If I were asked to guess what percentage of bloggers put real, hard work into their writing and websites, I would likely hazard a guess at 10%.
10%. One out of every ten bloggers are fighting to put themselves above the rest, learning new techniques, sharpening their writing skills, and constantly updating their websites.
The other 90% are writing lazy, 200-word posts, publishing once a month, refusing to do any marketing or optimizing, and failing to improve their writing skills, all while complaining that their traffic stays at rock bottom.
Which group is yours? Which one sounds more appealing?
There’s a massive difference between blogging like a beginner and blogging like a pro. Pros receive traffic, beginners don’t. Being a beginner isn’t bad of course; everybody has to start somewhere. Taking the step and becoming a better blogger, however, is a key part to seeing success.
Granted, I am not the greatest example. I have seen moderate success with my writing, but nowhere near that of excerpts like Neil Patel or Cristian Mihai. However, these ten tips are a compilation of the tips offered by experts such as the aforementioned Neil Patel. Employing them will ensure your step-up to the levels of elite bloggers and will give you an eventual boost in traffic.
Let’s face it. Views are the name of the game when it comes to blogging. Nothing is cooler than being able to say, “I got 18,000 views on my last post.” Of course, getting to that level of writing takes a long, long time and a lot of perseverance. But even if you have a small blog like mine, averaging 115 views per post, you can still usually tell if your views are starting to decline.
This can be seen in a few ways. Firstly, you might see a decline in your average daily views. Last month, my blog averaged about 85 views per day. Not terrible, not amazing, but pretty much average. That took almost a solid year of work just to reach in the first place. If, for example, I checked my average next month and found that I only averaged 60 views per day, warning bells would go off in my head. Obviously, something would be wrong, and I would attempt to find an answer.
Another way to tell this is by looking at your comments/likes on a post. My posts average 21 likes and 17 comments, and I can usually tell if one is above or below average at a glance. If it’s below average, I’ll start thinking- is it the time I published? Did I offend someone? There’s almost always an answer.
Finally, the last way to tell if your blog is losing readers is by looking at your average post views. My average post gets around 100 views after about a week, since some readers can take a bit of time to read them. Of course, if you’re publishing wintergreen content on a regular basis (content that could be read in ten years), your readers will continue coming back, making this statistic irrelevant. If you, like me, publish half-wintergreen content, now is the time to check your average post views. You can do so by clicking the WordPress stats panel, clicking “Months” to show your monthly statistics, and scrolling down. Under “Posts & Pages”, you will find your posts ranked by views, highest to lowest. This can be a fantastic indicator of which posts do better than others. If my Africa posts were towards the bottom of the spectrum, and my SEO posts were nearer to the top, what does this say? Obviously, some posts are read more then others.
There is, of course, a way to troubleshoot this. But before we get to this, let’s take a look at four reasons your views are declining in the first place.
When I first started blogging in 2017, I didn’t have a clue what I was doing. At first, I blogged on my dad’s website, writing about random things ranging from Fantasy Football scores to a weird dream. I believed my only readers to be my grandparents, and that was true.
After about eight months of this, I decided that blogging under my dad’s name seemed rather stifling. I created my own website using the free platform Blogspot. The website, elishamcfarland.blogspot.com, has since been deleted, but the lessons it taught me remain.
Last week we discussed the non-manual forms of SEO, pieces of search engine optimization that cannot be manually added, but must be worked for. However, there is more to off-page SEO then what we previously discussed. There are other things that must be done outside of our websites, boosting our rankings and increasing our traffic. Because these do not apply directly our website pages, they are categorized as off-page SEO. But since last week’s post on off-page SEO was over 2,500 words, we are going to break these up into bite sized pieces.
I call this section of off-page SEO “Manual off-page SEO.” The post written last week would fall under the category of “Automatic off-page SEO”, as it will automatically boost your rankings after you put in the work. Many of you, my readers, are already familiar with this section of SEO, but if you haven’t learned about pinging, Google Search Console, site audits, and blogging tools, get ready to dive in.
Content. Isn’t that a word that we hear so often? In a world of decreasing creativity, content is king. The best bloggers find ways to constantly create new content, publishing dozens of unique posts a year. In fact, the #1 defining feature between low-level bloggers and high-level bloggers is content.
The most common blog-related questions I receive have to do with content. After all, it’s hard to consistently come up with content, isn’t it? Well, here are three ways you can easily come up with new content prior to writing your post.
Last week saw the publication of one of Africa Boy’s longest posts, a near 2,000 word article on the subject of on-page SEO. The post covered nearly every piece of on-page SEO, including internal linking, title tags, and image optimization. If you haven’t read this post, be sure to read it by clicking here. On-page SEO is the easiest way to manually control your websites rankings, so if you haven’t read this highly informative post, you should make sure to check it out.
