I have seen so many bloggers that write their blog post, press publish and then leave it at that, expecting to get traffic and conversions. Very often they are left wondering why they are not getting any traffic and why their blogs are not making money.
***Disclosure -The links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.***
Blogging isn’t rocket science, but there are certain things that you need to do to ensure that your blog posts get some traffic. Simply writing an article and pushing publish is probably just going to send your blog post off into cyperspace but chances are high it is not going to get in front of the audience you are trying to attract.
Here are some of the things that I do for every blog post that I publish on my websites that will help you to grow your blog too:
Keyword Research and Competitor Analysis
So you have an idea for a blog post, but how do you know whether that topic is what people are searching for? The starting point for every blog post that you write needs to be keyword research otherwise you are just shooting into the dark.
Spending just a few minutes doing some keyword research before starting to write your blog post can mean all the difference. Doing a quick competitor analysis on your keyword research can also be very beneficial. It is important to know how many people are searching for the keyword you are targeting, but it is also essential to know how many other people are also competing for that keyword and how strong that competition is.
If you stand zero chance of ranking for that search term it would be much better to target a keyword with less traffic that you have a better chance of ranking for.
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Headings and Paragraphs
I love using headings when I write – it helps to break up my writing into nice manageable bits for my readers plus.
Headings help my readers to understand what is in my article quickly and help them to find the information that they are searching for quickly and easily. Not everyone reads every single word in a blog post and not everyone starts at the top and ends at the bottom.
Most readers are looking for specific information and will scan through an article to see if they can find it quickly without reading the article so make it easy for these people to find what they need.
I name all my files correctly describing them and where possible including keywords in my file names. This goes for image files, video files and pdf documents.
Images, videos and pdf documents can all be ranked and naming your files as keywords can make a difference. This goes for files I upload to my websites as well as for video that I upload to Youtube, including Youtube thumbnail images – this will also make your videos rank higher on Youtube!
Good On-Page SEO
Practicing good on-page SEO is always a great idea. I don’t make SEO a huge factor, but it is one of the many things that I like to ensure is done correctly when I publish my posts.
I always make sure that my keywords are added to some important places wherever possible, including the following places:
- The first and last paragraphs
- The URL, Meta title and Meta Description
- In headings, in bold, in italics or underlined
Images are really important – firstly they make your article look so much more appealing. People are visual creatures and we like looking at pretty pictures, its as simple as that.
Images also play a part when it comes to your website ranking. Images can rank on their own within search engines – this alone means that your images can help you get some traffic.
It is essential to ensure that your images are optimized for SEO – so make sure that your image sizes are not too large as this will slow down your website. This in turn will have a negative impact on your SEO and the slower your website is the less likely anyone is likely to stay on your website.
Make sure to add alt tags to your images and wherever possible include some keywords. The most important thing with alt tags is to describe the image. Don’t keyword stuff your alt tags, rather include keywords where possible if it looks natural.
I always add a featured image for my post which shows up on my blog roll, a featured image for my social shares and a Pinterest image. Depending on the length of my post I may add more images. I like to add one image per 300 – 40o words or so.
I use Pixabay, Pexels and Unsplash to find free images and I also have a paid Shutterstock account for when I cannot find great free images to use. I also try to take my own photos wherever possible. Using photos I have taken myself not only gives me complete control over my content, it also means I will rank better since using completely unique images will always please Google more than stock images.
I use Canva to edit my images and create special images for Pinterest and Youtube. It’s free to use and so easy once you get used to it!
Internal linking is when you add links in your blog post to other posts on your website. Internal linking is beneficial in a number of ways.
Firstly adding internal links gives your readers a way to move around your website and find other awesome content. Adding internal linking is great for when search engines crawl your website – it shows search engines what content is related to your article.
Internal linking can be great for boosting your website SEO.
Try to use relevant anchor text wherever possible rather than anchor text such as “click here”. It will be much more beneficial to use anchor text that describes the post you are linking to.
As soon as you have published a new post go to an older post that is related and add a link to the post you have just published. This will send some of its link juice to your new post.
Add Categories and Tags
Categories are a broad way of organizing your posts. Tags are another way of organizing your posts but tags define your post even further. Both categories and tags give your readers new ways to move around your website as well as help the search engines to understand how your website is set up.
Using categories and tags is beneficial for your readers and for SEO.
Call To Action and Monetization
This is a biggie – if you want to make money with your website you need to let your readers know what you want them to do. Add a clear call to action and make sure you have monetized your post.
You can’t make money from your blog if you don’t monetize it.
I have seen so many bloggers complaining that they don’t get any traffic and I ask them what social networks they are sharing on and very often they say that they don’t want to do any social media marketing.
To me this is insanity. Social networks are free so you are letting free traffic slip through your fingers, plus having social media shares is a really good way to build up your website strength. Social media sites like Facebook, Pinterest, Google Plus, LinkedIn and Twitter are high authority domains and each time you share your content there you are gaining an awesome backlink that will benefit your website.
Social metrics are big when it comes to your website so use it to your advantage. In addition to that if you can master social media marketing for those big social sites you can have traffic on tap at no cost.
My main business website gets anything between 200 to 600 daily visitors from Pinterest alone. Think about it!
Email Marketing & Push Notifications
Email marketing and push notifications are another incredible source of traffic that you should not ignore. I have a few thousand subscribers for my main business and each time I write a blog post that I want noticed I send it out to my subscribers and get immediate traffic.
Getting started with email and push marketing may take a little bit of time but once you have those figured out you will regret not starting sooner!