Wondering how to increase your website traffic and get blog followers without using Search Engine Optimization (SEO) or other strategies that require you to have an existing audience or older website?
If you’re nodding along then stay tuned, as I’ll be sharing nine powerful tactics for growing your website’s pageviews — even if you’re a new blogger.
While these strategies are great for bloggers who are just starting out, they can also be used by those who already have an audience and want to grow it even further.
In this episode, you’ll learn:
- How to choose the right places to guest post (and how to use it to grow your traffic, Google ranking, and email list)
- The email you should send out after every single post you publish
- How being on less social media platforms can actually increase your blog following
- My favorite types of content for growing website traffic
- A simple social media tactic for getting in front of new people
- And more!
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Increase Your Website Traffic & Get Blog Followers – Podcast Episode Audio
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Grow Your Blog Traffic (Beyond SEO) – Episode 13 Transcript
One frustration I often hear from bloggers in my community, particularly the newer bloggers, is that many of the traffic-growing strategies they learn about require either an older site or some kind of base community like an email list or a social media following to implement.
If you’re frustrated by this, stay tuned, because I’m going to be sharing nine powerful strategies for getting people to visit your website even before you’ve built an audience.
Free Travel Blogger Resource Library
We’ll dive more into a successful webinar structure in a bit, but first, I want to direct your attention to the show notes where I’ve shared a link to my free Travel Blogger Resource Library.
Inside you’ll snag access to 30+ resources from cheat sheets to workbooks to video tutorials that can help truly turn your blog into a profitable business.
I’m all about implementation and I really want to make sure you don’t just listen to the episode and forget about it, but that you actually use what I share to make your blogging life easier.
Feel free to even pause this episode to go grab those resources. You back? Okay, let’s dive into the traffic-generating strategies.
Also, to help you decide which of the following traffic-generating strategies you should use, take my free blogger personality quiz. It will help you uncover your unique blogging superpower while also providing advice on how to best use it!
Get blog followers with strategy #1: Guest posting.
Guest posting refers to writing content on another website, typically in exchange for links back to your blog instead of for money.
These backlinks can help grow your traffic and get blog followers as people read the post and click through to your website.
Building links from high-authority sites also helps you rank higher in Google search as Google starts to see your site as being more trustworthy; since these backlinks act as a sort of referral. Basically, if a trustworthy site links to you, Google will start to see you as more trustworthy, as well.While #GuestPosting can be great for growing #BlogTraffic, there are a few things to keep in mind to really make it worth your while. @jessonajourney lays them out here in #TPTBPodcast!
Now, there are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to guest posting:
First of all, you want to guest post on high-quality websites that share the same audience as you but who aren’t direct competitors in terms of products you might sell. Your goal is to grow your traffic, so you want to make sure you’re getting in front of the people you truly want to get in front of.
By the way, one predictive measurement of the quality — particularly in terms of the ranking ability of a website — is Domain Authority, which is a search engine ranking score developed by a company called Moz that predicts how well a website will rank in search results.
You can look up a website’s domain authority for free using the Moz Link Explorer. It goes from 1-100, and the higher the Domain Authority of a website, the better chance it has to rank according to this measurement.
I would say just as a starting point to look for websites that have a Domain Authority of 30 or higher for your guest posts.
Also, when guest posting you don’t just want a link to your homepage in the author bio. You want a few contextual links back to other relevant posts on your own site.
For example, if you’re writing a guest post on “A Solo Female Traveler’s Guide To Costa Rica” you would hopefully be able to link back to your own blog post on Solo Travel Safety Tips and the Costa Rica hotel review you wrote.
I also recommend asking if you can promote a relevant opt-in freebie to also be able to grow your blog’s email list. This way you’re really making writing for free worth your while.
Remember once someone is on your email list you can nurture them into customers, you can send them your new posts to grow your traffic, you can let them know when new videos publish to grow your YouTube channel, and so on. It’s very powerful.
Finally, don’t forget about companies you may be able to guest post for. For instance, if you write about travel photography, along with guest posting for other travel photography bloggers, maybe you can guest post for a camera or camera gear company’s blog.
Oh, and by the way:
Along with searching on Google for guest posting opportunities, you can use Keysearch’s Opportunity Finder tool.
Simply type in your blog topic, and Keysearch will find opportunities for guest posting about it in seconds. If you don’t have Keysearch, you can click my affiliate link here and use code JESSIEONAJOURNEY for 20% off!
