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8 Ways To Improve and Grow Your Blog Traffic Today

You want to grow your blog, get viewers, and get interactions, right? I get asked how I do this on my own blog a lot, so I thought I'd share some things I do in my own business to grow my blog. My methods are a combination of trial and error, things I’ve read, and instinct, so take these 8 ways and see what you can implement into your own business. 


BE SOCIAL ON SOCIAL MEDIA

Here’s the thing about social media – it only works when you do. I can attest to this on personal experience! When I get overwhelmed work-wise, social media is the first thing I abandon. I ALWAYS regret that decision, too! It definitely reflects immediately in page views, interactions, and inquiries for me. 

I’m not just talking about scheduling your tweets and pins; I’m talking about actually getting on there and connecting with people. When you join a Twitter chat or spend time watching other’s Periscopes you begin to interact with people that want to find out more about you and so they head to your site. Chances are if something resonates with them they will share it, thus sending their peers to you.

Now, I don’t mean this manipulatively. Don’t just get social in a fake way in hopes to grow your blog. Instead realize the importance of this networking (the same way you would network for a brick and mortar business) and devote time to doing that. Even if it’s an hour a week in a Twitter chat, I know you will see results. Some of my favorite Twitter chats are #CreateLounge from Kayla Hollatz and #CreativeCoffeeHour from Callie Gisler.


GET ACTIVE ON PINTEREST GROUP BOARDS

Pinterest is a hugely valuable tool for growing your blog – if you use it right. Yes, you need to be sharing your content to your Pinterest account and yes, you need to be repinning other people’s content, but don’t forget to get active on group boards! There are so many out there that are hyper focused to whatever your niche is and they are SO useful for getting your content seen by THOUSANDS of people.

Finding group boards and joining can be a little bit of work up front. I went to some of my “Pinterest Idols” and researched what group boards they were a part of, and then made a point to join and get active on those ones. I also created my own group board to help myself stand out as someone worth following and looking into.

Some group boards that I really like browsing through (and sharing my content to) are Creative Bloggers + Biz Owners and the Blogging Boost Official Board.


USE THE DAILY EVENTS IN FACEBOOK GROUPS

Other amazing resources include the Facebook groups that different entrepreneur’s run. They usually have some sort of themed day where you can share things like a tweet or a blog post or a promotion. These are great because you can get exposed to a new audience and also you can find new people that you want to follow and interact with.

There are usually rules for these interactions and I think following them is a vital part to the ‘trust system’ of these Facebook groups. Basically, don’t be greedy. If you expect others to share your content, then be sure to share their content too.

Facebook groups are also a fantastic way to research things that people have questions or concerns about and make sure you are putting out content that answers those needs. But we will cover that a few points down!

I love the Freelance to Freedom Facebook group so much! The Tweet Tuesdays are my favorite day because you can customize a tweet and have so many new people share it with their audience. It’s easy promotion and also a fun way to meet and interact people (and makes filling up my buffer queue a lot easier)! 


WRITE (A LOT OF) GOOD + SHAREABLE CONTENT

This is another one that I can say from personal experience – don’t sacrifice your content when your schedule gets crazy. I am still recovering from a period of absent-blogging because I was just too overwhelmed. Now, I know, easier said than done. Things get busy and get hard and life happens and something has to be sacrificed but having content that is good, shareable, robust, and pertinent to your business is so incredibly valuable. 

The more good content you have out there the more reasons someone has to visit your site, stick around, and share it with their peers. Content doesn’t necessarily have go come in the form of traditional blog posts either. It can be videos, checklists, guides, etc.


MAKE YOUR WEBSITE EASILY NAVIGABLE

As a designer I can't emphasize enough how the experience someone has on your website is so essential to their overall impression of your brand and your business. You need to have a website that is efficient and easily navigable so that it’s obvious how to get to more posts, how to search for posts, how to read more related posts, and how to get around and see what else you’ve got to offer. Make it foolproof. Make it obvious. There is absolutely no reason to try and be elusive on your website.

Something I highly recommend is having an avenue to more posts at the end of your blog post. So I include a summary block that links to “Posts You Might Be Interested In” in an effort that by the time they get to the bottom of one post they will click over to another. I see this in action too because I’ll get comments from the same person back-to-back, clearly clicking between posts. It’s an awesome pat on the back that one of my systems is working! 

