The Business of Blogging: Traffic Equals Money – 7 Tips to Get More of Both
Bloggers want traffic. It feels good to know that hundreds and thousands of people are reading what you write. It is for the ego, of course. It is also good for the wallet.
Don’t be fooled by the bloggers who say that they don’t want to profit from blogging. Whatever . Let me be perfectly honest: if you hear this baloney, the blogger either does not have traffic that justifies money or does not understand how traffic can equal money.
7 Simple Steps to Increase Both Your Traffic and Your Money
#1: Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – Just like you need to know how to add and subtract to be in business, you need to know the very basics of SEO if you want to drive more traffic to your site. Yes, you need to have quality content and at the very least sprinkle in a few key words for the search engines. No, you do not need to be a SEO queen but at the very least read a few good articles on SEO, install a WordPress plugin and make sure your Meta tags include key words.
#2: Quality Content – You have probably heard over and over that “Content is King” but it isn’t just content it is content that keeps your audience coming back. Content that is tagged with appropriate tags and keywords. Visitors who find you based on a false keyword search and then bouncing off your site isn’t real traffic. If your traffic numbers are high but your bounce rate is also high, it means you don’t have quality traffic or content that is keeping your audience reading and clicking. Not sure what is high quality or low quality content according to Google? Check out this article from Ana Hoffman and you’ll start to get it, promise.
#3: Links – Backlinking is when blogs link to other blogs. Don’t link to just anybody. Link carefully. Link to blogs and websites that you respect and want to refer your readers to. Inbound links from high-ranking sites are good for your Google Ranking. If your Google Page Rank is high, it means you are more easily found in the search engines and that equals more traffic. Don’t just write content that is about linkbaiting, that is like spam in the blogosphere.
#4: Use StumbleUpon – Don’t discount social bookmarking because it isn’t the latest and greatest. StumbleUpon can be a huge source of traffic. Want to know the how and the why? Check out this post by Ali Worthington on how to get massive traffic using StumbleUpon!
#5: Announce New and Breaking News – Not just news about your child being toilet trained! Come on, that will not drive the masses to your blog, just grandma and grandpa! Instead announce news that you hear by reading those press releases that get sent to your inbox, interviewing authors, CEO’s and other bloggers. If you catch wind of breaking news, do some investigation, make some calls and share what you have learned with others.
#6: Write Frequently – The more content you provide on a regular basis the better. Google loves new content and their spiders scan for it! Your regular readers and subscribers like a consistency and come to expect regular posts from you. Develop a schedule and stick to it! If you get stumped on what to write, check out this article from Social Media Examiner on how to constantly produce high quality content.
#7: Social Networking – Yes, you really do need to be on Twitter and Facebook! These two social networking sites are in my top 5 for traffic sources according to Google analytics. This doesn’t mean you need to spend all day telling the world what you ate for lunch, but if you spend 30 minutes each day connecting with new people, retweeting, liking posts and providing quality links and information to others, you’ll see a surge in traffic from these two sources alone.
Once your traffic increases, you can join an advertising network, or start selling banner ads yourself. Brands will be more likely to want to work with you because when you write a post, it will have high visibility. If you want to pitch a brand as a blogger, you can use your social media footprint and traffic in your media kit to sell yourself. If you use affiliate marketing, more traffic increase the likelihood your affiliate link will be clicked on and result in a sale. It all adds up!