Another idea is to join Perlu, a free-to-join influencer network that makes it easier to collaborate with brands as well as other creators, especially through what Perlu calls “Packs,” which are themed groups. Here is a referral link to my Collaborative Posts Pack, which offers another great way to build links and grow traffic.
Speaking of which, let’s move on to…
Traffic-generating strategy #2: Create and take part in collaborative posts.
Collaborative posts involve asking other people, usually bloggers, for their input on a topic.
These bloggers will usually submit a paragraph or two, which get combined to form one larger collaborative post.
There are numerous benefits to this type of content:
If you’re feeling stuck with how to come up with blog ideas because you’re limited by your own experience, this can help.
Additionally, by creating a collaborative post on your blog, you’ll often see a boost in traffic as the bloggers who contributed share the finished post on their channels, potentially even linking to it from their websites.
On the other hand, taking part in a collaborative post hosted on another blog allows you to make new industry connections, get in front of a new audience, gain backlinks and grow your traffic.
Again, I have a Perlu Pack dedicated to Collaborative Posts that you can join for free.
Now let’s chat about…
Strategy #3 for growing your website traffic: Freelance writing.
This is actually the main strategy I used to take my blog full-time back in 2011.
Like guest posting, freelance writing involves creating content for another publication; however, you get monetary compensation for your work.
Freelance writing can also be great for exposure. Just note that you’ll have less say in terms of backlinks and including your opt-in freebie than you would with guest posting. Often it is just a link in the bio, unless otherwise discussed, which can still be valuable.Have you tried any of these 9 strategies for growing your #BlogTraffic? Spoiler: We're going beyond SEO in this episode of #TPTBPodcast!
If there is a print or online magazine you’d like to pitch, look for a section on their site that says something like Submissions, Contributions, Write For Us or even sometimes Contact Us to try to find full information on who to pitch and how. You really want to try to address the editor of the magazine section you’re pitching by name. It’s a simple thing that can go a long way.
Also, to give you a starting point, at the time of recording this episode at least, I saw that Fodor’s, Authority Magazine by Medium, and WestJet Magazine are all accepting pitches from new contributors.
Okay, I personally am obsessed with this next strategy, as it’s something that I do for every single post I publish:
Blog traffic strategy #4: Let bloggers and brands know when they’re mentioned.
Whether a blog post is sponsored or not, it’s wise to email every single blogger you quote, every hotel you stay in, every restaurant you eat in, every company you talk about — just any person or brand mentioned in the post — should be emailed so that they know they’ve been mentioned and will, hopefully, share the post on their social media channels or possibly even link to it on their website.
For instance, over the years I’ve had a number of brands link to a blog post where they were mentioned on their press page.
Pro tip with this:
Link to your shares in your outreach emails to make sharing easy for them.
For instance, I will share a blog post across all of my channels before emailing the entities mentioned. In my email to them, I’ll include something like “Click here to re-tweet the post” and “Click here to re-share the post on Facebook”.
In each instance, the text is linked to my original share just to make it super easy for them to share and not put it off and forget.
Moving on to…
Strategy #5 for increasing pageviews: Use social media advertising.
I’m a fan of Instagram Ads and Facebook Ads for bloggers, though you can use Promoted Pins or ads on Google or YouTube; whatever makes sense for you.
I know a lot of bloggers only like to implement free strategies, but the truth is your blog is a business, and making investments in your business can help you grow your traffic, community, and income faster and easier.
What I will say is this:
I personally wouldn’t spend a ton of money on ads just to send traffic to a blog post.
Instead, consider how you can actually convert people into email subscribers and, more importantly, customers of your own products or products from affiliate partners.
Maybe that means crafting an affiliate marketing strategy that involves running an ad to an affiliate-optimized post so that you’re getting traffic and making referral sales.
Or you could optimize your Facebook Ad for purchases, send people to your opt-in freebie landing page and then pitch them through a tripwire where you offer a limited-time product discount on the opt-in freebie thank you page.Wow! Strategy 5 in this episode of #TPTBPodcast helps you grow your #BlogTraffic, email list & #BloggingIncome all at once!
Now I realize some of you are probably scratching your head and trying to picture this so let me give an example.
Let’s say you have a travel photography course, and you decide to run an ad to your travel photography cheat sheet. On the thank you page someone is sent to after opting into your cheat sheet, you might say “Limited time offer! For 30 minutes only get my travel photography course for 50% off.”
