Work Smarter, Not Harder–3 Ways to Massively (and Permanently) Increase Your Traffic.
By: Cora Harrington

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This post is by Ms. Treacle

One of the first questions any blogger asks when starting out is “How can I get people to visit my site?” Of course, that makes perfect sense because readers are a humongous part of the blogging experience. Traffic is a little bit like a drug; once you get that first hit of visitors, you’re always looking for more.

 

Unfortunately, some of the more popular methods of getting traffic are extremely time intensive. Visiting hundreds of blogs, leaving scores of comments, and sending dozens of e-mails with your link takes hours…hours that would honestly be better spent on your blog.

 

So what’s a fashion blogger to do? Well, keep reading, for starters! In this article, we’ll talk about 3 time-tested strategies that will not only give you a huge traffic increase, but will also net you the links, visitors, and comments every blogger craves.

 

Guest Posting

Guest posting is one of the most overlooked yet most effective ways of getting traffic. It works so well because of 3 main reasons. One, a guest post introduces you and your unique perspective to a brand new audience. Two, guest posts make you look like a credible authority (don’t we all trust things more when they come from our friends?) And three, guest posts gives you permanent backlinks, which is great for both referral and search engine traffic.

 

If you’re thinking of writing guest post for a particular blog, take the time to look it over first. See what articles have been published lately, read their guest post guidelines (if there are any), and do a quick blog search to make sure the topic you want to write about hasn’t been covered already. When you pitch your idea to the blogger, keep it short, simple, and straight to the point. And always remember that your guest post should be both completely original and incredibly valuable. Finally, when your guest post is accepted and published, don’t forget to promote it on your own website or social media. That’s all part of building relationships and it may even get you invited back.

 

StumbleUpon

Though I was never able to figure out Digg or Reddit, I have gotten the hang of StumbleUpon and it’s an excellent way to get recurring traffic with minimal effort. As an added bonus, StumbleUpon can teach you to be a better blogger by exposing you to the kinds of posts and articles that tend to go viral.

 

But as with most things, you shouldn’t expect instantaneous results. StumbleUpon does require a small investment of time (in the form of stumbling other people’s articles) before it begins stumbling yours. I’ve found the best thing to do is just select the topics you’re interested in and use those first few Stumbles as a learning opportunity. Finally, don’t make the mistake of stumbling only your own blog posts or of stumbling everything you write. Only Stumble your very best posts…things that are scannable, catchy, and on-trend. Once you get the hang of it, you’re rewarded with a steady stream of new visitors to the best stuff on your blog.

Post Titles

Speaking of search engine traffic and going viral, one of the most important things you can do to increase your traffic is write better post titles. Your blog post title should not only give visitors an idea of what your article is about, it should also include the words people are searching for when they want answers to a question. That’s not to say you should start writing for the robots, but if you think about the question someone would ask to find your blog post (such as “How to Wear Leggings This Winter”) and phrase your post title accordingly, Google will reward you by sending more traffic your way.

 

If you’re a bit stuck about how to create great post titles, I recommend just going to the bookstore and sitting down with a stack of magazines. You’ll see very precise, keyword-laden teasers on the front which promise the answers to a question (sometimes one you didn’t even know you had!). Best of all, once you’ve established yourself to Google as an expert or authority on a particular topic, you’ll find that traffic on that topic keeps coming your way.

I hope these three tips help you with increasing traffic for your blog. I’d love to hear about your strategies in the comments!

Comments

  1. Lauren says:

    I once got my highest number of readers but asking a well-known blogger, Smart Pretty & Awkward, to do a post on my site! She was willing and we both promoted each other, a great partnership.

    • Treacle says:

      That’s a great point, Lauren! When someone posts on your site, asking them to promote that post on their own site can often send some new visitors your way too. Like you said, it’s all about great partnerships. :)

  2. Niki Aguirre says:

    I’m pretty new to the blogsphere (2 weeks old), but had two guest posts via a friend that really increased my traffic and opened my site to a new audience. It really does work.

    I need to learn more about Stumble Upon and improving my titles – that’s for sure.

    Additional strategies I can think of – using your facebook fan pages as a blog feed so that your friends and fans can see it right away. My traffic increases ten fold whenever I publish to facebook otherwise it’s a dessert land, but again, I am new… so I don’t know how much that would help an established blogger.

    Great post, thanks for the tips. Cheers.

    • Niki, Facebook works for me too because as a still newer blogger, that’s where my biggest network lies. It’ll start to even out over time :)

      • Niki Aguirre says:

        Exactly, for me too. I spent a lot of time cultivating my fan pages on facebook. I didn’t realize how much more powerful running your own blog is and am still making that transition. I know it will take time. I’m sure FB will still be one of my biggest outpost even over time. Thanks for the comment!

