Give Your Blog Readers Multiple Ways to Keep in Touch!

keepintouchGetting quick bursts of traffic from social media sites is great, however, a lot of bloggers focus to heavily on getting surges of traffic and forget about building loyal readers for their blogs.

Now, let me be completely honest with you guys, on this blog, I myself don’t actually focus too well on building loyal readership.  I have several other blogs which are ones that make me money and are part of my main stream of income…whereas this blog has never really been about making money, thus, I haven’t put as much effort or time into building loyal readership or monetizing it!

Now, there are multiple ways to build loyal readership to blog, however, in this post I specifically want to talk about giving your readers many different ways to keep in touch with your posts and to keep them in your face.  If you have any other suggestions or ways that work for you, I’d love for you to add them in the comments below!

Most blog owners have an rss button somewhere on their blog, and that’s the extent of what they do to allow their readers to stay connected, however, believe it or not, most people on the internet do not actually use rss feeds or an rss reader!  In fact, most of the blogs I read, I simply have them bookmarked in a folder on my favorites toolbar!  I know crazy right…  Well, that’s your readership!

Twitter

Twitter is a great way to allow your readers to get updates whenever you post a new post on your blog.  There are several ways to do this, however, I’m just gonna share two that I use.

The first way you can do this is to use a service like TwitterFeed which you supply your twitter credentials to and they’ll automatically check your blog every so often (you specify how often) and if you have submitted a new post, then it will automatically submit it to your twitter stream.

The second way you can do this is to use a wordpress plugin called The Twitter Updater, which will automatically update your twitter feed when you publish a new post.

Aweber

Another great way to keep people coming back to your blog when you make new posts is to use a service like Aweber.  Aweber is a newsletter/mailing list program that allows you to build a mailing list.  You see this service (aweber specifically) used on most of the bigger names in the industry like John Chow, Shoemoney, etc.  There are multiple reasons for using a service like Aweber, however, in this post I specifically want to talk about it’s benefit for keeping your readers coming back!

There is a great feature in aweber that will allow you to send out a weekly email to all of your subscribers that has a list of the most recent posts on your blog that you’ve submitted!  This is a great way to get visitors that signed up to come back and also it may help readers that may of missed an excellent post or two during the week as it also gives a snippet of what the post is about.

There is one downside to using Aweber, and that is the fact that it’s not free, it costs 19 dollars a month to use and the more people you have signed up on your mailing list the more you’ll pay, however, I’ve always made more from my mailing lists then what it’s cost me to pay for Aweber.  It’s definitely worth it, as Aweber can be used for a lot more than just keeping your readers up to date about posts on your blog.  The more loyal readership you have and the more people you have that keep coming back to your blog, the more you can sell direct advertising for, and the more money you make!

Conclusion

So, when you start looking at building traffic to your website, remember that while it’s important to get new visitors to your site, it’s also just as important to make sure you keep as many of those visitors coming back to your blog as you can!

Twitter is More Than a Geek’s Playground Now

As you can see from the graph above, Twitter has continued to grow from half a million unique visitors a month to around three and a half million unique visitors a month according to Compete (I know Compete isn’t 100% accurate).  Another interesting fact about this graph is that it’s only talking about people that actually visit twitter.com and not all the people out there that are using Twitter applications like Twhirl or TweetDeck to manage, read, and post tweets.

So what exactly do I mean by the title of this post?  It’s simple really….Twitter, in my opinion, is starting to break out into the mainstream…No longer is it a tool or service that the tech savvy are using.  More people are starting to understand it’s uses, functions, and helpfulness.  I only believe this will continue to be the case and before long twitter will become an extremely powerful tool (not that it isn’t already!) to reach out to your visitors.  So what does this mean for you?

This means that now is the time to get yourself a Twitter Account, if you don’t already have one, and start building a network of your friends, peers, and readers that can help promote your content to their friends, peers, and readers!

I know…here’s what you’re thinking…

Derek, I’m signed up with several other Social Media sites like StumbleUpon, Digg, and Facebook…Why do I need to sign up with Twitter as well?  This is actually quite simple to answer… Twitters traffic is golden, it converts well and twitter users stick around unlike most other Social Media traffic.  They become avid readers, subscribe to your RSS Feed and Newsletters, and more!  Want proof?

  • Click Consultants last month had 371 visits from Twitter (Yes I know that’s not tons, but I’ve only started recently using Twitter myself), average time spent on this site was 3mins 19secs, and each person viewed an average of 2.78 pageviews.

As you can see, the traffic from twitter is something that, in my experience, no other social media site or service has been able to provide me or others in this field.