I also encourage clients to utilize their archives or categories to make it easy for someone visiting your site to find more similar content. If they really like one post, let’s make it super easy to find more. 


ANSWER QUESTIONS WITH YOUR BLOG POSTS

I started to mention this earlier, but just to expound on it more: make your blog posts (or other content) relevant. If you get asked the same question repeatedly (like how do I get more blog views – the inspiration for this post) then make a point to make the answer readily available. If you know people want to know the answer, then answer it for them!

Think of this scenario: you want to cook dinner for your significant other, but you have no ideas. You search for a recipe and find one, cook it, make an amazing meal that he/she LOVES and raves about. You are so excited! Then of course you tell your friends, your sister, your mom, the girl at the counter at Target, and anyone else who will listen about it and refer them to this website because clearly they have amazing recipes.

You want the same thing to happen with your blog. You want to answer someone’s question SO expertly that they can’t help but be overjoyed at the knowledge bombs you dropped that they have to share it. 


LINK TO YOURSELF (+ OTHERS) 

Another great way to grow your blog traffic is to link to yourself throughout posts and link to others. Linking to yourself works similarly to the point I was making before about having people know where to click next. I’ve done it throughout this post – linked to any of my services, offerings, or other relevant blog posts that I’ve mentioned. This is so you, potentially a first time reader, can learn more about me and what I do and continue to peruse my site.

Linking to others works in a few ways: it can help build authority, for starters. If I link to people that are making waves and doing awesome things then it shows that I to follow them and want to make waves and do awesome things. It also helps to establish that we run in the same circles and are friends by association. Another way it works is that it puts you in front of that person and increases the chance that they might share your content.

Now, again, don’t be greedy and expect a share automatically. But maybe you can tweet and say “Read this post about 8 ways to grow your blog traffic, featuring @whoeveryoumentioned and @theotherpersonyoumentioned” and a simple retweet might send 100s of new fans your way.


MAKE IT EASY TO SHARE

Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, make it EASY to share. Put social links everywhere. Put pinnable graphics with descriptions already written. Put social share links on your website that pop up (like the ones I have to the left). Put click-to-tweets. Make it so dang easy that there is no reason NOT to share your amazing content.

We are all super busy and the easier you make it for someone to add you to their buffer queue or pin your blog post, the more likely it will happen. Heck, ask for the share! End your blog post with a call to action that says something like “Would your friends want to grow their blog traffic? Share this post now!” and include social links.


Overall I hope one or more of these ideas help you to increase your blog traffic. Let me know in the comments which ways you are going to try out in your own business or blog! I can’t wait to hear your responses!



I’m Kaitlyn, your design assistant! I work with successful creative entrepreneurs to create cohesive, clean, and compelling visuals for their businesses. You can keep being the #girlboss you are (but with more time to focus on growing your empire)! Let's set up a time to chat!


A Guide To Growing Your Email List on ConvertKit

ConvertKit is the email tool created by Nathan Barry that I, and many other online business owners, use to communicate with their subscriber list (with free content, weekly newsletters, etc). I get inspired to write blog posts a multitude of ways, but this came to me after helping many clients get set up on ConvertKit. If you haven’t heard of ConvertKit yet, I wrote a whole post about why I swear by it and how it can help your business. Today is more a tutorial on actually using ConvertKit, but I am going to highlight how to get started capturing email addresses and sending out content.

When I got started on ConvertKit I had about 30 subscribers. I started using it in November of last year. Now, about 7 months later I have over 2,000 subscribers (with active sweeps removing inactive subscribers, too!). My free-mium course #1WkBrand (no longer offered) has had over 750 students enroll. I can attest some of that to my efforts, and myself, but I’d be mistaken if I didn’t give some of the credit to ConvertKit for making it so dang easy.

So, let’s get started. The first thing is to go in with a plan of WHAT we are creating. Are you creating an email sequence (sales funnel, course, etc.) or just a simple opt-in form for access to a resource library? What’s the end goal? I’m going to show you how the Forms, Sequences, and Automations tools work in ConvertKit today, which should set you up for any sort of opt-in you are trying to make.


FORMS/LANDING PAGES 

When you create your account and log in you will be taken to your forms (or landing pages). If you are just getting started you won’t see anything there besides the option to “+ Create Form”. Forms (or landing pages) are where you create the actual opt-in form that will appear on your website or as a stand alone landing page (hint: there's a form at the bottom of this post!). Once you click “+ Create Form” you will be given the option of creating a landing page or a form.

