6 Practical Strategies To Triple Your Blog’s Traffic

Over the years, my career as a blogger has really evolved. Here at IFB, I've taken more an editorial strategy role since the IFB team has grown. One of my daily activities is to focus on is how to bring more traffic in to the site through planning. Yes, you heard me planning! Luckily, we have great writers like Taylor, Ashe and Amanda… In the last few months, we've doubled IFB's traffic, then tripled it. It took a lot of focus, and we did it! And here's how…

 

1. Use Your Editorial Calendar

Who knows when the Editorial Calendar was invented, but it's probably been an integral part of publishing from the very beginning. When it comes to blogging, you don't need to make a big deal about your editorial calendar, but it makes a huge difference when you do something. Even if it's on a post-it. Here at IFB, we generally plan or Editorial Calendars a week or two in advance, in a spreadsheet. This allows for creating a content rhythm, and mixing things up when it starts to look a little stale or repetitive. Editorial Calendars also help you stay inspired and keep you motivated!

 

2. Content Marketing

Everything I've learned about content marketing was from CopyBlogger. There's so much to learn!  I can say that the little we've applied to IFB has had a profound effect on the traffic.  Borrow your post title strategies from magazines and newspapers (no more esoteric fashion puns!). Look at the types of posts you click on and analyze why. Reward readers by giving them something they need, what is your reader looking for?

 

3. Send Sticky Newsletters

Time and time again, the IFB newsletter has been our largest traffic driver. Since the beginning, I've personally sought to create a newsletter that would be useful. Email marketing is not dead, personally, I love the newsletter emails from Mashable, LinkedIn, Gilt, WhoWhatWear and Refinery29…as well as IFB. Look at the newsletters you love, analyze them and see how you can appropriate those principles to the newsletter promoting your blog. It'll do wonders!

 

4. Host an Event, Either Online or In Real Life

The IFB Conference is coming up next week. Now it's sixth season, it's possible to say, that after every confernece the community grows. Organizing conferences is a lot more work than I would suggest anyone do, however, there are other events you can plan to promote your blog. You can pitch your idea to a brand to cover the expenses (or even get paid for some events), and it would be a great way to connect with your readers. Heck, I even hosted a garage sale in my apartment lobby and it was a great way to meet my readers and make connections.

 

5. Experiment, Monitor, and Drop What Doesn't Work

I'll try just about anything, once. With blogging, there is just about a million and one things out there that promise traffic growth. A “million,” said with Dr. Evil voice. The truth is, different people have success with different things. A newsletter might not work for you. Twitter might be your game, or these days, Pinterest.  Stumble Upon might be your holy grail one month and the next it's all about Facebook. The traffic gods might seem fickle, but it helps to see what works by looking at the numbers that come in your analytics. That way you can see what is working, and have more information around why it works. Do your list posts work better than your outfit posts? Did that DIY post bring in enough traffic to justify the labor and, well, ok that DIY post was fun. Anyway you get the point. Looking at the numbers helps you make informed desicions about how to plan your time, how to experiment and how to know your traffic is really growing.

 

6. Set Clear Goals for What You Want to Achieve

If you start of by saying, “I just want MORE traffic.” chances are you'll have difficulties structuring your strategy, you'll also have a hard time knowing when you're really getting to what you want.  Set your ultimate goal, which could be anything like 3,000k a month to 3 million a month or more if that's where you're heading. Then break it down into achievable steps. Three million visits a month might sound crazy, but bloggers are doing it, if you set your goal to three million from three thousand in one month, that may not work. But setting a goal of three thousand, to four thousand in one month is achievable, and you can outline what you are going to do to get there. My favorite way is to write our goals down on our white board. Seeing the goals and the outline of how we're going to make it happen makes it easier to take steps and to recognize when it actually happens.

 

Of course there is a lot more we do behind the scenes, but basically this is where we start. How do you grow your traffic? What has worked the best for you?

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56 Responses

  1. Ashe

    First, <3

    Second, I love how clear and defined these goals are. I love that we can see the impact by the growth of members in IFB, and hearing that the reality of needing to grow a site like IFB. It's also fantastic that these are all ongoing goals– not one shot tips to land you an extra 100 subscribers in a day.

    Reply
    • Jennine Jacob

      Thanks Ashe!

      That’s really what goes on here, traffic grows yes, but not always at the rate you want. I think ti’s the thing that keeps things interesting with blogging, that you always have to set your eyes on growth. It’s rather kind of like life.

