You write the best blog posts, you promote the heck out of them on social media (you’re even annoying yourself!), and still your blog has no traffic.
Been there. Felt that.
So let’s fix it.
Blog traffic is a special beast, really and truly. If you have been blogging for any amount of time, it may seem like you are on a hamster wheel, continually doing the “right” things to gain more traffic and seeing zero results. But after 7+ years of blogging, I can tell you a few things about traffic that I KNOW to be true:
- People lie about their traffic all the time [so stop comparing yourself!].
- The number of page views you get on any given day does not mean your blog is unimportant, unpopular, or will forever be unread.
Traffic (the number of readers who click on your blog each day) is good and continually improving your traffic is important but it’s not the only thing that makes a blog successful…so let’s keep that in mind.
All that being said, I understand the frustration when your readership isn’t growing AND I get how certain traffic benchmarks feel important along your blogging journey. Trust me, the first time I hit 10,000 page views in a month I thought I had died and gone to heaven! It took months before I saw that number again, mind you, but I know how good it felt once I started consistently seeing 10,000+ page views a month and I want that same feeling of accomplishment for you.
I’m always happy to share my journey in blogging with you, so let’s unpack things you can do to really grow & improve your traffic no matter what stage of blogging you are at!
Longer blog posts that tell a story
Short blog posts just don’t cut it anymore. If you want a readership that feels like they get value from your blog posts, they need to be longer and packed with information. They don’t just want a list of ideas or suggestions – give them juicy details that they can implement or learn and grow from. Google is also a HUGE fan of long blog posts (over 1,000 words) and often ranks you higher in searches because of it.
If you’re struggling to improve the length of your posts, I suggest including personal stories of your own experiences or experiences of those you know (make sure to keep it anonymous) – storytelling gives a real personal touch to a blog post no matter what the topic is about. Remember that blogging is about connection and the best way to make those connections is by giving someone a reason to remember your blog or a specific post, and that’s what storytelling does. I will take the time to read a long blog post with great tips and personalized stories over a short list that tells me nothing (or is full of affiliate links!) every day!
I get it, longer blog posts take a longer time to write, but the rewards of having really good, meaty posts always pay off!
Write less often but consistently
Even if you are a new blogger you do not need to put out a blog post every day, or even every other day. Give yourself permission to put out one to two blog posts each week, making sure they are excellent! However, commit yourself to publishing on a certain day EACH WEEK. That is the difference maker.
Personally, I have committed to writing 2 blog posts a week, publishing on Monday and Wednesday. Each week, readers can show up and know that I’m going to have posted something new for them to learn from and that is why my traffic continues to grow and grow and grow. It’s amazing how much readers will begin to rely on you and your posting schedule once they see the pattern.
In fact, this is exactly what most of the popular YouTubers do (and we can learn from them, big time!). Any YouTuber who is making serious money off that platform does so because they show up at the same time on the same day week after week with good content that people enjoy. That’s the golden nugget that we can all apply to our own blogs!
Stop focusing on all social media platforms
Promoting your blog on every single social media platform is killing your traffic – I guarantee it. So stop. Here’s what I want you to do instead: for the next month, focus on the TWO social platforms you enjoy the most. Grow your readership, connect with real people and not just about your blog. Connect over your love for basketball (#GoRaptors) or reading a new novel or watching Jane the Virgin.
Sure, I want you to also promote your blog posts from time to time, but by focusing your attention on only 2 platforms you’ll have the chance to see what really works for you. Once you feel like you have a solid handle on TWO social media platforms, then you can add a third or fourth. Personally, I would begin with Facebook and Instagram and then move on to include Twitter.
And just so you don’t think I’m preaching at you, I personally have done this and it works. By putting all my focus on Instagram and Facebook I was able to grow a really targeting readership that were totally loyal and kept coming back to read my posts. Once I got a handle on those two platforms, I reignited my presence on Twitter. Currently, I am figuring out how to use Pinterest (or if I even enjoy it!).
Best of all, giving myself permission to focus on one or two social platforms at a time has almost doubled my readership! Give it a try and see your traffic improve!
Include easy to use share icons
Ok, this seems like a no-brainer but for years I didn’t have any social media sharing buttons on my blog. Like, none. In fact, it wasn’t until I moved my blog to WordPress and became self-hosted that I got social sharing buttons and it has been a game changers. I’m so mad at myself for not doing this sooner!