A landing page is hosted on ConvertKit and a completely separate-from-your-website entity. It captures email addresses and names and functions the same as a form, but it would be a free standing landing page. Remember the last webinar you signed up for? That was probably on some sort of landing page (either through ConvertKit, or maybe Leadpages). A form on the other hand is something you can embed into your website. I have a lot of forms throughout my website. There are some in the sidebar of this very blog post! Those were created through ConvertKit and them I embedded them into my website.

For this example, let’s create a form. So click on that and then you will be brought to three options of “types” of forms to start with. This is changeable later on; so don’t be afraid of choosing wrong. I usually go with the simplest one that just has a spot for name, email, and a subscribe button. There is an even simpler option that doesn’t require a name, but I like having my subscriber’s names! Anyway, click on whichever option you want to move forward with and you will then be brought to the default view of the form. You can use the wand-looking tool to customize the colors and make it more on-brand, but be sure to click save before moving into the settings.

Under settings you have a lot of different options to read through and adapt for your needs. You can change from a form to a landing page, if you have changed your mind on what you need. You can and should name the form something that will make sense to you. And finally you can decide what happens after someone clicks subscribe (or whatever you pay have changed the text to). So sometimes I just have a success message show and it says something like “great! Head over to your inbox for more information!” but other times I’ll redirect to a page – maybe a thank you page/social share page so that after someone subscribes they can share the information with their peers easily. The next tab down (on the left) brings you to the incentive email. This is that email you get when you “confirm your subscription.” Again you can customize what happens in this email (or if it happens at all). The next tab down is where you get the code to actually embed the form into your website. ConvertKit gives you the raw HTML if you are feeling like you want more customization, but if that’s not your cup of the tea, the simple JavaScript code will work great!

In Squarespace you can simply add a <code block> and insert that line of javaScript in and voila – easy as pie! 


SEQUENCES

“Sequences” is the next link over in the navigation. Again, if you are just starting out it will be blank with the option to “+ Create Sequence”.  Clicking that will ask you to give your new sequence a title and then bring you to a page with a laid-out suggestion of how you could set up a great sales funnel (Thanks Nathan!). These are all in draft mode now, but if you were creating a sales funnel this is a great outline to follow. 

Otherwise you can go through and create all your own emails in a sequence. Maybe it’s a seven-day course, or just an automatic welcome email. It can be as short or as long as you like. The important part is at the bottom to change the status to “published” and save your changes often! At the top of each email you can set how many days it takes to appear in your subscribers inbox in relation to the previous email. So “0” would make it appear automatically, but then if you want to wait a few days between emails you could have another one appear maybe “2” or “3” days later. 

Within the email itself you can use the normal formatting tools to create hierarchy, insert links and pictures, and “brand” your email. I personally recommend avoiding too many flashy effects and think with emails the simpler the better.


AUTOMATIONS

So you have a form and you have a sequence, but how do they actually work together? That’s where the automations come in. Automations are the set of rules that tell everything how to work together. So for most of your endeavors on ConvertKit you want a few things to happen: someone to subscribe to your list, be tagged as xyz subscriber (so you know where they came from), and to be added to an email sequence.

By clicking “+ Add Rule” to the right you can make that happen. It’s set up as triggers and actions. So a trigger might be signing up for a certain form (which will appear in a drop down menu), and the action would be adding a tag and subscribing to a sequence (you can have more than one actions!).  This means that once someone subscribes to your form that you’ve embedded on your site they will be tagged accordingly and dropped into the email sequence that you created (the sales funnel or course or whatever you made). 

Automations take a little bit to get the hang of, or at least they did for me. In the beginning I had to actually write out what I wanted to happen so I could remember – okay one form for my blog post resource vault, they sign up, they get tagged as “blog post resource vault sign up”, they get the email with the password to enter the vault… there’s a lot to remember! So I recommend, if you are like me, make that checklist the first few times so that you cover everything with your automations!

This post contains affiliate links for ConvertKit, but I would never recommend something I didn't *know* works wonderfully. 



I’m Kaitlyn, your design assistant! I work with successful creative entrepreneurs to create cohesive, clean, and compelling visuals for their businesses. You can keep being the #girlboss you are (but with more time to focus on growing your empire)! Let's set up a time to chat!