Blogging can be a thankless passion. Sometimes it seems like the more effort you put into a post, the less people read it. There are few things more frustrating than feeling like all your precious content is going to waste, but there are some things you can do to remedy the situation.
Although the number of website hits, page views, and unique visitors you get to your blog aren’t the end-all-be-all of metrics, they are important. After all, if you write the Great American Novel and no one reads it. Does it matter? Here are 11 reasons you don’t have more website hits.
Your Content Stinks
It’s a harsh reality to face, but it’s the first question you need to ask yourself: is what I’m posting worth reading? If your writing is bad, your subject matter uninteresting, or your general typical choice terrible, no one’s going to read (and if they do, they’re certainly not going to come back.)
Your Posts are Boring
There are a lot of reasons a post can be “boring”, but the most common include being way too long, having little or no images, or using sentences that are too lengthy. Remember that web writing is different from “real world” writing and needs to be easily scalable.
You Don’t Post Often Enough
It’s easy to fall into a trap of thinking each post has to be a masterpiece. Not so! Of course, everything you put on your blog should be interesting, but it doesn’t have to be 500+ words long. Aim to post at least once a week to keep your readers coming back. The web has a short memory.
You’re Not Thinking About SEO
Search Engine Optimization is important, even if you don’t know what it means. Before your next post, do a little research on keywords, meta tags, and page rank. Never, ever write for good rankings, but be aware of how to best situate your content so the search engines see it.
You’re Not Linking Out
Make sure your blog posts often include links to other blogs, news sites, or even Wikipedia! These outside links show you’re connected within the blogosphere and they make for a better reader experience.
You Don’t Promote
Are you using social media to promote your blog? You should be! Twitter, Facebook, even LinkedIn – not to mention your business card and email salutation – are great places to build readership among people who already know and like your style.
You’re Not Talking To Other Bloggers
You’re not the only blogger in your industry. Make a point to reach out (using social media or any other method) to other bloggers. You’ll learn valuable reading tips, maybe score a guest blog post, or better yet, a shout out on someone’s blogroll.
SEE MORE: 5 Mistakes I Made As A New Blogger
You’re Not Listening To Your Readers
If people are commenting on your blog posts, you’re already one step ahead of the game. Read their comments, find out what they like and don’t like about your posts and keep it in mind. Always respond to comments – an engaged blogger is a well-read blogger!
Your Domain Name is Awful
In rare cases, you may need to replace your domain altogether to be memorable and indexed well by search engines. And for Pete’s sake, get rid of the “.wordpress.com” or the “.blogspot.com” already.
You’re Not Original
No one wants to come to your blog repeatedly if you’re not posting original, thoughtful content. There are millions of interesting things on the web every day, but your job as a blogger is to offer your own take on them, not simply regurgitate the facts.
You’re Not Engaging
Speaking of engaging - being active in the blog community is one of the most important things you can do for your readership. Read other blogs, Like blog mentions on Facebook, and be sure to use your blog platform’s “follow” function to show other bloggers you’re out there. Blogging is not a one-way street.
Keep these tips in mind the next time you sit down to post and see your readership rise, slowly but surely. The best blog following is a loyal one, but it’s easier said than done.