best for yours.
Do you have any additional tips for getting traffic to your blog? Let us know with a comment below!