Once you’ve started a blog, chosen your theme and developed some content, the next step is figuring out how to increase your blog traffic.
While some blogs seem to grow overnight, please, please keep your expectations real and know that it can take years to develop a large following. It also takes time for search engines to recognize your blog and start ranking your posts.
When it comes to blogging, you should be spending 20% of your time writing and 80% of your time promoting your content. That took a while to sink in for me. When I first started my blog two years ago, I focused on creating good, quality content. I didn’t really promote it other than one Tweet, a few pins and a Facebook share.
Now, however, I’ve revamped that older content and I share it all the time. Pinterest is my biggest strategy for getting traffic to my blog, and it’s because of Tailwind that it’s possible. Tailwind allows me to schedule out my pins (I’m currently pinning 100 per day! There’s no way I could do that manually!!) weeks in advance. Our baby girl is due in 6 weeks and I plan on getting fully scheduled out the month after she is born.
Below are 10 specific ways to increase your blog traffic immediately.
Comment on Other Blogs
I spent 30 minutes each morning commenting on other blogs when I first started mine. Now, I don’t comment quite as strategically, but I’m planning on adding this back into my rotation once I’m on maternity leave. I commented mostly on personal finance, but would also comment on my favorite bigger blogs outside of my niche in hopes other readers/commenters would find my blog name unique and click over! One bigger blog I commented on once brought me 800 pageviews for the day! As a brand new blogger, this was huge!
Challenge yourself to either comment on X number of blogs each day OR spend X minutes commenting each day! It’s a quick and easy way to not only see an increase in your traffic, but also bond with other bloggers!
Write Actionable Posts
While a “Weekend Recap” post might be interesting for about a week, try to incorporate evergreen posts that can be shared for months (or years!) to come. Think “How To,” “X Ways To…,” “Tutorials,” “Recipes,” etc. A few posts I continually share are How to Start a Profitable Blog, The Best Job for Stay-at-Home Moms, Tips for Brand New Freelancers, and How I Made Over $18,000 My First Year Blogging.
While I enjoy sharing life updates on the blog, the truth is my blog is my business. I try to write posts with a few end goals in mind: Either to get more readers, get more newsletter subscribers, sell my own product, or sell someone else’s product (this is known as affiliate sales).
Continually Share and Update Old Content
Lately I’ve been spending about one hour per week updating older content. Like I said, when I first started blogging I posted three times per week consistently. I didn’t promote the content much though, and I had no idea how to monetize it. Now, I go back and read through my older posts, update my image (wow! Talk about one thing that will improve with time!), add in affiliate links if possible, make sure the content is how I want it, and then I repromote across social media. Right now my most popular post is How to Spoil Your Husband for Free. I wrote that post 1 1/2 years ago yet it still brings in a good amount of traffic for me every day.
Link to Other Posts Within Your Posts
I’ve already linked to six other posts of mine in this one blog post. It’s always a good idea to get your readers to stay on your site and read other content that you’ve written. Other than inserting popular posts in your sidebar, linking to other posts within your content works wonderfully!
Also, link to other bloggers content, as well! I’ve linked to tons of blogging friends of mine throughout my blog and to relevant sites that will provide my readers with extra value. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that there is plenty of space for all of us bloggers!
Create High-Quality Images
If you do happen to stumble upon an older post of mine that I didn’t update yet, you’ll be shocked at the difference in my images. I am NOT a designer, at all. Images are something I’ve struggled with and something I’m sure I’ll continue to struggle with. I can whip out a post in about an hour (writing is my strong suit!), and then proceed to spend another two hours on my image, haha.
If you struggle like I do with images, check out my friend Kristin’s fully customizable image templates. They’re just $10 for six and you can reuse them all you want for your own blog posts.
Tip: Keep your images consistent. I’m just now learning this, as previously my images have always been all over the place. Pick a few photos, a few fonts and a few colors and stick with that. Not only will it make your life way easier when you go to create an image, but it also makes you stand out as a BRAND.
Focus on Pinterest
Pinterest is my biggest traffic source by far. No matter what your blogging niche is, Pinterest is a fantastic way to get your content in front of thousands (if not millions) of viewers. Pinterest is a search engine, not just a photo-sharing platform. In addition to high-quality images, you need to write good descriptions with SEO in mind for each and every post. (You put your description in the “Alternative Text” spot on your image.)
I’ve gone to 6.4K current followers in about nine months. I don’t have a particular strategy other than pinning my content regularly. I hate to sound like a broken record with Tailwind, but this was really the game-changer for me. It’s super easy to use and makes it so everything is scheduled automatically and in advance. Boardbooster is another good platform. While I’ve used both in the past, I prefer Tailwind simply because you have more control over your pins. With Boardbooster, you set everything up once and you’re done; whereas with Tailwind I can specify what posts I want pinned and when. This comes in handy when I have specific posts – such as holiday posts – that I want to promote.
Need extra help with Pinterest? Again, my friend Kristin is your girl. She created a course – Pinterest Presence – that covers everything you need to know to gain a following and increase your blog traffic with Pinterest!
Give Your Readers More of What They Want
I mentioned earlier how my number one post each day is How to Spoil Your Husband for Free. I plan on doing follow-ups to this post since it drives so much of my traffic. My blog niche isn’t a relationship blog, but it is a personal finance and blogging blog. I plan on writing posts on “Spoiling Your Kids for Free,” “Ways to Improve Your Marriage without Spending Money,” etc. since those posts boost my traffic and serve a specific niche of my readers.
