Is your blog being found by search engines, referrals, or direct (bookmarks, or someone types in your blog URL)?
I have two blogs, and interestingly enough, readers are finding this blog, by referrals, almost exclusively. (A lot of my referrals, become “direct”, due to bookmarking.)
My second blog, Observation Mountain.com , is being found mostly by the search engines (keyword phrases), and by a much smaller amount of referrals.
This blog is, what would be considered a niche blog, but Observation Mountain.com, isn’t (it’s a more of a blog on off-beat subjects).
But, the traffic on Observation Mountain.com (OM), is almost 50% higher than this blog. (so much for having to have a niche blog, to succeed)
The small amount of money I have made by using Google AdSense and affiliate ads, is mostly attributed to my OM blog.
On both blogs, I try to use keyword density (to a degree). But obviously, it’s working better for my OM blog. Plus, …keyword phrases, for most blogging information, is a pretty saturated market.
For both blogs, I post approximately 20 days out of the month, thus insuring that my blogs get crawled on a regular basis.
Having watched the trends for both blogs for several months, I attribute the numbers to this:
When I am commenting on other blogs, I intentionally use the URL for Blogging Without A Blog (about 90% of the time). Hence, readers are clicking on my comments, and coming to visit this blog, i.e. creating referrals. Thank you!
With regard to Google AdSense, for this blog, I feel most of my readers, are bloggers, or aspiring bloggers. You are not “ad clickers”. You are blogging, or wanting to learn, and are on my site for content about blogging. You understand why the ads are on my site, plus, you know the ad is only going to lead to you being asked to “buy” something. That’s not why you came to my site. You want to gain whatever information you can from my site, and move on. It’s back to blogging, and/or micro managing your site. Time is of the essence.
On my OM blog, the posts are more casual. My readers are probably just enjoying, leisurely surfing the web, sipping their favorite beverage. They may read a few pages, click a few ads or links, and move on to their next search. A search engine may have brought them to my site, due to a search for a product review for Ecos Laundry Detergent, or they may be a parent , looking for help, and found my post titled: Children With Autism – Help for Parents
At times, I am both types of web “surfer”.
What I do find interesting….. is that what works for one blog, doesn’t necessarily work for the other.
With that being said, I believe your stats can reveal a lot, thus giving a blogger insight into how to drive more traffic to their site.
To put all of this in perspective, what I found is this:
1) Having a niche blog, doesn’t necessarily mean it will be more popular, than a non-niche blog.
2) Leaving meaningful comments on other blogs, definitely drives traffic back to your blog.
3) Keyword density will work well for some subjects, but not for others…it all depends how saturated the subject market is.
4) Your stats reveal more information, than just traffic counts
HINT Not sure where your traffic is coming from? Check your stats.
Listed below, are four statistical programs, and how you can find out if your traffic is coming from search engines, referrals or direct traffic.
AWStats has a section that reads:
“Connect To Site From”
“Links From a Newsgroup”
“Links from an internal search engine”
“Links from an external page”: i.e. referrals
“Search Key Phrases”
“Search Key Words”
WordPress.com stats lists
“Referrers” (which also includes direct traffic)
“Search Engine Terms”
Google Analytics lists, under “traffic sources”
Google also provides a graph (traffic sources overview), with percentages.
And, provides maps for greater breakdown
If you use a statistical program that is not listed, take time to review the information they are providing, to determine how visitors are finding your site.
If you blog about a subject, that lots of others blog about (saturated keyword market), your best bet is to start visiting other blogs, and leaving meaningful comments. This will help others to find your blog, and develop a steady readership. (Make sure you are providing great content, not only in your blog, but also in your comments!) Using keyword density is still important, but your posts may not be indexed in the first three pages of a search engine, and may never be found. Using social networks such as Digg or Del.icio.us, may also help to bring some sporadic traffic to your site. Submitting your blog posts to blog carnivals and/or blog registries are time consuming processes, but may help to also increase your readership.
If you are getting ample traffic, from search strings, continue to concentrate on keyword density. It’s working. Commenting on other blogs, will help bring additional traffic to your site, as well.
Find out where is your traffic coming from:
Drop me a comment…let me know your answer.