The Secrets to Long-Term Blogging Success [Part 12]

Here’s another update in our series about long-term blogging success.   If you’ve missed any of the eleven posts, you can find them all on this page.

Today we’re going to continue our discussion of how to create a core blog traffic strategy.  In the previous post, I gave my top three ingredients for successfully creating a flood of visitors to your site.  They include:

1)      Have passion

2)      Implement and follow systems

3)      Give regular, dedicated effort

With this post, we’re going to pick up where we left off and discuss the rest of the web traffic principles:

Traffic Principle #4- Track your Web Traffic

Do you know how people are finding your site?  Do the majority of your visitors come from organic search results?  Are you getting a lot of referral traffic?  Or do you have to do a lot of “push marketing” to get them to your site?

One of the best ways to increase your traffic is to ask questions like these and find out how visitors arrive at your blog.

There’s a simple reason it’s important to track your web traffic.  When something is working you want to do more of it.  Conversely if you spend hours on a method that brings zero results, then maybe you should do less of it.

Tracking your web traffic is one of the simplest ways to expand the reach of your site.  When you can identify key areas for growth, it becomes easier to duplicate your efforts.

One of the tricks I’ve used with my other online businesses is to install a tracking code.  This method gives me a running count of the traffic methods people use to find my site.  To do this, I recommend a program called AdTrackZ.  With this site you could set up a redirect code for each promotional tactic.  Like for article marketing.

Traffic Principle #5- Follow the 80/20 Rule

This goes hand-in-hand with the principle I just described.  To be honest, there are dozens, even hundreds of different ways to increase your web traffic.  But in reality only a few will actually work.

In previous posts, I discussed the concept of the 80/20 rule.  Simply put, 80% of your results will come from 20% of your efforts.  To really maximize your results, go after those sources of traffic that bring you the biggest amount of traffic.  Furthermore, don’t waste hours doing a task that’ll only bring a handful of visitors.

A simple trick I recommend is to break down your stats into individual sources of traffic.  Then compare this figure with the amount of time you spend on this task.

For instance, let’s say you spend ten hours a month on article marketing and this produces 1000 visitors to your site.  On the other hand, you do blog commenting for ten hours a month which only produces 200 visitors.  Then you know that your time will be better spent on creating articles over blog commenting.

Obviously, I just made up these figures.  And I do know that some activities are important for networking.  The point I want to make is to carefully analyze your “traffic generation time” and make sure it’s being spent wisely.

Traffic Principle #6- Treat Your Blog Like a Home

One of the best analogies I’ve heard about a blog is it should be treated like your home.  It’s the one place where you invite people in and let them know a little bit about yourself.   You don’t immediately pitch something when they walk through ‘the door.’  Instead you treat each person as your guest and provide value before asking anything in return.

In addition, it’s important to have your blog be the center of all your activities.  Even if you sell a number of products on the side, you should use it to build credibility.  People prefer to buy from someone they know and like.  Make your blog that place where can you build trust.

Even if you’re directing traffic to a sales or opt-in page, mention your blog.  And during your autoresponder sequence, refer people to some of your best content.  People want information.  So let your blog become that place where they can learn more about your niche topic.

Traffic Principle #7- Outsource Traffic Activities

In the last edition of this series, I emphasized that important of creating a system for your traffic.  The reason this is important is because you should eventually hand over this system to an outsource worker.

When it comes to a blog, your “core genius” time should be spent on activities like writing, planning, and product creation.  Sure it’s important to comment on other sites and build relationships, but you shouldn’t spin your wheels every day, trying to increase your traffic.

For instance, many bloggers will spend an hour a day “adding friends” on social media sites like Twitter or Facebook.  Yes, it’s important to increase your network of contacts.  However this activity could easily be systematized and handed off to someone else for less than $10 an hour.

I recommend taking a close look at every aspect of your traffic building and figure out if it’s something that can be done by another person.

Traffic Principle #8- Start Promoting Today

One of the biggest mistakes I’ve made is waiting too long to promote this site.  I’m now at the seventh month mark and I’m way behind where I thought I would be in regards to traffic stats.  The mistake I made was coming up with excuses about when was the right time to worry about traffic generation.

What I’ve learned is you should start promoting from the first day.  Even if you’re networking with other bloggers, it’s important to slowly get the word out there about your site.  It’s okay to admit that you’re still learning.  Just reach out and make those connections that’ll produce long-term results.

I recommend you get out a piece of paper and write down a few ideas for how to increase your traffic.   (Don’t worry if you can’t think of any…I’ll list a bunch in the next few lessons). Once you’ve filled this paper with ideas, take action.  I guarantee you’ll make mistakes.  And you’ll probably discover that some traffic methods won’t work.  The important thing is you’re taking those first steps towards creating a long-term traffic strategy.

Final Thoughts…

Well, I hope you learned something from my eight principles of a web traffic strategy.  I think it’s important to understand these fundamentals before you start promoting a blog.  They’ll save a lot of wasted effort down the road.

Now that we’ve covered the basics, I’m going to spend the next post (or two) talking about specific traffic strategies.  But before I do this, I need your input…

In the comment section below, could you list a few of the techniques you use to promote a blog.  Is it article marketing?  Blog commenting?  Twitter?  Facebook?  Guest posting?  Or something completely original that nobody else uses.

Take Action. Get Results.