A short guide to generate traffic to your blog

So you want to generate traffic to your blog? Of course, we all do! Once you got your site setup, it is very depressing if nobody is reading it. Make sure to follow the tips mentionned below if you want to generate traffic to your blog.

15 ways to generate traffic to your blog

1. Social networking

If you leverage the power of social networking the right way, it can bring you tons of traffic. For that, it’s not rocket science, you need to be active on the social networking platform like Twitter, Facebook or Reddit, make friend with other users and not over-promote. You can also take advantage of niche social networks. For example, designers will use sites like Designfloat, Designbump or TheWebBlend.

2. Leave comments on other blogs

This technique will not bring you lots of traffic, but if you write interesting comments on other blogs, it can bring highly targeted traffic and good connections with other bloggers in your niche. Write comments using your real name, keyword stuffing by entering “Web design Chicago” in the name field will not do any good and you’ll be seen as a spammer. Only write valuable comments, it’s totally useless to write “great post” or “I loved this post”.

3. Publish an email newsletter

Publishing a newsletter is a good way to let visitors come back to your blog. You encourage more interaction by entering your readers email box, and make sure that you keep a steady amount of traffic coming back to your site.

4. Write guest posts

Guest writing is great, it’s time-consuming but great. You have a direct contact with other bloggers and help them out with their blogs, which is always good to build great relationships. It also drives some traffic by having your signature at the end of the article with links, readers who enjoyed the article will be likely to click on those links to read more of your writing. The extra value is that it also builds up your SEO, which brings some good traffic on the long term.

5. Release some freebies

Another time-consuming link building technique, but to generate traffic to your blog is hard work. Releasing some freebies, like an ebook, a free video course or some templates, is a great idea if you are looking for back links and free traffic. Obviously, the better your freebie is, the more traffic you’ll get.

6. Host a blog contest

This one will cost you a little, but it can be quite efficient. Give away an Amazon gift card or something that your potential readers would like, then give them a task to do if they want to get it. It can be asking for a retweet or a blog post on a specific topic with a link to your blog. Don’t overuse it, but it is a good was to generate traffic to your blog.

7. Submit your site to website directories

Classic, submit your website to directories. Probably will not bring much traffic, but it is worth doing it if you have time on your hand. It does bring a little SEO juice.

8. Have a RSS feed for your blog

Having traffic on your blog doesn’t mean that you have to find new visitors all the time. In fact, having regular readers is even better, it proves that your content is interesting enough for people to come back. A RSS feed will allow people to get news from your site without having to come back all the time to check if you have updated. Make sure you also offer an email version of your RSS feed. For that, you can use a service like Feedburner.

9. Write a “top 10″ list

This is the ultimate link-bait strategy, take a popular topic in your niche and write a top 10 list on it. People love top 10 lists, they get more traffic and get linked to more. Don’t overuse this though, because it will seem that you are “traffic whoring”. Just write top 10 list posts when appropriate and promote them through social media sites.

10. Exchange links

Find blogs that are in your niche, if possible with similar audience/traffic. Contact the owner of the blog and offer him to exchange links, if you pick your partners wisely you should have a high success rate for link exchange. It will generate traffic to your blog, but also build up some on-target link juice for SEO.

11. Launch a retweet contest

Twitter is all the rage now, and most people who read blogs have an account there. Offer something to your readers if the retweet your post, then pick a winner randomly. If the contest goes viral it can bring tons of traffic, with potential new readers.

12. Speed up your website

Yep! Sounds a bit surprising, but speeding up your website can bring a lot of traffic to your site for two reasons. First, people browsing the web have no patience at all, if your website is not loading they will be out of there before you can blink. Second, Google likes fast websites and rewards it by giving them better rankings in its search results. And as we all know it, good Google rankings can bring you tons of good, targetted traffic.

13. Add your signature to your marketing material

Another obvious advice, spreading the word about your blog in every possible way is a necessity. Take all your marketing material: business cards, letterheads, brochures,… and add your blog’s address on it when you need to reprint it. It will help to spread the word about your blog with people your are close to.

14. Advertise

If you have a budget to promote your blog, this is the quickest way to get traffic. To advertise, you have the choice between banners, contextual ads like AdWords, paid reviews or text links. Advertising will bring you quick traffic, but you should make sure that you have some goals when starting to advertise. Create proper landing pages and make sure you keep track of your ads results.

15. Submit content to articles directories

Not the quickest way to generate traffic to your blog, but you should do it to help with your link building, search results rankings and SEO in general. If you don’t have the time, don’t feel forced to do this and skip it.