9 Things You Can Do Right Now To Make Your Blog Better
Do you know what Facebook, Twitter, and blogs have in common?
They are all excessively abused by the inexperienced for shameless self promotion.
If your blog isn’t getting any subscribers, you’re doing it wrong. Here are some things you can do right now to make it better.
1. Go through your posts with a fine tooth comb, and get rid of any articles that are spammy or useless.
Pretend you are a potential or existing customer. Would any of the posts on your blog make you want to subscribe or return to your website?
Keep those. Get rid of the rest.
2. Allow visitors to interact with your blog.
Interaction on your blog includes several elements. You may have one, but you should have all:
- Option to subscribe
- Option to share via email and social media with just a mouse click.
- Option to comment. (Bonus points when the comments section becomes a conversation among readers!)
Setting up comments, email subscription, and social bookmarking features does not take much time at all. No excuses!
3. Give visitors a reason to interact with your blog!
Just because the option is there does not mean that readers will instantly subscribe, share, or comment on your articles. In fact, most internet users have to really love an article before they will interact in any way… so start by making sure your articles stand out. Avoid generic, general knowledge topics. They are useless.
At first, the comments section may look like a graveyard… but you can always find your own creative ways to motivate readers to leave a comment. Perhaps, end your article with a question? The best blog posts will spark an open ended conversation rather than closing with a one-sided story.
It’s never easy to gain enough trust for a reader to surrender their contact information and subscribe. Offering incentive (such as a free white paper) can actually appear to be more of a red flag. Instead, give readers peace of mind that the subscription option is available—but not required. (Please, no forced pop up boxes!) Give peace of mind that if they choose to subscribe—on their own free will—their contact information is completely safe with you and they will not start getting spam from you or anyone else.
If you want people to actually share your articles… you first have to master the art of truly unique, valuable articles.
4. Write a Rant!
The purpose behind a blog rant is that common emotions and views will draw readers out of their shell. This is not something you can fake… it must be a genuine opinion or unique perspective about something you are personally (or professionally) passionate about.
The secret behind any successful rant is to be constructive, not just bitchy. Offer a solution or improvement for a situation. It is crucial that you write from the heart, include all emotion, but edit and revise before publishing!
Go ahead, make a list of every blogger that specializes in your niche. The secret to writing great articles is to read great articles. (Reading terrible articles can help too, in its’ own funny way.)
Subscribe to other writers. Do not confuse inspiration with stealing content. Simply make a note of which articles you loved reading and why you chose those articles. Also make notes of which articles did not keep you interested, and why.
Bonus points—eventually, you may wish to arrange for a guest post for or by one of your favorite writers. This opens up the door for your own blog to reach a much larger audience.
6. Don’t forget a call to action.
Remember how I said that your blog should not be used for shameless self promotion? That’s true… but that’s a poor reason to neglect the call to action!
If you want readers to call/ email/ text/ subscribe/ comment/ share/ like or visit… you have to ask them very clearly to do so. Plus, you have to make it as easy as possible. In most cases, anchor links are all you need.
Calls to action do not need to be seen as a shameless self-promotion or “plug”. When used naturally, they are nothing short of an effective way to make sure there is a return-on-investment for the time and effort put into your blog posts. Because—and this can’t be stressed enough—the rest of your article should never be about conversions, SEO, or yourself. Save that for the author box!
7. About the author…
There is a place in a blog article where the author can include a short bio that describes who (s)he is and why the readers should care. This is a mini-profile, you can do whatever you want with it.
If you want to make your blog better, make sure you’re using the author box to introduce yourself as an expert, without calling yourself one. That’s just tacky.
8. So your blog is still young. Take down the ads!
Ugh! If you really need a way to make money from your blog, find something more creative. It’s hard to take your blog from amateur to awesome!!! Peppering your blog with ads is only going to prevent it from ever growing…
Outside of stunting the growth of your blog, those ads won’t even earn enough money to be worth it.
9. Mix it up a little!
Who says that your blog has to be dedicated to be predictable? Try mixing things up a little with:
- Really long posts (2000 words or more)
- Really short posts (100 words or less)
- Image Galleries
It’s your blog… you can do whatever you want with it. The sky is the limit!