Yes, we aaaaaall want it: more free blog traffic It’s at the top of every blogger’s wish list, new and seasoned alike. How do you get traffic to your blog for free?
There are basically two types of traffic, free and paid. Free traffic is traffic gained by sharing your content on different channels, without paying anything. Paid traffic is gained by exchanging money for either a duration of time or a certain amount of impressions, hits, clicks, or other engagements.
If you’re not looking to spend a fortune on advertising, you don’t have to. There are plenty of ways you can increase blog traffic for free. Let me tell you about 10 of them!
10 Ways to Get Free Traffic to Your Blog
- Tell friends and family about your blog
- Post to social media
- Offer something for free
- Email your list
- Write a testimonial
- Guest blogging
- Use social bookmarking
- Forums, groups, and discussion boards
- Answers question on Quora or Yahoo! Answers
- Offer content on freebie websites
1. Tell your friends and family
Ask them to read your blog or share it with their friends, too. They’ll probably be happy to help you out. Make sharing it easy by asking with a Facebook or Twitter post. Ask them if they’d like to receive email updates, as well. Add them to your mailing list only if they say yes.[clickToTweet tweet=”Blog traffic tip 1: Share with your friends and family & encourage them to share, too. #bloggingtips” quote=”Blog traffic tip 1: Share with your friends and family & encourage them to share, too.”]
2. Post to social media
Social media is the number 1 way to get more traffic to your blog posts. It takes effort from both you, your followers, and people you don’t even know.
Probably the most obvious note, but make sure to add your link to your social media profiles. Make sure it can be easily found and tell your potential readers what it’s about.
Link your blog posts regularly. Include a short but captivating description and related hashtags if the network supports them. You can use social media scheduling tools to set up posts in advance. You can even set up your blog to post to social media automatically.
Don’t just link and post a headline. Add a quote or fact from your post that will make people want to click through to read more.
Post at the Right Time
Find out the best time to post on your network. Post at a time when users are most active, or at times when posting has slowed down enough that your post has more longevity. Decide which strategy would be best based on the type of content you’re sharing.
Don’t Forget to Repost
Remember to recycle your old content. Repost your seasonal content, remind people of your most popular posts and even posts that weren’t so popular. Sometimes a post is GREAT but just hasn’t been seen by the right people yet. Plus, you can get your old stuff in front of your newer followers.[clickToTweet tweet=”Blog traffic tip 2: Share quotes from your posts your social media channels. #bloggingtips” quote=”Blog traffic tip 2: Share quotes from your posts your social media channels.”]
3. Offer something for free
Everyone loves free stuff, right? This is also a great way to get people on your email list, or get people to share your content. Allow readers to gain access to your freebie as a gift for subscribing or for sharing your post through social networks.
The added bonus of this method is that you now have more members of your email list, or you’ve got social shares to someone else’s audience. Free exposure!
You may also consider having an item that doesn’t require an email sign up. This is sort of filter out the people who came to your blog because of the freebie, but aren’t interested in any of your other content.
If someone’s interested enough in you, they’ll sign up for some of your other stuff. Otherwise, you don’t need people around who only signed up for a one-off.
4. Email your list
It seems like a DUH thing, but I know I’m guilty of not sending things. Surely there are others! Even if it’s just 1 person, and that email out like a pro. We’ve all got to start somewhere.
If you don’t have an email list already, start building it! Email is a great way to get in contact directly with your readers. It also helps to remind them about this great blog they found once.[clickToTweet tweet=”Blog Traffic Tip 4: Send emails with highlights from your latest posts. #bloggingtips” quote=”Blog Traffic Tip 4: Send emails with highlights from your latest posts.”]
5. Write a testimonial
Do you use a product or service that you can’t live without? Has it boosted your success? Do you recommend it to everyone you know?
Write a glowing review and send it to the company. If they post your testimonial, they may also drop a link to your website.[clickToTweet tweet=”Blog Traffic Tip 5: Write a testimonial for your favorite products. You may be featured! #bloggingtips” quote=”Blog Traffic Tip 5: Write a testimonial for your favorite products. You may be featured!”]
6. Guest blogging
One of the best-known ways to get traffic to your blog is to leverage the audience of someone else. Find opportunities to write a post for another blog in your niche. While a popular blog is great, numbers aren’t everything.
One way to judge a blogs’ engagement is through their comments. If a small blog has a lot of activity in the comments, it may have more benefit to you than a large blog with no engagement. Another way to tell is by how many times your posts are shared.
If you know of a blog that gets a lot of response in the comments or a good amount of social shares, contact the owners and find out how to pitch a post idea to them. Some blogs may even have a page dedicated to guest writing opportunities.
