We’re about to enter 2017 in just a few days – can you believe it?
Time really does fly.
So much has happened in the SEO and content marketing world over the last 12 months that it’s safe to say that your blogging strategy needs a complete review.
And what better time to do it than the start of a new year?
You need to address certain key areas of your blogging strategy to maximize the impact of your content, further strengthen the relationship with your readers, and generate more consistent traffic that results in more sales.
Not sure what I mean? Let me simplify this for you
Here are 4 things you need to do well in the coming year to build take your blog to the next level and enjoy more success.
1. Enhance the Performance and the Security of Your Blog
Can you afford to have a slow blog with poor security these days?
In a word, no!
Research shows that readers, on average, wait for around 3 seconds for a page to load before bouncing back. If your blog’s performance is not optimized and it takes ages to load everything, you’re losing a lot of visitors.
But that’s not the only problem.
Poor security and slow load speed directly impact user experience which is one of the key Google search engine ranking factors.
The moment Google identifies any security breach or performance issues on your blog, your search rankings will take an immediate hit.
So what’s the solution to this?
First of all, know where your blog stands in terms of speed and performance by using Google’s Page Speed Test. It not only tells you how fast or slow your blog loads but also gives you tips and actionable guidelines to improve your blog’s load speed.
Secondly, make sure your blog is hosted on a reputable, secure and high-quality web hosting service. This is crucial for the security and performance of your blog.
Zac recommends A2Hosting, which is one of the top hosting companies on the web, in his guide on starting a blog. It’s a reliable service especially if you’re just starting a new blog and have budget restrictions.
If you’re already running an established blog, you may want to consider a managed WordPress Hosting service which takes care of your site updates, security, and other site management activities. It’s safer than a shared hosting service, but it’s also more expensive. So it’s not suitable for everyone.
Other than the hosting service, make sure you’re using a CDN to improve your site’s load speed and uptime.
2. Optimize Your Blog to Convert Visitors into Subscribers
Traffic is the lifeblood of any blog which is why most bloggers are always trying to find new ways to increase their site’s traffic.
But what many of them forget is that traffic alone is not enough to build a successful blog.
You need to convert your hard earned traffic into subscribers and followers if you really want to build a money making blog.
As we enter 2017, it’s becoming harder and harder to generate organic traffic to your site because the competition for search rankings is increasing every day and organic social media traffic is not as easy to generate as it once used to be.
So it’s crucial that you convert as many of your visitors into email subscribers as possible. Once you have people on your email list, you can reach out to them every time you publish new content or have a new offer.
Not sure how to optimize your blog for email conversions? I’ll make it easy for you.
Go to your Google Analytics account and look for the most popular posts on your blog. If you’re starting a new blog and don’t have content yet, look at the most popular content of your competitors.
You can also use free tools like Ahrefs or BuzzSumo to get an idea of the popularity of a blog post.
This will give you an idea of the 1 or 2 major pain areas of your audience.
Create an eBook or email course that comprehensively addresses one of those pain points and helps your audience take action.
Now give it away for free on your blog in exchange of your visitor’s email address.
In blogging terms, it’s called a lead magnet.
Zac’s giveaway is a great example
It addresses a single pain point and promises to deliver a tangible result.
Such giveaways attract subscribers 1000x quicker than a simple “Join Our Newsletter” box in the sidebar.
Here’s another good example from Jon Morrow’s website, GuestBlogging.com
The key to an effective lead magnet is that it addresses a single pain point of your visitors and gives them immediate value.
Use pop-up boxes, your blog’s sidebar and the space at the end of every blog post to promote your giveaway.
If you can get it right, converting traffic into subscribers won’t be a problem for you.
3. Use Visual Content to Simplify Complex Topics and Improve Readability
All of us are primarily visual learners.
Research shows that the human mind can process images almost 60,000 times faster than text content.
Since most internet users have small attention spans, creating plain text blog posts is only going to get them off your blog even faster.
This is particularly important if you’re running a blog on a technical topic that needs a lot of explaining, or a topic that is difficult to understand in general.
Using snapshots and images in your blog posts not only helps your readers understand your point better, but also allows you to keep them on your site longer.
You can use Evernote Web Clipper, a free Chrome extension, to create attractive snapshots for your posts. Or use free tools like Canva or Visme to create infographics for your posts.
Here’s a really good example of how infographics can be used to make complex or dry topics easier to understand.
Source: Fried.com – VPN Stats and Facts
You can generate even greater engagement by embedding video content in your blog posts. Several leading bloggers are already doing it and reaping the benefits.
In short, plain text blog posts are no longer effective in grabbing the attention of your readers. You need to create a mix of text and visual content to make an impact on your visitors and get your point across more effectively.
4. Boost Engagement and Build Your Influence With Facebook Live Videos
Facebook Live has literally taken over the content marketing world over the last 12 months.
Every single influencer I know is using Facebook Live to boost user engagement and strengthen their influence.
