This is one of the most common questions I get from people launching a new blog and I always tell them the same thing:
The key to growing blog traffic is actually to focus on growing subscribers.
On blogging team has found that investing in the growth of your email subscriber base is critical to growing and scaling traffic to your blog — whether it’s in its infancy, or it’s been around for years.
One of the best ways we have found to increase subscribers is to simply add an opt-in check boxes to the lead capture forms on our websites home and inner pages to give people the opportunity to subscribe to our blog while perusing your site. In other words, if people filled out a form on your website to get one of your gated offers (like an ebook, white paper, etc.), they could also opt in to receive emails about new content on related to your services.
This is HUGE nugget. In fact, by adding a subscribe check box, we have seen email subscribers double, triple, and quadruple in a very short period of time. It just works!
With a blog, performance can be impacted by a whole slew of variables such as publishing frequency and quality, timing, subject matter, and usability which are virtually impossible to isolate. This means it’s even more difficult to determine conversion and ROI. Fortunately, data is pretty convincing, and that’s why growing subscribers is the one of the best pieces of advice I can give to people who are trying to grow traffic to their blog.
Why Do More Subscribers Lead to More Traffic?
As you may already know, one of the biggest benefits of blogging is its long-term ROI. That’s because new blog posts don’t disappear the day after you publish them. Thanks to the beauty of search engines (and social networks), those new posts can get rediscovered days, weeks, months, even years after they were originally published. Which means that over time, the more posts you publish, the more opportunities you’re creating to rank well in search engines and drive ongoing, sustainable traffic to your website.
In fact, well over 50% of the traffic and leads we generated each month from WWW are from blog posts that weren’t published that month. That’s right — old content is responsible for the lion’s share of blog results every month.
That said, it takes time for your blog to accumulate a critical mass of content and search authority that leads to sustainable traffic from organic search … and a new(er) blog doesn’t have that yet. But that initial traffic needs to come from somewhere, right?
This is where subscribers come in. They can provide that initial surge of traffic to the new blog posts you publish, which ultimately propels those posts’ long-term success — in addition to your blog’s overall long-term success.
Here’s How It Works
You publish a new post and send an email to your subscribers to notify them. That traffic you get from your email subscribers provides an initial base of traffic to your new blog content. While your email subscriber base is mostly made up of repeat visitors, what’s great about it is that your subscribers are the people who come back to your blog time and time again, making them some of your blog’s biggest fans and content evangelists.
So that initial surge of traffic from those subscribers leads to social shares, inbound links, and even more views by brand new visitors, all of which helps that content (and other content on your blog) rank in search engines … which translates into sustainable organic search traffic growth over time.
Make Subscriber Growth an Ongoing Priority
While focusing on subscriber growth is critical for blogs just starting out, it can help drive ongoing blog growth for more mature blogs as well. It’s simple: The more subscribers you have, the greater your reach, and the more potential you have for generating more traffic from new visitors. In fact, the blogging has been around for many years, and subscriber growth should certainly be one of your team’s mission critical goals.