Tips to Increase Blog Traffic - 21 Tactics from Randfish

by - Sunday, October 23, 2011

blog-traffic

People always asked me how did you increase your blog traffic. Currently, I do receive more traffic from US, UK, Canada etc. instead of Asian. There's have a lot of way to increase your blog traffic that you can learn from internet. One of it is article from Randish. I have been following his article since 2010 and one of his article that I think really helpful is 21 Tactics to Increase Blog Traffic.

Choose the Right Blog Software (or Custom Build)
The right blog CMS makes a big difference. If you want to set yourself apart, I recommend creating a custom blog solution - one that can be completely customized to your users. In most cases, WordPress, Blogger, MovableType or Typepad will suffice, but building from scratch allows you to be very creative with functionality and formatting. The best CMS is something that's easy for the writer(s) to use and brings together the features that allow the blog to flourish. Think about how you want comments, archiving, sub-pages, categorization, multiple feeds and user accounts to operate in order to narrow down your choices. OpenSourceCMS is a very good tool to help you select a software if you go that route.
Different people have different point of view. Some said that Blogger is good and some said that Wordpress is better. I used both and from my point of view Blogger is friendly user compare than Wordpress. However, you can customize your blog with a lot of features by using Wordpress. Example of my other blog are: www.creativevstudio.com & www.feeqphotos.com that run under Wordpress.

Host Your Blog Directly on Your Domain
Hosting your blog on a different domain from your primary site is one of the worst mistakes you can make. A blog on your domain can attract links, attention, publicity, trust and search rankings - by keeping the blog on a separate domain, you shoot yourself in the foot. From worst to best, your options are - Hosted (on a solution like Blogspot or Wordpress), on a unique domain (at least you can 301 it in the future), on a subdomain (these can be treated as unique from the primary domain by the engines) and as a sub-section of the primary domain (in a subfolder or page - this is the best solution).
I choose to use .Com because it looks more professional. Whenever I went for a meeting or try to deal with a client, the percentage of your website will be choose by client will increase if you run in your own domain such as .Com or .Net or .My instead of .Wordpress or .Blogspot. One of the example is when you apply a media passes for an event, your website will look much better and professional. However, it is still depends on how your template and blog contains looks like.

Write Title Tags with Two Audiences in Mind
First and foremost, you're writing a title tag for the people who will visit your site or have a subscription to your feed. Title tags that are short, snappy, on-topic and catchy are imperative. You also want to think about search engines when you title your posts, since the engines can help to drive traffic to your blog. A great way to do this is to write the post and the title first, then run a few searches at Overture, WordTracker & KeywordDiscovery to see if there is a phrasing or ordering that can better help you to target "searched for" terms.
Before you want people to read your blog post, you must get people to visit your blog. Creating a good and catchy tittle/topic is one of the way to attract people to read your blog. Please make sure that your tittle is same as your blog contain. I saw a lot of people wrote a lot of good and catchy tittle. However, their contain is fully with crap. Remember, in social media it is all about brand loyalty.

Participate at Related Forums & Blogs
Whatever industry or niche you're in, there are bloggers, forums and an online community that's already active. Depending on the specificity of your focus, you may need to think one or two levels broader than your own content to find a large community, but with the size of the participatory web today, even the highly specialized content areas receive attention. A great way to find out who these people are is to use Technorati to conduct searches, then sort by number of links (authority). Del.icio.us tags are also very useful in this process, as are straight searches at the engines (Ask.com's blog search in particular is of very good quality).
Social media is not only about blog. It is more than that. Think out of the box and use another platform to promote your blog. If you only depends on Twitter, Facebook and Blog advertising company, it is not enough.

Tag Your Content
Technorati is the first place that you should be tagging posts. I actually recommend having the tags right on your page, pointing to the Technorati searches that you're targeting. There are other good places to ping - del.icio.us and Flickr being the two most obvious (the only other one is Blogmarks, which is much smaller). Tagging content can also be valuable to help give you a "bump" towards getting traffic from big sites like Reddit, Digg & StumbleUpon (which requires that you download the toolbar, but trust me - it's worth it). You DO NOT want to submit every post to these sites, but that one out of twenty (see tactic #18) is worth your while.
It is kinda new for me. I still haven't try it out. For those who already try it, do let me know your experience ya.

