This article is Part 3 of Blogging for Beginners series. Here’s Part 1 and Part 2.
Blogging for beginners is such a wide topic and condensing all the information, ideas, stories and answers I have will probably result to a 10,000-word blog post.
I also like the idea of dissecting a particular topic into smaller topics that targets those who have not yet created or started a blog or those who are in their first six months or less of blogging.
But I’m putting the biggest disclaimer upfront, I AM NOT AN EXPERT.
I AM NOT a blogging guru. And I cannot guarantee that reading (and finishing) this series will make your blog number one.
There are a number of goals I want to achieve in running this series:
1. Teach you how to start a profitable blog
2. Give you insights on how to monetize your new blog
3. Guide you on how to grow your readership
Four years ago I started SavingsPinay.
An online diary that chronicles my journey towards financial freedom.
It’s the very place where I shared how I got locked on my BPI ATM for trying the wrong pin thrice. I also narrated how I opened my first mutual fund investment (the process is now way easier, by the way), my direct stock market account and my crowdfunding investment.
There are posts where I confessed my financial struggles and common mistakes. And of course the lessons learned through the years.
I guess it is safe to say, starting a personal finance blog did change my life completely.
And I can’t imagine not being Izza of SavingsPinay.
Blogging started as a hobby and turned into a profitable side hustle. Could it grow into a business someday?
There is a big possibility. And traffic plays an important role when it comes to making money with a blog.
So this post I’ll try to zero in how to generate massive traffic on your blog or the story of how I went from 0 to 20,000 pageviews every month.
What Drove Massive Traffic on My Blog?
1. Investing back on my blog;
2. Quality Content;
3. Consistency and
4. Continuous Marketing
Domain and Web Hosting Solution
Growing your blog and building an audience comes with a price.
This a fact I tried to avoid for so long until an opportunity came to me and I got rejected for I am a www.savingspinay.BLOGSPOT.com
I thought I could remain a free blog forever.
But, boy I was wrong.
Having my own domain and web hosting solution became the biggest turning point of my blogging life.
I soon realized that a blog, no matter how small or big it may be, deserves its own residency in the online community.
Izza, do I really need my own domain and hosting?
My short answer to this question is Y-E-S!
To generate massive traffic on your blog, your blog needs to have its own domain and hosting facility.
Why and How Come?
Get a shorter URL
According to Blogging.org, there are about 152 million blogs on the internet as of 2013. Since then the number of blogs has continued to grow.
With that statistics, getting your blog noticed is way harder than one can imagine.
And it is even harder if you are riding along free blog platforms such as Blogger and WordPress aka yourblog.blogspot.com or yourblog.wordpress.com
So a shorter URL, that’s easy to remember, to pronounce and to type is one good way to grow the presence of your blog.
Have your own space
One of the main reason why most bloggers overlook the step of a good hosting solution is the lack of information on what it can do for you and your blog.
So I like to give you a good analogy on how web hosting works.
Think of it as if you are moving from your parents’ house to your own condo.
Staying with your parents offers convenience. Someone pays the house bills with you. You have home cooked meals every day and you are actually living within your parents’ care.
But with your own hosting solution you are moving out of your comfort zone and having your own place.
You are finally renting a dedicated server for your blog to stay.
This means freedom for you to navigate your own blog and total control over your data. If in one day, Blogger or WordPress crashes, you still have your website with you.
Dedicated email address
This is, by far my favorite feature when I bought my own domain and hosting with Pangalan – my own email address.
Using firstname.lastname@example.org to conduct all my email transactions made me appeal better on brands, PR firms and the readers. You can also have other email address such as email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org which increases the branding and credibility of your blog.
Email list platforms such as Mailchimp and Convertkit also only works with custom domain. Building your own email list will be way, way harder without a domain and hosting plan.
As Convertkit explains, when you send an email from a Gmail account you are using Gmail or Yahoo Mail’s reputation and not your own. In almost all cases, Gmail, Yahoo and AOL all issue a block whenever bulk email is sent from their domain.
