10 Important Facts of Blog Promotion

Steven Snell

Almost every blogger aims to grow their blog and reach a larger audience. Unfortunately, most new bloggers don’t know much about promoting a blog when they are just getting started. The good news is you will learn pretty quickly if you are consistently involved and working at promoting your blog. Here are ten things that I have learned to be true from my experience.

1. Building Significant Search Engine Traffic Will Take Time

New blogs generally take several months, at least, before they gain enough trust from search engines to produce any type of significant flow of traffic. If you are planning to focus on search engines as your primary source of traffic, you would be well advised to also focus on some other sources of traffic, especially in the early months.

Building a blog that is search engine-friendly is critical if you want to maximize search traffic, so take care of that from the start and focus on creating great content that others will talk about and link to.

2. Not All Traffic Is Equal

No two sources of traffic are quite the same. I get a good percentage of the traffic at my blog through social media, and I can attest to the fact that social media traffic is generally less responsive and less likely to stick around than visitors from most other sources. Focusing on stats without looking at the true results can cause a bit of an illusion. Sure, visitors are great, but are they leaving after being on the blog for 30 seconds and never returning?

Search engine traffic is highly sought after because these visitors are actively looking for what you have to offer. But other types of traffic have strong points too. Visitors who are referred from another blog will generally be more responsive since they have been recommended by someone they trust. Every source of traffic has pros and cons, so try to take these things into consideration when you are promoting your blog and analyzing the results.

3. Consistent Posting Is Key

Most bloggers need to keep publishing new posts in order to keep traffic at a certain level. Some bloggers are able to generate large amounts of search engine traffic to older posts to the point that traffic will be fairly sustained without new posts, but this is pretty rare. New posts keep subscribers coming back, they keep social media votes coming, and they keep adding new pages to search engine indexes.

Posting consistently doesn’t mean that you have to post every day, it simply means that you need to publish content on a regular basis, whatever that may be. Almost every blog that successfully draws traffic is publishing new posts with some consistency.

4. Consistent Traffic Is Almost Impossible

Although posting needs to be consistent to keep traffic levels up, that doesn’t mean that it will keep traffic levels consistent. Every blog has ups and downs and two days are rarely the same. This is a natural occurrence and it should be embraced or else it can become very frustrating. Make sure that you enjoy the times when traffic is high, and keep on plugging away to get through the slower times. Blogging would almost be boring is traffic levels didn’t fluctuate like they do.

5. Repeat Visitors Should Be the Goal

Yes, it’s great to see an impressive number of unique visitors arriving at your blog, but how many of them will be back? Repeat visitors are the lifeblood of blogs. Subscribers, of course, are most likely to keep coming back, so focusing on subscribers is typically a good thing.

Repeat visitors will not only help to improve your overall traffic flow and stats, more importantly they will be your most responsive visitors in terms of comments, social media votes, sales, and just about anything else. As they keep coming back and reading your blog, you will be earning more of their trust and your network will grow.

6. Links Help In Several Ways

Building inbound links is a priority for most bloggers, and for good reason. They drive click-through traffic from other blogs, they increase your exposure around the blogosphere, and they help to boost your search engine rankings. Link building is often prioritized because of search engine rankings, but the other factors should not be overlooked. If you blog in a competitive niche, recognition and exposure will be critical in convincing visitors that they should pay attention to you. Getting a few links from respected blogs can help with search engine traffic, but the added credibility that you get can be just as important, especially for newer bloggers.

7. Balance Is Important

Diversity in traffic will help you to avoid losing a huge percentage of your visitors if something unforeseen happens. Search engine rankings are not permanent, especially with Google being so ready and willing to penalize blogs who they feel have violated their guidelines. If you rely too heavily on search engine traffic you could find yourself losing a big portion of your traffic at any given time.

Also, social media traffic is extremely inconsistent, so just because you have been getting decent traffic doesn’t mean it will continue. The best approach is to spread things out and focus on growing traffic from several sources rather than just one. That way you will always be safe and you won’t depend on a particular source for your livelihood.

8. Smaller Sources of Traffic Shouldn’t Necessarily Be Ignored

Not all sources of traffic will send thousands of visitors, but that doesn’t mean that they are not valuable. For example, participating in forums is likely to drive some traffic to your blog, but not tons. However, those visitors can be very valuable because they have met you or learned from you through the forum and they’ll be more likely to subscribe and become a loyal reader.

