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How to Increase Blog Traffic – A Comprehensive Guide

Starting a blog is easy, especially since nowadays there are heaps of content management systems that you can use to your advantage. But if no one finds your blog, you are not going to be able to monetize your efforts. 

In today’s article, we’re looking at several solutions that you can utilize to increase blog traffic, and we’re also discussing whether it’s okay to buy SEO traffic or not. We’ve even put together a separate section on how to use Pinterest to drive traffic to your blog. 

How to increase website traffic

Understand your audience

This is perhaps the first step to increase site traffic since you do not want to waste a whole year writing content that no one wants to read. 

Try to create an ideal reader persona and think of the things that they might be interested in. 

Not every blog reader has the same interests you do, but if you pay close attention to the other blogs in your sphere, you’ll see what types of content people most interact with and think of how you can use that detail to your advantage. 

Make sure everything is perfect from a technical standpoint

Your website speed matters a lot when it comes to your bounce rate, for example, but it can also influence your CTR and how people engage with your content. 

If your website takes several minutes to load, it’s a really high chance that people are just going to close the window and choose another result that they get in the search engines. 

If you have zero experience in the matter, it’s probably a better idea to look for help in this sense. Utilize Google’s Page Speed Insights Tool to check your speed score is and check out their tips on how you can improve your site speed, too. 

Needless to say, having a lot of 404s on your site isn’t that good, either, so make sure you frequently keep an eye on what’s going on with your content. If you merge several pages together, make sure to redirect the one that’s not getting any traffic and then delete it from your sitemap. 

Create a content strategy based on keyword research

Using content marketing and keyword research these days is an essential tip if you want to find out how to get your blog noticed. There are heaps of SEO tools that you can use, some of them for free and others paid, but many of them are going to tell you what works and what doesn’t.

You can get the most basic Ahrefs or SEMRush plan, for example, and start looking at the topics you might be interested in writing about and then find keywords that match them exactly. 

ahrefs

Long-tail keywords usually tend to work better for new blogs, especially since the blogosphere is already saturated with lots and lots of content. 

Some might tell you that you should create long-form content only so that you can stand a chance, but if you use the right blog structure and find a unique way of looking at the same topic, you’ll be able to naturally stand out from the crowd. 

We’d also like to note that content strategy also involves re-using and updating your content on a regular basis. If you want to be a full-time blogger and you publish a post once every two days, you’ll end up wasting your crawl budget (look it up, it’s important) in no time, especially if your posts are not optimized. 

Updating your posts and even correctly removing them from your site can be a good way of going about things if you have dozens of ones not getting traffic at all. Optimizing them can also be done with tools like PageOptimizer Pro. 

Put together an editorial calendar

You are not going to be able to increase traffic to your website if you don’t publish content on a regular basis. Sure, if you have a full-time job and you’re just starting out with blogging, it might be feasible for you to publish a new post every day. 

increase blog traffic - editorial calendar

But the least you can do is to create a schedule where you work on an article every Saturday, for example, so that both your readers know what to expect and you keep your website updated and relevant in the SERPs. 

Make your content as unique and helpful as possible

This goes without saying — but your content should be at least a bit different from what people can read elsewhere. There are 2 ways of going about things in this sense if you find that you lack the inspiration needed for creating unique content. 

One of them is to write about the same things as other bloggers but add more to your posts, such as videos and other types of content that can prove to be helpful to your readers.

The other is to basically take as much time as possible to research your topic and use as many resources as you are able to so that you create the longest and most useful piece of content out there. 

Don’t worry, so long as you credit everyone’s work and you even link to their pieces, they’re not going to be upset over you having used their posts as inspiration. 

What about readability? 

This is perhaps one of the most challenging things when learning how to get higher traffic. 

The competition is so high these days that you simply have to do something a little different. Decide on how your posts are going to look and always create a blog structure before starting to write the content per se. 

how to increase blog traffic readability

Use as many bullet points and images as you can. You can even include other people’s infographics if they are relevant and videos that you come across on YouTube. 

Naturally, it would be a lot better if you were to be able to create all of these types of content yourself, but since making good online videos calls for expensive equipment and endless hours of video editing, you might not be up for the task, right now. 

Just use whatever you have available, whether free or paid. 

Sometimes, it’s only a matter of how readable your content is, in the sense that you can always make your font bigger, create shorter paragraphs, and write smaller sentences, too. 

Always think of how your post is going to look on a mobile device. A paragraph that on the web version of your blog might have 5 lines might be a 10-line long one on mobile. 

Use the right SEO plugins and tools

For keyword research, competitive analysis, and anything else you might have to do at the beginning of your blogging journey, we recommend SEMRush and Ahrefs. Both of these tools are comprehensive and easy to use (perhaps the first is easier to use than the second, though). 

When it comes to plugins, you have a myriad available, especially if your blog is on WordPress. From Yoast to AIO SEO (All-in-One SEO), there are lots that can help you understand what changes you have to make on your post to make it more visible in the search engines. 

AIO SEO even tells you how many backlinks you should add, how your score is in terms of images and visual content, and it, of course, lets you add your custom meta title and meta description.

Note: if you use the All-in-One SEO plugin, make sure that you go into its advanced section and add your canonical link. The plugin has been creating some issues for bloggers, so you want to make sure that your sitemap is alright. 

Create an internal linking plan that actually works

Want to know how to get your blog noticed in the search engines without having to waste a lot of money? Well, that’s where internal links come in handy. 

As much of a pain as they might feel like to add to your every post, the truth is they’re the only ones that can tell Google what post goes in the same category as another or if your internal linking plan is completely incorrect.