This is also the reason why my first attempt to build an email list failed back in 2015.
All web hosting companies give ton of freebies to its customers such as free domain alias, free Search Engine Optimization (SEO) program, one step installation, free technical support over phone or email, discounted upgrades and ore.
They can even cross promote your blog on their website, social media or testimonials. Such happened to me and Pangalan, my domain and hosting provider, whose generous enough to include my links on their website.
I can resonate with the doubts you have in getting your own domain and hosting services.
For one, I was blogging for free in the first four years.
I felt comfortable being a free blog.
Then my Kuya from Olanap.com said to me,
“Pag di ka .com, di ka lang hindi seseryosohin ng ibang tao. It also means na ikaw mismo ang hindi sumiseryoso sa blog mo”.
If you take your blog seriously and you want others to take your blog serious too, domain and hosting will help.
Remaining as a free blog for the four long years is one of my biggest regret. Ang dami kong napalampas na opportunities and not to mention, traffic.
Secure your own blog address now and process a hosting solution for your blog. Try Pangalan PN Sakto for Bloggers. Your investment? Only Php 116 a month!
Great content makes your blog stand out from the rest.
I started SavingsPinay with posts that are too vague and shallow. The blog has no direction at all. Then just last year I made a change in the way I write my content.
Quality before quantity.
Publishing high-quality content became my first priority. And it shows in the sudden spike of traffic how advantageous this decision went.
Whenever I think of a new blog post to write I think of the following:
1. Is this post useful?
2. Is this post relevant?
3. Is this post what my audience need?
If each question has a resounding answer of a yes then I know it is worth the time writing.
How much of my time is spent writing content?
It depends on the topic actually. I can write in one seating as fast as 45 minutes to an hour if the topic talks about my personal relations with money like How I Organize My Finances + Inside My Money Map.
Comprehensive posts like Investing in Mutual Fund for Beginners and How To Save Money Each Month : A Definitive Guide took around three to four hours of intermittent writing each.
Here’s a typical outline of a SavingsPinay post:
My posts will normally start with few sentences in the beginning that can be used for social media. I don’t have much time to think on what to caption my post on Facebook so I make sure that the first part summarizes or gives hint on what the post is about and why it should be clicked or visited.
For the body of the post I try to accomplish the following:
1. Always use headings and bullets. Headings and bullets are helpful to make sure that your readers can easily follow the information you publish. Bigger fonts in bold are helpful too to put emphasize a certain word or phrase on your post.
2. Use shorter paragraphs. Another important change I made on my posts is writing in short paragraphs. This helps keep the eyes of the readers on your blog. You want them to scroll and reach the end of your post. Always read your post after drafting. Kapag sa iyo pa lang, nabibilaukan ka na then your readers will surely find your content too difficult to read. Keep your sentences shorter and simple.
3. Write long content. Long content produces credibility as a blogger. You can be easily perceived as an authority in the topic your talking about. It is also easier to put links within the post that could point your readers to old content. Aim to make your post longer. 1500 words minimum. My posts tend to be between 2500 to 4000 words.
4. Include photos. Images can enhance a blog post. It actually helps in the overall production value of your blog post. Included in this tip are charts, graphs and print screens that could better explain your content.
5. Tell a story if you must. Sharing your anecdotes related to your content helps in establishing your own voice as a blogger. And that blogging voice help to distinguish yourself from the rest.
Don’t forget to conclude your post with a summary of your main points and a call-to-action.
The summary gives your readers a quick breakdown of what your post is about. Readers who have no time to read will most often than not go straight at the end of your blog instead. So never miss a chance to impact your readers with an overview.
I also make sure to add a call-to-action at the end of every post. This is a template so I just copy and paste to speed up the process.
Content is king in blogging. You really have to spend much time producing a blog post that people will love to read. Always check on the content of the bloggers you enjoy reading and evaluate what it is about their post that makes you hooked. Try to emulate even half of that on your next post. It is better to have one content a week that is well-received by your audience than a so-so content every single day.
