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How to Get More Traffic on WordPress

June 17, 2008

Once you finally get your blog set up and make it look exactly like you want it to, the next thing that you want, unless your blog is a private journal, is people to read the blog. There are a lot of ways to gain traffic for your blog, and some of them work better than others. Below are some suggestions for what to do (and what not to do) to get more traffic to your WordPress blog.

1. Stumble Upon– Stumble is a website which installs a toolbar in your browser (don’t worry, there is no annoying advertising or spyware, or anything like that) which allows you to “stumble” through the internet. You click “Stumble” and you are taken to a website based on your interests and the suggestions of others. You have the choice to mark the page as a “Like” or a “Dislike”, or you can review it. If you list your blog on Stumble, you WILL get traffic. I suggest writing a very good blog post and submitting it to Stumble (by clicking “I Like It” while looking at the post) and also submitting your main blog page. Doing so got me about 500 hits within hours. Since then, I get a few hits from Stumble every day. Sometimes it’s just one or two, and sometimes it’s twenty. If your content is good, more people will click “I Like It” and you’ll get more traffic. Something important to note is that if you submit every page that you write to Stumble, or if you’re not submitting anything else, you will eventually get blocked from Stumble or your submissions will carry much less weight. I suggest only submitting the posts that you REALLY think Stumble users will appreciate.

2. Digg – Unless you have a lot of friends and contacts on Digg, don’t bother. Digg can easily skyrocket your post from 100 Diggs to 1000 Diggs, but it will almost never move you from 2 Diggs to 20, or from 20 to 100. I listed about ten blog posts on Digg, and I think I got a total of one hit. If you do have a lot of support on Digg, or if you feel that you can build it, it might be useful. However, building a presence takes a lot of time and effort, and it might be better spent just by promoting your blog.  

3. Facebook and Myspace– list your blog’s webpage on Facebook and Myspace. Don’t spam, but stick it in your status message or on your profile. I’m barely active at all on either website, but I still get two or three hits a week from people who see the link in my profile and click it. If you are active, and if people view your profile frequently, you will get a lot more hits.

4. Use WordPress Tags and Categories appropriately– When I first started using wordpress, I organized my Categories based on things that I write. For example, I created the SILT category for “Stuff I Leanred Today”. It turns out that your personal Categories are tied to wordpress Categories in general. So if I post into my personal Category “Erin’s Political Views” it stays put, or gets put into Category – Erin’s Political Views, and no one ever finds it that way. If I instead list it under Politics, it gets hit by everyone looking at the Politics category, and can even get picked to be “Best in Category.” Tags work similarly, except that from what I can tell, there seem to be a lot more tags in use than Categories. I tend to get most of my hits, currently (with the exception of Stumble spikes) from wordpress Tags, and a few from Categories. Also, on the front page of WordPress.com are lists of Categories and Tag that are currently popular. Use this list when you’re not sure what to write about. The most popular tags are usually Politics, Life, Music, Photography, etc. “Personal”, somehow, is even a popular tag. I would think to add “life” to my journal-type blog posts, but I would never had thought to add “Personal” until I looked at that list. Check it frequently.

5. Yahoo Answers –If you have a speciality, and especially if your blog is focused on teaching people about specific things, Yahoo Answers can be a good place to advertise. When you answer a question (being thorough and helpful) list your website in the box for resources. People who like your answer will click the link to your blog for more information.

6. Be the reader you want.Go to other people’s wordpress, read and comment. Subscribe if you like what they write, and add them to their blogroll if you think that your readers will like it as well. Also, if you use other websites based on the things you discuss in your website (for example, I use Flickr and DeviantArt for photography) make friends there and list your website on your profile. Whenever you see ANY content online that you like, promote it just like you would promote your blog. Do it anonymously, or do it in a way that lets them know what you have done. Hopefully, they will do the same for you, but at the least, you know that you’ve given someone else the satisfaction of seeing new hits on their blog.