Likewise, leaving comments on other blogs will bring some traffic, but it is rare that any one comment will bring a lot of visitors. Still, this traffic is valuable because many times they have clicked through due to something that you said catching their attention.

Don’t simply assume that traffic is measured only in terms of numbers. Smaller sources of traffic have been instrumental in building many successful blogs.

9. Networking Is Critical

All successful bloggers are surrounded by a strong network of other successful bloggers. This is something that I didn’t really think much about before I started blogging, but I quickly came to realize the importance of networking.

A strong network will provide you with friends and colleagues that can be a help when you need some advice, they can provide links to your blog, they can give you social media votes, they can be an inspiration and encouragement to you, and they can even wind up being your partners in future projects. Being a strong networker is all about being willing to help others and being proactive in meeting others.

10. Blog Traffic Can Be Bought for Relatively Little Money

If you are interested in getting some extra promotion or growing your blog quickly, there are a number of affordable advertising options that will drive real traffic to your blog. Pay Per Click ads can be very effective and inexpensive (depending on what words and phrases you bid on). StumbleUpon advertising is another option. You can purchase their traffic for just $0.05 per visitor. Even banner advertisements on other blogs can be relatively cheap. Running an ad for a month or more will give you exposure to a new audience and if you were to calculate a cost-per-click it is usually pretty low.



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87 Responses to “10 Important Facts of Blog Promotion”

  • Seth

    Great post and definitely one to subscribe too! I have found that traffic is difficult to start as a new blogger, but hope that as I keep working it will get better. Social networking is usually only good for one time fixes, but we will see!!
    Also, is it worth it to pay for traffic if you aren’t selling anything on your site and are only using ads and affiliate sales?

  • panca

    great listing and tips, I have problems cause not consistent…sometime very lazy and boring to create new posting……thanks

  • Michael

    Very good points. I know a bunch of them but it is good to hear that what I think about some of these topics are correct according to what you are saying 🙂

  • Jagan009

    i think it really helps to the new bloggers. and also exsiting bloggers. this informaton enhances their confidence level also.
    thanks for providing valuable information.

  • bbrian017

    Nice list you have here it’s something I might consider doing over the weekend! Thanks for taking the time to put this list together 🙂

  • aman

    well that was a very nice and composed post. i liked the idea of networking. this is something i have heard for the first time..can u update a bit more regarding networking in detail

  • Bas

    I like to use Entrecard to promote my blog a bit, and what I’ve noticed there is that some people spend so much time promoting their blog and so little time actually publishing content.

    Some people are promoting their blog daily, but haven’t actually posted anything in over a month! That’s just plain dumb and I think posting original content should be every blogger’s main priority. After all, that’s what blogging’s all about.

    As for networking… If you’re on a blog that you like and you see this person users Twitter, add them and connect with them. It’s a really effective way of networking with fellow bloggers.

  • Jim Gaudet

    Great information, thank you. My colleague and I have only been blogging for a few months and these tips I wish I read before hand.

    I did learn them the hard way.

  • naruterz

    thanks for your ideas.

  • affordable web design service

    very nice and helpful tips. I will follow these tips to promote my blog.

  • Alex Griffin

    Brilliant and precise help on a topic I have struggled with. Many thanks

  • Austin

    Thanks for the tips. I hope one day my blog will be big but I know it wont if I do not work at it.

  • SEO Genius

    Another great article thank you again Daniel 🙂

    I especially like how you made present the fact that people should not focus on one source of traffic. This i believe is a key issue for some webmasters who focus to much on one source of traffic rather than balancing out each source strategically.

    Thanks. 🙂

  • Digital Quest

    When it comes to traffic you should never worry about whether the source is providing you 1000 visitors or just 1. Remember, 1000 is made up of 1000 1’s.

  • Sherer

    Fantastic tips. I feel online article, blogcatalog, and feed submission has worked best for me.

  • Sam Young

    Brilliant and precise help on a topic I have struggled with.

    Many thanks

    Sam

  • Blogging For The Money

    All excellent points, particularly about traffic from social media not sticking around. I see so many people chasing Digg and StumbleUpon traffic with infrequent, sensationalized posts while ignoring their regular (or potentially regular) readers.

  • Graham SMith

    Hi
    I just love getting the email updates on this blog. I have only been subscribed a short while but already the points made are so valuable, often so simplistic and obvious when you think about it.

    Particulary interested in the Stumble Upon method so certainly looking at that in more detail, amongst every thing else to do and implement. :0)

    But the problem is, with so much advice flying around the place, I often forget advice or just simply get overwhelmed with it.

