Now that you have started your blog and published it on the internet, you will have to do a couple of more things before you can realistically expect to generate profit from your blog.
This is especially true for those blogs that are not affiliated with any existing sites and blog owners who have never run a website before. You are going to have to work to build some traffic and readership to your new blog. It is going to be hard to earn any income, let alone make a profit, on your blog site if no one is reading it.
You need people to read your blog, so you need massive traffic to your blog. Before we start optimizing, we need to do some research.
The place where everyone usually goes to find keywords is the Google keyword tool. Just do a search on Google with the words: Google Keyword Tool and it should come up first. You can then put in your main keywords for your website and do a search.
Power Suggest Pro is a keyword and market research tool that leverages on multiple search engines to reveal millions of popular search phrases people are typing into search engines every day. Unlike most research tools on the market which are based on data from Google Keyword Planner, Power Suggest Pro works by harnessing live keyword suggestions from search engines, which means you’ll not only uncover much more low-competition keywords but you’ll also get the most up-to-date, effective and highly descriptive keywords exactly as they were typed into search engines by real people.
It is good to use more than one keyword tool. That is why I use both Power Suggest Pro and Jaaxy. If I have to choose between the two, though, I would choose Jaaxy because they have a KQI (Keyword Quality Indicator) grader for keywords. This ensures that you get keywords that work. Jaaxy also has a free trial. Go ahead and give it a try. You have nothing to lose.
Search Engine Optimization
Before starting any aggressive advertising campaigns, it is important to make sure your blog is search engine optimized. There are plenty of companies that will charge you a pretty penny to make these changes for you, but it is easier (and naturally cheaper) to do things yourself. Meta tags must be included in your blog in order to catch any random search engine traffic that might stumble your way, and to make sure your site is indexed to appear in a search engine in the first place.
Two free tools that will generate quality meta tags for your site are the Submit Express Meta Tag Generator and the Submit Corner Meta Tag Generator. I have used both of these tools to generate meta tags for all of my existing blogs. This helps ensure that my blogs get indexed and that I can receive traffic from search engine results that display my blog. Both of these tools are completely free and only require the user to answer a few questions and fill in a few blanks (site description, keywords, etc.). When you are done both tools can be used to analyse your newly created meta tags and give suggestions on how to optimize them (make them shorter or longer).
Depending on your blogging platform your newly created meta tags might have to go in different parts of your blog. Using WordPress I usually place my meta tags in the header and main index page of my blog layout. I use the Yoast plugin, which gives a place for the meta tags to go. If you are not sure where to place the meta tags consult your blog platforms Frequently Asked Questions or search for a help forum dedicated to your specific blogging platform.
Here is some more quality training on Search Engine Optimization.
Submitting to Search Engines
Once your meta tags are created and in place you can now start submitting your blog to major search engines. There are plenty of companies that offer to submit your domain to search engines, for a fee, and I recommend against using them. If you have some time at the beginning of each month to submit your domains manually it will be just as effective and save you money.
I usually use Submit Express to submit my blog to the search engines. Also, because of the constant updating, blogs get indexed faster (and stay indexed longer) than traditional websites. This fact alone makes me a blog supporter and promoter.
Make your blog look beautiful
When you have gotten comfortable with blogging, and your chosen platform, it is time to beautify your blog. You want to make sure that your blog stands out in the crowd, and the only way to do that is to have a unique blog theme/template. The worst thing that can happen to you in the world of blogging is for readers and clients to confuse your blog with that of your competitors.
There are many websites that sell pre-made blog templates for reasonable prices. One that I have personally worked with is Template Monster. They sell WordPress, Joomla, and Mambo templates for anywhere between $30.00 and $70.00. For an additional fee they offer another service, Template Tuning, which will customize your heading and other parts of the blog design for you. However, if you know anything about Adobe Photoshop then you should be able to make any necessary changes to the template yourself. Template Monster includes the editable PSD files with each order.
It is also possible to hire a designer to create a completely unique theme/template for your blog for a fee. These services can cost anywhere from $30.00 to $300.00 depending on the designer and the complexity of the design. In most cases you will need to provide images for the designer to work with. These images can be purchased from stock photography sites such as Dreamstime, Adobe Stock images or iStock Photo. There are many sites where you can get photos. Just google it for more. These sites may also have free images available for use as long as the photographer is credited somewhere in the design.
Some of the best places to find designers who will work for reasonable fees are on Craigslist, Fiverr and deviantART. If you are looking on Craigslist for a designer go to the Creative and Computer services section, and perform a search for blog design, blogging, or your platform by name. Be sure you search all major cities to try and find the most affordable designer. When looking on deviantART you can browse the Job Offers forum for designers who are currently accepting projects or register and post your own job opening.