Launch Without Comments (and Add Them Later)
There's something sad about a blog with 0 comments on every post. It feels dead, empty and unpopular. Luckily, there's an easy solution - don't offer the ability to post comments on the blog and no one will know that you only get 20 uniques a day. Once you're upwards of 100 RSS subscribers and/or 750 unique visitors per day, you can open up the comments and see light activity. Comments are often how tech-savvy new visitors judge the popularity of a site (and thus, its worth), so play to your strengths and keep your obscurity private.
One of the reason why I add on Shout Mix is because to let some bloggers who like to spam to drop by my blog to spam their link. However, if they feel that my blog is good, they will follow and subscribe it.

Don't Jump on the Bandwagon
Some memes are worthy of being talked about by every blogger in the space, but most aren't. Just because there's huge news in your industry or niche DOES NOT mean you need to be covering it, or even mentioning it (though it can be valuable to link to it as an aside, just to integrate a shared experience into your unique content). Many of the best blogs online DO talk about the big trends - this is because they're already popular, established and are counted on to be a source of news for the community. If you're launching a new blog, you need to show people in your space that you can offer something unique, different and valuable - not just the same story from your point of view. This is less important in spaces where there are very few bloggers and little online coverage and much more in spaces that are overwhelmed with blogs (like search, or anything else tech-related).
The question is, what is your blog all about? Some people will talk everything about the latest news. You need to have specific contain for your blog post. That is why I separate my food and photography blog.

Link Intelligently
When you link out in your blog posts, use convention where applicable and creativity when warranted, but be aware of how the links you serve are part of the content you provide. Not every issue you discuss or site you mention needs a link, but there's a fine line between overlinking and underlinking. The best advice I can give is to think of the post from the standpoint of a relatively uninformed reader. If you mention Wikipedia, everyone is familiar and no link is required. If you mention a specific page at Wikipedia, a link is necessary and important. Also, be aware that quoting other bloggers or online sources (or even discussing their ideas) without linking to them is considered bad etiquette and can earn you scorn that could cost you links from those sources in the future. It's almost always better to be over-generous with links than under-generous. And link condoms? Only use them when you're linking to something you find truly distasteful or have serious apprehension about.
Just ask yourself. If someone use your article without link back or credit to you, what do you feel? 

Invite Guest Bloggers
Asking a well known personality in your niche to contribute a short blog on their subject of expertise is a great way to grow the value and reach of your blog. You not only flatter the person by acknowledging their celebrity, you nearly guarantee yourself a link or at least an association with a brand that can earn you readers. Just be sure that you really are getting a quality post from someone that's as close to universally popular and admired as possible (unless you want to start playing the drama linkbait game, which I personally abhor). If you're already somewhat popular, it can often be valuable to look outside your space and bring in guest authors who have a very unique angle or subject matter to help spice up your focus. One note about guest bloggers - make sure they agree to have their work edited by you before it's posted. A disagreement on this subject after the fact can have negative ramifications.
This is one of the good method for you to promote your blog through your friend follower or other blogger follower. I have done before in Featured Blogger. It is really helps. I have to stop it for quite sometime because I gonna come out with something better. So, stay tune.


Eschew Advertising (Until You're Popular)
I hate AdSense on blogs. Usually, I ignore it, but I also cast a sharp eye towards the quality of the posts and professionalism of the content when I see AdSense. That's not to say that contextual advertising can't work well in some blogs, but it needs to be well integrated into the design and layout to help defer criticism. Don't get me wrong - it's unfair to judge a blog by its cover (or, in this case, its ads), but spend a lot of time surfing blogs and you'll have the same impression - low quality blogs run AdSense and many high quality ones don't. I always recommend that whether personal or professional, you wait until your blog has achieved a level of success before you start advertising. Ads, whether they're sponsorships, banners, contextual or other, tend to have a direct, negative impact on the number of readers who subscribe, add to favorites and link - you definitely don't want that limitation while you're still trying to get established.
When I ask some of Malaysia bloggers why they don't like AdSense, one of the reason is because of the earning. If you blog about international topic, the percentage of receive income from AdSense is high if you have a lot of readers from oversea.


Go Beyond Text in Your Posts
Blogs that contain nothing but line after line of text are more difficult to read and less consistently interesting than those that offer images, interactive elements, the occasional multimedia content and some clever charts & graphs. Even if you're having a tough time with non-text content, think about how you can format the text using blockquotes, indentation, bullet points, etc. to create a more visually appealing and digestible block of content.
Be creative in create a blog post. Ask other blogger opinion what they think about your blog. Accept their feedback and improve it.