      Reply
  2. Mindy

    thanks for the tips. i just started my blog a few days ago and i can really use this info. 3 million hits in a month probably isn’t an option right now, but i liked the details in this article.

    stylepukka.blogspot.com

    Reply
  3. style-delights (Jyoti)

    One of the best articles on IFB! Crisp, useful and really really practical to adapt!! No wonder I ❤ IFB!:-)
    I agree with last point- traffic without goal/strategy does nothing – the harnessing of that traffic is what its all about!

    Reply
  4. Mattie

    These tips are amazing. I certainly have applied some of these tips to my 2012 goals (newsletter, editorial calendar, etc.) and have seen results already.

    The hosting events tip is very true, but it takes a lot of work to throw a blogworthy event. But if you have the time and nerve to pull it off, it makes you very visible.

    I’m excited for what the year has to bring. I certainly plan on tripling my traffic, but most importantly growing as a blogger and overall creative.

    Reply
  5. Mint_G.

    Well, Thanks for the great tips you bring with us to overcome traffic. Thanks a lot it will bring a huge help to me/ All.

    Reply
  6. Aline C

    Applying everything is what I find most challenging, I’ll have all the ideas and goals in my head, but writing them down and implementing them gets a little tough. Especially when you’re trying to juggle uni, work and life.
    Great post though 🙂

    Reply
    • Jennine Jacob

      juggling life and blogging is tough, which is why monitoring, and analyzing is so important, that way you know where to focus your energies!

      Reply
  7. Style Maniac

    ProBlogger offers some good advice on how to frame goals for a traffic increase: aim for a percentage increase rather than a number. This factors in where you are now — so my 10% in numbers may be different than yours, but we each still have accomplished our goals.

    Reply
  8. Christina

    Great and incredibly useful tips. I recently bought a white board to help manage and complete my massive to do lists, but didn’t even think to write down traffic goals as well. Going to start this now, but am going to focus less on my lofty long term goals and more on realistic numbers, month by month. I spend so much time and energy dreaming up where I want to be say, a year from now, but not how I’m going to get there.

    Reply
    • Jennine Jacob

      haha, well it’s always good to have a vision of where you eventually want to be! the month by month goals are helpful in terms of breaking down how you’re going to get to where you want to be in a year. believe me, i have many of those!
      🙂

      Reply
  9. Natalia Dreamlander

    Useful tips! But there are aspects I don’t agree with. Like the “post title strategies” for example. Sure, we all want to increase our blog trafic, but at the end of the day you want to stay creative as well. If not, all blogs will look the same and it won’t be fun anymore. So if you want to name your post “poodle doodle” instead of “new trends for spring”, you should go for it. Again, this is just an example.

    Reply
    • Jennine Jacob

      Hi there, I don’t understand what you mean. Why can’t you be creative about your post titles AND have a strategy behind them?

      I used to think it was hogwash, “strategies” then I noticed what links I clicked on, they all were very much crafted and well thought out. They concisely said what the post was going to be about.

      Reply
      • Sharde Hunter

        As a blogger for my personal blog and also for my job- I have a web consulting call with my bosses and a consultant with hubspot on a biweekly basis. The keywords that you write in your post titles are incredibly important in what could show up in organic searches in google. By changing the way you write your post titles, you can gain traffic simply by ranking higher in google with some strategy.

        Jennine, I think this article is brilliant, and thanks for writing it. I’ve definitely got some things to work on, and I hope I’m going to achieve my 2012 goals for TSP! 🙂

        sharde @ the style projects

  10. Ashley

    Great tips! My blog turned a month old today and I’m trying to figure out ways to increase traffic just to break 100 followers, lol. I hope using some of these strategies works!

    Reply
  11. Sydne

    Great tips. Also another huge way: Social Media. So much of my traffic comes from Twitter. Definitely a great way to introduce new people to your blog.

    So bummed I can’t make the IFB conference. Can’t wait to read about it!

    Reply
  12. Lisi

    Great article! I like the white board idea. That way it’s right in front of me every day. I always wonder how bloggers set their goals and I’m learning it’s just personal. I waver back and forth about being into blogging and then not and always come back to it. I think it’s time to just embrace it and do as much as I can to make it worthwhile. I think your newsletter IS incredibly effective and always gets me to your site. Also, an editorial calendar would help me stay motivated. Like having a syllabus. Why would I do the readings if they weren’t assigned? Same as with posts. I need to make myself assignments or else they don’t happen…

    Reply
  13. faye

    I would add in to make sure you submit your blog to all the search engines, do guest posts & make sure to add alt tags to your images 🙂 Great post though!

    Reply
  14. Mediamarmalade

    This is a really great post and all such useful tips! I sort of create a calendar but sometimes lose time to write and end up writing about the same type of thing twice in a row! I am going to start analysing which posts drive my biggest views more 🙂 xx http://www.mediamarmalade.com UK style Blogger

    Reply
  15. Mary Kincaid

    Great tips but I also think it’s important to focus on the QUALITY of your traffic and not just the QUANTITY.