    • Treacle says:

      I’m on Facebook also (just made my fanpage about 3 months ago)…and you’re right, it’s another great traffic resource.

  3. Treacle, thanks so much for this post, especially the last part about post titles. I posted a survey a couple months ago, wondering what the IFB community recommended for titles. The responses were completely mixed! This article, however, took some mystery out of why you should put thought into your titles. Going forward, I’m not going to use song lyrics as titles anymore. Thanks again!

  4. Style Bite says:

    Thanks for the tips! I just started using Stumble Upon and love the results. With a little time spent stumbling other articles, the rewards are huge. But it’s easy to get caught up and spend hours stumbling :)

  5. lisa says:

    Definitely agree with tips #1 and 3. Great advice!

  6. Stumbleupon can be SUCH a great resource, but it’s hard sometimes to convince bloggers NOT to use it just for themselves… use it on your site sparingly, but promote others! That’s really such a big part of increasing your traffic– promoting others as well.

    Great article, Miss Treacle!

    • Treacle says:

      Thanks for commenting, Ashe, and I agree 100%! StumbleUpon won’t work if you just use it for self-promotion…you have to participate, and that means you have to stumble other people.

  7. Doni W. says:

    I’ve been using Stumbleupon for a few weeks now but it’s not catching on yet. How long did it take so see results for you guys? Because I browse and stumble more than I submit my site but I’m still not getting good results.

    Maybe I should change the placement of my stumble button?

  8. Ndi Lauper says:

    This article was very informative but I find that most people arent willing to help unless you pay them for advertising or promoting maybe I’m wrong but I will give it a shot. THANKS

  9. eli says:

    Blog titles really have worked for me, I have one post from years ago that still gets many hits because of the title! who knew so many people were trying to make their own American Apparel clothes?!

    Stumble upon only worked for me the first day after that = nothing. I think it’s because I stumbled myself. But I think I might have to give it another try?

  10. Marissa says:

    Thank you for this! I will definitely check out Stumbleupon now. Someone once submitted one of my posts to reddit, and my traffic increased three-fold! It’s amazing what those types of sites can do.

  11. This is an awesome post – so informative. I think I would add press features to the list as well! In my first 6 months of blogging, I was highlighted by another larger blog and the same readers I gained from that feature still come to my site, a year later. Don’t be afraid to email online publications and ask to be featured. They’re always looking for the latest and greatest in fashion blogging – they just haven’t stumbled on yours yet ;)

    Cece from LoveBrownSugar

  12. nookie says:

    another great way to get visitor is a tumblr photo blog,I’ve started one for about 2 weeks and it drives lots of visitors to my fashion blog.
    aww, and the “how to wear” posts are the most popular on my blog ( search engine point of view)
    really, really useful post!

  13. Emmett K says:

    Great Article with useful tips for new bloggers. I’ve used Stumbleupon a handful of times, but reading this article made me realize that its a great resource to get your blog out there.

    Thanks for sharing your ideas :)

  14. Great article! I’ve been thinking a lot about guest posting, but just don’t have the time to do it right now. I have enough trouble just getting my own posts up twice a week. Thanks so much for the advice. I’ll be keeping it in mind for the future.

    • Treacle says:

      Well, it’s all about what your goals are, Heather. Increased traffic doesn’t just happen; you usually have to “put yourself out there” to get results. Thanks for your comment. :)

  15. Kiki says:

    Great article and tips. So, far I’ve used facebook, ifb, and bloglovin. I believe it’s also patience when you want your traffic to increase on you blog. I’ve been doing a lot of research on the more popular fashion blogs and some of them didn’t see HUGE traffic increase until a year or more.

    • Treacle says:

      Absolutely! Patience cannot be underestimated. So many people think I’m a new blogger and they’re surprised to hear that I’ve been at it for 2.5 years! You have to be willing to try new things, go out of your comfort zone, and just give the stuff you’re trying time to work. Great point.

  16. This was a really great article, I’m really considering the guest posting idea!

  17. fuyume says:

    great post x i would love to do a guest post or having someone do one on mine but as i blog about japanese fashion its a lil difficult x

    • Treacle says:

      Hi Fuyume,

      You don’t have to be limited to blogs that are just on your topic. Going a little outside of your niche is good too. Thanks for commenting. :)

  18. I’m aware of tip #3 and tip #1 although I have not acted upon it yet. Stumble upon confuses me though.

    I signed up and made the mistake of stumbling only my own posts to start with. I then read a little bit about it and started to stumble other sites. What I don’t understand is how it generates traffic for your site if you’re only stumbling other peoples sites.

    I’m guessing the more you stumble the more likely your webpages will come up on other people’s stumbles??

  19. Cync00 says:

    Very sound writing and great advice! Thanks for your help and sharing your knowledge!

