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Ready to learn how to get traffic to your blog by following an amazing list of options, sorted and delivered? Let’s do it once and for all!
Let me be honest… Driving traffic to your blog is one of the most crucial parts of blogging.
Some people believe that publishing good content is just enough to make people want to visit your blog.
The most popular belief is that people will come through searching for related articles on Google.
To be fair… That’s partially true.
Google is getting smarter each and every day and surfs through the internet like your local hard drive search.
But even Google search abilities have limits.
In order to rank, any blogger or website owner needs to let search engines know about its existence.
Even though this process is pretty simple (more or less), it still takes time.
And it might not be a part of your perfect plan anyway.
So before trying to rank for search engines alone, you need to have a basic understanding of your promotional options.
What I mean by that is – How to drive traffic to your blog (mostly – for free).
I usually break down this process into three parts:
Needless to say, there is no “the best way”.
All of the options for driving traffic to your blog can be and are effective if they are correct for your audience.
What does it mean?
Nothing special that you don’t already know…
It means that in the best-case scenario, you want to promote your blog in places where people are looking for it… And in a way that they are most used to.
And trust me, somewhere out there people are searching for anything your blog might be about… ANYTHING!
All you have to do is to find that place and connect with these people.
In order to do so, you need to know all of the options – a.k.a. ways you can connect with them.
This will make sure that you are promoting your blog in a correct manner for your niche and not wasting your time and resources.
Remember, every channel, website and service has a purpose, both for marketers and visitors. All you have to do is to follow the “rules” tested by time.
Let’s go straight to the options of driving traffic to your blog.
How To Get Traffic To Your Blog
The first one that is mentioned in the list above is – S.E.O.
1. S.E.O. – Search Engine Optimization + Backlinks
We start our list with S.E.O. because it is probably the most versatile method for bringing in the traffic to your blog.
But more importantly, S.E.O. technique is essential for ANY sources of traffic, especially the free ones.
It sounds a little geeky, but the truth is quite the opposite. It is a simple method that let’s search engines know about your existence and “tells” them what your blog or article is really about.
This way websites like Google can offer people your blog correctly as an accurate search result.
Plus, search engines are really careful with what they offer to the people who trust them and are not really interested in offering a site that doesn’t follow S.E.O. principles.
Be nice to them and they will be nice to you!
And all it takes is a little bit of attention to the small details.
“You are saying that I can show up in Google just by integrating some small tricks into my blog and get some free traffic in exchange for practically nothing?”
Yes… That’s exactly what I’m saying.
That’s why we stated in the beginning that this is probably the best way to get some free traffic and let the world know about the existence of your blog.
However, it has to be mentioned that nobody knows what exactly are those “tricks” but we always pay attention to what search engines react to.
So since we have a clue about what “has to be done” in order to get some free traffic, all we have to do is to use that knowledge.
The first word that associates with S.E.O. is definitely – “the keyword“.
A keyword is a word or a combination of words that your whole article is mostly about.
By identifying your keyword, search engines get a better understanding of what should they rank you for.
Without them, it is nearly impossible for any platform to analyze your content and promotional efforts properly.
MUST KNOW: Remember we said that knowledge of S.E.O. is essential for any marketing strategy? Well, we were talking about the usage of keywords.
By mastering the technique of keywords, you are definitely bringing your blogging game to the top level.
A lot of people don’t pay attention to them and it’s such a sad fact. They are just wasting a lot of free traffic and making things way more difficult than they should be.
There used to be a time when you could just fill up your text with the same keyword over and over again and that would rank you higher in search ranking.
We won’t spend time on discussing that, because…
Well… “Panda” update by Google happened in 2011 and messed that whole method up. Sad for marketers but good for humanity in general, right?
Now search engines and Google, in particular, have a way smarter algorithm that analyzes the whole text and blog before “giving it a shot” to rank for a particular keyword.
Don’t get scared… It only sounds complicated but it is actually super simple.
S.E.O. can be broken down into 2 parts:
On-Site S.E.O. – The correct way of placing and integrating the keywords into your articles/blog in general. There are a lot of plugins that will help you with that but “Yoast S.E.O.” is probably the option for now.
Off-Site S.E.O. – Search engines don’t have time to check the authority of every single website. That’s why they prefer to trust websites that have already established themselves as trustworthy.
But what does a beginner blog has to do then?
That’s when a technique called “backlinking” is essential. Once a link to a blog shows up on a trustworthy website, search engines start to look at this page differently.
The logic: More “good” links = ranking higher.
Ranking for search engines takes time but has a long-lasting effect and an enormous potential for bringing in the free traffic.
Now let’s move on with and learn how to bring traffic to your blog by using social media channels.
2. Social Media
Social media marketing is definitely one of the top sources of traffic that you can get for free. For a lot of niches, it is way more effective than basic search engine rankings.
There are so many social media channels and websites like:
- Google +
But you have to be careful – Don’t use all of them for one blog. You need to identify whether or not your targeted audience uses that particular social media channel before investing your time in using it.
Before we start discussing some of the most notable social media platforms we have to outline one fact that stands true to all of them:
We started discussing this topic of traffic with S.E.O. technique. For a reason…
You needed to understand the importance of the keywords and their proper usage.
The same method stands true for 99% of social media channels. Correct usage of keywords is the guarantee of people noticing your activity – for free.
Facebook is the number one social media platform for a reason. According to the official stats, more than 1 billion people worldwide are active on Facebook.
This means that all sorts of people interested in various stuff are presented on Facebook. And they are active as well. Sharing articles and discussing them all the time…
Facebook groups make it even easier to connect with a specific targeted audience.
