How to increase your blog traffic with 4 essential tools
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When you are running your blog as a business, how to grow your blog traffic is one of your key priorities. To increase your traffic, it is essential:
1 – To have the right tools to understand your traffic: how much, where it comes from, etc.
2 – To understand how search engines (specially Google) see your site.
3 – To work on different elements to improve SEO (Search Engine Optimisation).
What key tools you need?
1 – Google Analytics.
Google Analytics is a free tool that collects detailed statistics from your website and provides detailed reports. Google Analytics collects information like:
– Number of site visitors to your site.
– Which pages do they visit?
– How long is each visitor on each page?
– Where are your visitors coming from: social media, Google search, direct traffic?
– Where are your users located?
Gathering statistics about your site allows you to understand the behaviour of your users: which pages they go to, how long they stay in each page and how they got to your website (social media, a search engine or typing your website address on the browser). All this information is vital to help you improve your site, increase and retain visitors and improve conversions.
Check my blog post “Step-by-step guide to set up Google analytics” for detailed information about Google Analytics.
Google search console is a free tool by Google that provides detailed information about how your site appears in Google search results.
Some key information provided by Google Search Console is:
– Which pages within your site are visible to Google and can appear on search results.
– How many times do different pages on your site appear on Google search results and in which ranking position.
– How many clicks do the different pages get from Google results.
– Information about errors.
This is valuable information you should use to optimise your site and improve your SEO ranking, which will increase the free organic traffic you get from Google.
For detailed information to set up Google Search Console, check my blog post “How to set-up Google search console“.
3 – Yoast SEO.
Yoast SEO is a WordPress plugin. Yoast SEO checks your website content, looking at keyword optimization, links, readability, titles, URL names, and meta descriptions. A traffic light system is used to display areas that are working well in green and problem areas in orange or red. The visual aspect of the tool makes it easy to identify issues quickly. There is a paid version of the plugin, but I only use the free version.
Key features of Yoast SEO:
1 – Yoast SEO Helps you easily edit titles and meta descriptions
2 – Yoast SEO Provides readability analysis.
3 – Yoast SEO provides keyword analysis.
4 – Yoast SEO provides link counters.
5 – Yoast SEO makes it easy to submit your content and sitemap to search engines.
Yoast SEO is an essential tool to help you improve your SEO ranking. To install it, follow my blog post “Improve your search engine ranking with Yoast SEO (free)“.
4 – A good keyword research tool.
When a user goes to a search engine like Google to search for something, the user enters a few words or a phrase. Those words that are Keywords. When you write an article or a blog post, you need to think about what keywords users are likely to enter in a search engine when looking for the information that you are providing in the article. Then you need to include those keywords across your article or blog post selectively. This will help you rank higher on search engines when a user enters the selected keyword.
If you want your blog posts to rank high on Google, you need to target the right keywords. Some keywords are very competitive and are very hard to rank for. Others are easy but bring very little traffic. You need to find the right middle point, targeting keywords with decent traffic but not too competitive so you can rank for those keywords. This is where keyword research tools provide you with essential information:
– How many times does a keyword or keyphrase appear on search results.
– How difficult it is to rank for that keyword.
– Which articles are ranking for that keyword.
There are many keyword tools. All three tools I’m recommending offer you a similar view, with information for the keyword you enter and related keywords, how easy it is to rank for the keyword, the traffic that the keyword generates and which sites are ranking for the keyword. These three tools are:
KWFinder is my favourite keyword research tool, but you can only use the free version for 10 days, which is why I’m adding the following two alternatives.
Semrush provides similar information to KWFinder and allows you a number of free searches per day.
Ubersuggest is a free tool, but it’s sometimes unavailable due to load on the server.
Check out my blog post “Keyword research basics” for more detailed information on how to perform keyword research and how to use some of these tools.
In summary, if you are focusing on growing your blog traffic, you need to be able to understand your traffic statistics and your Google ranking. Google Analytics and Google Search Console are the ideal tools to help you with this. You also need to be able to work on your SEO and perform keyword research for your blog. Use Yoast SEO and keyword research tools like KWFInder or Ubbersuggest to improve your SEO ranking.
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