How to generate massive traffic on your blog?
For me consistency works in two ways.
1. Consistency in your posting schedule.
2. Consistency in your content.
Let’s differentiate the two.
Consistency in your posting schedule
If you want to generate massive traffic on your blog I highly recommend following a blog schedule.
A blog schedule lets you know what to post and when to post it. You can create a blog schedule that works through the following steps:
Step 1. Decide how many times a week you will publish
To generate massive traffic your goal is to publish as often as you can, without sacrificing the quality. Your regular readers would appreciate seeing there is new content on your website at least once a week.
New post is also an opportunity to attract new readers aka new traffic to your blog. According to a Hubspot study, companies that published 16+ blog posts per month got almost 3.5X more traffic than companies that published between 0 – 4 monthly posts.
What does this study imply?
Make a commitment to publish quality content on your blog regularly. If you can only publish once a week, then so be it. Stick to than number of post and schedule.
If you can go with two blog posts a week, better. Or if daily blogging works for you then go for it.
Again, just ensure you are publishing great, high-quality posts.
Step 2. Get clear with your blog topics
It is important to specify the topics you want to cover on your blog. If you are in a personal finance niche there will be a hundred of topics you can choose to blog.
But you have to pick the top five to seven topics of your focus.
Serving your readers too much topics that are not related with each other will cause you to lose traffic. Focus on the main topics of your blog.
At first I covered various topics on SavingsPinay. I thought of covering banks, insurance, tips for OFWs and more. But after listening (and observing) what my readers need, I narrowed my focus down to only five topics.
For example, SavingsPinay talks about:
- Saving money
- Making Extra Money and
- Early Retirement
While my other blog, IzzaGlinoFull has posts about:
- Beauty (Makeup and Skincare)
- Bullet Journal or Planning
You will notice how I stay within the topics I specified for my blogs.
Step 3. Create a content calendar
Now that you have specified the number of days you will post and the topics you will write about it will be easier to create a working schedule for your blog. I recommend using a Google Calendar or any blank calendar you have with you.
Plot out the days of the month you plan to publish and new post.
Then edit each entry to include your blog topic. You can also use color code to help differentiate each topic.
Step 4. Follow your content calendar
Once you have a working calendar, all that’s left for you to do is to follow it.
Because you know that there should be a new content every Monday and Thursday, you have to be sure that the post is read a day before.
It’s okay if you miss posting on some days. Don’t be too hard on yourself especially if you have a full time job. Just make sure you don’t leave your blog hanging for too long.
One solid post every week is a good start.
Consistency in your content
The consistency of your content impacts the audience decision whether to continue visiting your blog or not.
If they find your content helpful and engaging for the first time they will certainly visit other posts from your blog.
Knowing that almost all your posts are consistently helpful and engaging, they turn to loyal readers.
Visitors become hooked and will just dig into your posts.
This is why you need to stay as consistent as possible to the quality of your posts.
For example I make sure that every SavingsPinay posts follow the following:
- Within the topics of budget, saving money, investing, making extra money and early retirement or financial independence.
- All are within 2500 to 4000 words.
- Have images of the same dimension and format (e.g. color scheme, photo inclusion, font, etc.).
- Includes a lot of links to past relevant posts.
- Consists of short sentences and reserve a lot of white space to the readers.
- Have focused keyword. I mentioned about keyword in Part 2, How To Make Money Blogging for Beginners. This post for example has the focused keyword – traffic.
- Includes ads inside the post that also act as separator for the next heading.
- Has call-to-action (CTA) in the beginning, middle and below each post.
As such, it became a recurring task for me to update old posts or the posts I published before that doesn’t follow the standard mentioned above.
Give your readers quality content after quality content. Be consistent with your publishing schedule.
Domain and hosting gives credibility to your blog.
Quality content separates your blog to the rest.
Consistency turns every new reader to return and become loyal to your blog.
