Increase Blog Traffic & Subscribers: 8 Tips!

by Molly Greene

GROW_OpA reader recently asked for ideas that would help increase blog traffic. Growing traffic is one thing, of course; convincing visitors to stay, and to subscribe and/or return, is closely aligned with every blog-building effort. You need both! Here are a few ideas.

1. Beef up your Twitter followers

I’ve often said that Twitter is one of the best social media platforms for growing a blog. But if you want to leverage the power of Twitter, you’ll need lots and lots of followers. The more followers, the wider your net will be cast, and 20,000 is better than 2,000. That takes time. If you’re weary of the time commitment, try using the free (or paid) version of ManageFlitter. I hear this is the vendor people prefer and get results from.

ALSO, be sure you’re tweeting links to your own blog posts every few hours or so, M-F, between 6 am and 6 pm. Try 6, 9, 12, 3, 6 o’clock. Tweet other peoples’ content as well, be sure to retweet others, and develop a Twitter support group of fans and friends who share your links. Review Using Twitter Lists To Grow Your Blog to simplify the process.

2. Be consistent about interacting live

I started my blog and Twitter almost simultaneously in 2011. It was new, fun, and exciting, and back then I aggressively grew my account. As a result I met a ton of lovely people on the platform who remain friends. But I’ll tell you the truth, I’ve slowed my Twitter presence markedly since late in 2014, deciding to use much of that time to increase book production.

As a result, blog traffic from links I’ve tweeted has also dwindled markedly. It’s a clear correlation. I’m not chatting with folks live and in real time, so they’ve lost interest. I don’t blame them – that’s how it works. Blog visits stay high for me because I now get a lot of search engine traffic, but until you get to that place, you have to spend a certain amount of time online.

3. Freshen up your blog post format

Be sure that when traffic lands on your website, visitors are visually compelled to stay and browse, and then subscribe and return. To do that, you need to use images, lots of white space, and things like bolded subheads to make each post more visually interesting and keep the eye moving down the page. I use free images from morguefile in my posts. I also covered this in How To Build A Perfect Blog Post.

4. Change up the type of posts you publish

For instance, try publishing curated posts once in a while, aggregated from the links you’re tweeting from favorite resources, etc. Bring in guest posters. Write about your experiences at different venues. Try a few personal posts. All these ideas are not pertinent to everyone, but you might just find something you can use here: 101 Fabulous Blog Topic Ideas. That article also covers the different types/categories of posts you can put together.

5. Add video posts

Also, consider video. Podcasts, recorded bits from classes you give or attend, things like that. You can use video in a lot of different ways, including links to a YouTube or iTunes channel/page. Video is very important nowadays, and Author Ben Wallace has had great success with his podcast series, which he discusses here.

6. Add another social media platform

Let’s circle back around to sharing your blog links. If Twitter isn’t bringing you as much traffic as you’d like, it’s time to consider adding another platform, like Instagram or Pinterest, which are more visual. That means better for video. So if you take the video and podcast route, those are a great tie-in. Here’s a good article about How To Add Video To Pinterest.

7. Offer a freebie to increase subscribers

You can try an opt-in plugin for a while – that’s a pop-up that appears when people land on the site – although they do tend to irritate repeat visitors. A couple of them (not free) have settings you can choose that will recognize (and therefore not antagonize) repeat visitors. To leverage an opt-in plugin, you should put together some kind of free incentive to draw people from social media to your blog, then encourage them to subscribe. A free book is nice.

8. Add a search function to your homepage

I recently did this on my own blog, and was flabbergasted to see page visits for my past-post archives increase enormously. What it seems to do is encourage folks to remain on the blog, reading posts. A side benefit is that when visitors hang around longer, your blog’s Alexa rating might take a dive – which is a good thing.

If you feel it’s time to jazz up your blog, a couple of these ideas should help. Let us know if you’ve tried anything else that has brought success!

All original content by Molly Greene and guests is copyright protected – did you enjoy the article? You can show your support by checking out my Amazon Author Page – and hey, buy a book while you’re there! Or, subscribe to my blog and you’ll never miss my weekly posts. Your email will NOT be sold, shared, abused, or rented – that’s a promise. If you’re not already, follow @mollygreene on Twitter. Mwah! Thank you so much.

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20 Responses to Increase Blog Traffic & Subscribers: 8 Tips!

