How I'm Growing my Blog Traffic in 2017
And because I really do use the techniques I talk about in my Action Planning Class here's my process for planning how I'm going to Skyrocket my blog traffic this year!
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Step One: Define my Business and Blogging Goals
I started by working out my aims and Brand Vision for the year, including my income sources and desired Brand perception.
I spent last year working on content, on exploring lots of ideas and concepts, on working out what I really want my brand to be and on finding out what really gets me excited.
Now I've done that, 2017 is all about increasing visibility. About getting myself out there in front of you guys that I can help.
My aims for my brand are based on providing affordable solutions for bootstrapping Bloggers (and proving it's possible to make money without charging thousands of dollars for everything!) meeting my income goals relies on high sales figures.
Which ultimately requires more traffic. More eyes on the blog, on social media, on the shop and on my Skillshare and YouTube channels.
I only have 2 ‘number goals’ for 2017. One is financial and the other is my traffic goal, which is to achieve 100k unique visitors per month by December 2017.
I have to admit that is a figure basically plucked from mid air. But because it's a number that currently feels totally un-achievable it's made me stop and really look at what action I need to take and changes I need to make to get even a quarter of the way towards that goal!
Step Two: Review my current Blog Traffic stats
My current average unique monthly visitors is 1470. So you can see I’ve got rather a lot of work ahead of me to be up at 100k per month by December!!
My top traffic referrer is Pinterest. Over 50% of my blog traffic comes from Pinterest.
My next two referrers are Facebook (approx 6%) and Google (approx 5%)
It’s pretty obvious from those stats that Pinterest is already working for me. A major bonus of Pinterest being my biggest traffic referrer is that it’s nearly all automated. I use Boardbooster* random and scheduled campaigns to pin my own and other people’s pins to group boards so I always have content being pinned even if I don’t go on Pinterest myself.
My Facebook traffic comes from Facebook groups and sharing my posts on promo threads in the various groups I’m in. The problem with getting traffic this way is it takes quite a lot of time. I have to manually comment on the promo threads and it hurts my brain keeping track of which group has promos on which day!
Even though Google isn’t currently sending a lot of traffic my way, it’s nice to know it’s sending a bit! And my referrals from organic search are increasing all the time. The big positive thing about my search traffic is it has the lowest bounce rate of all my traffic (only 42% in the last month compared to 84% for my traffic from Social Media) and it has the highest number of pages visited and longest session duration as well.
Looking at my traffic stats I can see that Pinterest is my best referrer in terms of quantity of traffic and organic search is my best in terms of quality of traffic.
Step Three: I made a Plan of Action
After looking at my stats I decided to concentrate on using Pinterest and organic search to grow my traffic this year.
Pinterest is mainly a case of doing more of what I’m already doing and my action points are:
- Join more Group Boards and start to monitor the quality of the group boards I’m in and possibly leave the ones that are of lower quality
- Create at least 3 different pin images per blog post
- Create pins for individual content upgrades and opt-ins
- Pin at least 30 pins a day to my own boards (my automated pinning is all to group boards)
Related Pinterest for Bloggers posts
- The Complete Guide to Growing your Blog with Pinterest
- Discover the Best Way to Market your Business on Pinterest. Whatever your Niche or Industry
- How to Plan your Pinterest Account like a Pro
Increasing my organic search traffic is only going to happen if I work on my SEO. I haven’t really been deliberately working on SEO though I have been doing the simple stuff like adding alt text to my images, including keywords in my tags, Blog titles and blog headings and URLs, writing longer posts and including internal text links within my posts.
There is absolutely loads of information about SEO for Blogs and I could easily have ended up with a million action points!
The important thing to remember about SEO is that the Search Engines want to provide search results that users will like. Google’s webmaster guidelines highlight the importance of:
- Providing high quality content
- Natural links from other sites
- Making all pages on your site easily accessible
- Fast loading speed
- Mobile friendliness
Using the tips from Google’s Search Engine Optimisation Starter Guide and several other useful posts (linked below) these are my action points for growing my search traffic this year:
- Post more regularly. This is something I’ve been terrible at during 2016 so in 2017 I’m aiming for a blog post twice a week!
- Test (and improve) my site speed
- Be more intentional about my keywords for each individual blog post and do keyword research as part of my blog writing process
- Clean up my blog topic tags
- Increase inbound links by guest posting on quality blogs in my niche
More Info on SEO for Bloggers
Step 4: Track my Blog Traffic growth
I have monthly and yearly stats trackers in my Business and Blog planner where I will be tracking page views, unique visitors and referrers as well as bounce rate and popular posts.
I will also be able to track how my sales grow as my traffic increases.
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