7. Consider your own habits– How do you find websites? Do you search google? Do friends IM them to you? Do you click links in people’s blogroll? However you find websites, try to make your own blog accessible in the same ways. You’ll be amazed at how many ways you can think of to bring traffic to your blog.

8. Signatures– In emails and on forums, add your blog url to your signature. If someone likes what you have to say (or if they really don’t like it) they may click on the link to find out more about you.

9. Don’t spam– spamming, just as posting a URL to your blog on a website’s comments sections or in an unrelated forum thread, doesn’t do you any good. Think about it. Have you EVER clicked on one of those links? You’re only wasting your time if you spam.

10. Interesting Titles and Opening Lines – frequently, readers won’t see your entire blog. They will see the titles of one or more blog posts, and maybe the first few lines. If the titles are boring, they probably won’t click to read more. You have to attract your reader from the start.

11. Submit to contests and blog-rating sites – there are a number of websites, such as Blog of the Day Award, that you can submit your blog to. I recently won a Blog of the Day Award, and I’m getting a lot of traffic from that. Don’t be afraid to submit your blog, what’s the worst that can happen? Also, don’t be afraid to ask a blogger that you respect to look at your blog and make suggestions. If they like what they see, they may link to you. If they don’t, their suggestions will hopefully help you make your blog better.

12. Make your RSS button accessible– having an easy-to-find RSS button means that readers who like what they see will be more likely to add you to RSS. If your RSS button is at the bottom of the page, or if you don’t have one, readers might not even consider adding you to RSS.

 

There are literally hundreds of ways to promote your blog. Some of them are absolutely worth your time, and others aren’t. Some take only seconds to set up (such as an email signature) and others will take hours of work (such as building community on Digg). Decide what is worth it to you, and, above all, produce quality content on a regular basis. Granted, you can write stuff just for you, such as my Journal posts, but make sure that you are also posting things that readers who don’t know you will be interested in.

If you’d like me to take a look at your blog, feel free to post the URL in the comments. I’m thinking of adding a “Blog/Website of the Week” sort of post, if there’s enough interest.

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31 Comments leave one →
  1. June 17, 2008 3:40 pm

    Good writing. Keep up the good work. I just added your RSS feed my Google News Reader..

    Matt Hanson

  2. June 20, 2008 1:50 am

    geat advice thanks

  3. assamebiz permalink
    June 21, 2008 6:06 pm

    cool! It’s really helpful. Thanks a lot for a nice post.
    http://assamebiz.wordpress.com/
    http://coolgooglegadgets.blogspot.com/

  4. Navdeep Jakhar permalink
    June 26, 2008 2:33 pm

    thanks for the advice.
    here is mine – http://navdeepjk.wordpress.com/

  5. tommiekelly permalink
    July 15, 2008 11:10 am

    Great Ideas, I’ll use them and see how it goes!

  6. July 17, 2008 2:18 pm

    Great advice. Ive got many websites that are using stories from my wordpress blog on thier sites, and I dont even have an RSS link on my page. Ill try that one first! Also, is Digg worth the time building a presence if you have over 30 blogs? Thanks!!!!!

    Matthew M
    http://TampaEthanol.com

  7. July 21, 2008 2:38 am

    Thanks. I learned something form the post.

    Please take a look at my blog, http://www.avenuestosuccess.com

  8. August 6, 2008 4:41 pm

    Very nice . This help me a lot and right way. Thank you

  9. August 10, 2008 12:29 pm

    really helpfull article..thanks!

  10. badneuz2 permalink
    August 24, 2008 7:56 pm

    thx 4 the help

    http://www.hood-kings.com

  11. August 30, 2008 1:27 pm

    this is really useful

  12. September 12, 2008 11:50 am

    Helped me a lot. Thanks for the tips.

    http://havocinitiation.wordpress.com/

  13. September 12, 2008 4:02 pm

    Hey this is a great post! I am a web designer and I am always looking for new quality information out there to help me, and my clients better. Thanks so much for the good input!

