Blogging isn’t unique. It’s not a rocket science. It’s not the most complicated business model in the world.
I may sound like someone who hates blogging. But trust me; I don’t hate blogging at all. I am a blogger, and I love it!
The problem is that there are so many new blogs being created every day. It’s hard for a newbie to stand out from the crowd, especially if one doesn’t have good writing skills. It’s because the key to any successful blog is to create quality content on a regular basis and promote it to the relevant audience.
It’s easier said than done. But implementing the below-mentioned strategies will help you increase the authority of your blog and get more exposure to your content.
1. Get your domain name – This is the first step of your journey so make sure you do it right. Avoid free hosting services that don’t allow you to use your domain name (www.example.com). People don’t like reading blogs that have domain names like www.yourblog.freehosting.com, so it’s better if you just avoid free hosting services. And since hosting doesn’t cost more than a few bucks a month, it shouldn’t be a big deal for anyone to buy hosting from reputed companies like BlueHost.
As far as domain names are concerned, there are a couple of ways to use them. You can get a keyword-rich domain name (www.mensfitness.com), or you can get a brand-able domain name (www.moz.com). I prefer brand-able domain names because I’m a big fan of branding.
2. Install a Content management system (CMS) – WordPress is my personal favorite, and I recommend it over all other CMS software, at least for blogging purposes.
3. Do a thorough keyword research – Keywords are an important part your overall blogging strategy, so you have to make sure that you’ve done all the necessary research to find out main keywords as well as LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords (also known as long-tail keywords). However, while writing content, don’t stuff your keywords unnecessarily in your articles as it will make your content look spammy and unnatural.
4. Pingbacks and trackbacks – Pingbacks and trackbacks are ways to alert other websites when you link to them. Both are the same except that pingbacks are automated, and trackbacks aren’t. I am talking about self-hosted WordPress blogs. I am not sure if it applies to other CMS software like Drupal or Joomla.
When you publish a blog post and link to a post on another blog, a pingback is automatically sent to that blog. When you publish a blog post, you can add trackback URLs from WordPress editor. WordPress trackback URLs end with /trackback/. You can get trackback URLs from the blog posts that you’ve linked in your article. You can enter multiple trackback URLs by separating them with commas.
5. User-friendly design – Your blog design plays a critical role in the success of your blog. So make sure that you have a user-friendly design with proper navigation, good fonts, color theme suitable for your niche, etc. And of course, your design has to be mobile responsive.
6. Optimization – Your blog needs to have proper on-page optimization. If you’re using WordPress, I’d recommend using Yoast WordPress SEO plugin to implement the majority of the on-page optimization activities.
Provide your audience an option to subscribe to your blog by adding subscription boxes in the sidebar and in your content (if it is feasible). You should also display social media icons in your header or sidebar, which will allow your readers to follow you on social media quickly. Another thing to do is to create proper categorization of your website.
7. Use archived posts to generate new traffic – When people subscribe to your blog, you will usually send them notifications when you publish new blog posts. But that way, you don’t get an opportunity to promote your older posts.
That’s why you should also consider sending an email every once in a while informing your subscribers about one of your earlier posts. This will allow you to generate some more buzz for your older posts.
8. Link building is an ongoing process – You should always focus on creating new links from more and more relevant websites. If you’re considering of buying link packages, be very careful because it’s very unsafe.
I would personally recommend that you focus on building links naturally and organically instead buying hundreds or thousands of links at once. Also make sure to run audits on the sites from where you’re getting links, to avoid Google penalties.
9. RSS feeds – This is one of the older techniques to generate traffic to websites, and it still works. Find out sites where you can submit your blog’s RSS feeds. There are sites like AllTop that can generate some traffic to your blog.
Once you submit your feed, you will continue to receive traffic as long as you’re publishing content. People can also subscribe to your feeds using services like Feedly.
10. Tracking – Track your website traffic using tools like Google Analytics, Clicky, Piwik, etc. Doing the regular analysis of your traffic will help you understand what results you’re getting from your activities and campaigns.
Check which cities/countries you’re getting traffic from, which pages are the most popular on your website, what are most popular traffic sources (social media, search engines, paid campaigns, email, guest posts, etc.). Track as much as you can because it will get you more organized in your day-to-day blogging activities.
>> Continue to Part 2