Many others are using it to drive traffic to their blog content and convert Facebook followers into email subscribers.
Studies show that users spend 3x more time watching Facebook Live videos as compared to recorded content.
Source: Bold Content Video
So if you haven’t started using this platform, you need to get on board quickly because the competition is increasing every day and the market might not be as open in a few years as it is today.
Facebook is currently giving increased organic reach to Live videos as compared to the text or link updates that you post on your Facebook Page.
So this is a great opportunity to not only build a much stronger connection with your audience by interacting with them live and responding to their queries, but also to drive additional traffic to your blog from Facebook.
Blogging has evolved over the years from a part-time activity to a practical business that is generating millions of dollars every month for people around the globe.
You need to stay one step ahead of the other bloggers in your niche and keep a close eye on the latest blogging trends and practices.
What other techniques do you think will be effective in the coming year?
I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Why Trying to Learn Blogging through a Free Website Is a Massive Mistake
Go ahead. Try it. Try to learn blogging through Blogger. Give it a shot. Have you mastered Blogger after a few months? Maybe after a year? Good. Now that you are ready to be a serious blogger you can buy your domain and hosting and begin blogging on a WordPress dot org blog. Ouch! You are in trouble. Some basic blogging principles apply but blogging on wp dot org is a full 180 from blogging on a free platform like Blogger. The set up is light years different on dot org. Monetizing and branding potential? Limitless. Complete game changer, which rocks, but you realize you made a massive mistake learning blogging on Blogger.
Blogging on a free platform ain’t blogging!
Learning how to blog on a free blogging platform is like learning how to ride a Ducati by riding a kid’s bike with training wheels. Please re-read that statement. Totally different experience. WordPress dot org has so many more moving parts to learn and master that you see the skills you learned, honed and developed over your year on Blogger go into the cyber trash – largely – the moment you begin blogging on WordPress dot org. Sure the basics remain constant. Make friends. Create value. But all the sweet details, the difference makers, differ dramatically between both platforms.
Imagine if you learned how to blog on Blogger. After buying my course and listening to my advice, you quickly learn any serious, legitimate blogging course is fully designed to speak to WordPress dot org bloggers, not free platform bloggers. Blogging on free platforms is not even blogging because you do not own the domain and hosting. You are just a user on Blogger, not an actual blogger. But if you own your domain and hosting you can call yourself a blogger. Huge difference.
Can you see why learning on Blogger or other platforms is a major league error when it comes to blogging successfully? Virtually every serious blogger owns their domain and hosting and tailors their teaching to a self-hosted crowd. Back in the day, high school students actually spent time and energy learning Latin. Maybe this skill could have been beneficial hundreds of years ago, but 30 40 years ago, this was a foolish exploit, learning an outdated language, developing a skill no longer in demand, or useful. Learning on Blogger is similar because all ins and outs become useless and you need to learn about a whole new, robust, valued, professional platform in WordPress dot org.
Do not even bother guys. Learn blogging by buying your domain and hosting. Get on WordPress dot org immediately. Learn how to blog the right way. This way, you won’t waste precious minutes, hours, days, weeks and months learning how to blog on a platform that will take you nowhere of note. Even if you buy your domain, you give up so much branding, monetizing and pro blogging potential the moment you forego WordPress dot org and choose instead to blog on Blogger. People need to learn blogging on the proper platform. Why? Why not? Why would you avoid positioning yourself for future success? If you want to learn blogging, learn blogging on the proper platform. Go with a self-hosted, WordPress dot org blog or do not even bother.
3 Ways the Sony Xperia 1 Mobile Device Can Make You a Better Blogger
How many times have you already looked at your mobile device or cell phone today? It’s probably already been close to 50+ if it’s early in the day. By the end of the day you will likely have already picked it up and looked at it more than a hundred times!
With all of this in mind, it’s crazy how much we are all using mobile devices to do more than just make phone calls and access emails.
For site owners and bloggers, cell phones can make a huge difference in the type of content we create, and may even allow us to run our businesses from anywhere.
As new technology and devices are coming out all the time, today seemed like a great opportunity to take a look at the Sony Xperia 1, which is loaded with all of the latest technology, tools, features, and security settings to make running your business and brand from anywhere easy.
1 – Access Everything From Anywhere
No matter if you are running a website, a blog or even an online business, you need to make sure your mobile device is not only fast running and loaded with all of the latest tech trends and features — but also so it’s running on a super fast wireless platform and operating system as well.
This is all possible through the use of a Sony Xperia 1, as it has one of the most powerful processors and operating systems out there, while also being associated with all of the top brand name mobile carriers and also having 4G LTE speed.
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor
The octa-core processor and 6GB of RAM deliver outstanding overall performance for opening and running applications, flipping through menus and more.
- Android 9.0 Pie OS
Adapts to you and the way you use your phone, learning your preferences as you go. Your experience gets better over time, and it keeps things running smoother and longer.
