How to Increase your #Blog Traffic & Followers

The number one question I get is "how did you get so many followers/readers/visits so quickly?" I'm no blogging expert, but I'll try to lay out all the things I did to increase my blog traffic. This may get long, so sit tight.

Submit your site to Search engines
You will want to make sure and submit your sites to google and yahoo. Take a second and do a quick swagbucks search to see how and if your site is being crawled by these search engines. This was one of the first things I did and I get 1000's of visitors from just the google search engine.

It's a major way for new readers to find you, and the best part is they are looking for related content, so they are most apt to be interested in your information. Can you guess the #1 thing people search to find my blog? If you found me through google, then maybe you can. ;)

Pick a Topic
All the great bloggers recommend picking a topic and sticking to it. That's sage advice....but I've never kept it. Perhaps that will keep my blog from ever being "really big" or earning a substantial income, but it's just not me.

If you excel in one area, write about and shine. Chances are, your hard work will be rewarded.

Then get writing
It doesn't make a lot of sense to seek out followers or advertise your blog until you've got some content. For one, people can't easily find your blog without content to search. And second, they need something to read when they get there.

Design it right
I am no expert in the design world. And once again, I disobeyed conventional wisdom. All advice says your blog should be content should be white. It's the easiest to read, looks the most professional, and it's clean. I, of course, wanted my blog to be green, and green it is. :)

But whatever color you choose, try to keep your blog as clean and uncluttered as possible. If you can, try to create a professional design. Everyone can spot a newbie blog based on layout. Not that there's anything wrong with being new, but....let's just say the basic blogger templates leave something to be desired.

Put your best foot forward (or above the fold - in blog speak)
Make it easy for readers to find out what you are all about and contact you by putting those things at the top of your blog.

If you want people to follow you, make it easy for them to find your follow buttons.

Set up a blog feed
There are many feed options. I set mine up with feedburner. Once you have this set up, put a subscribe box on your blog. That way people can easily find your feeds or have them emailed.

Be accessible
Put your contact information somewhere on your blog. People need a way to contact you if you're going to connect with them. Also, be sure your blogger profile has a link to your blog and your email.

Set up a traffic tracker
You can use sitemeter, google analytics, or a number of others. You will want a way to track traffic so you can keep track of what is or is not working with your blog. Also, if you start working with advertisers or companies, they will want to know your stats.

Get connected with Twitter
I resisted this for a long time and just started on twitter last month. But I wish I had jumped into it from the beginning. In under 2 months, I now have almost 800 twitter followers. How did I get those twitter followers? By signing up for twitter, and twitterfeed. Twitterfeed grabs your blog feed (see above) and automatically tweets out anything you post.

When people see your blog post tweet and they are interested, they will visit your blog. If they are really interested, they will RT (retweet) to their friends. Then they tell two friends, and they tell two friends, and... you get the point.

This month alone I have received 623 unique visitors from twitter.

I'm still resisting the facebook world......

Visit other blogs
If you are blogging in a specific niche, then visit other blogs in your circle. You will probably learn a lot from them and may make a few great friends.

Leave comments on blog posts that interest you. Best case scenario, they stop by your blog to see who you are and you make a new friend. Worst case, you brighten someone's day by leaving them a comment.

How to find other blogs
You can search for topics that interest you and chances are the results will include quite a few blogs. You can also search for blogging groups. I consider myself a mommy blogger, so I frequent mommy blog groups. My faves: thesitsgirls, mombloggersclub, and twittermommys. I'm actually starting my own blog group, but it's not quite up and running yet.

Thousands of bloggers are listed on these sites and you can click around to visit them. In the mommy blogs, I have met tons of caring and supportive bloggers. They are moms, after all. :) Most are willing to help, share tips, and genuinely care.

Visiting other blogs is fun. You may learn things you never knew, meet cool people, and increase your traffic all at the same time.

Host a giveaway
All of the above tips are important and great for increasing the traffic, readability, and overall quality of your blog, but I have to be honest when I say a lot of my blog traffic and followers have come from giveaways.

People love to win. Me too. And it's natural that hosting giveaways would bring people to your blog. It may or may not make them stay, but it will bring some visitors.

Participate in blog Memes
What is a meme? It's a recurring theme. Some big ones: Link & Win Mondays, Thankful Tuesdays, Wordless Wednesdays, Aloha Fridays, Super Saving Saturdays, and many others. All of the ones I listed are real, but only the linked ones are ones I participate in. I don't know where they others originate, but if you search around on a few blogs or even search swagbucks, you'll probably find them.

How do you participate? Write a blog post on the meme's theme. For example: if you wanted to participate in wordless wednesday, I think the rules are to take a picture of your children or family...that's beyond words maybe? Then you take the link to your post and put it in the link-up section on the originating blog. Then people will click on your link and come see your post.

If you want to see how the link-up (linkys) work, you can see them at my Link & Win Monday's posts. Feel free to enter any giveaways while you are there or link up any of your contests.

Submit articles to other sites
You can ask to guest post on other blogs or write for groups like squidoo and about.com. I've made one squidoo lens and guest posted a few times. I really need to pick it up in these areas, and maybe you could benefit from submitting articles too.
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Well, that's it. Those are all the ways I've helped my blog grow over the last 5 months. I would have liked to say people just magically flocked to my blog because it's fabulous. And that may be true, lol, but I did do a little legwork along the way.

