Blogging — both writing blogs AND reading blogs — has gone from being a "fringe" activity to one of the most popular pastimes on the ‘Net. In fact, blogging is now a global phenomenon. There are currently 112.8 million blogs in existence, with 175,000 new ones launching every day.
… But did you know that blogs are also a great way to drive traffic to your site?
Blogs, by design, are built to quickly and easily attract free traffic, whether it be from search engines or from a rapid influx of links. The moment you publish a post, your blog goes to work for you letting the world know that you’ve made an update - the search engines come running and you find yourself ranking #1 for keywords in no time.
Here are 4 ways to attract FREE traffic to your site using blogs (and 4 reasons why you NEED to start blogging):
1. Long-Tail Keywords
Instead of using only the most obvious or generic terms related to the topic of your post, focus on more specific words and phrases, i.e., long-tail keywords.
For instance, if you are writing a post about nordic skiing at Sun Peaks Resort near Kamloops, British Columbia, you don’t want to target keywords such as ‘travel’ and ’skiing’ which will put you in direct competition with Expedia.com, SkiNet.com and the like.
Instead, target "cross country skiing at Sun Peaks Resort" and not only will your post show up in a blog search, but it’ll soon rank in the top ten in Google’s organic listings as well.
Blogs are notorious for ranking high and fast for long-tail keywords. Over time with hundreds of these, the traffic is more targeted and far more valuable than having one "highly competitive" keyword.
2. Bookmark with OnlyWire
Onlywire is a service that allows you to automatically bookmark your post on well over 17 high-traffic sites.
It takes just a few clicks to do this every time you post. You simply click a button on your browser, type in a few keywords and hit "submit." Yes, the service is absolutely free.
Onlywire is a great way to not only attract visitors but to also get the search engines running in to index your new post.
3. Leave Blog Comments
One of the best ways to get traffic and highly valuable links in the beginning is to leave comments on other high-traffic blogs in your niche.
Finding these blogs is easy — either just search Google or visit Technorati and find the most popular in your topic.
A couple of key techniques to use:
A) Don’t use your name, use something catchy (or a keyword). When the post LINKS to your site, they link the "name field" — so as long as you use something enticing, you’ll get people to click.
Or you can use a keyword and that way you get more search engine recognition for the term you are optimizing for.
B) Don’t abuse this — You can easily find yourself blocked from leaving future comments. Leave a comment that is useful and shows that you read what you’re commenting on. Not only will this make the blogger happy but it’ll get you more traffic and credibility.
4. Involve the Press
Too many people have forgotten how great press releases can be for traffic — mostly because they don’t know the "right" way of using press releases.
The trick is to base your press releases on information that actually MATTERS to people.
The easiest way to generate the valuable content for press releases is to quickly poll your readers (or get another blogger to help generate the results). So long as you can get at least 50 people to respond, you can issue a press release with your new-found data.
The press loves data, readers love data — posts and press releases like this make their way around the Internet very fast.
The above 4 tactics represent less than 20% of the ways that a blog can generate free and targeted traffic to your website.
If you don’t already maintain a blog, you should seriously think about starting one up right away. It’s the easiest way to establish a solid online presence.
… And if you’re not sure how to go about setting up your own blog, don’t worry — we can help!
519Studio is an independent, full service, digital creative agency. We specialize in website design,website development, online promotion, flash design, interactive marketing, 3D games, viral campaigns etc.