Working Wednesdays – Ten Tips To Increase Your Blog Traffic

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Generally on julie-ellen, I write about the things I love – beauty news and reviews, with a little fashion and lifestyle for good measure. Occasionally I will even write about my efforts to lose  weight or to increase my health and fitness levels. Its all good fun! There is no doubt though that blogging isn’t just about fun. As everyone who has tried it knows, writing a blog is incredibly hard work and in the 18 months I have been blogging I have had to learn  to do things I had no experience of before, like photography, editing, web design, negotiation, accounting and so on. I definitely do not hold myself up as any kind of an expert in these areas but hopefully I can help some of you by sharing the things I have learned. So I have decided to set up a series of posts called Working Wednesdays where I will share some of my thoughts on the more complicated areas of blogging and hopefully in the comment sections, you will share your experience with me too.

Every blogger wants to increase their numbers right? I know I do! I started this blog  as a hobby (some hobby, I spend more time on it than on my full time job!!) but it’s such a compliment when people read what I write and enjoy it enough to come back. So for the last few months instead of concentrating on followers, the number I have focussed on most was my page views, the number of people who visit my blog both for the first time and my returning visitors. During these months, I have found some simple ways to increase  these numbers so today I thought I would share with you 10 tips to increase YOUR blog traffic.

Content – It might seem obvious but WHAT you write about really IS the most important factor. If you want to increase traffic to your blog, you need to offer something to your reader, whether that be information, advice or entertainment. In addition, you need to consider not just what people are interested in NOW but also what they will continue to be interested in this time NEXT year. If you get this right then the blog post you write today, will still be generating the same number of hits next year as it does tomorrow. 

Title – A killer title really can make a HUGE difference to the amount of traffic a blog post gets. There are two ways of looking at this. Some people like to keep it cryptic in order to catch people’s attention in the hope that they will then visit their blog to find out more. Personally I prefer a more straight forward approach. I like the title of my post to make it very clear to my potential readers what my post is all about. That way my readers know what they are getting which keeps my bounce rate low. (But that’s a whole other Working Wednesday) post. 

Appearance – Hey we are beauty and fashion bloggers – looks matter! But you don’t need to spend lots of money to have a great looking blog. There are lots of things you can do yourself to make your blog attractive to your readers. For me the most important elements are a layout which is easy to navigate and a font that is comfortable to read. By making your blog visually appealing  to your readers, you will make sure they pop back for a second visit. 

Images – Blog Photography is another topic I will cover in much more detail in a future Working Wednesday post but it’s such a key part of attracting visitors to your blog and ensuring that they become regulars, that I simply could NOT write a post on blog traffic without mentioning images. Whilst it is definitely NOT essential that you spend mega bucks on a posey camera and lighting, I would say it IS essential that you spend a bit of time (hell make that a LOT of time) learning how to take a decent blog photo. 

Promotion – Obviously no one is going to visit your blog if they don’t know it’s there so you really do have to get out and do some PR. Try to be a little creative in your promotion, Twitter’s great but try other ways of advertising your blog posts. I will be writing a whole post about Creative Ways To Promote Your Blog in the next few weeks so look out for that. 

About Me – I like to know a little bit about the person behind a blog and their about me page is one of the first I head to. It helps me feel connected to the blogger which in turn encourages me to return. If you want to turn every visitor into a regular reader, one of the ways you can do it is to write a really attractive About Me page. 

Get Involved – For a long time after I started blogging I was convinced that the only people who read my posts were other bloggers. Nowadays the majority of my traffic comes directly from Google but a significant proportion of my readers are still have their own blogs. And that’s hardly surprising. Who else would be as obsessed as I am with everything new in beauty? There is a strong community of bloggers out there and it’s important to take your place in it. I’ve heard it said that the blogosphere can be cliquey and I have to admit some of its members bear a strong resemblance to the lead characters from Mean Girls,  but in my experience most are a really friendly bunch. It can be hard to just put yourself out there but make the effort and you will be glad that you did. Not only can other bloggers represent a significant proportion of your blog traffic, they can be your new best friends. After all, you all have something in common. Your passion for blogging!! 

Comments – A great way to get involved with other bloggers is to start commenting on your favourite blogs. And when I say comment, I do not mean, spam other blogs with your link. What I mean is that when you are reading a blog post that you enjoy, let the blogger know. If they write a positive review of a product you didn’t get on with, share that experience. And when readers comment on your posts, answer those comments, start a conversation, build a relationship.

Guest Blogging – Another way to build relationships is to ask other bloggers to guest post on your blog. Hopefully they will bring some of their readers with them and they will like what they see and come back. You could also offer to guest post on other people’s blogs. If those readers enjoy your post, they may pop over to your blog to read more.

Improve Your SEO – I will write a whole post about this soon but I really do recommend that if you are serious about growing your blog, you read up on SEO and learn how to use it to persuade google to rank you more highly. Since I have improved my SEO, I have increased my Google ranking and watched my page views increase significantly. Nowadays most of traffic comes from Google and that has made a huge difference to my blog traffic.

I hope you have found some of these tips helpful but now it is your turn. Why not help out your fellow bloggers and share your No 1 tip for increasing blog traffic in the comments below. 

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