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So you started your blog. You have a few posts up, so you sit back in your computer chair and wait for the readers to come streaming in.
Except… they don’t. Days go by without a single view, or maybe with only a few. Certainly not enough views to sign up for Mediavine and start making money on ads.
What could be causing this? You were promised quick riches with your blog, so why isn’t it working for you?
The fact of the matter is, a lot of bloggers fall into this same trap you just did. You pay for the hosting, you write some posts, but nothing ever comes of your blog.
There are 12 reasons this happens, and luckily all of those reasons can be fixed once you know them.
1. You’re Not Using The Right Social Media
Some niches thrive on Facebook. Some thrive on Instagram. You have to do the market research to find out where your content is needed and wanted.
Instagram, for instance, only really works if you are regularly making beautiful images. If you’re an art blogger, fashion blogger, or crafts blogger then Instagram is a great place to start advertising.
If your audience is older, then you’ll probably be better off focusing on Facebook. The demographics of Facebook is definitely skewing older than it used to.
Twitter is a bit of a catch-all, but if your blog is about helping other businesses then you’ll really thrive there. There are a lot of people on Twitter that are trying to run their own business, so go where they are to catch their eyes.
2. You’re Not Using Pinterest Correctly
You’ll notice I didn’t mention Pinterest in the last section. That’s because (as I’m sure you’ve read many times) Pinterest isn’t really a social media website. It’s a visual search engine, so you should treat it the same way you treat Google.
When I say you need to be using Pinterest correctly, this is what I mean:
- You need to be using Tailwind to schedule posts
- You need to be using Tailwind tribes to find content from other people to repin, and to advertise your own pins
- You need to be reciprocating Tailwind tribe repins at least once a week
- Each of your blog posts should have at least 3 unique images optimized for Pinterest (I make at least 6 and use Canva)
- You need to be posting at least 30 times a day
- Your pin descriptions need to be Pinterest SEO optimized with 3 to 5 relevant hashtags
- You need to stop worrying about followers on Pinterest
3. You’ve Got SEO All Wrong
In my blog post about why keywords are outdated, I explained how to do proper SEO for blogs in 2020. It means answering questions instead of trying to stuff the right keywords into your post the right amount of times.
As more and more searches are completed via voice search, the way that search engines tune their algorithm is changing too. So it’s essential that you cater to voice searches by writing content that will fit a natural language search.
Check out that blog post to learn more, because I give you a tool to find the questions people are actually asking so you can write the best possible blog posts.
4. You’re Not Working On E.A.T.
Another major algorithm update for Google is called the E-A-T update. That stands for expertise, authority, and trustworthiness.
What that means, practically, is that a blog can’t just be a blog anymore. It has to be a brand, and that brand has to be represented by a human being with qualifications and real-life experiences.
How can you build E-A-T? Start by having a full about page and about section in your sidebar. Tell Google, and your readers, who you are. From there, you can start guest blogging, interacting on social media, and getting natural links from other industry leaders.
It’s all about building trust with the internet. And if you want to succeed online, you have to start caring about that. You can still be a successful introvert blogger, but you can’t as easily be a successful anonymous blogger.
Let your readers know who you are.
5. You’re Putting Your Eggs In One Basket
One of my blogs recently had its Pinterest account suspended. I was, admittedly, posting too often, so I understand why it happened. But now that blog is making a fraction of the money it used to bring in, and I’m really hurting from it.
What did I learn from that experience? That it’s not enough to find the best source of traffic. You need to be spread out, have tentacles in every corner of the internet. While you should focus on your best source of traffic, you should still have a presence on forums and other social media platforms, too. Your online marketing plan should never be solely focused in one place.
Because of that one blog being suspended on Pinterest, I’m going to explore making Youtube videos for my blog posts. Everything I have read says that Youtube is a great way to bring in traffic, so why not give it a shot?
6. You’re Not Posting Enough
How often do you post? Once a week? Once a month?