Cover Topics that Need Attention
In every niche, there are certain topics and questions that are frequently asked or pondered, but rarely have definitive answers. While this recommendation applies to nearly every content-based site, it's particularly easy to leverage with a blog. If everyone in the online Nascar forums is wondering about the components and cost of an average Nascar vehicle - give it to them. If the online stock trading industry is rife with questions about the best performing stocks after a terrorist threat, your path is clear. Spend the time and effort to research, document and deliver and you're virtually guaranteed link-worthy content that will attract new visitors and subscribers.
The good article is supported by good researches. Take your own time to do your own contain that supported by few article. Try to avoid "copy-and-paste" press kit or news.

Pay Attention to Your Analytics
Visitor tracking software can tell you which posts your audience likes best, which ones don't get viewed and how the search engines are delivering traffic. Use these clues to react and improve your strategies. Feedburner is great for RSS and I'm a personal fan of Indextools. Consider adding action tracking to your blog, so you can see what sources of traffic are bringing the best quality visitors (in terms of time spent on the site, # of page views, etc). I particularly like having the "register" link tagged for analytics so I can see what percentage of visitors from each source is interested enough to want to leave a comment or create an account.
If you are using blogger, they do have "Stats" page in your dashboard. Take time to see who are your visitor, what topic that they like most and when is the time that you receive a lot of visitor. Some of my most higher blog post are: Uncover Secrets Behind Girls Killing Rabbit VideoiPhone 4S New Features - Worth to Buy?Porn Website Using Facebook as Marketing PlatformSantapan Istimewa Mencari Halal Restaurant/Cafe yang Unik and My Selangor Story 2011 Launching.

Use a Human Voice
Charisma is a valuable quality, both online and off. Through a blog, it's most often judged by the voice you present to your users. People like empathy, compassion, authority and honesty. Keep these in the forefront of your mind when writing and you'll be in a good position to succeed. It's also critical that you maintain a level of humility in your blogging and stick to your roots. When users start to feel that a blog is taking itself too seriously or losing the characteristics that made it unique, they start to seek new places for content. We've certainly made mistakes (even recently) that have cost us some fans - be cautious to control not only what you say, but how you say it. Lastly - if there's a hot button issue that has you posting emotionally, temper it by letting the post sit in draft mode for an hour or two, re-reading it and considering any revisions. With the advent of feeds, once you publish, there's no going back.
Instead of doing your blog post like an article, make it more like a diary. After all, previously blog is an online diary. In a communication, "two-ways-communication" is really important. Try to play with your audience.

Archive Effectively
The best archives are carefully organized into subjects and date ranges. For search traffic (particularly long tail terms), it can be best to offer the full content of every post in a category on the archive pages, but from a usability standpoint, just linking to each post is far better (possibly with a very short snippet). Balance these two issues and make the decision based on your goals. A last note on archiving - pagination in blogging can be harmful to search traffic, rather than beneficial (as you provide constantly changing, duplicate content pages). Pagination is great for users who scroll to the bottom and want to see more, though, so consider putting a "noindex" in the meta tag or in the robots.txt file to keep spiders where they belong - in the well-organized archive system.
If you want to make blog as your main income, you must be disciplined. Set your own target and your own time when and how many you should be blogging per day.

Implement Smart URLs
The best URL structure for blogs is, in my opinion, as short as possible while still containing enough information to make an educated guess about the content you'll find on the page. I don't like the 10 hyphen, lengthy blog titles that are the byproduct of many CMS plugins, but they are certainly better than any dynamic parameters in the URL. Yes - I know I'm not walking the talk here, and hopefully it's something we can fix in the near future. To those who say that one dynamic parameter in the URL doesn't hurt, I'd take issue - just re-writing a ?ID=450 to /450 has improved search traffic considerably on several blogs we've worked with.
You can use  https://bitly.com/ to help you make your blog url short and at the same time to track how many people visit your blog. Nowadays, if you use tweetdeck, it will help you to make your url shot too.

