Here are 10 proven ways to increase blog traffic for free – 100 percent free. The only way they’ll work is with a plan and you can get that here.
10 Ways to Increase Blog Traffic for FREE
Look through this list and pick one thing to work on this week: increase blog traffic for free with data, create and administer a survey to boost your sessions, OR create a business plan. You should really start with that, by the way.
If you feel you have a good handle on goals and marketing for your blog, for example, focus on a bookmarking or calendar plan. If you want to increase page views with content, start your growth plan with a survey.
Somewhere in this article, there is an affiliate link which means at no cost to you, I may receive a compensation if you make a purchase. Here is my full (boring, yet legally compliant) policy.
Blog Growth Strategy 1: Look at the Data
There are so many sources of free, actionable data. The problem is most bloggers look at just a couple and ignore the rest. For 30 days, choose to learn a bit about one of the following:
- Google Analytics
- Google Search Console (webmaster tools)
- Primary social media network’s included analytics
- Pinterest analytics
The point: you don’t need to invest a lot to get a plethora of USEFUL, ACTIONABLE data.
Hint: there are MANY tutorials so spend a few minutes finding one you like (video or text) and an hour going through it a week.
Tip: your audience will point you in the right direction.
Traffic Tip 2: A Business Plan. Seriously.
Write out a business plan. I’ve made you a one-pager, so it’s totes easy. If your growth is booming and you’re just here because you adore my contagious smile and snarky delivery, do it anyway.
If you don’t know why you need a plan, check your reason for reading this. That’s a damn good reason. If you’re serious about growth and implementing these other ways to increase blog traffic for free, this should not be overlooked.
The point: do you want to make money or get a focus? You need a plan.
Hint: spend more time on the marketing section if you are growing already. If not, spend more time on the value proposition.
Tip: don’t skip this. I wouldn’t suggest (and use) one if it didn’t actually work.
Grow Your Blog Tip 3: Take it to the Streets
Survey your readers. Yes, even if you have 300 sessions for the month.
Get the free guide, “Beyond the Data” to get insight (and questions) for surveys.
It doesn’t have to be hard, it just has to get done.
The point: they know more than you do, namely what THEY want to read.
Hint: make this a priority. They are your people – let them guide you.
Tip: if you’ve never created a survey, there are many free resources.
Grow Traffic Tactic 4: Plan Your Content
Create (and stick to) an editorial calendar.
When I first started blogging many moons ago, the concept of editorial calendars was something utilized by printed publications. Nowadays, my best friend’s nanny’s 14-year-old’s sister has an editorial calendar for her blog. #truestory
If you’ve never created one, read why you need an editorial calendar. If you don’t want to use my favorite tool (CoSchedule), here is how to create a free (but limited) one using Google calendar. Having a plan is one of the best ways to increase blog traffic for free.
The point: it keeps you on track and allows you to plan for you and your reader.
Hint: print it out and stick it on your fridge.
Tip: my editorial calendar allows me to all my schedule social shares. #timesaver
Traffic Tip 5: Get a Little Help
Join a mastermind group. I’m in 5 (yep) and learn something EVERY.TIME.WE.MEET.
They want you to succeed and they don’t even know you yet.
I have been in masterminds that were complete poop and I have been a part of some amazing ones. The good part about a mastermind is that you’ll find so many additional areas where you can improve.
The point: this will add a some work to your plate, but it will be valuable.
Hint: if you do only one thing on this list, a mastermind should be it.
Tip: try and mix bloggers within your niche and outside it
Traffic Tip 6: Goals and Grace
Give yourself a break, some grace, and just acknowledge that sometimes stuff happens.
We are always hardest on ourselves and that is not a bad thing – it often is the impetus for change and learning. What sucks, however, is to dwell on something we let slip.
Successful bloggers acknowledge the failure, pinpoint what caused it, correct it (if possible), and they move on. Goal mapping helps them do so.
The point: you’re human.
Hint: ask hard questions about your habits, motivators, and roadblocks.
Tip: in the Resource Library, you have a goal mapping guide and workbook.
Traffic Tip 7: Stop Trying to Be EVERYWHERE!
Trivia: “Stop trying to make fetch happen.” Name that movie.
So many bloggers put more time into social media than into their content. Social media is not a traffic strategy – it is a PART of a traffic strategy.
Fear of missing out (FOMO) on social media is real, however, so is your desire to increase blog traffic for free, right?!
Keep a log of how much time you’re actually on social media (personal + blogging) and it’s surprising. You can get apps to help you (I use Moment). Then take just 30 minutes of that time to work on a new post.
The point: we focus too much on social and not enough on content.
Hint: is a large social following more important than traffic?
Tip: the 80/20 rule applies.
Traffic Tip 8: Take a Course and Really Invest In It
How many times have you signed up for a free resource and not actually ‘bought into” it? I used to be SO guilty of this between wanting to support my fellow bloggers and thinking “I’ll get to that one day.”
Instead of that, clear your schedule or add the course work into it. Dedicate time every single day to it.
The point: we don’t know it all and can always be improved if we work on it.
Hint: the day you download it, review it, and assign time to your calendar.
Tip: only buy or download something that supports your PRIMARY goal.
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Traffic Tip 9: Shareable Content
Don’t roll your eyes… Read this and then go look at your posts.
- Do you have headings which tell the reader what is in the section? Not cutesy headings because it won’t help the skimmers. Psst: most of your readers are skimmers.
- Share what they will get from your post in the first part and remind them what they received in your summary or takeaways section at the end.
- Use sharing buttons that work! I love Social Warfare (so inexpensive for what you get!) but there are many free traffic-building options.
The point: get a second opinion on your formatting.
Hint: make it easy for people to share on THEIR favorite network.
Tip: test a sharing plug in for speed and user experience.
Traffic Tip 10: Collaborate
I dedicate an entire section of the Content for Growth training to guest blogging and collaboration. Why? Other bloggers help you grow as a blogger, make new friends, challenge you, and give you valuable real estate in front of their hard-earned audience! A side benefit: it’s one of the best ways to increase blog traffic for free.
If you’d like to delve into this deeper, pick up a copy of Content for Growth today (special price if you use this link).
The point: no (wo)man is an island.
Hint: yes, even if you’re an introvert (email me and I’ll help you do it – for free).
Tip: learn how to be a great collaborator with Content for Growth.
Work your way through these 10 ways to increase blog traffic for free and you’ll find clarity, focus, and motivation to carry you through the year. If you want to share a quick video on social, it’s here.