Starting a blog is easy; attracting readers is the hard part! These tips for increasing blog traffic are from professional blogger and technologist Darren Barefoot, who spoke at the Surrey International Writers’ Conference in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Before the tips, a quip:
“Don’t say the old lady screamed — bring her on and let her scream,” said Mark Twain.
Successful bloggers let their “old ladies” scream long and loud! The old “show don’t tell” writing adage holds true for bloggers as well as writers.
To learn how successful bloggers blogged their way to the top, read Blogging Heroes: Interviews with 30 of the World’s Top Bloggers.
And, here are tips for attracting more readers to your blog…
7 Ways to Attract More Readers to Your Blog
1. Write “link bait” posts, which are articles or posts that other bloggers want to link to. Two effective ways to write link bait are: 1) Write a controversial post or discuss an unpopular/contrary topic; and 2) Write a useful and/or clever posts — stuff that helps people improve their lives in some way (prescriptive writing).
The more you can entice bloggers to link to you, the more readers you’ll attract to your blog.
2. Syndicate your blog. You could promote your blog by submitting it to certain websites. Some sites, such as Facebook, automatically update your profile and show readers your most recent posts.
3. Offer to write guest posts. Barefoot says that 80% of the internet traffic goes to 20% of the websites. One way to increase blog traffic is to write posts for other — more popular — blog. To do this, pitch a guest post to the blog owner or manager (similar to pitching a query to a magazine, but less formal). And remember: hosting guest authors is also a way bloggers can attract more readers!
Need help? Read 5 Tips for Inviting Guest Bloggers to Blog for You.
4. Be generous with links. To promote your blog, link often and freely. “Links are the currency of the web,” says Barefoot. “Links increase your visibility on the search engines – they’re like a vote for your site.” But, don’t add more than 40 links to your Blogroll (too many to upkeep!).
5. Monitor your presence on the web. Sign up for Google Alerts, so you’ll know when your name or blog was referenced. Then, you can make a comment, say thank-you, or even offer to write a guest post for the blogger who mentioned you. This can increase blog traffic by building connections.
6. Use Google Analytics to track how many visitors you have; this will help you target new surfers more effectively. Barefoot suggested that new bloggers may need a computer nerd to help register blogs, but I’ve set up all three of my blogs with Google and didn’t have any problems (it was tricky but doable!).
7. Start a Facebook group for your blog. Starting a Facebook group allows you to gather readers (fans!) to your blog or business, which will help increase traffic to your blog. Facebook pages are your products (books or even articles if you’re a writer). People can join your Facebook group, and will hopefully invite others to join, too – and that’s how you’ll build your tribe.
For more tips, read 4 Most Popular Ways to Attract Readers to Your Blog.
Fellow scribes, what do you think of these ways bloggers can attract more readers? I welcome your comments below…