I’m a huge fan of the Income School videos. One of the biggest points they make is that, at least at the start of your blog, it is essential to be publishing new content often. Eventually, you can slow down, but if you start out only posting once a week, there’s a chance that Google will never really give your blog a chance.
I try to post once a day for a month or two when I start a new blog, and then 2 or 3 times a week after that. Then, if I think a blog needs a kick in the pants, I will go back to posting more often now and then.
How often can you post, realistically? In that Income School link above, they show how they can write a blog post in an hour. That’s how I do it, too. Do you have a spare hour every day? Could you get up an hour earlier or stay up an hour later?
Find the time to write more content, and you will be rewarded with more traffic and more opportunities to make money with your blog.
7. You’re Writing Short Blog Posts
I have a hard limit for how long a blog post must be before I can post it. I never post blogs shorter than 700 words anymore, and I always aim for at least 1000 words where possible.
Why? Because longer posts are simply more likely to be satisfactory for readers. And a satisfied reader is more likely to share your post, increasing your blog’s social proof.
There’s also some evidence that Google prefers longer posts.
There are some topics where it’s hard to write even 500 words, and having a shorter post now and then is fine. But the bulk of your posts should be around 700 to 1500 words long, because that’s simply how many words it takes to fully answer most questions your readers have about a subject.
If it’s hard for your to reach that length, I might consider the topics of your blog posts. Are they too narrow? Have you done the research to find out what readers actually want to know? Are you answering the questions your readers have?
8. Your Headlines Suck
Your posts need to have titles that catch readers and make them think they need to read your post. In all honesty, your post titles should remind your readers about a pain point or insecurity they have that you can address.
If you run a blog about making money, for instance, your titles should remind people that they still haven’t met their monetary goals.
If you run a homeschool blog, your titles should remind people that they might run out of things for their kids to do or ways to teach their children new things.
Think of your ideal reader, and write a title that will hook them in.
9. Your Niche Is Too Small
Think 5 years down the line. By that time, you should have at least 250 blog posts written. Can you imagine writing that many posts? Or does that seem impossible?
If your niche is too narrow, you’ll never get Google on your side. The fact is, the more content you write, the more chances you have of really hitting a home run.
The good news is that you don’t have to keep it so narrow. You don’t even have to change your domain most of the time to explore other topics on your blog.
The Income School guys started out with a snake blog that they then turned into a bigger niche with Embora Pets. You can do it, too!
10. You’re Too Focused On Being Unique
There are no new blog post ideas, and if you do find a unique topic chances are it’s one that no one is searching for.
So instead of refusing to be derivative, instead decide to put your own spin on every topic. You have something unique to offer, a new way to explain a topic.
Sometimes I take a poke around Pinterest for blog post ideas, and anything that seems popular and relevant to my blog gets added to my list of blog topic ideas.
11. You’re Not Building An Email List
If you’re not building an email list, you’re not taking control of your audience. You may be suspended from Pinterest, banned from Facebook, banned by your blog host… but if you’re collecting emails for your newsletter, you still have access to your audience.
Building an email list is future proofing yourself. And if you can send out awesome emails, you can turn a lot of your readers into customers for products you put out eventually.
12. You Just Started Your Blog
If you really just started your blog, you’re still laying the groundwork for your future career. It can take 6 to 8 months to really see how much traffic any given post will have, and even then the algorithm can change in your favor or against you.
Give your new blog three months before deciding if you’ll keep up with it. Follow all of the other tips in this post and give your blog a fair chance at success. If you’re still not happy with the traffic you’re bringing in, then it may be time to try out a new blog with a new niche.
How Are You Going To Get More Traffic To Your Blog?
If you’re determined to be successful with blogging, you need to address all of the possible issues above. Fix them, and you’re almost guaranteed to succeed and you’ll definitely be doing more than the vast majority of your competition.
Blogging isn’t rocket science. Once you get the hang of it, it’s really very simple. If you still need help, though, consider trying out this blogging starter guide on Skillshare. Over 7500 students have used this course to get off the ground with blogging!