HOW TO GET READERS TO COME BACK TO YOUR BLOG (MY TOP ADVICE)
Having a blog is such a powerful marketing tool.
You can use it to attract new readers and clients, as well as establish your authority and increase the visibility of your online presence.
But how do you create a blog that readers want to come back to? Well, my friend, you’ll find that there are four special ingredients involved. In today’s post, I’m going to talk you through them and how they can skyrocket engagement with your audience.
As a blogger, you might think you’re doing well already. Your writing is of a high standard and you’re posting regularly. But are you actually encouraging reader interaction? Is the purpose of your blog clear?
If a blog is difficult to navigate, or readers can’t find what they’re looking for quickly, they’ll leave. What might look good on the outside isn’t nearly as good once a reader digs in.
There’s one thing that a lot of blogs lack that we don’t even realise - there’s no way for readers to quickly see whether a blog is worth reading.
This is where these four secret ingredients come in. Keep an eye on these four features of your blog and it will be the most successful marketing tool you’ve ever used.
#1 | CONTENT
Content is essentially the foundation of any blog. It’s the element that encompasses everything your blog is about. If your content isn’t good and doesn’t service your readers, they won’t come back to your blog.
Create each piece of content with your readers in mind. If a reader isn’t interested, entertained or inspired, they won’t come back. They won’t subscribe to your community. They won’t join your Facebook. They won’t purchase something from you.
Your content is the main opportunity you have to really get inside the mind of your audience. You want to become the go-to person for your particular niche.
Think about when people search the web. There are two main reasons people do this: to learn something or to be entertained.
Let’s take the first reason - to learn something. A great example of a blog like this is Diary Of A Freelancer.
Zoe uses her blog to teach others how to begin their writing career, market their content and earn money online. Every single post is educational and I bet this helps her get more clients too.
Next, we have the entertain factor. You may think that this should come in the form of images or videos rather than text. But a blogger who is great at writing in an entertaining way is Hannah Gale.
From her weekly vlogs to her list posts and pregnancy diary updates, her sole purpose is to entertain and inspire her audience. She never fails, and she also never fails to educate and engage either. You can tell this by the extraordinary community she has created.
Then we have another reason why people search the web. Maybe they’re not actively searching for it, but it’s still there - engagement.
You want people to connect with you and join in with the conversation. One of the simplest way to do this is by asking for comments.
Now you might be saying in your head, But Holly, I do this already and it doesn’t work.
But how much effort do you put into formulating the question. Do you just ask a closed question that requires a yes/no answer? Or do you craft one that’s relevant to your post and really gives readers a chance to share their opinion?
Readers need to be told what to do. Ask the question and then say something like, “Scroll to the bottom to leave a comment!”
As soon as someone engaged with something, whether they leave a comment, click a link etc. they become an active reader. They’re not sat in the sidelines anymore. They want to become involved with you. That’s one step closer to becoming a subscriber or customer.
The most important piece of advice I can give you when it comes to your content is to just be yourself. That’s what makes a piece of writing great.
I went into more detail on how you can create your own content strategy here.
#2 | OUTREACH
As much as your own blog is important, other people’s blogs can be even more important.
In order to get readers to come back to your blog, you need to interact with other bloggers in the blogosphere. You need to read and comment on other blogs within your niche, reach out to bloggers on social media and generally get your name out there.
This is how your grow the visibility of your online presence and how you get recognised. This is how you build relationships with other bloggers and brands that can lead to big opportunities and generate lots of traffic back to your site.
I wrote more about how you can consistently attract new readers here.
Social media also plays a huge part here and I mean Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn - all of them. If you know the channels where your audience hangs out, that’s where you should be present.
Make sure your profiles have consistent branding so people can instantly recognise you. Also make sure that you include a link to your website in all your profiles so your followers have somewhere else they can get. You’re taking your readers along a journey that is leading them to the core of your brand - your blog.
#3 | DESIGN
You might not be a designer and don’t worry, I’m not either. But the layout and functionality of your blog is so important in terms of how readers experience it. Your blog needs to:
- Be easy to navigate
- Be easy to understand
- Be able to build trust
- Look good
The more professional a blog looks, the more inclined someone is to stick around, sign up to your mailing list and buy something from you. It doesn’t matter if your content is great when your design doesn’t match up. It needs to represent what your brand is all about. It needs to provide people with easy routes to take depending on what they want to do.
A branded design is the best route you can go down. And your brand needs to be unique. Don’t just get a random header like the other blogs you see. Don’t just pick a standard template and stick with it. Put the effort into making it your own. Customise it with your colours, font and logo - they’re the must-haves.
Having a custom logo will also help you stand out from your competitors. Be sure to include the name of your blog and a tagline, if you have one.
Go onto your blog right now as a brand new visitor. Will they know what you’re blog is all about? Will they be able to tell if it’s what they’re looking for? This is the information your blog has got to be able to convey to people.
#4 | CALL TO ACTION
Last but not least, you need a call to action. What do you want people to do when they visit your blog? How do you get your readers to become actively involved? How do you get them to sign up to your mailing list, click on links, buy your products and so on?
Even if you blog for a hobby, you still want your readers to act in some way. That’s where a call to action comes in.
Calls to action can be any of the following:
- Leaving a comment
- Downloading a content upgrade
- Joining a Facebook group
- Taking a survey
- Asking for a social share
- Taking a look at your product/service
Plus many more.
If you know the next step you want your readers to take, your results for your blog will skyrocket.
HOW TO PUT IT ALTOGETHER
You put a lot of time and effort into your blog. You want to see results.
One of the things in this list might be your favourite. But all four need to work together to successfully get readers to come back to your blog. A blog that is built around content, outreach, design and call to actions will continuously get more readers, subscribers and customers.
What would you add to this post? Which of these strategies is the most effective for you? Which one do you think is the most important? Leave your thoughts in a comment below!