  14. September 17, 2008 12:56 am

    Hi,
    Thanks for your advise. I registerd to StumbleUpon and hope it brings me some traffic.
    P.S maybe you all friends are interesting sometimes in reading the latest news.
    Here is my news blog site: http://www.wonews.de/enblog .
    Have nice traffic.

  15. September 28, 2008 7:20 am

    Thanks
    That helped… another way I find is to use the ‘Add Me’ button to the posts.
    Check out my site: http://www.kennethwatt.com
    🙂

  16. jlv0628 permalink
    October 21, 2008 1:21 am

    Great post, thanks for the tips!

    -Jorge
    thejorgezone.wordpress.com

  17. Epalmuda permalink
    February 25, 2009 3:02 pm

    ok….ive learn something new

  18. darkdotz permalink
    March 21, 2009 6:43 pm

    really helpful article….thanks!!

  19. teenrandom permalink
    April 21, 2009 6:44 pm

    I happened to notice that your RSS Button is at the bottom of the page just thought i would let you know. Please check out my blog it teenrandom.wordpress.com I just started so there is like one post right now haha but i hope to start making more and more posts!

  20. teenrandom permalink
    April 21, 2009 6:45 pm

    Very helpful though!!!

  21. May 3, 2009 9:43 pm

    Very nice article, i’m trying the Stumble stuff now, see how it pans out.

  22. thatsphuckedup permalink
    May 6, 2009 10:54 am

    Thanks for these suggestions…. a great read… I will do some of these right away!
    http://thatsphuckedup.wordpress.com/

  23. Komarraju Venkata Vinay permalink
    May 22, 2009 8:48 am

    This post has been very helpful. I never knew that a I could put a status message in Orkut. After reading your post, I did that and also nominated for the BOTDA. I am really thankful to you for putting things in an easy-to-understand way. I am still getting to know the trade. Your tricks, I am sure, will be helpful.

    Venkata Vinay
    http://affirmativethinking.wordpress.com
    Watch your thoughts for they are your destiny!

  24. July 2, 2009 4:04 am

    Once my website got so many traffic than the others day, I thought that my website was on the way.
    But after several days, the traffic started decreasing quickly.
    I don’t know why and I try to do many ways but it seem not to be effective.

  25. Matt Parker permalink
    July 31, 2009 7:10 am

    Just started a new blog.Great Tips.

    http://eternaleuphoria.wordpress.com/

    Visit my blog and leave few comments if you could.Will be greatly appreciated.
    http://eternaleuphoria.wordpress.com/feedback/

  26. gornoblonde permalink
    February 25, 2010 2:21 pm

    Awesome advice….i’m trying to go from 200+ to 1ooo+ views per day!
    So check out my blog site:

    The Actress Obsession Channel –

    http://gornoblonde.wordpress.com/

  27. dejairl permalink
    March 2, 2010 4:49 pm

    I know it’s been a little while since you posted this; but still extremely helpful. Thanks! 🙂

  28. shoppingbagger permalink
    March 10, 2010 9:36 am

    Some good key points. Thanks, for writing this article.

    http://shoppingbagger.wordpress.com

  29. March 23, 2010 1:21 am

    hey this has really opened my eyes to better blog promotion….

    by the way check out xaiformation.wordpress.com

  30. March 29, 2010 6:13 pm

    I really enjoyed reading your entry and it made me realize that some of the efforts I’ve been putting into digg and other sites have indeed been a waste of time. Thanks for that and hopefully I’ll be able to figure out better ways to get traffic to my blog!

  31. April 2, 2010 1:30 pm

    Thanks for this helpful post!

    I’m new to WordPress, which is why I’m finding tips on traffic on the internet. I never knew about this thing called Stumble Upon! I will try it right away!

    Sittikhei

    http://nothingin.wordpress.com

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