You can also design your own pictures on Canva which may be the cheapest option and may be the best way to start.
After you’ve found a designer, or before you purchase a pre-made template/theme, be sure you take readability into account. Your reader shouldn’t have to strain to view small text or get headaches because of overly bright colors. I have extremely poor vision and nothing will make me leave a site or blog faster than small font and bad colors.
Take readability into account when you are writing individual posts as well. Make sure that you always use a decent sized font and that you use punctuation when needed.
Also include line breaks between paragraphs or statements. Even with decent sized font reading text with no breaks or punctuation can be frustrating, and will cause your blog to lose readers.
Make it easy to subscribe
Once your blog is beautiful, readable, and you are ready to start posting content, make it easy for people to subscribe to your content. If you are providing content that your readers want to read on a steady basis they shouldn’t have to tear your site apart looking for an RSS feed. Also, offer an alternative to RSS feeds just in case your readership does not like dealing with feeds. Services like Feedblitz will let readers sign up to receive your latest content right in their email inboxes.
Maximize your traffic
Now that your blog is optimized you have to start maximizing your traffic. A lot of blog income opportunities can only be maximized if your blog is receiving a good amount of traffic. Participating in a pay per impression ad program is useless if only two people visit your site a week. Make sure your blog is listed with as many blog directories and communities as possible so that you can ensure a good amount of traffic. Here is a list of great blog directories and communities that can help your blogs traffic and popularity skyrocket.
This is one of the largest free directories on the internet. Once your blog is listed on Blogarama users will be able to rank your site, and many users using Blogarama will comment on your posts and refer your blog to other users.
The Blog Catalog is a directory of blogs around the world. This directory contains high quality, content rich blogs. Having your blog listed on this catalog will increase your blogs popularity and reputation.
In addition to letting you add your blog to their directory Blog Flux offers a variety of tools that will help you promote your blog and increase your revenue. Blog Flux offers a button maker, online now codes, advance tracking, and much more.
This is a toplist just like the name suggests. Blog Toplist has built up a year’s worth of fantastic blog traffic and has an excellent reputation. List your blog and benefit from this toplist’s traffic and various advertising campaigns.
Finally, a search engine dedicated entirely to blogs and blog related tools. Users visiting this site are only seeking blogs so you don’t have to worry about attracting visitors who are completely uninterested in blogging.
A combination blog directory, search tool, hosting company, and forum. An all in one resource for new blog owners to promote blogs, search for tools, and connect with other blog owners.
Social networking sites are another great way to drive quality traffic to your blog. Many bloggers rely on MySpace for new readers and customers. Setting up a free MySpace profile and participating in groups and forums can attract an entirely new group of people to your site. When networking and promoting on MySpace it is important to remember the Terms and Policies of the site and to avoid sending out bulk messages of any kind.
I have used MySpace as a promotional tool for years now and have never had a problem. I include a widget to my blog on my MySpace profile page so that all visitors can see my latest blog headlines. I also cross post bits of my blog posts to my MySpace blog linking back to the full post on my own domain.
While MySpace is very strict about posting links to your site in certain forums and groups, there are ways to advertise your domain and blog site without breaking the rules. MySpace allows users to have a headline which appears instead of their name.
Many users, including myself, replace that headline with our web address. Also, instead of receiving messages, I have all users attempting to send me messages receive an automatic message asking them to send me a message at my website.
Facebook is another good site for promoting your blog and getting the attention of new clients, readers, and even local businesses. Quite a few bloggers have groups set up on Facebook and network with each other. Also they are often helped by friends and relatives who are also on Facebook and who don’t mind sharing news of you blog through word of mouth. Many of the Facebook applications make it easy to add feeds to your blog and to promote your domain or blog without getting into any trouble.
I find LinkedIn also a good source of traffic. I post articles to some of the groups I belong to if the article is relevant to the group topic. Other places to post your link to is Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.
Social bookmarking sites are also a popular way for bloggers to promote their blogs and gain more traffic. Social book marking sites can also be used to increase the number of other blogs and sites that link to your own blog. This linking can increase traffic and, if the sites linking to you are quality sites, PageRank. The popular social book marking sites are:
Stumble Upon – I love this one as I get most of my traffic from there.
Signature to use everywhere
Lastly, but not least, don’t forget the power of the signature. If you participate in any online message board communities that allow posters to have signatures, include a link to your blog. Not only will this increase traffic but it will also increase your backlinks since many of these directories are indexed and listed on major search engines.
Also add a link to your new blog in your email signatures. You would be amazed at how many people who receive your emails will click your link out of curiosity.
If you follow this list religiously, you will optimize your blog for maximum traffic. Go forth and make money!
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