Some blogging gurus have said, “Only post when you are really inspired.” This year, I took them to heart, and while working on IFB, I put my personal style blog, The Coveted, on hiatus. I didn't intentionally take five months off, it just kind of happened. When I decided to start posting again, something strange happened.
My traffic didn't go down that much.
It did go down a bit, from 2,500 visits per day to 1,500. But still, it wasn't like I had to build from scratch. At first I was happy, then a bit depressed, then it occurred to me, that there is more to building traffic than posting every day, it's they type of posting that pulls in the traffic. While I'm not sure exactly why my traffic didn't tank so badly I took a look at my Google Analytics to help understand what type of posts will bring in traffic.
What's interesting is the top 5 traffic-driving posts for the month of September on The Coveted were:
- Sock Bun Tutorial in 5 Easy Steps
- 23 Stores to Watch on eBay
- How to Make Feather Earrings and Necklaces
- Easy DIY Half Moon Manicure
- Review: Benefit's They're Real Mascara Really Does Work
What do these posts all have in common?
They're Pillar Content
They're useful, instructional, they give the readers information that will [hopefully] make their lives better in some way. This is basically what's called “pillar content” posts that continue to draw in traffic. What's good about these types of posts is that they help establish your traffic base, and pull in new readers to help your traffic grow.
Everyone I talk to who does DIY posts on a regular basis say that it's a lot of work, but looking at my analytics, it's apparent that this type of work pays off. Resource guides, reviews, are also more labor intensive, but at the same time, they can really lay the foundation, and bring in the traffic over a period of time.
They're SEO Friendly
Looking at The Coveted's traffic sources, it's clear that Google search amounts to nearly half of all traffic, 49% to be exact. The top 5 posts all have titles that would do well in SEO, catchy, descriptive and to the point. Notice how there are no puns or ambiguous post titles? While I really love doing those post titles, it's apparent that Google loves keywords and the keywords bring in traffic. “How to make feather earrings,” “Sock Bun Tutorial,” and “Benefit They're Real” searches all had The Coveted's post on the first page.
While I wouldn't recommend anyone take five months off from blogging, from this experience, I would recommend spending some time thinking about what types of posts would bring in traffic so you can really be strategic about building your influence. Or at the very least, if the event should ever arise that you do want to take that break, you'll still have readers to come back to.