    I can’t put my finger on it, but this Blog really rates for me in terms of functionality and purpose. YOu just do what you do very well.

    Great stuff.

    Graham
    ImJustCreative
    “On: Creativity within Life”

  • Steven

    Andy,
    That’s good to hear that you’re getting some good results with paid traffic from SU. I bought some traffic from them a few times months ago but didn’t really see any real results.

  • Andy MacDonald

    There’s some fantastic idea’s there. I have tried quite a few of them, and the most successful method i have found is actually one you have listed. Purchasing traffic from StumbleUpon works great for me. i usually spend about $50 per week on an advertising campaign with them and that gives me a very steady source of traffic, which ill continue to use until my blog (which is relatively new) brings in organic traffic from other sources.

    Thanks a lot, and keep up the good work!!

  • Daniel

    Brooklynite, interesting question.

    First of all I don’t think it is worth to network with people that consider fellow bloggers competitors. This is the wrong mindset to begin with, and if someone is worries that another small blog will “steal” his readers, he is not thinking or acting big enough.

    Most people, however, do not answer to emails because they are too busy, and not necessarily because they don’t want to help you. So do not rule out the ones you don’t hear back from.

    Finally, keep writing great content and I am sure that they will link or approach you sooner or later. If they don’t others will, or readers will discover your blog through other channels (social bookmarking, search engines, etc).

  • Jim | SevenActions

    Some of these are timely reminders for me. I have been frustrated with the crazy traffic swings I’ve had recently, but #4 is a reminder for me…traffic WILL vary. Thanks for a great list.

  • Brooklynite

    Daniel,
    Any fresh ideas on how to network in a subject category filled with bloggers who jealously guard their turf? It’s a revelation to me whenever I hear stories of bloggers supporting one another because so far that has not been my experience with bloggers in my category.

    I recently launched a blog and I sent out simple, low-key introductory emails to a few of the already-established blogs in my topic area which is related to learning a foreign language. The reception has been lukewarm to cold. One blogger removed a link to my blog from my comments, even though it was on topic and even though I had been posting comments on his blog for six months before I ever put a link to my blog on his. Funny, I would’ve thought that after SIX MONTHS of posting comments on his blog, without ever asking for anything in return, I would’ve been entitled to put a measly link to my blog in one of my comments. When asked about this, he told me flat out that he viewed my blog as “a commercial enterprise”. In other words, he views my blog as competition, competition which he does not wish to aid in any way.

    A couple other bloggers I approached, never responded or even acknowledged my introductory email. And these aren’t super-huge blogs. These are blogs with a PR 3 or PR 4. The one who told me he viewed me as competition has a PR 5. You would think he would feel a little more secure at that level about a young upstart like myself.

    I know what you’re going to say…find other bloggers, but unfortunately, the blogs that operate in the same subject area as mine and have the type of audience I would like to reach are the blogs that have been the least receptive to networking.

    Any ideas? I’m already active on Blog Catalog and Stumble Upon, so any additional thoughts you might have will be welcome.

    Thank you.

  • Sarah Ng

    Great post.

    I think the part on repeat visitors is true. Most of the comments that get left on our blog is from repeat visitors.

  • Daniel

    Lincoln, it can vary from site to site.

    Some websites get as much as 90% of organic traffic (search engine).

    There are advantages and disadvantages for that as well. Organic traffic tends to click more on ads, but it is also more volatile.

    20% is not a bad number, though you could improve it.

  • Lincoln

    Is there some consensus on what percentage you should aim for when it comes to repeat visitors? For example, 20 percent of my traffic currently comes from repeat visitors. Would this be considered a good percentage, or should it be higher?

  • Daniel

    Well about the consistent posting, I think the term is relative. It is not necessary to post daily to achieve good traffic.

    What is important is to have a clearly outlined posting frequency, and then stick to it, cause readers needs to know when new stuff will come.

  • Impotence aids

    Great post thank you!

    I also have a problem with consistent posting, with school and everything. I try to post 15 posts every month, but I usually get 13-14. And I also noticed that if I miss a day in which I should post SE rankings go down.

  • Jacky

    I agree. It’s important to make your visitors into Repeat visitors and make the Repeat visitors into subscribers.

  • Thomas Sinfield

    Consistent posting is something that I struggle with a lot. I get distracted and realise that I havn’t posted in a couple of days.

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