Thursday, September 18, 2008

Ask Britt: How Do You Increase Blog Traffic?

Between the internet strategy teleseminar for the San Francisco Writing Conference I did on Monday, the blogging presentation I did for the Oakland branch of Ladies Who Launch on Tuesday, and the consults I had with individual bloggers on Wednesday and Thursday, I've been asked several times this week:

"How do I increase my blog traffic?"

Based on my own experience, and after reading posts about blog traffic by folks like Seth Godin, Darren Rowse of ProBlogger, and others, here is a list of tips I've compiled:

  • Post regularly.
  • Link to other bloggers in your posts.
  • Comment on other blogs.
  • Have a blogroll.
  • Make it easy to comment. It's ok to have comment moderation, but don't make people register.
  • Allow readers to email posts to other people.
  • Enable subscription to your rss feed with Feedburner.
  • Enable subscription by email with Feedblitz.
  • Include images or graphics with every post to catch the reader's eye. Blogs are a visual medium.
  • Add your blog URL to your email signature.
  • Tell Google you have a blog.
  • Tell Technorati you have a blog.
  • Write titles with phrases that people are searching for (i.e. How to Bake a Cake).
  • Write about current events.
  • Ask a question in your title.
  • Post a list (i.e. Ten Ways to Frost a Cake).
  • Provide a way for people to easily share and bookmark your posts by using something like AddThis or Add to Any.
  • Twitter.
  • Bookmark your posts in del.icio.us, and other social bookmarking services.
  • Try writing shorter posts (200-300 words). That's about how many words the average person can read in a minute.
  • Leave more space between paragraphs. Use bold subtitles. Catch the reader's eye.
  • Participate in memes, blog carnivals and challenges.
  • Tags your post with Technorati tags.
  • Let ping servers know when you have a new post.
  • Interview people who have blogs or email lists, and will post a link to the interview.
  • Have guest bloggers post on your blog
  • Include videos in your posts.
  • Install web analytics tools like SiteMeter, StatCounter and Google Analytics. Look at what kinds of posts get the most traffic. Write more of those!
  • Highlight your most popular posts in your sidebar.
  • Create a MyBlogLog community.
  • Participate in social networks like Facebook and MySpace, as well as niche social networks related to the theme of your blog.
  • Participate in online forums and communities.
  • List your blog in blog directories.
  • Run a contest.
Finally, write posts that people want to read!

What are your tips for increasing blog traffic?

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You can email your question (please keep it to 50 words) about the do-good, or artistic work you are doing, or want to do, to britt@brittbravo.com. Title your email, "Ask Britt: your question topic." I won't post your name, but I will post your question with my answer, so keep that in mind as you write, if you don't want details in your question to identify you.


Flickr photo credit: Daily Traffic uploaded by Nam Nguyen.



11 comments:

  1. This is a really good list of things to do! I would add:
    1) using sites like Digg (Digg other website articles that you like, the webmaster might notice and return the favor by pointing readers back to your blog),
    2) seeking press/interviews (I've found many blogs because the author was quoted or interviewed in a magazine / newspaper)
    3) making os catchy business cards that you can pass out to any and everyone and
    4) think outside of the box (& away from the computer) like having meetUp's and using your blog to raise funds for a good cause, sponsor a charity bike team, etc., (in turn they wear your sites logo/web address).

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  2. This was very helpful, thank you Britt!

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  3. Hi Britt! Thanks so much for sharing these wonderful tips here. I'm going to send the link to our Ladies Who Launch group as I know they will all really appreciate these valuable resources. You Rock!!! Thanks again for coming to speak to our group.

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  4. Britt,
    As always, your post is very helpful! How about sending out press releases announcing a blog?

    www.charitynetusa.com/blog

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  5. I'm glad the post was helpful.

    Marie - These are excellent suggestions! A great place to find calls for experts to interview for articles is http://helpareporter.com/

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  6. You could do a weekly or monthly "reader round-up" where you highlight blog posts from your regular readers' own blogs, or insightful comments they have made on your blog.

    Also, if you're using original images, make sure to give them optimized names like "boston-volunteer-event.jpg". This will help them get found on image searches, and will introduce new users to your blog via the image search engines.

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  7. Great ideas. Thanks, Casey!

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  8. Very nice list. I definitely have some work to do to promote my blog and this post will help me alot in doing so. Thank you.
    Btw, the link in the 2nd last item (List your blog in blog directories) seems to be broken.

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  9. Thanks for the link break catch, Everybody Geeky. I'll fix it.

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  10. Very insightful thanks!

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  11. You can increase number of visitors to your blog by pinging search engines. Say to ping yahoo, you need to type the following url.

    http://api.my.yahoo.com/rss/ping?u=http://yourblog.blogspot.com/atom.xml

    I have found a very interesting article on how it works and how you can automate all these process using tools.

    http://www.bobsindia.com/bobyweb/articles/adverticeyourblogs_pinging/I have used the tool mentioned there and it is cool and easy to use. Check it out, it is worth spending few minutes.

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