So if you aren’t using Twitter, you need to sign up today and get moving.  If you are using Twitter, make sure that you are working on building your profile up, getting followers, etc.  How you ask?  I’ll be talking about this in my next post so make sure you subscribe to my RSS Feed so you don’t miss it!

Five Reasons Your Website Design is Killing Your Profits

This is a guest post written by Mike Smith from BlogThemeMachine.

If you would like to write a guest post and see it on Click Consultants please email us with the post at clickconsultants [at] gmail [dot] com. We will then let you know if we would like to use your post or not. Thanks.

So, you write custom content, but your website design is plain, dull and uncustomizable? This is the number one issue I’ve seen with affiliate marketing lately. You get your quick website up and running, flood a bunch of PPC traffic to it and hope it sticks. Guess what? If you website design doesn’t give the feeling of “quality” your traffic will notice. It’s not 1990 anymore, so why are your websites looking like it? Ok, so maybe they don’t look like a blast from the past, but why would you consider using free templates or wordpress themes when 1,000,000 other websites have the exact same template? Odds are, your website niche is being covered by 10 other websites with the same exact theme. Doesn’t really do much for your custom written content now does it?

There are a laundry list of reasons why your website design can kill your profits and I wanted to touch on the 5 biggest in this article. I’d suggest studying this post closely and see how many of these items can be checked off your list on any website you run. If you can think of more, feel free to leave a comment and discuss it with us.

1. Most People Do Judge A Book By It’s Cover!

Yes, regardless of what anyone tells you, your book is judged by its cover alone. Your first impression is supposed to be memorable. Why would you waste your chance of giving off a positive vibe with an outdated or overly simple / overused website design? Most visitors are surfing through the search engines, or clicking ads on websites in hopes to find what they’re looking for, and if your website looks nothing like the content they’re searching for, they will instantly leave. For example, if your template is
a basic red/black/white business style layout, but you’re affiliate marketing is aiming towards a dog-lover crowd, you’ve missed your target instantly. You need something fun and pet related to grab the visitors attention for longer then 5 seconds.

2. Your Article Titles Are Laid Out Horribly!

This is more along the lines of the number above, but if your website article titles are laid out in regular blog format, and you do not have a section that the visitor can quickly overview, they’re likely to leave. Also, if your blog titles are the same size as your website text, but only colored differently, this makes skimming the page extremely hard, and your visitor will definitely leave. Grabbing the users attention is more then just with your header image or cool ‘web 2.0 graphics’. It’s all about creating a user experience and giving your visitor the ease of navigating your website easily.

3. Your Free Template Offers Limited Ad Placement!

So you’ve got the titles done to grab your visitors eyes, but now you’re stuck with a template that offers limited ad placement. sure you can toss up 5-10 ads on the page to make sure every area is covered, but wouldn’t you agree that proper blending of advertisements gets better Click-throughs compared to a bright blinking ad right in the center of the page? Your free template is built to offer certain layout size, certain space for ads, and limited room for improvements. Some ads won’t fit on certain free templates, while others have the total opposite ad space of what you’re looking for. Instead of making your ads work with specific
templates, why not make a template work with your ads?

4. Cheap Templates Do Not Invoke Trust!

Your visitor sees a cheap, free template and will immediately feel like they’re on another MFA website. Alternately, if you’ve got a custom design for your website, it will give the visitor a sense of comfort that they’ve come across a website that is actually built for their needs. If you come across a website that looks exactly like the one you just left, would you find it to be trust worthy? Especially if the website you just left was horrible?

5. Lacks Room For An E-mail Newsletter Sign Up Box!

If you’re in the business of marketing to your visitors through email, and sending out newsletters with ads, sponsor links and so on, why would you want a free template that doesn’t even offer a highly visible place for this? And if you do get your template to fit this in, 9 times out of 10, it could probably be placed much better and in a way that doesn’t seem out of place and spammy. Click Consultants is a perfect example of a great placement of the rss subscriber sign up box. Directly in the top middle of the page. The choice of where you want to have the sign up box wouldn’t happen with a free theme.

Again, I don’t know how important it is to stress this, but if your website is full of custom content, why don’t you have a custom blog design to go with it? Take a second and look over your current website. Could any of these things be hindering your profits? If you were to hire someone to design a new layout for your website, would it increase your profits? I bet it would.

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Mike Smith is a blogger and likes to create custom blog designs for a living. You can view samples of his work at Blog Theme Machine. If you find yourself agreeing with any aspect of this article, make sure you write Mike and find out what he can do to help you increase your profits.