Posted: 8:24 pm by tom in Blog
After blogging for a little while now I’m beginning to feel very pessimistic about the recommended promotional methods that most bloggers are telling people. In my eyes almost all of these methods are ineffectual, and a complete waste of time and money.
I’m going to outline just what I think is wrong with most promotional options available to bloggers:
Digg - Almost impossible to get on the front page, and very ineffective otherwise. Also if you do get on the front page you get a massive traffic spike sure, but also the possibility of a server crash. The main downfall of Digg is that the traffic is highly worthless. The Digg traffic spike is typically a massive vertical line up and then straight down. You would think that it would have some gradual run-off time, where a few visitors would be interested enough to check back to your site for a week or so. But sadly no, Digg users seem to have the attention span of a reality-television fan.
Stumbleupon - Only really effective if you’re willing to pour valuable hours into Stumble exchanges - and these a generally frowned upon as unethical. Also the traffic from Stumbleupon is about as worthless as Digg.
Adwords - One word: expensive.
Banner Advertising - Overpriced and doesn’t convert that well.
Guest Posting - You can read my thoughts on this here.
The trouble with all of these methods is that it’s very tempting to use them to your advantage (supposedly) by exploiting BAD traffic. That is to say that bloggers are often tempted into spending hours each day following all of the above methods simply to keep their daily traffic stats up. However, the key point here is that if they stop this tireless ‘promotion’ the traffic won’t stick around, in fact it’s already gone.
So the obvious question remains… How do you achieve good traffic?
The answer I’m afraid isn’t what you wanted to hear, and may sound like a cliche… but time. You may have thought hard work was the answer. However, the blogger achieving ‘bad traffic’ is probably working a lot harder than you to achieve temporary results, and worthless traffic. I’m going to be striving for ‘good traffic’ from this point onwards, and subsequently may see an initial decrease in my traffic. However I’ll be happy in the knowledge that this traffic is more meaningful, and hopefully it will gradually creep back up to great heights. I will be doing the following, which I feel are the best options for achieving quality traffic:
Getting to know other bloggers, commenting on their blogs and chatting with them. Networking is a great way to build up some long term relationships - opening all kinds of doorways to new visitors.
Spend more time on forums. This is simply another form of networking. I’m not talking about advertising my website or asking for link exchanges. I will be getting to know other bloggers, helping people more, and building a reputation for myself.
Search Engine Optimization If you spend the time optimizing your blog for the search engines you will be receiving organic, targeted traffic that is finding you, and not the other way around.
Write great content, and keep doing so. I’m going to be focusing more time on researching for great articles, checking and rechecking my posts and making sure that I never run out of stuff to blog about. This may seem like a lot of work, but I’ll be saving an enormous amount of time that I currently spend chasing ‘bad traffic’.
So there you have it, a harsh lesson learned on my part, but I’m sure glad that I learnt it early on. I’ll be posting about the results of this little experiment in Blogging Diary Week 2, so stay tuned.