Even though that ad appears to be a lead ad to get subscribers, you would optimize it for purchases so that Facebook knows the purchase is the ultimate result you want, and that they should find more people who will want to buy your course.
I do have a free Facebook Ads Blueprint right here that can help you get started with running profitable Facebook Ads without the overwhelm and stress.
By the way, if you’re wondering how to take your blog full-time within a year, this strategy can really help you monetize faster.
Ready for the next tactic?
Blog visibility strategy #6: Get active in sharing groups.
This could be niche Facebook groups, Tailwind Tribes for Pinterest, or something else.
Essentially you want to find groups where people share each other’s content. With this, you want to find groups that are truly in your niche so the content is all relevant.
Moreover, be wary of groups where you need to share every single post in a thread because then you may be forced to share something irrelevant. I’m a fan of the Female Travel Bloggers group on Facebook, as they host a #BlogPostSaturday event where you reciprocate sharing with others, though you don’t have to share the content of every single person who takes part in the weekly event.
Now let’s chat about…
Increasing your blog traffic with strategy #7: Show up daily on the channel of your choice.
Wondering how to use social media?
Here is a tip:
You’ll grow a lot faster if you choose one platform to master and to show up daily on than you will if you spread yourself thin across every social media channel.
Consider where your audience hangs out, as well as which platform speaks to you the most. Then you’ll be able to go all-in with this platform, pouring your creative energy into the process to see results more easily.
You’ll also have time to utilize all the features of a platform. For instance, instead of just posting links to your content — which is typically not a very engaging strategy — you might get active in niche Facebook groups, take part in weekly Twitter chats, host YouTube livestreams, create videos for IGTV — and have fun in the process of learning the platform that you choose.
When you’re having fun and sharing in an inspired way your community will notice.
When you feel good when you’re creating content, that energy shines through. You set your point of attraction from an inspired, joyful, fulfilling place, and that then transfers to the people who see what you create.
Now, no matter which platform you choose, aim to be helpful and add value.
For instance, I’ve seen incredible results in terms of growing my community when I show up regularly to answer questions in niche Facebook groups. The more time you spend in a group, the more visible you become.
And when you help others, you become visible for the best reasons.
Moving on to strategy #8 for getting blog followers: Host long Facebook Lives.
What I like to do is treat my livestreams as a live webinar or event.
I really plan them out, I promote the heck out of them, and I create a resource to pair so that I can get people over to my website and also convert them into an email subscriber so that they’re really part of my community.
During the Facebook Live, encourage engagement, which then helps more people see the video as it opens up your reach to the audience of those who are engaging.
This means that if I’m hosting a Facebook Live and you like and comment, my video now gets opened up to your audience. If you share my video, wow, even better.
Also note that the longer you go live, the more of a chance you have to increase views and engagement. I see a huge difference in engagement — as well as in traffic to my paired resources — when I go live for an hour vs. 15 minutes.
Finally, increase your monthly website visitors with strategy #9: Show up live, in person.
This is obviously going to be the most time-consuming strategy, as you actually have to close your laptop and leave your house, but it’s often one of the most rewarding.
First of all, it’s fun to connect with people in person, especially if you’ve been staring at a screen all day.
Additionally, you become so much more memorable to the people you interact with face-to-face.What tactics are you currently using to grow your #BlogTraffic? Check out these 9 strategies *beyond SEO* from @jessonajourney in #TPTBPodcast.
I know personally when I meet people at, say, a local Travel Massive meetup or at a blogger conference, I am not only more likely to follow their accounts but actually interact with them.
These in-person interactions also open up the doors for cross-promotion, co-creation, and collaboration — which, by the way, there is a podcast episode about called “How To Grow Your Blog Through Collaboration: 3 Powerful Strategies.”
For example, let’s say you’re at an in-person event and you meet a fellow travel blogger and you hit it off, and you find out that they run a private Facebook group for a small group of solo female travelers to cross-promote content.
You can mention you’d love to be a part of something like that. It’s way easier to feel out your options and see if you vibe with someone in person than via a cold email that may never get seen.
Alright, now I hope you enjoyed this episode. I hope you feel inspired and empowered to start growing your own blog traffic.
Don’t forget to grab free access to my Travel Blogger Resource Library. The tools inside will really help you grow much faster and easier.
Also, make sure to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes so you get notified when future episodes publish.
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