If you blog it, will they come?  

Posted by Rich DeFabritus in , ,

If you blog frequently, it goes without saying that if you don't get people's attention, no one will read it. Not unlike any other source of information, simply having content isn't enough - you have to work to get those eyeballs. Don't despair - there are creative ways to go about doing this, and you won't have to expend any additional energy.

You may have heard the term "SEO", or Search Engine Optimization. SEO is a critical way that webmasters get their content or sites to rank higher in natural search. It can be complex and expensive, but if you are creative, you can do some basic SEO for your blog at no cost. Many search engines use technology called "bots" that crawl your content to determine relevance to search terms. Basically, they read the text and interpret those terms accordingly. Your task is to make the bot's job easier by using keywords, tags, and keeping your blog easy to load (also called "lightweight").

First off, the title of each of your posts is extremely important. It's there not only to get the reader's attention, but usually the first part of a page the bots will crawl. As an example, the title is what will be linked and displayed in the results of a Google search. It's key that you create catchy titles with some specific details in them. See my post on Twitter: the art of the headline for more information on creating catchy titles. You'll want to keep them brief, specific, and unique.

Another trick is to link to content or posts you've previously published on your blog - note the link above as an example. The search bots not only crawl content, they follow links, so the more you can link to relevant content, the better. It also helps to keep your readers captive on your blog and reader your other posts - always a good thing!

You should also link to posts on other blogs. Other bloggers will discover what are called "trackbacks" - basically an acknowledgement from your blog to theirs - and they will visit your site to possibly link back to you. This in turn makes you more noticeable to their readers and will drive more traffic to your site.  Here's an example of a linked post from another blog (an interview I did with the Telecom Blog).

I should point out that you must take care which sites you link to. You want to maximize your trackbacks, something a big corporation may not do. You also don't want to link to sites that are suspect - that may leave you with an email inbox full of spam, or worse, viruses!

Remember the old saying "If a tree falls in the woods, does it make a sound?" is very applicable. If you have something to say, it's not going to matter if no one can hear (or see) it. Keep blogging, and use these small tips to gradually build you reader base and improve your chances of being seen!

This entry was posted on Friday, February 25, 2011 at Friday, February 25, 2011 and is filed under , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .



Great tips - thanks for posting!

February 26, 2011 at 11:25 AM

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