10 Easy and Effective Ways to Grow Your Blog

10 Easy and Effective Ways to Grow Your Blog:

1. Write About What You Love

I wholeheartedly believe you can create a successful blog around just about any topic… and the more niche your topic is the better (unless you’re literally the only person in the world who knows about it). If you’re a person who loves scrapbooking, gives away scrapbooks during the holidays, and shops at Michael’s a few times a month, then scrapbooking would be the perfect topic for your blog. Plus, if you’re writing about something you’re passionate about, your articles will never become tedious to write and your audience will find more value in your blog because you’re putting your heart into it.

♥  Your Passion + Your Blog = A Loyal Audience 

2. Utilize Social Media

If you’re a pro at using Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram or Facebook it will absolutely help you grow your blog. Around 1/3 of my traffic comes straight from social media sites… which is huge! Social media is awesome because it helps connect your website with people who may never have found you otherwise. If you’re not taking advantage of social media as a free marketing strategy you totally should.

TIPS:

Post Regularly
Make sure to post regularly on your social media accounts to help grow your blog. To make this even easier, schedule specific time slots where you give them some love. Tuesday morning can be dedicated to creating pins for Pinterest and Thursday morning can be dedicated to creating photos for Instagram. That way you will always have content to share which will make staying on top of your social media accounts that much easier.

Create Relevant Content
It’s also important to stay consistent with your brand across all social media platforms. If your blog is on scrapbooking, your Pinterest and Instagram accounts should be all about scrapbooking too! Although it’s tempting, avoid posting a photo of your boyfriend or vacation. That way when someone ends up on your website after clicking on your awesome pin about scrapbooking, your website will be exactly what they’re looking for.

Utilize Apps to Make Your Life Easier
There are a bunch of apps that will post your content onto your social media accounts for you. All you have to do is plug in your tweet or pin and schedule the time you want it to be posted. For my Twitter account, I use HootSuite which posts my tweets multiple times per day. This helps me save time which I can spend engaging with the people who like or retweet my posts. Plus, it’s definitely worth it for the price (I pay $9.99 per month).

3. Create “Evergreen Content”

Evergreen content is one of the best ways to help grow your blog. If you’re not familiar with this term, it’s content that will be great six months or even a year from now. That means content that doesn’t quickly become outdated and that your audience can be able to refer back to far into the future. The great thing about evergreen content is that you can share these articles months down the road and still offer real value to your audience.

EXAMPLES:

● Evergreen Post: “Everything You Need to Know to Start Scrapbooking”
       ► This post will be great for a long time!

● Evergreen Post: “Scrapbooking Supplies 101”
_        ► This post will also be great for a long time!

● Not an Evergreen Post: “My Favorite Scrapbooking Stickers from 2014”
       ► Most people won’t want to read this post past 2014.

4. Feature People Within Your Niche

If you want to grow your site, featuring people within your niche is an easy way to drive traffic back to your blog. If your blog is on scrapbooking, you can interview an authority within your niche or even post a “Top 10” article featuring other scrapbookers. Once you publish your post, make sure to share it across all of your social media accounts (and tag the people who you featured). Not only will you be promoting the article but the people your feature and their audience will also like and share.

Examples:

“10 Scrapbookers You Need to Follow on Pinterest”

“An Interview with Jane Smith aka the Scrapbooking Queen”

“The 25 Best Scrapbooking Blogs to Follow on Twitter”

5. Focus on One Topic

Another important tip that will help grow your blog is to only focus on one topic. If you post about scrapbooking, recipes, and your dog, Lulu, it will be that much harder to build a loyal audience. However, if you only post about scrapbooking, your audience will trust you as an authority within this niche. Let me give you an example:

Samantha is 28 years old, just had her first baby, and loves to scrapbook. She’s a stay at home mom so she want to start scrapbooking even more. She goes to Pinterest to look up scrapbooking ideas. She clicks on one of your pins and it leads her back to your blog. Below are two different situations on what happens to Samantha…

Situation 1: 
Samantha goes back to your blog and the first article that pops up is on a cupcake recipe you posted the day before (it was your boyfriend’s birthday and you made him some pretty amazing cupcakes so you wanted to share the recipe). She’s confused because she thought your website was about scrapbooking and unfortunately is not interested in a recipe blog. Samantha leaves your website to look for another blog dedicated to scrapbooking.

Situation 2: 
Samantha goes back to your blog and the first article that pops up is called “Everything You Need to Know to Start Scrapbooking”. She reads the entire article. Then she clicks on a second article. This one is titled “Scrapbooking Supplies 101”. She loves that article too! Both of them were exactly what she was look for so she bookmarks your blog to come back to in the future. You just created a loyal fan.

So if you’ve been publishing articles on recipes and your dog, you probably should avoid this in the future. Instead, keep posting awesome, evergreen content on scrapbooking.

6. Create an Email List


An email list is crucial to growing your blog! It reminds people to keep coming back. If you sell an e-book, online course, or whatever it may be, you can set up an email sequence that will help sell your product or service. It also gives you the opportunity to share tips and resources exclusively with your subscribers which will helps build trust. All you have to do is create a signup form on your blog.

