1. Find your focus – The first thing you should always have in mind is your blog’s focus. What is your main niche topic? You want your topic to be specific so that you can get in the readers you want without alienating anyone with off topic posts. This means no mix and match sites. What you do not want to do is have a site about cats and flowers or technology and babies. If you can merge the topics then all the better, like plants for cat lovers or technology to keep babies safe, but if you jump from topic to topic you are going to lose readers who are not interested in both, which will be a lot.
2. Know who your readers are – After you find out what your topic is you can focus in on who your readers are. Finding out who you are targeting with your blog is easy. There are many programs online that can help you to do that. Once you figure out who they are you can more effectively target them with your writing and blog layout. For example teens would probably like a layout that has lots of images and music and bright colors. However retired people would probably like a blog that was laid out in a familiar way like a newspaper.
3. Make a good first impression – Think about your blog’s layout. What does it say about your blog right off the bat? Does your blog look boring or exciting? Entertaining or same old same old? Make your blog have a great first impression on your readers by investing your time in redecorating. Make your blog have a great layout and look that will draw readers in.
4. Have great content – Content is king. After you draw readers in your need to be able to keep them. In fact, having great content can be a draw in itself. Search engines love great content because keywords are used naturally. However when you are writing your content make sure you know what your readers want. Since you have done your research to find out who your readers are, do a little more to find out what they are searching for and then center your content around those key words and phrases. If you do it naturally and well, you should get lots of traffic organically to your blog without any further effort.
5. Keep it short – One thing that many bloggers do not think about is that great content does not have to mean long content. You can often write great posts in only a few hundred words. Anywhere from five hundred to a couple of thousand is the best. Any shorter than five hundred and search engines do not pick it up. Any longer than a couple of thousand words and readers get bored and leave. There are always exceptions to this, but in general that is the way it works. Keeping your posts short allow you to keep your blog updated frequently without having to invest too much time.
6. Update a lot – Speaking of updating, one of the biggest things you can do to boost your blog’s traffic and the amount of readers that end up at your blog site is to post frequently. Keeping your blog updated means that you pop to the top of search engine lists and reader newsfeeds. This constant exposure will help your blog to stay in reader’s minds and will also help your rankings on search engines to improve greatly. Everyone wants the latest news, so updating your blog every day is a great way to give it a boost.
7. Break it up – In your efforts to update a lot and keep your content short you should learn the art of breaking things up. Long posts can be broken into post series with parts one, two, three and so on. You can also make list posts by giving points and each point is a different post. If you prefer to write longer posts you can keep readers interested by using bullet points or number or you can break it up into sections with sub headers. This allows readers to scan a long blog post and read only the points that apply to them. Most readers do not sit there and read long posts, but rather they prefer to scan and go. Use this to your advantage and make your posts easy for readers to grasp quickly and easily.
8. Add images – Giving your blog a boost means more than just text however. When you give your blog a new look do not forget to add images. Images and multimedia like graphs, infographics and videos work well in blogs to add a bit of color and make readers interested in your text content. Images also work to draw in more traffic through image searches. If you get great images and name them correctly you can get many new readers in just from image searches. Images also get reader’s attention and make them stop to read. The more interesting, colorful, or funny your images are the better off you will be. You can get free images from sites like FreeDigitalPhotos.net or use open source images like the ones from Flicker. You can also create your own videos with web cams or screen caps or import one from YouTube.
9. Make your blog easy to use – Once you have the content in place the next part is to make your blog as easy to use as possible. If you make your blog hard to get around in readers will leave no matter how great your content is. That is why it is important that your links work, your pages are easy to get to and ads do not distract from your blog. Many blogger use ads in an effort to get money off their blog but the ads themselves keep readers out. Be careful about ad placement and make sure the ads do not cover up, block or distract from your blog’s content.
10. Become a part of the community – Last but not least you should get your blog involved in the community. That can mean your real life local community, your national community, your blogging community, or the community of Earth as a whole. You can offer your products or services to disaster relief agencies, give other blogs ad space or references on your blog, comment on news worth accounts and offer your two cents, or even donate money to charities in your area. These efforts can get you links on very good sites and even bring in new readers who read your comments and come to check you out. By becoming part of the community you also build relationships that can open the doors to opportunities to build your blog and help it grow in new ways you would not have thought of alone.
These are just a few of the ways that you can help your blog to get a boost. There are many avenues to increasing your blog’s traffic and usability. From adding images to making your blog more user friendly to even becoming a part of the greater good; take a look at your blog and see what you can do to improve it.
This was a guest post by Ken Myers, who is the founder of www.LonghornLeads.com & has learned over the years the importance of focusing on what the customer is looking for and literally serving it to them. He doesn’t try to create a need, instead he tries to satisfy the existing demand for information on products and services.