Let’s be frank, blogging can be frustrating. First of all, it’s a big time commitment. You spend hours writing killer content, more hours taking photos, editing photos, creating social media graphics, pinning and scheduling said graphics, sharing, promoting, tweeting…. the list goes on and on. You would think with all of that effort you would no doubt see results; I mean we are working SO hard here. Yet, those little bar graphs that we check daily for pageview counts never seem to get any higher.
So what’s the problem? Why isn’t the traffic making its way to your blog? How do you increase your pageviews?
While there are a lot of reasons this can be happening, I believe it comes down to one of the “BIG FIVE”. In the past year of blogging, I have been blessed to have the opportunity to help a TON of blogger who seem to be banging their head trying to figure it all out. Almost every single one of them was facing at least one of the traffic roadblocks listed below.
Not setting Goals
I’m a firm believer that without goals, we lack direction. We are spending time doing “things” without really knowing “how things are going”. We may find ourselves low on motivation and feeling like we are spinning our wheels and not accomplishing much.
As I mentioned in my latest blog report, I sat down in January and created goals for the year. This wasn’t a quick 10 minute process. I really took time to think about where I wanted my blog to go over the next 12 months. What did I want to accomplish? What targets was I aiming for? What did I want to make happen this year?
After pinpointing the direction I wanted the blog to go, I narrowed down how I would achieve that with goals. From those goals, comes my monthly, weekly and daily tasks. Everything I do leads me towards meeting a goal.
As with any goals you set, make sure they are measurable. “Increase pageviews” is not a good goal. You always want to have a time frame attached to your blog and a plan of action to achieve it.
Increase page views by 15% by revamping SEO and increasing pin audience by joining 10 new group boards. Complete by 3/15/18. (That is how just about every one of my goals reads!)
If you haven’t taken the time to set goals, grab your laptop, open a fresh doc and start brainstorming. It may take a few hours to really think through what your goals are and to set yourself up, but it will be time well spent!
What’s In It For Me?
Readers may not be SAYING those exact words when they are browsing through Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest, but it is definitely a subconscious deciding factor when they are deciding what they want to spend their time reading.
What are your readers gaining by reading your blog post? Is it solving a problem for them? What’s in it for them? If you can’t answer these questions, you may not be providing enough value for your readers, which could be a contributing factor to low page views.
A blog post entitled “15 things you never knew about me” isn’t exactly going to hook a potential reader user who has never met you and probably never will. To be honest, I wouldn’t click on it either.
Write for your readers. Help them, entertain them, provide them with resources and solutions. Give them something of value. Give them a good reason to spend whatever time they have to spend online reading YOUR material.
If you feel like you may be off track in this area, it’s easily fixable. Take some time to really think about your target audience. What pain points do they have? How can you help them?
Quantity over Quality
I get asked this all the time… “How many times per week are you posting?”.
Truth be told, I don’t believe there is not some magic number that will send your blog into soaring success.
It’s not about HOW many times you are posting. It’s about WHAT you are posting and HOW you are promoting it.
It only takes one good (and I mean really good) blog post combined with a stellar promotional strategy to seriously boost your pageviews.
Don’t force yourself to meet a certain number of posts each week just because you think it’s what you need to do to have a successful blog. Chances are, if you are forcing yourself to crank out content, the quality of it might suck.
Again, focus on who you are writing for here. Who is your audience? What do they NEED and how can you give it to them?
Use the tools you have been given
Someone posted in a blogging group that I am in that their pageviews were skyrocketing. Like 200 a day to 17,000 in ONE day. She was freaking out. Everyone was congratulating her on her success!
Then someone asked the magic questions:
“Where is all the traffic coming from? How did you do it?”
Her response: “I have no idea! But I’m so excited!”
I wanted to reach through my phone screen and shake her. You don’t know?! But you’re excited?!! That won’t get you very far.
Obviously, she had done something right. She had written some stellar content people had WANTED to read! She had overcome big error #2 in this blog post. She had shared or tweeted or pinned or taken some sort of action that caused this reaction from her readers, but she didn’t know what it was. Meaning she wouldn’t know how to replicate it to keep those pageviews coming.
There are so many FREE blogging tools out there that can help you see what is working and what isn’t.
Here are a few of the FREE analytics tools I would suggest doing some serious digging into:
- Google Analytics (Don’t just rely on your Jetpack, there is so much more to be learned about your audience in GA)
- Google Search Console (There are search terms that are bringing people to your website. Know them and use them frequently!)
- Pinterest Analytics (Which of those group boards is actually working for you?)
These tools will help you spend what little time you have to work on your blog doing what will give you the most results. Which brings me to my final pageview roadblock…
In a recent blog post about how to kill it on Instagram, I talked about the month I spent in a “comment pod”. If you are not familiar with the concept, basically it is a group of 20 or 30 bloggers in a group in Instagram. When a member of the pod posts a new photo, everyone in the group goes and comments. When you post a new photo- you get at least 30 comments! Sounds wonderful, right? No.
I was spending so much time catching up on the thread and commenting on the SAME 29 peoples photos, every single day! While there are many reasons this hurt my entire blog game (more on those reasons here), a big issue was the time I spent. Image all of the other things I could have been doing. It was a terrible use of my time.
As a blogger, the never-ending to do list that comes with running and promoting your site is nothing new to you. It is so easy to get caught up in just doing things.
Ensure that you are not wasting your time in areas that are not helping you meet your goals.
A question I often ask myself to see if a task is worthy:
Would you pay an assistant to do what you are spending your time doing? If the answer is “no”, than you probably shouldn’t be doing it either!
Your time is valuable, make sure you are spending it on things that pay you back.