The blogging world is abuzz with strategies to improve organic traffic. You’re in complete control over many ranking factors that drive traffic to your website, it’s only a matter of focusing on the right ones to give your blog a much-needed SEO boost.
If you’ve seen a decline in organic traffic to your blog or never had much of it in the first place, now’s the time to make some changes to your approach. Applying a more data-backed mindset to blogging will leave impactful and long-lasting effects on your traffic.
1. Improve Internal Linking Structure
Bloggers often overlook the importance of proper internal linking structure, thus losing out on valuable traffic. Internal links show Google the relationship between the pages on your site and also help it understand the content of the web page using anchor text.
2. Optimize Underperforming Content
No matter how hard you try to write a piece of content on a subject of your choice, it’s not always going to garner the attention it deserves. Moreover, it won’t always be exactly clear why you’re missing out on valuable traffic sources, especially when you know how much time and effort you’ve put into creating outstanding content.
Content is king, right? So why isn’t your high-quality blog pulling in organic traffic? The reasons could be many, so you should first pinpoint all the blogs that are underperforming by your standards. Try to look for the commonalities between the underperforming blogs. They might all be missing proper subheading structure or have no images and proper alt texts. Or, they could simply be missing important keywords that the competing blogs feature.
That’s why you should look into latent semantic indexing (LSI) to find relevant keywords that compliment the main keyword of the page. If you haven’t already, you should improve the structure of your page by introducing correct subheadings that logically stem from one another. Add images where necessary, enrich them with alt texts that contain keywords, and include metadata such as meta descriptions and meta titles.
3. Compete for Definition Featured Snippets
Google pulls definitions from only the top-ranking pages. By structuring your content the right way, i.e., providing answers directly to the questions you pose, your content might just get selected for the featured snippet.
You can use tools such as Ahrefs to find keywords that already appear in featured snippets. Not every keyword is going to rank for the definition box, so you might as well focus on the ones that have a chance of appearing at the top of the page.
4. Add Videos to Your Blogs
Unlike all the other tips in this article, this one is not targeted at web pages that are underperforming. While adding videos to low-traffic pages can boost the organic traffic, it’s pages that are doing well that will benefit the most.
Adding videos to your blogs is including rich media that a lot of visitors prefer to reading walls of texts. It’s simply a way to expand your content in a manner that attracts different kinds of visitors.
5. Blog on a Regular Basis
Readers love content that comes out when they expect it to. It’s a good idea to create a content schedule and stick by it.
It creates a sense of continuity that readers can appreciate, and sets clear expectations of your blog. You don’t have to go overboard with your schedule — if you feel like biweekly posts are enough for the time being, by all means, write only two blogs per week.
What matters is they come out when your readers expect them to. No one likes sporadic content that may or may not get published.
6. Track Competing Backlinks
If you’re not getting enough organic traffic, one common cause might have to do with the greater quantity and quality of backlinks on your competitors’ web pages.
There’s nothing wrong with going directly after your competitors’ backlinks. You can set up alerts for every time your competitor earns a new backlink and see if you can hijack it.
Look through their content. If it seems inferior in comparison to yours, you might want to reach out to the linking website directly and ask for a link to your page instead. Usually, you have enough grounds to do this when your content is more elaborate than your competitors’ and contains more information than their article.
You don’t have to hijack live links to get more quality backlinks. You should always be on the lookout for broken or missing links and help the website owner fix that issue. Usually, they’ll be thankful enough and use the opportunity to link back to your page for helping them out.
7. Use HARO to Reach out to Reporters
Speaking of backlinks, there are no more high-quality backlinks than the ones you can get from top-rated media outlets.
Help A Reporter Out (HARO, for short) is a service that brings expert sources and reporters together. It’s a mutually beneficial relationship where reporters get more credibility for the pieces they’re writing by citing expert sources, while sources themselves gain valuable links and mentions on the most prominent news sites on the internet.
If you’re a travel blogger, for example, you could sign up for HARO as an expert source and wait for reporter emails. HARO sends out emails containing reporter queries three times per day. You have to scan them for reporters looking for a travel expert to share their opinion on a certain issue or suggest a travel destination for the upcoming holidays.
You then send out an email explaining your credentials to be commenting on the topic and share a couple of ideas with the reporter. If they consider your response to be worthy of being published in their news article, they’ll quote you and link to your blog.
8. Start Guest Posting
If you haven’t already, you should start guest posting as soon as possible.
Many bloggers avoid guest posting out of fear of being penalized by Google. We can’t say that’s too unreasonable, especially since Google has cracked down on everything that isn’t pearl-white hat link building.
While buying links or trading them for services and products is strictly out of the question, there are still plenty of white hat methods of obtaining them. Guest blogging is still very much alive, only there has to be no money involved.
Writing editorials can still get you the much-needed exposure on partnered websites and put your name out there.
9. Perform Competitor Analyses
Don’t just monitor your outperforming competitors just because of the backlinks they might be getting.
Analyzing every little step they take can reveal much about why they’re ranking better than you. It might be the quality and quantity of backlinks, but it also might be content volume, structure, keywords, internal linking, and many other small factors that amount to greater SEO impact.
Look for gaps between what you’re doing and what your higher-ranking competitor is.
10. Do Annual Content Audits
Annual content audits can reveal content gaps, find underperforming pages, and help determine which blogs need to be consolidated.
By analyzing every web page on your site, you can find blogs that need removing, some that could just do with an update, and most importantly, content that you should have, but don’t.
Be careful when removing pages that are underperforming. Some are crucial to your business, even if they’re doing very poorly SEO-wise.
Keep Optimizing Your Blog
SEO is an ongoing process, and there’s always room for improvement. It’s not something that gets done and dusted, never to be picked up again.
By constantly striving for the betterment of your SEO game and relentlessly seeking ways to improve your blog, you’ll have a chance of coming out on top and staying there.