For example, if you have a food blog, make sure that you create distinct categories for what you write, like Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Brunch, Treats or whatever else you might write about. 

how to get higher traffic internal linking

Then make sure you always link to and from the posts within these categories. If you’ve monetized a page that you consider to be important, you can feature that one on the homepage, but one Google’s crawler ends up on it, it needs to be able to link it to the other ones that are relevant to it and belonging to the same category. 

There were lots of tests performed by SEOs in the past years, and some of them involved getting a site ranked only using on-page SEO in a matter of several weeks. And guess what? Some of them ended up on the first page of the search results without acquiring a single backlink from another site. 

So that’s how important a correct internal linking structure can be. 

Generate backlinks using whatever you have available

Link building can take a toll on everyone, especially if you’re just starting out and you don’t have the money to pay for expensive PR links or the likes. But if you get a guest post on a good site, you can always build lower quality (but high DR) links to that one. This is called a two-tier link-building strategy. 

Another way of acquiring backlinks is to reach out to other bloggers and ask them whether they wouldn’t be interested in publishing your guest post. Indirect link exchanges work well these days, too, but make sure that you never accept a direct one request. 

That would mean that if you were to publish a guest post for someone and link to their site, they would have to somehow find another blog in your niche that you could get a link from. 

This method is great since none of you have to pay any money and there are endless opportunities, too. 

Whatever you do, try to stay away from buying PBN links from sites like Fiverr, for example. This kind of link can hurt your site in the long term and even risk you getting penalized. 

Choose the right design

You can work on your site’s design as it grows and that’s perfectly okay, especially if you don’t have the funds right now. But whatever you do, you need to make sure that your theme is as user-friendly and clutter-free as possible. 

Think of it this way – the more elements on your theme, the higher the likelihood that it’s not going to load fast. So, you risk losing precious readers or people that could click on your affiliate links, for instance. 

Email marketing and newsletters

Is email marketing dead? Well, no. It might not be the best marketing method to use right from the start, especially if you haven’t published more than 3 posts on your website. 

But growing your email list and sending out newsletters to your subscribers can be another neat tip on how to get more blog traffic without you spending a cent. 

Plus, it opens up a lot more opportunities for you, monetization-wise. If you have dozens of thousands of subscribers, you might get brands to want to be featured not just on your blog, Instagram page, or whatever social media account you have (with a high following), but also in your newsletter. 

And there have been cases where people have spent as much as one thousand dollars for being included in a newsletter. 

Explore the correct social media networks

Not every social media network is right for all blogs. If your content is highly visual, you should be using Pinterest and Instagram, as these will trigger the right engagement. 

But if you’re in the business, marketing, or productivity niche, your content might not be as visual, so you could be using other networks, such as LinkedIn or Facebook. 

Try to think of your niche and understand what might work best for you. 

Increase user engagement

Get people to comment on your posts – ask them to do it either in the beginning or at the end of every article. There’s nothing wrong with it, especially since many bloggers like to express their opinions on a lot of things, especially if they’re in the same field as you are. 

Plus, think of it this way – those comments can tell Google that people interact with your content so that it’s good enough for its rankings to be increased. And after all, it’s free content that you don’t even have to write. 

You do have to reply to the comments as often as possible, though, if you want to use this method. 

Find other bloggers in your niche

You should be commenting on other blogs, too, both because you’ll be able to get (albeit nofollow) links from them, but also because you’ll find people you will resonate with and even collaborate with in the future. 

Don’t be afraid to use sites like Quora or Reddit and look for threads that you can give a good answer to. 

reddit for blogs

Analyze, track, make adjustments, repeat 

Not every piece of content is perfect, and you’ll quickly come to realize this. 

Whether you haven’t been able to rank for a keyword because the competition is through the roof and you stand no chance or you’ve simply not used the right structure, so you’re not getting the right engagement — you simply have to reorganize your content every once in a while. 

You can keep your posts updated or remove them completely if they bring you no value at all. You can also add the content in them to your other posts, but be sure to edit it beforehand so that it doesn’t look funny. 

Try to create a schedule for these changes and, most importantly, stick to it. If you tend to write a lot, doing it once every three months might be the solution. If you tend to publish fewer long-form pieces of content, doing it once every six months might be the right way of going about things. 

Run ads

Test a number of platforms and find the one that works best for you. For some, that might be Facebook Ads, but for others, it could be Twitter Ads. Google Ads are usually more expensive, but they’re still worth looking into. 

Should you buy SEO traffic?

It depends. You can certainly use CTR manipulation to your advantage and even buy actual website traffic from certain platforms, but you have to keep in mind that these two techniques actually go against Google’s policy. 

So you always risk getting in trouble if you use them. However, if you’re being smart about it, you can definitely make a lot of money – but you also could get your site banned from the search engines altogether, so you’d waste several years’ worth of effort. 

The best way of buying SEO traffic is to use ads. But try to be as smart as possible and always select your audience as correctly as you can. 

If you write for the US audience, it would be pretty useless for you to get traffic from France or Germany unless the users are actually interested in your content and will translate it through using their browser. 

But if your monetization is focused solely on the United States and the United Kingdom, for example, you’ll get traffic, but you aren’t going to get any sales or leads. 

How to use Pinterest to drive traffic to your blog 

People use Pinterest for bookmarking recipes, ideas, and even tutorials, but it can also be used to drive traffic to your website. We have a tutorial on the topic that you might want to check out, especially since it’s very detailed and it can also tell you how you can use Pinterest for your business. 

But generally, you should be using the right tools and make your Pins as visual as possible – there are lots of free tools available these days that can create Pinterest-specific sizes and designs, and one good example is Canva

Need help with your SEO or digital marketing efforts? We have lots of plans and courses available. Get in touch to find out how we can be of assistance!

 

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Craig Campbell

I am a Glasgow based SEO expert who has been doing SEO for 18 years.

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