Making sure your blog generates recurring traffic. And you can do this through Marketing.
There a number of ways you can market your blog to generate massive traffic.
1. Social Media
2. Guest Posts
3. Networking to other bloggers
4. Diversifying your traffic to other mediums
Let’s talk about each below.
Get involved in social media
Social media has become a great source of traffic to bloggers over the years.
Almost everyone is on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram, so there’s a great chance to be found by the masses.
Your duty as a blogger doesn’t stop once you created a social media profile. To get massive traffic, you need to get involved.
Here are some ways you can promote your blog on social media:
1. Create a Facebook Page for your blog and link your best blog posts. You can also interact with your followers through questions and announcements.
2. Build your own community with a Facebook Group. This is a good idea if your blog is within a specific niche. If you have a travel blog, you can start a Facebook Group of Newbie Travel Bloggers. This will gather like-minded individual who shares the same passion as you. You can even create a vague like Philippine Travel for example.
3. Pinterest is another booming tool in promoting content. It works as an active visual search engine to find inspirations online. You need to create graphics specifically meant for Pinterest. These photos should be enticing enough and must answer what the searcher needs.
4. Create an Instagram account for your blog to build better engagement and promote more. Instagram can be very tasking at first but it could help bring a ton of traffic on your blog especially if you are in the beauty and lifestyle category. Instagram is all about highly curated photos with call-to-action captions.
When it comes to getting traffic through social media my greatest tip is to focus on 1 to 2 accounts first. Juggling multiple social media accounts can be very tough and you may lose your focus at the end of the day.
A social media plan is also important.
Personally, I keep a separate Google Doc that contains my social media schedule. This helps me maintain presence in Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest for both SavingsPinay and IzzaGlino.
Of course, my social media routine (just like my blog routine) is far from perfect. I will have days when I don’t publish anything new. But, knowing I have a page to check back when I’m in a rot turned out to be helpful.
Guest Posts to other blogs and websites
Posting to authority websites and blogs can also create a dent to your traffic.
You can bring new readers almost instantly.
How does guest posting work?
Guest posting is writing and/or publishing your content on someone else’s website or blog. At the start and of the post you will get be introduced with a link to your blog.
Here are example of guest posts sent by others to SavingsPinay:
Philequity Dividend Yield Fund First Impression from Geli
6 Top Reasons Why Pinoys Find It Difficult to Save Money from John
4 Useful Tips to Live Within Your Means from Kyle
Success in guest posting can fade away fast.
You want to turn the first time viewers to readers.
That’s why quality content is still #1.
No matter how good your guest post is, if they don’t find the rest of your content helpful and engaging, that traffic will simply vanish.
Here are some tips when it comes to guest posting:
- Guest post only to blogs and websites that matter. Focus pitching on sites that could bring your good and steady traffic.
- Read and follow the guidelines. Most blogs/websites provide a list of do’s and don’t when it comes to accepting guest post so you want to be respectful of that.
- Submit only an original content, created with an intent to serve the need of the target audience. Don’t submit a post you have already published on your own blog unless it is okay based on the guideline.
- Make sure your blog is ready with sign-up boxes, quick links to popular posts and a number of recently published post that can make viewers stay on your page.
- Build relationship with the blog or website owner. Send a thank you email for featuring your post and try to engage to any comments received by your post. This will showcase how much you value the opportunity to post as a guest blogger.
Always network to other bloggers
Networking is a great way to promote your blog too.
The blogsphere is a huge community so might want to get your blog out there through making connections and building genuine friendships with other content creators.
Here are simple ways you can network with other bloggers:
1. Comment to other blogs within your niche.
And by comment I mean leaving helpful and relevant words on other blogs you like. I find this networking technique easy for beauty and lifestyle blogs because they are everywhere. For SavingsPinay, I stick with the top blogs I really follow and leave a comment in case I really enjoyed the post.
