For even the smallest niche, there are hundreds or even thousands of websites competing for the attention of visitors. Bloggers that have even the faintest hope of attracting regular visitors need to get creative to stand out from the competition. These five tips will help blogs attract new visitors and keep old ones coming back for more.
Update the Blog Frequently
Good content attracts visitors initially but a steady stream of it is what keeps them coming back. Bloggers should update their site frequently with new content. Posts can be written in advance and published on a schedule so visitors know exactly when they can read the latest update.
Enhance the Blog with Rich Media
Text only blog posts are boring. Enhance posts with photographs, illustrations and videos. Every post should have something other than text added to it, with very few exceptions. Bloggers can find many sites that offer royalty free images and other rich media that can be used to enhance their posts.
Add Social Media Widgets
Visitors love sharing articles they enjoyed with their friends on social media sites like FaceBook, Twitter and MySpace. Bloggers would be doing themselves a favor if they would make it easy for their visitors to share. WordPress and other blogging platforms can often be configured to display social networking buttons on every post so that visitors can easily share a post they enjoyed with their friends on their favorite sites.
Make Some Noise on Social Networking Sites
Bloggers should create an account for their blog on all of the major social networking websites. Add-ons to WordPress and other popular blogging platforms will automatically create a post for those social networking sites each time a new blog post is made.
This cuts down some of the work of posting on social networking sites and increases the blogs exposure and the number of social networking links pointing back to the blog. However, social networking sites should not be used solely as a megaphone to announce to the world that a new post has been published.
Bloggers have a golden opportunity to use these sites to interact with their audience, learn what they like and allow visitors to get to know the blogger on a more personal level.
Host a Contest
Nothing boosts blog traffic like a good contest. Contests should include the following elements to be most effective:
- A prize visitors will love.
- The contest should be relevant to the overall theme of the blog. Use common sense. Don’t give away DVD copies of the hippest new paranormal romance on a commercial blog about lawn care. Don’t require readers to answer trivia questions that are unrelated to the content of the blog.
- If winners are chosen randomly, a way for readers to gain more entries by commenting in the blog or by performing other tasks. Encourage them to like on FaceBook or tweet on Twitter.
- Include an easy way for visitors to tell their friends about the contest, either via email or social networking widgets.
- A clear description of how winners are chosen.
As a search engine marketing service provider, Keith Barrett takes a keen interest in blogging and generating interest in both personal and business blogs.