- Compatible with GSM carriers, including AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon
It also works with GSM SIM kits, including Cricket Wireless, Tracfone, Net10, H2O, AT&T Prepaid, and Simple Mobile.*
- 4G LTE speed
This Sony Xperia cell phone provides fast web connection for downloading apps, streaming content, and staying connected on social media.
2 – Take Better Photos and Videos
If you want to be a successful blogger or someone worth following on social media, you are going to need some great visuals, photos and videos to grab the attention of others. In today’s day and age, there is no excuse for not having the highest of quality images or content. With the Sony Xperia 1, creating such type of high quality content has never been easier.
Take a look at the following benefits and features of the device when it comes to video and images.
- 6.5″ 4K HDR OLED touch screen with 3840 x 1644 resolution
The extra-large screen is matched with a slim body to comfortably fit in your hand. The 21:9 extended display ensures easier multitasking and immersive viewing. Gorilla Glass 6 resists shocks and scratches.
- 12.0MP triple-lens camera system
Offers 21:9 cinema ratio, 4K HDR movie recording, and 2x optical zoom to capture details without losing quality. Also includes an 8.0MP front-facing camera for self-portraits and videos.
- Motion Eye
Lets you capture slow-motion videos at up to 960 frames per second for staggering films.
- BIONZ X image processing engine
Powerful digital image processing produces even more vivid colors and ensure contrasts are high.
- Optical SteadyShot image stabilization
Keep your images free from motion blur with SteadyShot image stabilization.
3 – Cool Features and Extra Security
For anyone that is already using their mobile device to run their websites or online business, then you will already understand and appreciate the need for cool features and heavy a secure device that others can’t hack into. These are all elements that you will find in the Sony Xperia 1, as it’s loaded with the latest technology, features and fingerprint security settings.
You can take a look at each of these highlights in full detail below.
- 128GB internal memory plus microSD slot
This cell phone provides plenty of storage space for your contacts, music, apps and more. Expand your storage by up to 512GB by adding a microSD card (sold separately).
- Sony’s audio expertise always by your side
Hear music as the artist intended with high-resolution audio. DSEE HX™ improves the quality of low-resolution music files. The smart amplifier delivers a loud, rich sound through the speaker.
- Your fingerprint keeps your phone secure
Hold your finger on the fingerprint sensor to unlock your phone.
- IP68 rating
The phone is protected from dust and can also withstand being submerged in 4.92′ of static water for up to 30 minutes.
Running Your Site and Business from the Palm of Your Hands
When it comes to your mobile device, it’s no longer just about making phone calls and accessing the internet — it’s now about being able to do everything from anywhere.
This is exactly what site owners, bloggers and business owners are looking to accomplish when choosing a new mobile device or looking to make the upgrade to a new brand or technology.
If this happens to be the situation you are currently in, be sure to read through each of the tech specs and highlights mentioned above to learn more about the Sony Xperia 1.
Advanced Blogging Tip: Have a Poor Link Memory
I create oodles of content daily. One tip to being prolific is to have a poor link memory. I forget what I published content-wise and link-wise to keep publishing content frequently. Do you know how most bloggers publish one blog post, include a link to a product and/or service, and keep checking the post again and again, to see how the link performs as far as clicks and conversions and sales and profits and money? I never do that. I have no time and energy to check how my links perform because I have a terrible link memory. I am always on to the next piece of content to create and the next link to place and the next person to help because I have a poor link memory. I forget links. This works perfectly for me; makes me super duper prolific.
Most bloggers attach to and cling to particular business links. What happens if you attach to a link? You give attention and energy to checking the link again and again instead of creating more content from a generous, prolific energy. How can you appear to be all over your niche if you check links regularly throughout the day and if you are not creating helpful, new pieces of content? You cannot be super successful if you are not prolific and you cannot be super prolific unless you have a poor link memory. Be generous, abundant and detached by forgetting links you place in posts; especially links pointing to business opportunities.
I link to my blogging course quite a bit but never get attached to any one link or blog post or guest post through which I link to it. Why? I have more fish to fry. I have more content to create and more bloggers to bond with and more folks to help and more bloggers to connect with and heck, after converting 50 more of my eBooks to paperback, I will have over 200 products about on Amazon, under the Blogging From Paradise umbrella. That is a lot of products to promote! We need to have a poor link memory to forget the prior link we promoted so we can move forward and promote more links, more content and greater blogging success. Envision yourself having an abundant mindset. What happens if you do not feel like anything seems short, scarce or running out? Being prolific is what happens. Being generous is easier if you are not burdened by any link to promote, to review and to assess regularly. I am not opposed to scanning metrics if doing so feels good and relaxing but most bloggers never take the time to assess their genuine feelings when it comes to how they feel promoting links.
I do. I am ruthless in assessing, observing, embracing and moving along my energies because watching your energy is the key to blogging success. Blogging from abundance, relaxation and trust leads to success while blogging from fear, scarcity, tension and anxiety leads to failure.
Which road do you prefer to take?
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