I installed the SumoMe plug in (which is free!) and I have seen sharing of my posts go up by 35%. All because I added some buttons that make it super simple to share. DUH!
One pro tip: if you are including an image in your post make sure the image has a description attached to it (usually you add this in the “Alt Text” section of the image when you add it to your media gallery). This will ensure that when your post is shared, it is shared with a pre-written description of the post they are sharing [and not just a bunch of computer jargon!].
When people click a share button they are opening you up to an enormous amount of potential new blog traffic that you haven’t had to do anything for!
One of the best ways to grow your blog traffic is to host a giveaway!!! PEOPLE LOVE FREE STUFF! 🙂
Back in the early days of my blogging, I used to host giveaways once a month and I would actually purchase the item myself, take it to the post office, pay for the postage and send it to my winner. Now, I tend to partner with brands and host a giveaway every few months. But without fail, I get a huge influx of blog traffic with a giveaway and a lot of those readers stick around and continue to read my blog long after my giveaway is done.
Don’t think you have to partner with a big brand to run a giveaway! Think outside of the box: partner with an Etsy seller, help cross-promote by giving away an e-book that another blogger has written, promote a local small business to a wider audience they don’t have access to through a giveaway. There are a lot of ways to help others market their produce while bringing new readers to your site & improving your own blog traffic if you get a bit creative…don’t wait for a sponsored post or big brand to come knocking on your door!
Do something you haven’t done before
My blog traffic was stale and stagnant, so I committed myself to learning Pinterest and making teaching videos to post on YouTube and my Facebook Page. I saw an immediate spike in blog traffic just by trying out those two new things.
So if your blog isn’t growing, it’s time to do something you haven’t done before.
- Go live on Facebook
- Create a weekly Twitter or Instagram chat (I did this on Instagram and it was GREAT!)
- Grow your presence on a new social media platform
- Join a new Facebook page and participate!
- Email a blogger you like and see if you can collaborate
- Create a “round up” post of blogs you like and tag all the people you mention on social media!
- Make new blogging friends
- Buy a ticket to a conference (bonus if you don’t know anyone there so you have to make new blogging friends!!)
- Join a mastermind
- Write a series of posts that aren’t on your usual topic
I could go on and on. The point is, if you blog traffic feels stagnant then BREAK YOUR RUT!
Do something new, try something out, put effort into building new relationships. Those types of actions have always resulted in spikes of traffic for me that I never expected (but should start expecting because, sheesh!, I’ve been blogging for long enough now).
Be passionate about your content
If you’re not excited and passionate about what you’re writing it will show. If you’re writing posts because you heard they do well with readers but you don’t care about them, it will show. If you aren’t looking forward to getting on that keyboard, it will show! So write about the things you are passionate about and see the difference it will make in your blog traffic.
Worry less about writing for a “niche” or super specific audience and worry a lot more about writing things that make you happy. You might be trying to profit from you blog (I get that!) but that doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy what you write about. In fact, that should be the only reason you blog in the first place- it gives YOU something as much as it gives to others.
When you write passionately people take notice!
Stop checking your analytics all the time
Worry a heck of a lot less about your traffic and it will improve – counterintuitive but true.
Don’t check your analytics every hour (like I used to!) and don’t fret constantly about what your page views are at compared to others. Like I said at the top of this post: people lie about their numbers all the time. It’s a sad but true reality. Although it’s important to know your numbers and know when and where your traffic comes from, it’s not the only important thing about your blog. Don’t obsess over it. Don’t shut down your blog simply because you’re not getting 100 page views a day. There is room for all types of content and all types of blogs (and there is opportunity to make money from all of them as well!).
To sum it up: write long content that you’re passionate about, spend time focusing on only 1-2 social media platforms so you can really shine on them, make it easy for readers to share your content, and don’t obsess over numbers, just do you!
PS: As of right now, INSTAGRAM is my biggest traffic source. Instagram is about attracting the RIGHT followers who care a lot about you and your blog/business & become real fans who interact, engage, and tell others about you!
I created an Instagram growth guide that rivals any high-priced course out there, for the price of a cup of coffee. REALLY! My guide is proven to work, proven to get you real readers/followers, and proven to get you results quickly if you put in the work!