10 ways to build your blog traffic
30 August 2006 in Blogging | Comments enabled

Top 10

  1. Link Liberally
    Some people are really tight with links – you shouldn’t be one of them. The more you link to sources the more other bloggers are likely to link to you. Links add context to your post for users who have a deeper interest in what you have to say. 
  2. Write attention grabbing headlines
    I’ve been poor about this, I quite often write somewhat bland headlines that don’t grab attention. The truth is, I can actually see in my statistics the posts where I wrote a good headline because they get more traffic (from people linking in from their RSS reader).
  3. Be a thought-leader
    This was a term that I came across at Tech-Ed, rather than just blogging what others have to say, write original content. It can be useful to blog announcements but it’s not really differentiating you from other bloggers. If you’re creating the content you’re more likely to be linked to. 
  4. Participate in the online community
    Online nobody has a name… until they comment. The more you comment on other peoples blog the more likely they are to participate on your blog. It also makes blog owners happy to have people commenting, so why not take a few moments to comment on something you find useful? Call it Karma. I learnt this well from GEEK who is great at leveraging this method.
  5. Make commenting easy
    A lot of sites use CAPTCHA or require registration to comment which only inhibits people from commenting. If I can’t post a comment, I’m not likely to return in a hurry to see what others had to say. Use a fantastic anti-spam tool like Akismet which takes away the headaches while making it easy for users to interact.
  6. Solve a problem
    A lot of my traffic comes from people visiting posts where I comment on a solution I have to a common problem. In my case this includes things like how to resolve a common coding question or how to achieve something with a third party tool. People like linking to solutions.
  7. Make syndication easy
    When I last upgraded the theme of my blog I accidentally removed all links to my RSS feed. Since adding the feed link back and adding a prominent link at the top of the page the number of subscribers has been increasing strongly. Don’t make people hunt for your feed, they want to be return visitors so don’t punish them for it.
  8. Ask for links
    I identified a post that was getting a significant number of visits to it and updated it to ask that if people found the information useful that perhaps they would like to subscribe to my RSS feed. This has resulted in a steady increase in RSS subscribers over time.
  9. Post often
    …but not too often. I notice I get more links and visitors when I post between once and twice in a day. It’s just like selling - the more often I’m in front of a prospect (visitor) the higher chance they will find a post useful and subscribe or link to it. Post too often and you consume too much time and annoy your audience.
  10. Pimp it!
    It’s surprising how many opportunities you have to link to your blog. I advertise my blogs existence in presentations, in my email signature and anywhere else that seems appropriate. It’s not seen as a bad thing, often having a blog adds authority to what you have to say.

There are many more things you can do to improve traffic but I thought I’d round of the top 10 that I use to try and help my own blog. I’m trying to take a more aggressive approach to trying to improve the experience for you, the audience, but some of these won’t be visible for a while. The key to any improvement is being able to measure your success (or failure) which is why often I comment on tools that I use to measure my own performance.

What have you found useful to help reach more people?

- JD


16 comments. Add your own comment.

10 ways to build more traffic » Bloghacking says 31 August 2006 @ 02:44

[...] 10 ways to build your blog trafficTechnorati Tags: blog traffic, marketing, promotion, blogging Share this linkThese icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages. [...]

Andrew Connell [MVP MCMS] says 31 August 2006 @ 14:38

Jacksonville Code Camp Recap (Part Deux) – More Tools and Blogging…

Dan says 31 August 2006 @ 14:51

Nice post JD, thanks for sharing some of the secrets that helped you earn the NZ.NET blogger of the year title ! ;-) Your blog is always an interesting one to read…

James Newton-King says 31 August 2006 @ 17:50

One that you didn’t mention JD, and that I’ve started doing after seeing it here, is always having at least one picture with a post.

Like a headline I think it grabs people’s attention, even if it is completely superfluous and only loosely related. A picture also helps break up screens of text.

traskjd says 31 August 2006 @ 19:31

Thanks for the comments guy :)

James, I’ve been a bit slack with the images every now and then (mainly when I’m away from a machine with photoshop).

– JD

Tim Haines says 1 September 2006 @ 18:33

Highly Relevant: http://www.seomoz.org/blogdetail.php?ID=1347

Craig Box says 4 September 2006 @ 13:13

Another good tip: make sure your blog looks good wherever it’s syndicated. Most of your readers don’t come directly to you, at least not initially.

t94xr’s blog » 10 ways to build your blog traffic! says 4 September 2006 @ 19:09

[...] JD’s Weblog posted up 10 ways of increasing your blog traffic - hense forth aswell to be a better blogger aswell in some respect… [...]

traskjd says 5 September 2006 @ 16:13

Cheers for the link Tim, quite useful :) I’ve been away for a couple of days but I’m really looking forward to working more on building this ol’ blog up a bit :)

– JD

Andrew says 12 September 2006 @ 13:35

Great pointers, thanks. I’m also putting a link on my site back to you :-)

traskjd says 12 September 2006 @ 20:11

Thanks for the link Andrew, your site looks good – liking the layout :) Linked.

– JD

Richard Rinyai says 14 September 2006 @ 05:56

Just read over the information you posted. Very nice.

I do have one question though. How do you put adsense javascript into your blog just after each post? I tried going it on mine, but it doesn’t show up.

I’m not good with HTML, so if you would like, you can view my source code through my blog site and let me know how it could work.

I am using Beta Blogger right now. Makes it easier for me to work with.

Any help would be much appreciated.

Thanks,

Richard Rinyai
http://www.howtoadmin.blogspot.com

traskjd says 14 September 2006 @ 07:15

Hi Richard,

I just inserted the snippet of JS in the template. I’m not sure you can do this with Blogger (I’m not a blogger user and I’m not sure how they do things). My guess would be that perhaps you can’t do it at all with Blogger.

Thanks for your comment,

– JD

Easton Ellsworth says 15 September 2006 @ 07:08

Good tips, thanks. I’m always looking for more tips to include in my blog about professional and corporate blogging. You’ve just fed the beast :) !

Snice says 18 November 2007 @ 20:12

Thanks for those great tips.

Velda Brotherton says 8 July 2008 @ 09:10

Thanks for the top 10. I’m so green I don’t know how to do half the stuff, but I’m working hard on learning and you’ve just helped me some more. My first mistake was using variations of my name on two blogs, now I wish I had more interesting names, but hate to start over. Any way I can transfer my archives to a new blog at blogger? Help.

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