When you’ve develop a loyal readership to your blog, and have implemented effective SEO strategies, it is important to not only keep your unique visitors high, but also to maximize your returning visitors. I’ve discussed ways to ensure that you can do this with posts on Feedburner, autoresponders, and the use of various social networks, but a lot of clients still have questions. One of the big issues is content. If you have a loyal readership, you have to be able to give them new content on a consistent and regular basis. They will want fresh material and in turn, have to be able to depend on your consistency, know when you are releasing new posts. If you do this, your readers will visit your site three or four times a week, instead of twice; if you don’t, users may gradually stop visiting your site. However, keeping a website stocked with fresh content can be a challenge if your online business or blog is something you do on the side. This is something that people struggle with, so I thought it would be helpful to put together a list of things you can do to help keep your site populated with new content.
1: Original Content
Original content is always your best bet. Algorithms from various search engines can spot duplicate content, and so if you are syndicating material from other sites, those posts will not help your SEO ranking as much as your own original content will. Unique content will allow you to target your content to the needs of your readers, and will allow you to make it keyword rich and topical. If there is a trending topic in your field, perhaps something that may have come up on Twitter, your Facebook feed, is trending on sites like Yahoo and Bing, then you can write content related to those topics out with the optimal keywords. If you wait for your site to syndicate the material, you won’t get it out until a little later. This is a time consuming process, especially if you aim to keep your posts between 1000-2000 words, like many of the top ranked articles are. If you don’t have a lot of time for this, set aside a couple hours on Sunday afternoon to write a single post a week. Edit it before you got to bed, and then publish it the next morning. If you are syndicating articles as well, this will allow you to piggy back on the keywords and content on those posts, whilst also adding your own original content.
2: Syndicating Posts
One of the most affordable, efficient, and effective ways to keep your website stocked with content is by syndicating articles from other sites. This has been an effective method for some of my clients, and I’m actually running a program called Affiliate Rollout that incorporates this method. The program builds websites, and if clients choose the syndication option, automatically populates the sites with fresh material every day, and also blasts the posts out on social networking sites. By subscribing to the RSS feeds to various sites, with the right plugin, your site will be loaded with fresh content every day. The first question people have is, how does the site that is syndicating the article get a leg up on the site that originally posted the article? There are two things at work here. First, I always encourage clients to write their own content as well, though they do not have to for the site to be successful. This will, however, differentiate them from the other sites. The second, and perhaps the most important part, is that it aggregates posts from several sites onto one. Therefore, readers who might have had to visit several sites to read their daily news, now only have to visit one. Having all the resources in one place, coupled with original content, makes the site unique to both readers and search engine spiders.
3: Guest Posts
I’ve written on the value of guest posts in the past, but this can be especially helpful. If you’ve come across a website in your niche that might not be getting a lot of viewers, drop the administer/blogger an e-mail inviting them to write a guest post with the promise of backlinking back to their site to drive traffic to them. The only catch to this method is that bloggers often want to trade posts, so if you don’t have time to put one together, this may not be a good option. Alternately, you can scroll through the visitors who left comments. Drop them an e-mail and invite them to do a guest post. This will take a little bit of your time in terms of putting the post together and publishing it, but somebody else is doing the writing. Likewise, you can create a forum for your site and allow users to create threads and discuss topics related to your niche. This method is usually only effective for websites that generate significant traffic, so if you are new to online marketing, it may be a while before you can implement this with any degree of efficiency.
4: Paid Posts
Paying for posts may not be in your budget if you are just starting out, but this is not a terribly expensive option. There are a number of websites, like oDesk, or perhaps eLance, that will put you in contact with freelance writers who offer affordable rates. These sites work a lot like Ebay, only instead of you bidding on a product, the writers are looking for you. If all you have for a post is $10, then post the job, wait for respondents to message you, and pick whichever one you think is best. They usually use payment systems like PayPal. This can be a great way to get a couple of posts out a week at an affordable rate. The posts might not always be ideal, but it is original content that will separate your content from other websites.
I’m a big fan of diversifying, so with that said, though each of these methods are great, it is best to use a combination of them. Your own original content is a must in my mind, but the syndication of other websites will make sure that those of you who do not have the time to put up a post every day, will always have current posts up daily and still allow you to post your own material once or twice a week. Guest posts, either from readers or bloggers, are a great way have others drive traffic to your site, and keep your site stocked with fresh content. Paid traffic is a viable option, but because it costs money, and because it might be difficult to find ideal writers, it is likely the least appealing option, though it is one that can work effectively if you have some capital to invest and want to take the time to recruit quality writers. Syndication and your own original content are a must, but each of these options can keep your website pack with fresh content, which will make sure your readers always have new material to engage with, and that search engines will always have to content to index.
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