My second-most popular post is How to Start a Profitable Blog. Slowly, my blog has transformed from personal finance to more of a “How to make money online,” “How to make money blogging,” “Blogging and freelancing tips” -style blog. I love it, since those types of posts are my favorite to write! Blogging is awesome in that it grows and changes as you do 🙂
Want blogging posts that will make you money?! Sign up for free here:
Join Facebook Blogging Groups
Google “Facebook Blogging Groups”and join a bunch! The hosts usually allow you to share posts on certain days with the rest of the group and in return, you promote other bloggers’ content. This also makes it so your content is promoted by other bloggers in other niches, which is great for traffic!
I’m not a huge Facebook user, but I do sign on daily to see what’s going on in my blogging groups. Sometimes in order to share a post, you’ll have to promote 20 other bloggers content. If I don’t have time to do that that day, I skip it.
Guest Post on Other Sites
I guest posted on Money Saving Mom about a year ago and received over 8,000 pageviews in one day! When my blog was brand new, I linked to The Penny Hoarder and they ended up sharing one of my posts on their Facebook page. That day, I received 32,000 views!! Of course, there have also been times where I’ve done a guest post and received five views, but you take the wins with the loses!
Most bigger sites will have a Guest Post page with information on how to submit your ideas and what to expect. Smaller blogs might not have that; so if there’s a blog you want to contribute to, just reach out to the site owner directly. Don’t be shy! The worst that will happen is they either won’t get back to you or they’ll tell you they aren’t currently accepting guest posts.
Join Group Boards on Pinterest
With Pinterest, it really isn’t about the number of followers that you have, but more about getting your content in front of people who would be interested in reading it. This is where Group Boards come in. I’m a part of 80 or so Group Boards. You can see them all on my Pinterest page; Group Boards are the ones with the little people in the corner.
To find boards, I do a few things. First, I use the Pinterest search bar to look for Group Boards in a certain niche (like blogging, personal finance, parenting, etc). Click on the board you’re interested in and see if they’re accepting new contributors. If they are, they should have directions in the bio telling you how to join (you normally follow the board, follow the board owner, and email the board owner asking to join).
I also use Google to find boards. Just Google “personal finance Pinterest group boards” or something similar.
And lastly, I look at my favorite bloggers Pinterest pages and see what boards they belong to. This is the BEST way to find awesome Group Boards with thousands of members and tens of thousands of pins!
What am I missing? What are some strategies you use to get more traffic to your blog?! Share in the comments so we can all help each other out!!
Aliyyah @RichAndHappyBlog saysat
Great list! When I first started my blog, the majority of my traffic came from comments on larger blogs. Now Pinterest is by far my biggest traffic driver as well.
Sarah Brooks saysat
Yes it’s crazy how much traffic commenting on other blogs can bring in!! I definitely need to re-incorporate that into my strategy!!
Great list. I’m currently working on all of them. I have a question about creating images by only using a few pictures for Pinterest. How do you do that if your blog posts vary quite a bit? They all relate to personal finance and travel but I’m not sure how I’d pick just a few pictures. Won’t they all look too similar with just changed titles? I can see where it would work well for posts about blogging though.
Sarah Brooks saysat
You could for sure change the picture each time but I would suggest keeping the font and color scheme the same! Mine are still kind of varied as I’m trying to decide exactly what I want my brand to be, but you definitely want your ultimate goal to be that people can recognize you on Pinterest just by seeing your image!
Shirria @ GDTH saysat
I do agree that Tailwind is a must have blogger resource for growing traffic for new bloggers. Since using it my page views have nearly doubled.
Thanks for the tips – majority of traffic is through the Facebook Groups but I plan to implement some of your other tips too!
Great post! Helpful for me that I am a newbie. I will follow your tips. Thanks!
Brittany Coleman saysat
Good info! Thank you for sharing. It’s very helpful for us newbies!
Ramona @ Personal Finance Today saysat
Post in forums. For me it’s been a HUGE traffic source all these years. Find niche forums that allow you to link to your website in your signature and just post great replies there and help out people. Quora is also a great traffic tool, used right.
Joining way more group boards, using Tailwind, and remembering to comment on other blogs–those are all fantastic reminders for me now that I finally have time to promote my blog. I’ve been blogging for 3 years–90% writing and 10 % promoting, so as you can imagine, my traffic is sad, sad, sad. Thanks for the help!
Great list!!! Looking to grow my traffic on my blog!! I have been doing it for almost a year. I still have so much to learn. I do feel like i should write more than I promote, so this def. helps… I probably spend about 50% learning and the other 50% writing/promoting.
Angel Bland saysat
I just want to say that your ebook has been a godsend! I haven’t stopped reading it since I purchased it about a week ago.
I was actually in the process of revamping and starting a new blog all over again and since your ebook came along I have used it every step of the way.
When I started my first blog I had no idea what I was doing. Your ebook has helped me TONS!
Cannot thank you enough 🙂
This Wife's Life saysat
Thank you for this blog post…and it’s true, I found you on Pinterest! 🙂
Ben Bergmann saysat
Thanks so much for this list. I’m a relatively new blogger as well and most info I found just says use Pinterest, and I haven’t really had much luck with it yet. Christmas and the fact that I wasn’t able to write any posts for the last two weeks as we were visiting family in Germany probably didn’t really help.
Now I’m back in the game and this list really helped me decide on a strategy to get more traffic 🙂
Lizzie @themindfulmedic saysat
Working through the list! Cheers for more helpful ideas and tips x
Good tips, thanks! I’ve actually never tried using Pinterest however it seems like a good idea. Recently we published a blog post about the ways that worked for us. I thought you might find it interesting as well. https://goo.gl/tgl2U9 Let me know what you think!