If you’re going to be putting so much effort and money into your site, at least a few readers would be nice. Consider these seven reasons why no one is reading your blog.
You’ve recently started a blog—either as part of your business marketing or as a dedicated space to express your writing and creativity.
You’ve invested in a beautifully designed, mobile-friendly theme, all the must-have plugins, taken a crash course in blogging best-practices and have researched all the best sites for free stock photography.
You’ve chosen a niche, filled up your content calendar and have been blogging consistently, churning out quality content on a regular basis.
Things are going great! Or so it seems. There’s only one problem. No one is actually reading your blog.
You log in to your Google Analytics dashboard and there it is. Or rather, isn’t. Traffic. You have just about nil traffic. For all the writing and updating you’re doing on a daily basis, you should have tons more traffic to show for it. But you don’t.
Whether you’re a graphic designer, writer, photographer, social media expert, real estate agent, or virtual assistant looking to promote your small business, a blog is the perfect way to showcase your work, build your online reputation and earn the attention of prospective clients.
Blogging is one of the best ways to connect online, establish your goals, and even make a little side income.
Even if you don’t have a small business and are blogging as a hobby, it’s a great way to share your unique voice, tell your story and inspire others.
But your content can only help others or help your business, if eyeballs are actually reading it. If no one is reading your blog, you need to dig deep and figure out why.
I’m not saying you need thousands of pageviews each month. But certainly, if you’re going to be putting so much effort and money into maintaining your blog, at least a few hundred unique visitors a month would be nice.
If you are having trouble attracting site traffic, consider these 10 reasons why no one might be reading your blog.
1. You’re Not Sure Who You’re Writing For
When you first start blogging, it may not be clear at first exactly who your audience is. It takes time to define your writing style. It will also take time to determine your niche and how to really work it in your tone of voice.
But through all this it’s also important to get a sense of who your content is resonating with. Who are the readers that are relating to your content?
Analytics is useful in giving you an idea of the demographics of your current blog readers, but you can also analyze who leaves comments on your blog, who engages with your content on social media, and where else these people hang out.
Follow your readers on social media and in Facebook Groups to see what kind of interests they have so you can weave these aspects into your own content.
Once you begin to understand your audience, it will become easier to create content that will attract them to your site.
2. Your Content Is Not Helpful
It doesn’t matter what kind of blog you have or your reasons for blogging (hobby or business), your content must have some sort of value. It must transition the reader from a state of “not knowing” to a state of “knowing.”
If you’re blogging to promote your small business, it should illustrate to potential clients that you are an expert in your area of business. Your content should be useful to potential clients.
If you’re a food blogger, you’re content should teach your readers how to cook a yummy dinner or where to find the best local Thai food restaurant.
Whatever your niche or area of expertise, your blog should be a coach, mentor, teacher, entertainer and inspirational leader for your readers.
3. Your Content Is Not Unique
Here’s the thing about writing for the web—you have to write original content. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you all the reasons why copying and pasting is bad news, but it is.
But also keep in mind that even though the internet is still relatively young, it’s already overcrowded.
Whatever topic you’re blogging on, it’s also essential to weave in your own experiences and personal stories. That’s the only way to make it unique and make it stand out from the thousands of other people who are blogging about the exact same topic.
Storytelling will also make a topic that might seem dry or technical, more interesting and even entertaining.
4. Your Content is Not Being Found
The first thing that needs to happen before people start reading your blog is for people to actually know it exists.
Readers have to be able to find your content. As a blogger, you’ll need to learn about search engine optimization (SEO).
SEO can often be viewed as a difficult, techy and not something that every blogger or website owner needs. Small-scale businesses and newbie bloggers might not even think about it at all. But 93% of online experiences begin with a search engine.
Search engine optimization is meant to ensure you are creating valuable content that Google can use to answer people’s questions when they search. It’s meant to improve your search traffic and boost your blog’s rankings.
This means bringing more eyeballs to your blog content.
5. You Have Too Many Ads and Pop-Ups
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve left a blog or website because there are way too many pop-up ads and way too many banner ads or display ads.
Not only do ads and pop-ups slow down your site speed (so it takes longer to load), but they’re annoying as h*ll!
Readers don’t like pop-ups and they won’t stick around to even give your content a chance if you have too many of them. They’re intrusive and interrupt the browsing experience.
Not only do readers hate a lot of ads, but search engines like Google hate intrusive ads too. In fact, Google will actually prevent your site from ranking in searches, making your blog harder to find online.
Think twice before loading your site with pop-up ads, auto-playing video ads with sound, large sticky ads, prestitial ads, full-screen scrollover ads, or flashing animated ads.
6. Your Content is Not on Social Media
Many times what I hear from new bloggers, is that they don’t share their content on social media. And if they do, they only post it once.
It’s important to understand each social media channel and how to use them in order to leverage them to increase your site traffic.
Instagram is great for community-building and brand awareness, but you might not easily receive a lot of referral traffic from Instagram. In my experience, it takes a lot of planning, apps and investment in order to really convert IG followers into blog traffic.
Facebook Groups are also great for connecting with others, sharing experiences and exchanging ideas with other content creators, but again it might not give you the spike in traffic that you’re looking for.
My biggest traffic drivers have been Twitter, my Facebook page and I’m starting to see bit of traffic spike come in through Pinterest.
When you do share your posts on social media, you’ll need to share them more than once. Due to algorithm changes, many of your followers won’t even see your posts to begin with—give old posts new captions and re-post them three or four times a week.
If you are on Pinterest, give your old posts a new visual image and re-post it a few times as well.
7. Your Readers Don’t Know Who You Are
When I do my blogging workshops, I hear this worry all the time—bloggers are afraid to reveal themselves. They want to focus on perfecting the craft of writing which is great, but take it from me—that’s not enough.
Part of sharing unique and original content, is sharing who you are as well. It won’t be enough to put pen to paper, people want to see you and hear you.
This is probably the hardest thing for new bloggers to come to grips with. I know for me it’s still something that I’m struggling with and I’ve been blogging for years.
But it’s important to include an About me page, a brief bio, and even include why you’ve started your blog in the first place.
You want people to connect with you and feel confident in the value that you’re providing them. Whether it’s informational, inspirational or a shared experience that they can relate to.
Now It’s Your Turn
Are you making any of these mistakes with your blog? What are your tips for earning blog traffic? Share your experience below.
Photo by Tanya Mok