Don’t forget to link to your own blog using words within your post as well as in an author bio section, if available. Some blogs leave a note at the top or bottom of posts, letting people know who wrote the article with a link back to the author’s blog.[clickToTweet tweet=”Blog Traffic Tip 6: Write posts on popular blogs in your niche. #bloggingtips” quote=”Blog Traffic Tip 6: Write posts on popular blogs in your niche.”]
7. Use social bookmarking
Pinterest, StumbleUpon, and Flipboard are all great places to get some traffic to your blog, especially when you’re first starting out. They do take some work though, so listen up.
Pinterest is a huge traffic provider for most bloggers. If you’re not on it, you need to get started right away. Pinterest is basically built entirely off of blogger content, so you’re really missing out. It’s great for most niches and all genders, so don’t think you won’t fit in.
A lot of people like to think of Pinterest as social media, but it’s definitely more social bookmarking with a search engine. You should remember to keep SEO in mind rather than using hashtags when posting to Pinterest.
Stumble Upon is a website that displays a random website to its users when they hit a button to, well, stumble upon new content. You can add your pages to this site for free or use their paid service to ensure more hits. It’s a great way to get traffic to your blog fast.
To do well on StumbleUpon, your content needs to grab the user’s attention within the first few seconds of landing on your page. Your headline is everything, especially with mobile views. On the StumbleUpon mobile app, users can read your headline before the page even loads. If your headline doesn’t interest the stumbler, they can quickly jump away from your page. Before it even loads.
This is a good place to start if you’re feeling down about your numbers. The bump is good for the blogger soul. Just don’t forget to stumble the pages of other blogs and websites or your content might not be put in rotation as much as it could be.
Flipboard is kind of like a beautified RSS feed and a bit similar to Pinterest. In fact, I basically read all my blogs through it if they’ve got a feed. That also makes it easy for me to share content on it.
You create magazines that you can Flip content into. I set mine up much like my Pinterest. I have a magazine for my blog and then others for blogging related articles.
Flipboard is a bit overlooked by most bloggers, but I think with time and the right audience, it could bring in as much traffic as Pinterest, or at least be a close second.
The great thing about Flipboard and Pinterest traffic is that when people come to your site, they’re there to read your content. StumbleUpon is a bit random and the entire site set up encourages jumping from site to site quickly.[clickToTweet tweet=”Blog Traffic Tip 7: Share your posts on Pinterest, Flipboard, or StumbleUpon. #bloggingtips” quote=”Blog Traffic Tip 7: Share your posts on Pinterest, Flipboard, or StumbleUpon.”]
8. Post on forums or discussion websites
Tell members of an online community that you’re a part of that you have a blog. This could be a great place to ask for any feedback on your design or content, as well. Facebook groups, Reddit, and community forums are great places to share your content if it fits the group niche. Don’t forget to add your link to your signature and/or profile on these sites, too.
Check the rules and guidelines to make sure link sharing is allowed. Getting traffic to your blog is never worth a suspension.
If you need some Facebook groups for bloggers, try[clickToTweet tweet=”Blog Traffic Tip 8: Promote through Facebook groups or forums. #bloggingtips” quote=”Blog Traffic Tip 8: Promote through Facebook groups or forums.”]
9. Use your posts to answer questions
It may help out other people who have the same question as well. Maybe even months later. Quora and Yahoo! Answers are great places to look for people who could use your help. This is another great way to put your old content to work. If you post a good answer, you’ll be able to drive more traffic to your blog for months down the line.[clickToTweet tweet=”Blog Traffic Tip 9: Answer questions and link your post for in depth info. #bloggingtips” quote=”Blog Traffic Tip 9: Answer questions and link your post for in depth info.”]
10. Offer your free content on popular freebie websites
Depending on your industry, this might be easier for some than others. Do a search to find out if there are websites giving away content related to your blog. You often get a link back as well.
As a designer, I know there are several websites where you can submit a graphics related item that they’ll post on their website for free. People might like your stuff and click through to see what else you have. Be on the look out for websites in your own niche.
Don’t forget to add a text document with your URL and contact info in the download![clickToTweet tweet=”Blog Traffic Tip 10: List your free stuff on niche websites offering free content. #bloggingtips” quote=”Blog Traffic Tip 10: List your free stuff on niche websites offering free content.”]
Get More Traffic to Your Blog
So now you know a few ways you can promote your blog. Remember, if you’re new, it’s going to take some time even with using these things. Don’t think you should just wait around for traffic to come to you. You need to be proactive. If you don’t take action, months are going to pass you by and you won’t have much to show for it.
Don’t get upset because you aren’t receiving floods of traffic each day. It’s just not going to happen unless you’re paying for ads. Be patient, follow a few of these methods, and in time, they’ll pay off in a big way.