When it comes to getting traffic to your website you’ve really got 2 options: paid or organic. Paid traffic to a blog doesn’t really make sense in most cases, unless you’re selling an info product. Since you found your way to this article, I’m going to assume you’re looking for Google to notice you anyway. So in this article I’m going to discuss how to increase organic traffic to your blog.
Here are 17 different way to help grow sustainable, organic traffic to your blog.
How to increase organic traffic to your blog
I sat and did a quick brainstorming session with myself and tried to think of all the strategies I use to rank articles and quickly grow sites. Here’s what I came up with.
1. Low competition topics
I often feel like a broken record when I say this, but go after low competition topics in the beginning. If everything goes right you’ll reach a point where you can go for more competitive keywords with higher search volumes if you choose to.
By going for lower competition topics you greatly increase the chances for a newer site to rank for a given keyword. Each article might not bring much traffic on its own, but many articles together bringing in small amounts of traffic can add up.
2. Untapped keyword clusters
When I start a new site or even open up a new category on an existing niche site, I always start exploring for clusters. I don’t really want to start off publishing 50 articles and each one is a completely different topic. I’d rather publish 5 batches of 10 articles where the articles in each batch are very closely related.
Find as many low competition clusters as you can and start adding them to a spreadsheet. Now go through and publish 1-2 articles from each one. Keep an eye on the performance of these. When one takes off you want to go ahead and publish the rest of the articles in that cluster.
3. Don’t forget the titles
Having a well written and descriptive title is crucial to getting people to click on your site over all the other choices. On top of that, you often need a little something extra that makes your title stand out. Something that evokes a feeling in the searcher that your article is the best of the bunch and has exactly what they’re looking for.
Writing good titles isn’t that difficult to be honest, just copy how other people are doing it. It involves a lot of testing, so you may change your title several times before you find one that seems to work well. Since you may be changing the title, make sure your post’s permalink is short and will still make sense.
4. Optimize for featured snippets
If you don’t do this then you should be It just takes a little bit of effort to optimize for the featured snippet in Google. This will mean that Google is giving away your information for free, which sucks. By using a clever title and strategic wording you can still entice users to click on your article over any other position on the SERP.
Simply having a post that’s well-optimized for getting the featured snippet can result in a lot of organic traffic. Just be sure to solve the search query in a very direct and concise manner, usually above the fold. I will also typically do so directly underneath an H2 subheading that contains the primary keyword.
5. Fix underperforming content
In this business it’s often hard to look back when you’re always looking ahead and publishing new content. It often pays off big time to audit your site and optimize and fix any underperforming articles. Sometimes literally a few minutes of work can be the difference in your post being bumped to the first page, or even the first position in Google.
Dig into your Google Analytics and find the page that are getting the least amount of page views and try to determine why. Sometimes when you look at blog content you wrote 2 years ago the mistakes stick out like a sore thumb.
6. See what the competition is doing
Always be aware of your competition and know what their general strategies are. Explore their sitemaps on their sites by going to /sitemap.xml and just scan over all of their articles. Brainstorm some ideas. See of they have any partial, low-competition keyword clusters that you can finish off.
Please don’t copy anyone completely or plagiarize, but by all means use your competitors for inspiration.
7. Publish lots of lists
I keep saying this, but lists do really well with ads. Now not all niches are going to have a lot of listicle opportunities, so that may be something you want to research before you jump into a niche. If you’re like me then you’ll want to be able to churn out lists like crazy.
Without question I get the highest ROI on a well written and targeted listicle. I have dozens that consistently bring in over $100/month, and several that bring in over $500/month.
Then on top of that consider if those keywords were in a cluster that had hundreds or even thousands more just like them. All you have to do is publish the content and wait for the traffic to start flowing in.
8. Watch your post structure
A well structured post goes a long way. Your H3s go under H2s and H4s go under H3s, etc. All headings should be relevant to the topic and be structured in a way that makes sense to the reader. Try to tell a story with your article and break it down into easy to understand sections.
For example, my formatting for listicles is something like the following. It’s very easy to scan over for the reader, and a repeatable post structure for me.
- Mention my topic in the H1
- Have a short intro
- Mention topic again in the first H2
- Snippet optimized text directly under the first H2
- All list items are H3s
9. Increase your output
If you aren’t outputting enough content then you’re probably never going to see the traffic you want to. If by chance you create some of the most amazing content on the planet every time you publish, then sure you can do well with only a handful of posts.
For most of us though, we need to create massive amounts of content and take the wins with the losses. Eventually the wins add up over time to respectable amounts of organic traffic.
For the average new blogger, you need to write as much as possible in the first 60 days. Let’s say you hit 60 posts in 60 days. That sounds like a lot but I assure you it can be done by one person that’s also working a full time job. I’ve done it. If you do this then you’ll have a good shot at seeing some decent organic traffic early on.