  20. Rachel says:

    Thank you so much – you’ve totally just got me back into StumbleUpon – and I’m just about to stumble this article! x

  21. Kim says:

    Hmm this is all very informative! I’m definitely going to look into StumbleUpon,see if I can figure it out.

  22. Kate says:

    I am fairly new to blogging, I mainly keep mine as a track of inspiration for my design work and things I’v found that I like along with work I’v produced but I don’t seem to find many others like it apart from illustrators. I find it hard to get my blog out there but I will give Stumbleupon a try later tonight. Thanks for your advice! x

  23. Isis says:

    I love this thanks so much this is of great help!

    xoxo

  24. Jade Rose says:

    I’m gonna check out StumbleUpon ;)

  25. Kate says:

    Some really good advice here. Glad you mentioned titles, they’re so important.

  26. Guest posting is such an untapped avenue. I think a lot of bloggers are afraid to reach out and ask to do guest posts but it is a great way to get incremental traffic. Also allowing guest posts attracts link from other sites and brings in traffic as well.

  27. Great advice, I’m definitely going to check out stumbleupon right now! Also, love the blog title info.. I forget how important that is.

    Gina Marie Vintage
    http://www.ginamarievintage.com

  28. One more blogger out to give stumbleupon a chance.

  29. Love the fact that this post focuses on 3 main areas with a concise explanation. I’m going to try all 3 this week !

  30. Diana says:

    I’ve found StumbleUpon to be pretty hit-or-miss after awhile; generally you need to use it intensively to get it to also send you the hits. Admittedly though, the fashion section of stumbleupon is pretty awesome, so it’s not like it’s time wasted when you use it like that.

    • Treacle says:

      You’re right, part of success with StumbleUpon is stumbling other people way more than you submit your own work.

      The other part though, is writing articles that are easy to stumble. Lists work really well. So do posts that have lots of images.

      Basically, anything you stumble should be scannable and easy to “get” in a few seconds (or less)…otherwise it likely won’t take off.

  31. fshnonmymind says:

    I’ve recently been thinking of ways to increase traffic to my blog and these are all helpful, somewhat out of the normal box ideas that could help. Glad I found this article. :)

  32. Evie says:

    This is a really helpful post. Everywhere says about pushing your blog at every opportunity, commenting on every blog, following everyone on twitter. But these tips are the ones to get you genuine readers not forced followers.
    Thank you!
    One More Blog

    • Treacle says:

      Exactly! You don’t want to make people sick of your blog before they’ve even visited it. These techniques keep you from turning into the thing everyone hates–a spammer.

  33. I’m not a fashion blogger and this article is awesome for me (a creative thinking blogger). Magazine titles – BRILLIANT!

    Why do we bang our heads when they’ve been doing all the tricks for years?

    I’m heading to the bookstore…

  34. Really useful tips, thanks. I haven’t really tried guest posting but this has given me a push in the right direction. Is it best to stick to asking closely related blogs?

    • Treacle says:

      Hi Lind,

      It depends on what the goal of your guest posting is. I’ve used guest posting to both expand my reach in closely related blogs and to expose myself to entirely new audiences in unrelated blogs.

      You can get an idea of what I mean from my Press page here–http://www.thelingerieaddict.com/2010/06/sharing-lingerie-love-websites-ive-been.html

  35. T. says:

    Very interesting post! I’m obviously doing it wrong: I try to use creative post tiles, puns, things that seemingly have nothing to do with the post. Maybe I can try and change that. And I’m going to find out what StumbleUpon is now.

  36. daisymay says:

    Great post, its all good advice, will have to start stumbling properly, I tried it a few times and never got much traffic, will have a go again and see what happens.

    Daisy Dayz Home
    Cross-Jones-Photography Home

  37. uraraa says:

    great ideas! i do no. 3 but people don’t always stay after they find what they were searching for!

  38. Schedule says:

    Best you could edit the page subject Work Smarter, Not Harder–3 Ways to Massively (and Permanently) Increase Your Traffic. | Independent Fashion Bloggers to more catching for your blog post you make. I enjoyed the the writing nevertheless.

  39. Stephanie says:

    Thanks so much for the tips! Definitely going to try Stumbleupon.

  40. AEJones says:

    This post was exactly what I’ve been looking for the past month. I’ve been trying to figure out what I can do to get my blog out there more. It is so true what was written – it is kind of like a drug! Once you get a following, you want to grow that following more and more!

    I’m glad you talked about StumbleUpon. I read about it a while ago, but it kind of intimidated me, but after this, I will definitely give it a go.

    THANK YOU!!

    • Treacle says:

      I’m glad you found it helpful! :)

      • This was such a great article! As a brand new blogger (www.thelittlelovelist.com is only a month old), I need all the help I can get. I’m excited to invite guest bloggers onto my site, and I definitely want to try Stumble Upon. Thanks so much for taking the time to write this amazing article!

        xx
        A

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