However, It has to be mentioned that even though a lot of people are using Facebook, they are often interested in “just scrolling” rather than following a link to another website or a blog.
The most popular activities of Facebook marketing are:
- Promote your page (keywords go a long way);
- Get the most out of Facebook groups;
- Become an influencer as a personal profile;
Plus you can place facebook widgets all over your blog so that people share your blog/article with others using… you guessed it right – their facebook profiles.
Even though these are the basic methods, there is so much more to Facebook marketing. So don’t be afraid to come up with your own ideas and tricks as long as they are not violating any rules.
Updated: Google+ registration was shut down by Google, so you can just skip this one.
Google plus is often overseen by a lot of online marketers and bloggers. The reason behind it is that no matter how hard Google tries to promote its social media channel, it still stays in a shadow of Facebook.
However, a lot of people that use Google + do no use Facebook, which gives you an opportunity to target people you wouldn’t have been able to connect with otherwise.
There is a specific demographic audience at Google +, that’s for sure…
Plus, competition at Google plus is much lower than on Facebook which might be a good reason to practice your activities on Google + as a beginner.
One more thing that has to be mentioned about Google + is :
It is rumored that bloggers posting their posts on google plus get immediate indexing of that particular page for google search.
A huge time-saver, huh? It’s definitely worth giving a try for some blogs.
The methods of marketing are pretty much the same as on Facebook. Promotional activities of Pages, Circles (a.k.a. groups) and profiles are the primary methods for driving some free traffic.
Last but not least, it is probably a good idea to be on Google’s side whenever you can.
This social media platform is an amazing way to interact with people you don’t know.
Twitter is an amazing way to hand out and interact with people who have all kinds of interests and you don’t have to be a part of any group or circles as in the case of Facebook and Google +.
Twitter creators made it amazingly simple to interact – By using hashtags.
A hashtag is a word or a combination of words that describe/sum up the whole topic/mood in one… #simplehashtag.
This little symbol (#) is a brilliant way to connect. By writing/linking to a related post and placing a descriptive hashtag(s) in status, you are able to be seen by people searching for that particular hashtag.
A pretty simple and effective way to connect with people interested in what you have to share, without annoying anyone, right?
Yes, Instagram! It’s not only for sharing some half-naked photos…
Well, at least not for the majority of bloggers.
But hey, since we started talking about this type of photos. Models share a lot of them to show of their body or any kind of beauty… and gain authority of their followers.
By doing that, they can promote a lot of products and influence their followers’ choices of orders.
Sounds logical right?
Well, that’s called influencer marketing and Instagram is one of the best places to promote your blog that way.
Of course, not all niches are popular on Instagram and like in any other case – You have to know your target audience’s behavior.
If they are hanging out on Instagram, you can definitely find a way to connect with them.
Just like in the case of Twitter, hashtags are one of the best ways to do so.
Honestly, Pinterest is one of my favorites.
Not only it makes so easy to find keywords during your research for S.E.O. matter, it is great for connecting with people interested in certain things.
Instead of words, Pinterest is all about graphics. By creating an attractive photo for an article, you can get millions of free traffic to your blog.
But creating a cool photo is only half of your job. You need to spread it.
Pinterest is not really a social media to start with, it is more of a search engine.
And just like in any case of search engines, the best way to connect with people is to get your keyword game to the top level.
You can create your own boards and pin your articles + join shared boards and take advantage of popular ones, right away.
Unlike Google, Pinterest is not for anyone though. But there’s way less competition and ranking in search results is much easier.
Hashtags were not welcome on Pinterest in the past. But now, things have changed. If keywords are not enough, you can try promoting your pins using hashtags as well.
Not everyone likes reading, especially reading “previews”. They would rather watch than read.
That’s why Youtube is such a popular channel for blogger’s promotional activities.
By creating a small video to demonstrate a little sneak peek of what people can find on a blog, bloggers attract a lot of traffic daily.
A lot of bloggers are even just reading their articles throughout the video and point to a link in the description as a call to action.
As long as a viewer is interested, continues attention is almost guaranteed.
Youtube is more of a search engine and needs to be treated just like it.
As for the promotion, ranking with keywords (usually referred to as tags) is practically the only way to gain the attention of your potential target audience.
You have to remember about Snapchat, Reddit, Slideshare and a couple of other social media channels as well.
3. Paid Ads
The other option of attracting traffic is to pay for it.
Not everyone can or wants to spend time on the promotion of the blog. That’s when the paid ads are a great option.
The top options for paid ad channels are:
- Google Adwords
- Facebook Ads
- Youtube Ads
- Instagram Ads
- Promotion on any social media
Some people might think that it is the best way as long as the return on investment is fair.
Instead of spending time on interacting with people, building a strong relationship and investing time in promotional activities, just paying for it.
Why bother, when you can avoid it…
On the other hand, as long as the blogger takes his or her job seriously, getting free traffic is so simple that paying for all of it, makes a little to no sense.
Free traffic generates way more engaged visitors than paid ones.
But don’t get me wrong. Paid ads are an extra weapon in any blogger’s arsenal.
Plus the options that advertiser has are amazing.
From paying for clicks to paying only in cases when a visitor takes other pre-specified actions. There’s a wide variety of options.
But! It’s definitely not the best option for the beginners and it’s not a MUST afterward as well.
So, it is highly recommended any beginner to look for some free traffic in order to get familiar with the way this business works, before spending money on promotional activities.
Now you learned all of the primary methods to understand how to get traffic to your blog.
As a quick reminder, I would like to remind you that you can find a lot of further details on this topic along with other in-depth lessons about blogging in the free step-by-step 5 Day Bootcamp I shared with my visitors.
Comment below and let us know what you think. And don’t forget to see other articles of bloggers plan as well!