Off-page SEO deals with just that- the parts of Search Engine Optimization that are not found within your page. They cannot be manually controlled but must be worked for and developed naturally. Thankfully, users on the WordPress free plan can use all of these tricks as they don’t apply to a website’s customization options. If you are on the WordPress free plan, your full focus should be upon off-page SEO.
But what is off-page SEO? Neil Patel, owner of NP Digital and creator of the fantastic tool Ubersuggest, describes it perfectly.
On page SEO is one of the most tricky (yet rewarding) SEO fundamentals. Without a base in On-Page work, your site won’t get very far. So, before you go off ready to conquer unknown places and acquire “backlink juice”, slow down and pour yourself a cup of coffee, because this is going to be fun.
Now, because this is a WordPress Free Plan tutorial, there will only be so much we can do. If you haven’t paid for the business plan, certain options will be locked by WordPress, unusable and useless. However, there are still some awesome things we can do to help our sites rank higher on Google. Let’s dive in.
Let’s face it. In today’s world, Search Engine Optimizers are a dime a dozen. It only takes a Google search and a few clicks to find an Optimizer that will help you or, at the very least, give you tips on helping increase your website’s traffic. So why write on this at all? Word
The answer is astounding- around two out of every three new bloggers has no clue what SEO is. They start a WordPress blog, convinced the world is going to come calling at their doorstep, only to realize (after a week of writing) that they’ve only had five visitors and one comment from a dude with a weird username. They give up, convinced that blogging isn’t for them.
2020 has arrived. And with it, a new wave of SEO updates has emerged. Last year, we saw a massive update to the industry, penalizing specific sites and sometimes giving others near-overnight fame. When Google releases an update, people watch out. Usually, they release one every so often, so who knows what the future holds for SEO experts and digital marketers?
To combat the constant Google updates, we need to keep up with new information. What may have worked for websites back in 2005 will get you penalized in 2020. If people don’t get with the times and learn the new practices that work, they will never see exponential growth in their websites.
If you are one of those people, don’t worry. There is always time to learn and grow. If you begin to implement these tactics into your site now, you should see a large growth in traffic. Make sure to do them correctly and, if need be, consult experts such as Neil Patel if you need help.
Blogging is more than just SEO and post format. At the end of the day, there’s only so much you can do to change your site for the better. However, don’t make the mistake I did in thinking that once I had checked all the SEO boxes, I was fine. This is wrong.
Unfortunately, there are many things that can go wrong with SEO. Websites devolve, mistakes are made, and habits aren’t developed. And so, to combat this yet again, we must learn to use tools.
What are tools? Well, they are internet-based apps or websites that will help your site for the better, one way or the other. Some may be able to actually help your SEO (although these require plugins which, in turn, require you to be operating on WordPress’ Business Plan), while others will prevent you from making crucial mistakes. These are the tools we will be focusing on today. And the best part? They’re all free and you can start using them right now. And so, without further ado, here are three fantastic tools that you can start using right now.
We bloggers have become lazy. Even in our ever-growing pursuit for followers and views, we have decided that some pieces of blogging are beneath us. And so, in our passivity, we have neglected key parts of our blogs and the posts therein. This has resulted in a lack of blog quality and a lowering of standards. But, if we work hard and learn from our failures, we can overcome the failures of our past and turn the Christian blogging community into a high-quality writing niche.
So, to combat laziness and blog failure, here are five common mistakes that many bloggers make. If you read these carefully and correct the mistakes that you are already making, you will immediately find an increase in your blog traffic and visitors.
The role of Christian Blogger is changing every day. As the culture and world changes, so do we. We adapt, changing our writing and article subjects to include newer events. So, because of this, many Christian bloggers are falling into a type of “identity crisis”. We forget what it means to be a Christian blogger and instead become bloggers. Or, even worse-irrelevant. Becoming irrelevant is probably the most difficult ditch to climb out of, especially as a teenager.
Search Engine Optimization. The forbidden words. Many treat these words as frightening as if they are swear words or something similar. Thankfully, as long as you stay within the rules, SEO will make your blog stronger and increase your traffic. Sadly, if you are using the Free version of WordPress, there are only a few things you can do to increase your SEO. We’ll be covering those today. If you are using the Business plan of WordPress, then there are literally thousands of things you can do to increase your SEO. If you want a total guide to using the Business plan on WordPress, read Rohit Palit’s stuff, found here. His guide will be much more extensive than this one. Disclaimer: I have based several of the following points off of the points given in his article. They are, however, in my own words.
Now, sadly for we WordPress users, SEO goes much further today then Keywords and Backlinks, although those do help. There are thousands of components to Google’s SEO Algorithm. Thus, no website will ever be completely perfect. The best thing we can do is try to cover a few algorithm requirements and wait for Google to bump us up.