Reveal as Much as Possible
The blogosphere is in love with the idea of an open source world on the web. Sharing vast stores of what might ordinarily be considered private information is the rule, rather than the exception. If you can offer content that's usually private - trade secrets, pricing, contract issues, and even the occasional harmless rumor, your blog can benefit. Make a decision about what's off-limits and how far you can go and then push right up to that limit in order to see the best possible effects. Your community will reward you with links and traffic.
Always share with your readers your secret as long it is not too personal. Of course you no need to share your house address or even contact number. If you are a successful blogger who have a lot of reader, share with your readers how you can success in blogging. If you are entrepreneur, share with your readers how you can success in business line.

Only One Post in Twenty Can Be Linkbait
Not every post is worthy of making it to the top of Digg, Del.icio.us/popular or even a mention at some other blogs in your space. Trying to over-market every post you write will result in pushback and ultimately lead to negative opinions about your efforts. The less popular your blog is, the harder it will be to build excitement around a post, but the process of linkbait has always been trial and error - build, test, refine and re-build. Keep creating great ideas and bolstering them with lots of solid, everyday content and you'll eventually be big enough to where one out of every 20-40 posts really does become linkbait.
Promotion is good. However it is depends on your blog contain too. If you blog 10 blog post per day but all your blog contain is rubbish, people will "say-no-to-your-blog" and it will become worst when people start to talk bad about your blog to other people.

Make Effective Use of High Traffic Days
If you do have linkbait, whether by design or by accident, make sure to capitalize. When you hit the front page of Digg, Reddit, Boing Boing, or, on a smaller scale, attract a couple hundred visitors from a bigger blog or site in your space, you need to put your best foot forward. Make sure to follow up on a high traffic time period with 2-3 high quality posts that show off your skills as a writer, your depth of understanding and let visitors know that this is content they should be sticking around to see more of. Nothing kills the potential linkbait "bump" faster than a blog whose content doesn't update for 48 hours after they've received a huge influx of visitors.
Please be aware with timing. For an example in Malaysia, most of people went out on weekend to have fun/attending event/shopping etc. If most of your visitor came from Malaysia, you might want to less blog on weekend because less people will read your blog post.

Create Expectations and Fulfill Them
When you're writing for your audience, your content focus, post timing and areas of interest will all become associated with your personal style. If you vary widely from that style, you risk alienating folks who've come to know you and rely on you for specific data. Thus, if you build a blog around the idea of being an analytical expert in your field, don't ignore the latest release of industry figures only to chat about an emotional issue - deliver what your readers expect of you and crunch the numbers. This applies equally well to post frequency - if your blog regularly churns out 2 posts a day, having two weeks with only 4 posts is going to have an adverse impact on traffic. That's not to say you can't take a vacation, but you need to schedule it wisely and be prepared to lose RSS subscribers and regulars. It's not fair, but it's the truth. We lose visitors every time I attend an SES conference and drop to one post every two days (note - guest bloggers and time-release posts can help here, too).
Some people that I met can easily blog 5 blog post per day. If you can blog 3 blog post per day, make sure it gonna be maintain or increase. Do not decrease it. If you feel of having exam or holiday, you can do a schedule blog post. Some of you do have a loyal reader who wait your new blog post. Do not waste their time who wait for your blog post.

Build a Brand
Possibly one of the most important aspects of all in blogging is brand-building. As Zefrank noted, to be a great brand, you need to be a brand that people want to associate themselves with and a brand that people feel they derive value from being a member. Exclusivity, insider jokes, emails with regulars, the occasional cat post and references to your previous experiences can be off putting for new readers, but they're solid gold for keeping your loyal base feeling good about their brand experience with you. Be careful to stick to your brand - once you have a definition that people like and are comfortable with, it's very hard to break that mold without severe repercussions. If you're building a new blog, or building a low-traffic one, I highly recommend writing down the goals of your brand and the attributes of its identity to help remind you as you write.
Before people read your blog, they must know your blog. How you market yourself is important. Some people thought that create a lot of random blog post will help you to increase your traffic. However, it is good for you to have your own trademark. If your blog about food, you can mix between food and travelling. If you love to talk about business, you can focus on business industry. It will help your reader to know what is your blog all about.

Sources: 21 Tactics to Increase Blog Traffic by Randfish


Currently I am in the middle of My Selangor Story 2011 blogger competition. I hope that you guys can help me by voting me and share my blog post to your friend =) I really need your help to win this competition.

Let's see other blog post of My Selangor Story 2011:
DAY1

DAY2

DAY3

DAY4

DAY5

You May Also Like

3 comments