Collaboration happens when two or more bloggers partner or join in a collaborative effort. This can be done through hosting simple giveaways together, guest posting to each other’s blog, creating a comprehensive round-up post or interview.
I recently did this on a SavingsPinay series wherein I interview ordinary people who have helpful and inspirational stories when it comes to personal finance, investment and making extra income.
Since inception of the series I’ve collabed with a marino who started investing in the stock market at 24, a real online farming investor and a young mompreneur with her own arts and crafts business.
3. Send an email.
An email is a good way to personally acknowledge and appreciate your fellow blogger. Over the years, I’ve written to bloggers I follow and I find it a good way to let them know my humble blog exists. I love reading and responding to emails sent to me at email@example.com.
4. Attend events and conferences
If you get invited to attend events or blogger conferences, say yes and go. These type of gatherings are good opportunity to meet and greet like-minded bloggers. Some of the events and conferences I joined and helped me network were iBlog Philippines, Bloggers United and Blogapalooza.
Branching out to other mediums
I think blogging in general, offers limitless possibilities to anyone.
And there are far more ways you can generate traffic on your blog than just writing content.
There are those who found massive success by diversifying their traffic to other mediums such as videos, podcasts and email marketing.
Making videos out of your content could be a good start. I am currently doing this over my YouTube channel where I recently made a video on Where to Best Invest Your Money This 2018. I enjoy talking in front of a camera so this traffic vehicle is something I will continue to do so.
For those who are not as keen to posting a video of themselves online, podcast could be the answer. You can create an audio version of your blog post, something I’ve contemplating to do as well for SavingsPinay.
Another way you can branch out your blog is through email marketing. Here your goal is to build an active email list you can send out content every week or every other week.
For the first three years of my blogging journey I didn’t take building a mailing list seriously. I thought no one will dare to sign up on my tribe. Thankfully I overcome this fear in June 2017.
What do you get as part of my email list?
Access to the Resource Library where you can download freebies like workbooks, budget templates, money manifestos etc.
An exclusive email every week containing info and updates I only share to my subscribers. My first newsletter includes how my first three months investing in direct stock market went. And the response has been amazing.
You’ve managed to spend money on your own domain and hosting plan, you’ve managed to write useful and high quality posts to your readers and you’ve managed to stay consistent.
What’s stopping you from giving your 100% in marketing your blog?
Focus on one marketing effort you can do today and diversify from there. Study what other bloggers are using and how they are performing.
Final Notes from SavingsPinay
When I first started SavingsPinay, I didn’t have any idea it would be what it is today.
Back then I was just solely focused in sharing my journey online. I never really thought I could influence others to act on their financial freedom too.
As you can see in the photo, the average monthly traffic I get when I started was just around
300 a month.
That’s 10 visitors a day!
Fast forward to today this blog now consistent gets around 20,000 monthly pageviews.
To be read and found is such an amazing feeling for every blogger.
I wouldn’t be as passionate as I am blogging if I haven’t had any readers in the first place.
In conclusion, if your goal is to generate massive traffic on your blog you should:
1. Secure your own blog address now and process a hosting solution for your blog. Try Pangalan PN Sakto for Bloggers. Your investment? Only Php 116 a month!
2. Spend much time producing a blog post that people will love to read.
3. Give your readers quality content after quality content. Be consistent with your publishing schedule.
4. Make sure your blog generates recurring traffic through social media, guest posting, networking with other bloggers and diversifying your traffic to other mediums (i.e. Youtube, podcast and/or email marketing).
How is your finances for March 2018?
Do you have a blog? Is this post helpful for you when it comes to getting traffic?
Follow the SavingsPinay FB Group and join the conversation at : SavingsPinay
Follow my official Facebook page at : IzzaGlinoFull
Stalk some behind the scenes in my Instragram: @izzaglino
Follow me too in my Twitter account: Izza Glino
Subscribe to my Youtube channel: IzzaGlinoFull
Email me any question or topic suggestion at firstname.lastname@example.org
Or leave a comment below!!!