  1. Garry Rodgers April 20, 2015 at 2:56 pm #

    Hi Molly,

    Great points, as usual! I’ve implemented most of this strategy and the results have been so rewarding. Out of curiosity, I just checked my Alexa rating and see that I’ve increased 507,887 places in the last 3 months. My mailing list also compounds by about 10-15% per month. Must be doing something right 🙂

    I believe it’s a combination of things – all coming down to an increasing-the-numbers game. First is consistent and varied content with a visual format. Second, I think is guest blogging – both hosting and doing posts for others. Third is Twitter Power. Fourth is search engine recognition and that is exponential to increased traffic by way of the first three. Fifth is the freebie enticement to sign-up to the mailing list and sixth… I have to thank a little book I read that took me to a whole new level of blogging, both in understanding what to do and in boosting the commitment to it.

    You might have heard of this book. I highly recommend it to every other person out there who is blogging or considering getting started.

    It’s called Blog It! and it’s available here:

    Worked for me!

    • Molly Greene April 20, 2015 at 3:02 pm #

      Thanks for the book plug and great blog stats, Garry! Just like book promotion, blog promotion works best if you have a plan and stick to it, re-assessing periodically along the way. Sounds like you did exactly that. 🙂

  2. Kendra April 21, 2015 at 3:46 am #

    Hi Molly, Thanks for another incredibly helpful post. I’ve been considering tweeting links to my previous blog posts but wasn’t entirely sure of the etiquette involved. Glad to know that’s okay to do! 🙂

    • Molly Greene April 21, 2015 at 7:15 am #

      It is, Kendra. I use the WordPress plugin “Evergreen Post Retweeter” to automate the process. Good luck!

  3. Sue Coletta April 21, 2015 at 5:06 am #

    Excellent as usual, Molly. I have a question though. Alexa rating… huh? I’ve always just used the stats. Is this similar and do I need it in addition to my usual stats? When I read Garry’s comment (hi, Garry!) I had no idea what his rating meant. That’s probably not a good sign, I’m guessing. LOL Oh, and why is lower better than higher? If this question is too big for the comment section can you refer me to somewhere for the answer please. Or, you could always email me. *wink* Thank you!

    • Molly Greene April 21, 2015 at 7:11 am #

      Hey Sue! Alexa is a tool that measures a website’s popularity in terms of page views and traffic. It’s not bulletproof, but tracking your own Alexa will help you gauge how you’re doing in the blogosphere. The lower the Alexa rating/number, the more popular the site. Here’s an article that explains in general:

      What is Alexa Traffic Rank? “In simple terms, Alexa Traffic Rank is a rough measure of a website’s popularity, compared with all the others out there on the internet, taking into account both the number of visitors and the number of pages viewed on each visit.”

      • Sue Coletta April 21, 2015 at 8:59 am #

        Ah, okay. I should have Alexa, then. Thanks so much for the link, Molly!

        • Molly Greene April 21, 2015 at 10:18 am #

          It’s not a “have,” though, Sue, it’s just a “use.” Go to the Alexa website and plug in your url, then bookmark the page and visit it once in a while – you’ll see your progress. Yay!

  4. Laura Zera April 23, 2015 at 11:19 am #

    Like selling your house, I’ve had “start using Pinterest more” on my to-do list for about three years! 😛

    • Molly Greene April 23, 2015 at 2:32 pm #

      PERFECT! Figure it out and share w/us via a guest post here.:-)

  5. Maureen Grenier April 23, 2015 at 4:39 pm #

    Great info as usual. Thanks, Molly!

  6. Laura Fredericks April 30, 2015 at 1:13 am #

    Hi Molly,

    I love all of these, and will of course be using them as we grow the Describli blog. It’s the next big adventure! Thanks for, as usual, posting really really super helpful content.


    • Molly Greene May 1, 2015 at 5:27 pm #

      Thanks so much, Laura, and best to you with your blog!!

  7. Lorna April 30, 2015 at 9:56 am #

    I think the ‘related posts’ plugin helps to keep people reading too.

    • Molly Greene May 1, 2015 at 5:28 pm #

      I agree, Lorna – I use “most popular” posts, and I think that helps, too.

  8. Niki July 26, 2015 at 11:48 pm #

    Offering a freebie is great way to increase blog readers. Social network like Pintereset can also bring up a lot of traffic to your website. All you need to do is creating an eye-catching image for you post and posting it on Pinterest.

    Thanks Molly for sharing these valuable tips with us.

    • Molly Greene July 27, 2015 at 7:32 am #

      Thank you, Niki, and thanks for the tips!