If you are currently looking to increase your blog following, feel free to leave me a comment. I will come check out your blog. I always appreciate new followers and I'll gladly follow blogs with similar interests.

24 comments:

Stefany said...

Well, I pretty much do all that so I must just suck. haha! :)

Thanks for the info.

Samantha @ Mama Notes said...

great info!

Stefany you do NOT suck.. it just takes a while for readers to find you and stick around :)

~Shelley~ said...

Great post! This is awesome information! I'm definately going to do some of this! I have a new blog and am having alot of fun with it! I would love to see it grow! I'd love for you to stop by! It's a little bit about couponing, freebies, recipes, and giveaways (which is my latest obsession!)
www.shelleysswag.blogspot.com

~Shelley~ said...

Oh...and I am a new follower :) Love your blog!

Dina- said...

WOW! I have got get busy! I am a new blogger also. http://dimes2vines.blogspot.com/ Outlining adventures as the frugal mom of 10, it has been a great new adventure.
Thanks for all your advise,
Dina-Maarie

Anne - mommyhastowork said...

When you say "submit your blog to google and yahoo", is there something specific to do in order "to submit" or just searching for them? Mine comes up, is that good enough?

Angela said...

If yours comes up than it's probably submitted. Blogger is supposed to submit (the new blogger) automatically but sometimes it takes a few months. The old blogger didn't automatically submit and you could submit it sooner if it hadn't.

Lisa said...

Great tips. I do a lot of these things but there is more I am going to do. Great post and btw...I do love your blog, including the colors!

Jessica said...

Stefany:

I just found your blog tonight by the comment you left on this blog.

So see the: Visit other blogs and leave a comment trick worked for you! Your site is fantastic!

I have yet to start a blog, I don't know what I would write about! Maybe someday I will!

Midday Escapades said...

Hi, Angela - Congrats on your continued success. You've convinced me to move my "Connect" section up on my sidebar again. I had moved it below the Resources part, so we'll see.

I do think that the content is the most important. After all, if you don't offer something of value, it's not worth the follow.

Thanks for the other tips. It does take a lot of work!

chubbydove said...

thanks for the great info its very inspiring, would love for you to check out my new blog i would love to see it grow i'm already having a lot of fun with it http://chubbydove.blogsot.com

WCatDD said...

@ Anne - Yahoo and Google have special site submission pages that you can add your link to. They may/may not increase the chances that your site will get crawled through sooner, but it doesn't hurt! Here are the links:

http://search.yahoo.com/info/submit.html

http://www.google.com/addurl/?continue=/addurl

Angela said...

WCatDD- Thank you for giving the links. It's been so long since I submitted mine, I forgot them. :)

Tanya said...

Hi this is Tee! My problem is I don't
know where to look for or I should say
companies that give products to review
or giveaway. I found 2 and I have only
received one offer. It's frustrating.

Holly said...

Wow...that is a great post. Thanks you for sharing all your information and knowledge. I am new to this blogging world and will read it all!

Holly @ 504 Main.blogspot.com

Andrea (ace1028) said...

Great tips! I'm not of the conventional methods much myself, I don't do giveaways, but I like to win them, I don't really stick to one topic, I just write what I write, but I do bloghop a ton and that's how I came across your blog today! :) I'm anti-fb, too, but I have heard good things about twitter. Still resisting here ... :)

Angela said...

Tanya - Have patience. Most (90%) of all the PR I have on my page has come from emails sent directly to me. When the PR people are out looking for bloggers, they will eventually find you. And then it kind of mushrooms from there.

Eventually you will get to the point that you have to say no. That's tough to do, but you only have so much time. Best of luck.

Lorrie Briggs said...

For some reason I can not seem to figure out how to put a follow me on twitter widget on my blog. I have looked all over the twitter site. Is there something I am missing? Thanks

How did you get your facebook, twitter, and subscribe buttons to line up?

Lorrie Briggs said...

Thank you!

MisAdventuresofMomof3 said...

I am so green at this - I want to do product giveaways and product recommendations - but like others have said, "how do you get yourself noticed and become a standout"? Your advice is great and I will start right away double checking to make sure I have done everything that you suggested. I can't wait to learn more from you! Thank you for sharing your advice!

Fiona

Crafty Girls Workshop said...

Angela,
Thanks for sharing this information. I see there is a lot of comraderie between moms and mommybloggers but I don't have any kids (unless you count my three dogs). I wonder if there are any places out there for non-moms. Haha. I just need to be more diligent about using these suggestions. Thanks again!

Anna
P.S. If you happen to like to sew or quilt you should stop by my blog and say hi.

Rachel said...

What a great list of tips and ideas! Thanks! I am mentoring a newbie and I know this is a must-read for her!

P.S. I am amazed by your twitter stats! You must write some amazing blog titles... I don't get as much traffic via twitter, but I love tweeting!!!

Jenny said...

Great post! I have just started my blog 2 weeks ago. Still learning and could use all the help I can get!

Meagan said...

I really enjoyed all of this information. I did not know any of it.

Post a Comment

Thank you for your comments! I appreciate all your tips, advice, and well wishes!

Angela

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