TIPS:

Give Something Away for Free
I created a library of free resources for my subscribers. Now they have an incentive to subscribe to my email list.

Pop-Ups
Although pop-ups can be annoying they definitely work. I have multiple signup forms across my website and the greatest number of people subscribe though my pop-up.

Include a Signup Form at the Bottom of Each Article
If they love your article they’re going to want to read more. This is a great place to ask them to subscribe. Again offer them something for free but this time make it relevant to that specific article.

7. Make Your Website SEO Friendly

If you’re not familiar with SEO, it stands for Search Engine Optimization. It’s basically what will help your site show up when people Google relevant keywords or phrases. If you learn how to make your posts SEO optimized it will help drive traffic back to your site all on it’s own. Even just learning a few SEO tricks will help you grow your blog.

TIPS:

Keywords and Phrases

Decide on a primary keyword or phrase for every article you write. Then make sure to have well-written content that will focus on that keyword. It’s also important to strategically include the keyword in the body of your article… just remember not to overdue it.

Alt Text
Whenever you add an image to your blog you have the ability to change the “alternative text”. Instead of leaving it as “IMG_0023889922122” change it to “Scrapbooking 101” or whatever the keyword or phrase is you’re using for that article.

“Click Here” Links
When you create a link on your site use specific keywords. Instead of using “Click Here” as the link use “Scrapbooking 101”.

Outbound Links
Google loves when you link to other websites.  I believe the thinking behind this is if you’re willing to link to someone else’s site (and possibly lose that person forever) you must really be providing value within the article. So make sure to include helpful, outbound links in your posts.

8. Make Your Blog Visually Appealing


Have you ever stumbled upon a blog that looks like the stock photos are from the 90’s? If you have, please don’t make this mistake with your blog. There are so many free stock photos on the web you don’t have an excuse to use old school photos. Take some time to scour different stock photo websites to find photos you love. Your audience will definitely appreciate you for it.

Below are a few links to FREE stock photo sites I personally use:

●  https://unsplash.com


●  https://stocksnap.io

●  https://picjumbo.com

●  http://www.gratisography.com

●  https://www.pexels.com

9. Connect with Others

The great thing when you’re just starting out is that you have the time to genuinely connect with other people within your niche. Spend some time each week to like, share, and comment on other peoples’ blogs and social media accounts. You can also go to forums to answer questions that relate to your niche. This will help you become an authority and drive traffic back to your blog.

10. Spend Time Promoting Your Articles

One big mistake a lot of bloggers make is creating awesome content but not spending enough time promoting it. If you publish an article and 10 people love it, there’s a good chance there are another 100 people that will also love it. The only problem is the extra 100 never knew about it.

TIPS:

●  Share your article on all of your social media accounts: Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, etc.

●  Post on social bookmarking sites like StumbleUpon, Digg and Delicious.

●  Give some love to your old posts. Go back to articles you published 6 months ago and share them again.


We would LOVE to hear from you, too! What other ways do you grow your blog? Comment below to let us know.

JOIN THE COLLECTIVE MILL COMMUNITY!


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19 Comments

  1. Love this post! It’s really really useful. I’ll make sure to reference back to it as I go with my current blog. I’ve just started one and I’m trying to find as much information on using social media effectively to bring more traffic to my blog.

    I never even thought about stumble upon or digg!

    Thanks again!

  2. One of the most helpful posts I’ve ever come across! Thank you so much, I will keep coming back to this post to refer to it! X
    Becky Shannon xx – Life-by-Becky

  3. Thank you so much for your post! I will be using all of this!

  4. I have a question: How do you differentiate between someone subscribing and joining your email list? Do you do these differently or how would you recommend setting the two things up? Thanks!

    • Hi Stephanie!

      Sorry, I might be confused. I’m thinking someone who subscribed or someone who joins your email list would be one and the same.

      Let me know if that answers your question. : )

      <3,
      Marianna

  5. This is great. I held off on adding pop up sign ups as I find them annoying but you’re right, they will work on some readers! Gonna go figure out how to add that! Thanks.
    Char

  6. Thank you for writing this! So much great info….now I have to get to work! ;)

  7. Thanks you so much for these tips, I like your writing style!

  8. This is a great post! Very helpful! :)

  9. Excellent article. I always found popups annoying, but I guess I could see how they would be beneficial. Thanks for all the tips!

    • Thanks! I know! Popups can definitely be annoying. Especially when there are multiple popups and ads that appear, and they make the site really slow, and you can’t figure out how to close them. So i figured if I only have one it’s okay. : )

  10. Thank you so much Marianna for all the effort you’ve put into writing this post, it’s truly helpful and easy to understand! Also, thank you for sharing the websites with free stock photography, they have amazing photos!

  11. Wow! This article is great. I just launched my blog one week ago and I have so much to learn. Thanks for sharing! :)

  12. Thanks SO much for this post. It is super helpful as I just got started in the blogging world. Hope to read a ton more of your work. Keep it up. :)

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