If you’re only posting once a week to a new site, that’s probably not enough.
10. Keep an eye on GSC
You should have hooked your blog up to Google Search Console the day it went live. If you haven’t yet you need to immediately. GSC monitors all of your search activity that comes in from Google. It tells you things like which pages are showing up in search results the most, and what people are searching for when they see them.
Here you can find tons of opportunities to optimize existing content, and get ideas for new content as well.
11. Good internal linking
Good internal linking helps Google crawl your site easier and may even help your posts rank better. If you can convince your visitors to click onto other pages on your site then that is ultimately going to translate to more earnings per visitor.
The longer a visitor is on your site and seeing your ads and affiliate links, the more money you are likely to make from your site. It’s as simple as that. For a plugin that can help immensely with internal linking, see Link Whisper.
12. Go above and beyond
Whenever possible, go above and beyond what is necessary to fulfill the search intent. That means that you need to answer the query or give the searcher exactly what they came for, and give them some supporting and related information that you think they might find useful as well.
Give them a helpful table full of relevant data, bulleted lists, engaging images, an infographic, or whatever other content enhancers you can think of. You don’t have to do these things every time unless you have the resources, but it’s always a nice touch.
13. Don’t target no volume keywords
Registering “0” by a keyword tool and actually having no search volume are two different things. The first example below is a zero search volume keyword that I think someone might actually search.
It registered as a search term in Google Autosuggest, and “People also ask” on the SERP. Most importantly, to me it seems like a reasonable person might type that into Google and go on to read an article about it.
The next example is obscure, odd, and way too specific. I don’t think enough people would search it, to be worthwhile to write. The ROI wouldn’t be there.
I see so many new bloggers think this is what people mean when they say target underserved keywords. Sometimes there’s a reason why no one is writing about a topic. Always use common sense.
14. Build links
This is an option to try and get organic traffic coming in as soon as possible. I have little experience with link building and can’t really speak on it too much. I know people do it and I know backlinks are one of the biggest ranking factors.
Keep in mind that link building can be expensive. If you pay for links you must be careful who you work with and buy from, if you do it yourself it can take up valuable time that could be spent writing content. It’s a choice you have to make, but if done properly it could bring in organic traffic sooner.
15. Keep it lean and fast
Especially with Google’s Core Web Vitals recently rolling out, the speed and user experience of a website is more important than ever. I try not to get caught up in the trap of chasing perfect scores in Google Page Speed Insights, but if you implement a few key changes to your blog then it can really help. Here they are.
- Have a fast theme – I use Generatepress
- Have a fast host – I use: WPX Hosting | Knownhost Managed VPS | Rocket.net | Siteground
- Have a good caching plugin – I use WP Rocket
- Compress and optimize your images – I use Shortpixel
16. Site architecture
When I say site architecture I’m talking about things like categories, tags, and other taxonomies. But also your menu structure and general ease of navigation. It’s ok to have your blog as your home page, that’s how I do it for most sites.
Make sure the category structure makes sense, and keep it easy to navigate for both the user and Google. Aesthetically, it doesn’t need to be fancy. You may have an urge to spend copious amounts of time tweaking every little thing you can, but don’t.
Generatepress’s default layout is going to be fine for a while. You can customize later, work on content now. This goes for pretty much any other theme as well.
17. Evergreen content
This won’t necessarily get you traffic quicker, but there’s a reason you should be writing about evergreen topics. In blogging, an evergreen topic is one where the content you write should never need updating because the answer to the query will never change. Here’s an example.
What Are Trees Made of?
I’m not sure I would ever write this, but then again I haven’t researched it either. The point is that a tree is always going to be made of wood, that will literally never change. If you write an article talking about how trees are made of wood, in 20 years it will still be accurate. Here’s an example of an article topic that is not evergreen.
What’s the Best iPhone For Kids?
If you had a tech site this is likely going to be a good topic, but it will only stay accurate for a year before it needs to be updated. Now that’s fine for many people, you go in once a year and update or even rewrite an article.
I want to decrease my chances of ever having to return to an article to update the content. I want to spend my time creating new evergreen content. This is how you build the most passive and reliable income streams from blogs.
If you’re chasing affiliate sales then you will probably have to update articles every so often, there’s no way around it. Depending on the products you’re promoting though, to an extent you can control how often you might have to update links. That’s out of the scope of this article, it goes back to the product evaluation process when choosing affiliate offers.
As bloggers, we never get everything perfect. If I’m being honest, my sites are a mess in many ways. They are to me anyway, you might see them and think otherwise. Regardless, my point is that don’t always strive for perfection. Sometimes we want that one piece of content to be perfect, but other times you have to be ok with “good enough” and just hit publish. Keep the items above in mind and your organic traffic should be sustainable and long lasting.
I hope at least one of these tips gave you a better idea about how to increase your organic traffic!