I’m going to give you a big picture view of how to get more traffic to your blog. Everything you think you know about making money blogging? It’s a lie. Sign up for this free blogging course today and learn how to build a profitable blog, the correct way.
So you decided that you want to make money from your new blog.
There’s only one problem: it doesn’t have any traffic.
Just create outstanding content, and the traffic will come. That’s what you might have heard in the echo chambers of the internet, but it’s simply not true.
Want free money?
Let me explain.
You have to realize that the above advice was true about 10 years ago, when the internet was still young and there were many barriers of entry preventing the average person from starting a blog. Those days are long gone. Now there are so many blogs that it’s hard to stand out from a very large crowd.
When I hear someone repeating the golden content is all you have to do routine, I realize that if that worked for them, then they simply don’t understand what happened behind the scenes to get traffic to their site.
That’s why in this article, I’m going to give you a big picture view of how to get more traffic to your blog. We’ll actually cover the most common ways that I walk all of my new clients through in our first interview about their website. Let’s get started.
The first step is assessing your strengths and your weaknesses. Every person will have preferences, experiences, and things that they are good at. You have to leverage this in choosing the type of traffic that you are going after for your website.
For example, if you are a crowd pleaser and get energized by interacting with people and being the center of attention, then most likely social media is your ticket. On the other hand, if you are more introverted and technical, then search engine optimization is a better choice.
If you are somewhere in the middle between these two, then paid ads might just be your thing. There are other options as well. We’ll go through each of these areas in more detail next.
One of the most common places to start in generating traffic to a website is with social media. The reason is that the average person is already on social media platforms at least as a content consumer.
Depending on what their goals are, at some point they may transition into a content producer. Many people try this, but burn out after a few months because they don’t have any results to show for that period of time.
What they don’t realize is that in order to win the social media game, you have to out produce others with your content creation. Every single post, video, or share is one more seed that is planted in potential future attention, and therefore potential traffic. You have to constantly feed the beast.
There are many factors here to think about, especially your audience and what the top players in that niche are doing. Typically, you need to be posting more than 10 times a day for a very long time before you make some major headway.
Check out thought leaders Gary Vaynerchuk and Grant Cardone if you want to learn more about how to dominate social media to get more traffic.
Search Engine Optimization
For the more technically gifted folks out there, search engine optimization (known as SEO) is a great choice if you are dedicated to building a long term website asset. More than 5 years ago, SEO peaked into its golden era where it was relatively easy to rank for any keyword that you wanted to.
Those days are gone. Google’s search algorithm got smart, and several updates wiped out many of the websites that were exploiting it to rank high in search results.
These days, the focus is back on creating golden content. The catch? If you just create golden content and don’t tell anyone about it, it will never get found, and the necessary things that need to happen in order to rank high won’t get done.
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Let me clarify what I mean. Basically, if you take a look at the many different ranking factors that Google cares about when it decides which websites make it to page 1 of search results, there are many.
However, the different factors are weighted differently. That simply means that a few things are much more important than all the rest in Google’s eyes. If you want a detailed breakdown of what’s important, check out my guide on SEO.
For example, one of the biggest ranking factors is backlinks. Think about backlinks as like a voting system on the internet. The more “votes” other websites cast in favor of your website, the more Google believes that your website is great quality.
You might be asking, what is a backlink. It’s simply a chunk of text that has an embedded hyperlink to another website. The following is an example: Google is the best search engine on planet earth.
You have to be careful these days and make sure and follow Google’s guidelines in order to avoid penalties. Usually, this involves getting links naturally for great content, but also doing the hard work of getting awareness of your website out there. Guest posting, just like this article, is a popular method for doing just that.
Keep in mind that SEO takes a while before it starts working. You are looking at 6 months minimum before you make headway after a lot of work. However, it’s worth it in the long run and one of the most cost efficient methods for traffic.
If you like grabbing people’s attention, but you’re also a tad bit on the technical side, then paid ads might interest you. What I mean by paid ads are Google Adwords, Facebook Ads, Youtube Ads, and LinkedIn Ads.
All social media platforms have paid ad options that you can choose from. The trick is to pick the social media platform where your ideal audience hangs out the most. Of course, Google is a great place for ads if you want to catch people in either a buyer’s mindset mode or on a mission to find information.
The basics of getting good at running successful paid ad campaigns is to practice a lot. Once you get started, you’ll quickly realize the power of split testing. By being disciplined in how you run these tests, you can come up with highly optimized ads that perform well.
If you want to go down this road, go find the many experts in the different type of ads and take a few courses on it. It’s not hard to figure out, it just takes time and effort. The advantage of paid ads is that you can get traffic right now, at a price. If you are in a hurry, this should be your primary method.
Referral traffic is simply visitors that come from some other website to yours without going through a search engine like Google. Like we discussed earlier with backlinks, not only do they make your website look good to Google, but they also allow readers to follow the link and then visit your website as well.
If you are going down the social media route, then referral traffic is a great strategy too. It consists of you figuring out who the main circle of influencers are in your particular niche, and then initiating a dialog with them.
Create meaningful conversations and add value enough, and most likely they will share your content with their followers, giving you a ton of referral traffic. It’s a great strategy.
Many times people forget about in person events in order to generate online traffic.
I’ll give you an example. I was recently at a meetup on social media and a person that was managing a conference came to give a presentation about entrepreneurship. While she was there, she handed out 3×5 printed cards about her conference’s website with the URL.
There were 50 people in the room that were very targeted to her niche and I’m speculating that at least 75% went to her website since her presentation was so good. I know that I told several people that I know about it and shared the link outside the event.
Think about how you can attend events in your local area, provide value, and at the same time drive traffic to your website. Resource pages do well here that are designed around meeting the needs of other attendees at these events. Create a FAQ page about the subject and share the URL with the group.
Also, podcasting, seminars, teaching classes, and even webinars are some great channels that fall into this category and work wonders for generating traffic.
Speaking of forgetting the older ways of doing things. Most people completely neglect the old forms of advertising, even though they are still valid in the digital age.
Things like direct mail, TV ads, and radio ads can get you some attention to your website. Just remember that you need something memorable for the URL so that people don’t forget or mess up when they finally get around to going to your website.
Also, sometimes you should just pick up the phone and cold call people that might be interested in your website. As long as you don’t act too salesy or too pushy, you would be surprised who you might get to know and how much traffic they can help get you.
Generating traffic can be a lot of hard work and is super important after you have created your golden content on your blog. It turns out that there are some key methods that you can use to accomplish your goals.
Just remember that it’s a lot easier to pick a traffic method that is more aligned with your skills, talents, and interests. You only have to master one or two of these methods in order to have a successful website. So pick the one that appeals to you most, and get working on making it happen.