Creating a blog may seem quite easy but getting it off the ground is rather difficult. You may have to spend weeks, days or even months before you get the first comment or the first ‘Like’ or the first ‘Tweet’.
You may be checking your analytics everyday and seeing a lot of visitors frequenting your website but none of them engaging with your blog in form. What’s wrong with your blog?
Yes, there’s indeed something wrong that’s not exciting them to engage with your blog. You need to find that out.
This post lists 7 ways that’ll help you build a successful blog.
This is not the ultimate list but if you’re going wrong with any one (or many) of these, then that might be the reason of your blog’s failure to engage visitors.
Publish content frequently
Do you expect to have followers if you don’t have anything to give them?
Take for example, the case of Tom Cruise, one of the biggest stars of Hollywood who acted in films like Knight and Day, Mission Impossible, Jerry Maguire and many other films. He has built audience and followers with his extra-ordinary acting skills and he now has 4,306,191 followers on Twitter and 5.9m Facebook Likes.
What I want to say here is that you need to give your audience valuable information, something they’ll cherish and come back to your blog again and again looking for value.
The internet is now so full of information that every idea you think of and search for, you will get something or the other on it. Somebody has already covered the topic. But what if you could write that from a different angle and explain things in a better way?
Portraying your ideas with the fresh perspective and a new angle will make your content new. And if you can publish this type of content regularly, your blog will grow and you will see success.
Not only should you publish on your own blog but also publishing as guest posts on other blogs is an important tool to build credibility. This way, you will get the attention and get more targeted traffic to your blog as well.
The main thing is that your name should get promoted and you should solve people’s problem through your blog. Only then, you will be able to create a brand, which is very important for your business.
So, what I mean to say is publishing really valuable content that your audience wants to read and that solves your user’s problems all over the web is important to building a successful blog.
Delve into the blog design
You meet two women – one has great conversational skills but has not dressed well (doesn’t have fashion sense), so doesn’t look attractive; the second one looks gorgeous, attractive because she has great dressing sense and has great conversational skills too. Which one would you love asking for a second date?
Similar is the blog design. Most people are visual and the first word they will say if you’ve a great design is “Wow…Beautiful blog” (even if they are not interested on your niche) and after that, their eyes will roll down to check the headlines.
And if you can capture them with the headlines and the first few paragraphs, they might move over to viewing the other pages on your blog and spending some time; otherwise, they’ll leave.
I am not talking about applying variety of colors to your blog. What I am saying is that you must make the blog design optimized to increase conversion rates.
A simple designed blog can attract visitors as well but you need to make it optimized, i.e., place the widgets at the right place to attract the maximum traffic.
So, to make your blog successful, check the conversion points of your blog and the activity of the visitors to your blog. Are they converting at the points you have optimized the blog?
This will give you an indication if you’re on the right track or not and the things you need to change for your blog.
Give a tour to the visitors of your blog
Your blog is like your home. Someone visits your home, and you don’t give them a good reception. Will they ever think of coming to your home again?
If you have a “Start Here” page for the first-time visitors to your blog and can give them a good navigation experience around your blog, suggesting them what they can read and view in your blog, they’ll be likely to visit your blog again the next time if the need occurs.
For this, you need to create a path that you’d like your visitors to go through and view your blog.
You can create a “Start Here” button on the homepage, which leads them another page, if they click on it. On this page, you can introduce yourself with a video and talk about the things you’ll be sharing with them on this blog.
Take them through a series of articles they can read, based on the type of visitor – beginner, intermediate or pro and ultimately, end with a call to action asking them to do what you want and the benefits they’ll be receiving if they did the action.
If you can give your first-time visitors this kind of grand reception, they might remember you (I mean, your blog) and will be likely to visit it the next time.
Be Focused on your blog
The main reason why many people unsubscribe from blogs is because the blogger is rambling blog posts off-the topic.
People subscribe to blogs only if they’re interested in the niche and want to follow the posts of the blog regularly.
Posting off-the-topic posts (especially if it’s related personally to the blogger) sometimes is good because it is a fact that we all want to know the blogger personally. But if a blogger often posts such blogs, it becomes annoying because the subscriber doesn’t want to hear what’s going on in your personal life always but has subscribed to get the latest and most valuable information on the niche.
So, focusing on the niche and writing niche-based posts is important to increase your subscriber list and not getting your current subscribers from unsubscribing.
According to me, I keep my posting to 80% informational and 20% personal. This way, I keep updating my visitors with my personal information but not overloading them.
Engage socially with other bloggers
Social networks are a craze among people now. Who doesn’t have a Facebook or a Twitter profile? I guess, everyone does, unless you want to keep yourself secret from the FBI…LOL
You may have thousands of followers in your Twitter or Facebook profiles but still don’t have much interaction. That’s because of your lack of engagement with them.
You need to engage with them and make them feel a part of your network. Answer to their questions, share and like what they have to say, give opinions and interact with them both on a personal and professional level.
Doing this, you may feel that you have to spend almost the entire day on Facebook or Twitter. But that’s wrong. If you spend so much time on social networks, you won’t get the desired success you’re willing to see.
Social network brings only a part of traffic to your site, so spending 20 to 45 minutes social networking is enough. Initially, it may take an hour or two but with time and experience, it will hardly take 20 to 45 minutes to engage with your fans and followers.
Engaging in social networks with your followers will help you grow your blog successfully.
Comment and Reply to comments
Most blog owners ignore this part. They just write the article, publish it, build some backlinks and move on to writing the next article, forgetting the published article.
There’s more to do than these when it comes to creating a successful blog. Engagement is the key to success.
After you write a blog, people may comment on your blog post. And if you reply to their comment, you’re taking the time to show them that you really care for the time they’ve taken to read your blog and you’re showing them the gratitude with your reply comment.
How many times has it happened that you say Thank You to someone and he just ignores your thanks and moves away? And how do you feel when someone replies to your Thank You with a Welcome smile?
In a blog, though you’re not interacting with your readers face-to-face but your written words and the simple actions can speak a thousand words. You can show your readers that you care for them and are really trying to solve their problems.
You can go a little further by even commenting on their blogs (if they have one) sometimes. This will create a stronger relationship with your audience and slowly build the trust that you require to establish your brand.
Many times, you often comment on other blogs just for backlinking purposes…and this is wrong. No, backlinking is not wrong but commenting solely for backlinking is a wrong method.
By adding value commenting on other blogs, you can come to the notice of other commentators and even the fellow blogger on who’s blog you’re commenting on. This will help you get targeted visitors from that blog.
The more targeted visitors you get and the more percentage you can convert them into customers, the more successful you are.
Run Blog Contests from time to time
Who doesn’t like participating in a contest and getting something? Contests create excitement, and the gifts, if they are something that would be something useful to you, then the contest becomes even more exciting.
For example, if you run a tech blog, you can create a contest and gift the winner with ipads, tablets or such prizes. Of course, a reader or a subscriber of a tech blog will be interested in such stuff.
Running contests is a huge craze among bloggers now because contests attract a lot of visitors. They get popular among people and the word spreads rapidly.
Besides, you can create engagement and interaction among your audience with contests, which as I said before, is the essential key to success.
Do you know of other points that can help you build a successful blog? What form of engagement have you applied to your blog to make it successful?