    Are the folks you’re attracting sticking around and reading more than the just one page they landed on? Are they joining your mailing list? Are they finding you via one vehicle (your blog, Facebook or Twitter) and then joining you on the other mediums as well?

    I’d rather attract 10 rabid fans in a month who I can develop a relationship with and provide value to for years to come than 100 readers who flit in, stay a bit, and move on to the next latest and greatest thing.

    At the end of the day it’s OUTSTANDING consistent content that will attract exactly the right readers for your brand and this applies to all five steps you mention whether you’re developing content for a seminar, a newsletter or your daily postings.

    Reply
    • Jennine Jacob

      That’s true, it’s very important to have traffic that converts, but there’s also something to be said about finding a balance. Sure having 10 rabid fans is great, but in order to grow a business, you have to have your mind set on growing those 10 rabid fans to 100, then 1000, etc.

      Reply
  16. Fajr

    Great post. Couldn’t agree more with having clearly defined goals. My whiteboard is filled with outlines for what I hope to achieve.

    Also, Brian Clark & Copyblogger are a goldmine!

    Reply
  17. Rich Girl

    Great post! Thank you for sharing such valuable tips! I have a goal to double my traffic by summer. Let’s see if I make it.

    Reply
  18. Mrs. Jarette

    This information is really helpful… Im not trying to generate real money I just like connecting with everyone I find that outfit post don’t just satisfy me I want to relate to my readers and visitors on a personal level. I definitely would like more traffic from those readers and even though it’s just a hobby for me I will outline my goals and write down ideas that will capture my audience. Thanks IFB!

    Reply
  19. Omega

    A wise lady said to me not long ago that the best thing I can do to build traffic is just be “ME” – and not a safe, “What I think others will like” version of me, either.

    A good blog post with a catchy title that does well on google will get you a spike of one-time visitors, but people who connect with you personally will stick around..

    I try hard to not be afraid to let my personality show, and to give readers a glimpse into my life.. I let them know me. Not everyone’s going to like that, but the ones who do become regular readers, and come back every day to see what’s happening.

    Reply
  20. Nikki @ Styling You

    Awesome tips – with the Editorial Calendar – if you’re on WordPress, then the WordPress Editorial Calendar plug-in makes this SO much easier. I’m a big fan – you can drag and drop your drafts and look at the week or month in view to make sure you’re offering that varied content.

    Reply
  21. Stephanie

    What an awesome post! I was just participating in a Twitter chat earlier this evening about this very topic. Some awesome tips that I’ll definitely be putting into use! 😉

    Reply
  22. the mannikin

    Pinterest is definitely a huge help I’ve noticed! At the same time DIY posts and giveaways have boosted traffic big-time as well. Great post, great tips! Thanks again IFB! x

    Reply
  23. Hannah Jane

    I came across this from my first newsletter from IFB. Well, your advice is clearly working for yourself which is an encouraging motive for me. I will set some goals today, use my whiteboard, and up my traffic this month for sure! (Positive Mental Attitude).
    Happy Blogging Y’all
    http://hanjanran.blogspot.com/
    Peace, X

    Reply
  24. Erin

    Thank you for bringing this up! I have had a newsletter for a couple of years, but keep forgetting to tweak the layout and call to action. This was just the reminder that I needed. Can’t wait to watch IFBcon tomorrow!

    Reply
  25. Laura

    Great tips – I have been experimenting with my blog posts lately, so your tip about trying everything once and monitoring rings a bell for me.
    I look over the past few months at what I’ve done and plan from there. My readers seem to like high street fashion posts.

    Reply
  26. Holly Mackenzie Cupp

    One way I increase my traffic is by devoting one day out of the month to going “viral” My friends and family help me out by sharing my latest blog posts on all of their favorite social networks. I also share my latest blog posts on my favorite social networks and let everyone know I’m trying to go viral that day. It’s a lot of fun actually! I have awesome support when it comes to my blog and I am so thankful!

    Reply
  27. Lou Jones

    This is a nice piece, lots of great ideas in here. An editorial calendar is one of the most important tools you can use to keep things on track, it’s a major part of any promotional plan. It also helps you plan ahead and prep pieces in advance so you can have a few weeks off from blogging.

    Reply
  28. Emily Jayne

    Thanks for this – after my blog growing fairly organically over the past year, I think I’ve been guilty of the just wanting ‘MORE’ traffic, tomorrow I’m going to sit down and work out some goals.

    Reply
  29. Carmen Brillianwati

    Thank you thank you! Traffic has always been the problem for a beginner like me, I seriously need to reset everything now .-.

    Reply