Think you’re doomed if you have less traffic?
Maybe your blog is still relatively new…
Or maybe you jumped on social media pretty late and all those algorithms seem like they’re taking forever to kick in…
It doesn’t mean you have to sit back and play the wait game till your traffic picks up.
Your page views are just a number.
Unless you’re relying heavily on ads, they don’t mean much.
And you can do plenty of things to get the most out of your situation.
In this post, I’m going to share 8 simple steps you can take to make the most out of your traffic no matter how small or embarrassing that number is.Watch your income + email list soar with 8 simple steps even if you have less than 20k page viewsClick To Tweet
Before we dive into what these steps are, let’s determine what we have to work with.
Let’s keep that at less than 20k page views a month.
Now, you have to determine what it means to maximize blogging returns or results.
For most of us, this means to
1. Grow your email list
2. Sell your products and services
So you want every portion of your blog to help you achieve these two goals with the traffic that you have.
For that, we first need to eliminate any distractions that don’t contribute to the two end goals.
1. Remove the noise from your blog
When you want to drive a specific reader action, for instance…
sign up for your opt-in, sign-up for your content upgrade or check out your sales page..
You need to minimze distracting elements on your site which take up the reader’s bandwidth.
Here are some examples of what these are:
Remove categories from your sidebar for new blogs
If your blog is new and you don’t have a lot of posts, don’t add categories to your sidebar.
When a user clicks-through, it doesn’t reflect well when there are only 1 or 2 posts in each category.
I added categories a whole year after my blog was live.
Don’t clutter your sidebar with several opt-ins, banners and affiliate products.
When you give readers too many options, they take none.
Pick 2-3 of your most valuable offers, affiliate products or opt-ins for your side bar. But always go back to check from your google analytics if they are doing anything at all.
For instance, have a look at this.
For the entire time my ‘Email List For Newbies’ sidebar modal has been there, it converted 7 people!
That’s miserable and it doesn’t justify taking up all that ‘real estate’ on my side bar.
Obviously, people are getting into that course through other means and the side bar isn’t one of them.
So, I’ve removed it together with a few other elements.
Remove ads If ads are a big part of your monetization plan, you can leave them there.
But if they are only earning you a couple of cents a month, it’s wise to remove them.
Remove unnecessary widgets
2. Add Authority Signages
Social proof is huge.
It plays into herd mentality.
When people see that others have used something or shared something, they are more likely to do so as well.
Have a look at this opt-in form on Hubspot’s blog. They reference the total number of people who enjoy their emails.
Although most of us we don’t have such huge audiences, we can still use social proof to our benefit.
Add ‘As seen in’ logos – These are logos from popular or authority sites you’ve been featured on. Consider adding these to your homepage, sidebar or header.
Testimonials – Grab screenshots of any comments you’ve received on social media. If you receive an email comment, follow up with the person to check if it’s ok to use their feedback on your site.
Hide low share counts – Authority signages also work the other way round. If you use a plugin like Social warfare, your share counts will only be displayed after they hit a certain number.
3. Optimize Key Website ‘Real Estate’
These are pages that most people click on once they come to your site.
It’s important to optimize these pages by removing distractions and adding authority signages.
Your homepage can have quite a few calls to action. These could be:
- Subscribe to your email list
- Read your latest posts
- Book a free call
- Order your product
- Join your community
But if there was only one thing you want a casual reader to do after reading your homepage, what would that be?
For me, it’s to sign up for my mailing list.
This is why I recently redid my homepage to bring more attention to this call to action.
Other elements that you should include in your homepage:
- Your unique selling proposition (USP)
- Clear and specific
- Most are 1-2 sentences long
- It has to be desirable to your readers
- Your logo
- Author bio
- Social proof (testimonials)
- Latest posts or popular posts (optional)
Your about page like your welcome email isn’t all about welcoming the new reader.
It has to do more than that. It’s not about you or the reader but why YOU are for that subscriber.
Here are three elements that your About page needs
Now, your social proof doesn’t have to come in the form of logos or big name sites or dollar signs.
It could come from a place of join me on my journey and this is my why or join me because this is important to me.
Why does what you’re talking about matter now?
Why does your message matter?
Here’s how it pans out.
If you’re a VA, your message could be: save time, focus on growth, you deserve to take back your business
If you’re a homeschooling mom and you sell planning templates or meal plans, your message could be: save time, money especially for big families, you deserve a break and some support
3. Call to action
You’ve laid out your context.
Now you present your call to action.
If your call to action is ‘sign up to my list’, why should they and what do they stand to gain by doing so.
Here’s how I have weaved those portions in.
I state that ‘70%’ of my writing goes to my email list. So they get exclusive content not found anywhere else.
I also show testimonials.
4. Make the most out of your product(s) and service(s)
For each product and service that you have, here’s what you need to consider.
1. Is there a pathway?
You’ve launched your product and service. Great! But how is it going to be found? Is there an easy pathway where readers will be able find your product or service?
- Email courses?
- Content upgrades which lead to dedicated sequences introducing your product or service?
- Pinterest pins to the posts which feature content upgrades…which are in-turn connected to a sequence that introduce your product and service? (quite a mouthful, but you get the point)
- Pinterest pins to landing pages which feature opt-in freebies…which are in-turn connected to a sequence that introduce your product and service?
Keep your product at the center and work outwards.
2. Are you taking the opportunity to turn subscribers into buyer?
Add a Tripwire
A trip wire could very simply be a splinter of your main product.
Or if you’re offering a service, it could be the product version of your clarity call.
A diagnostic kit or a clarity kit for instance. I was hesitant to offer a trip wire till very recently because I believed in providing value first to the new subscriber.
But here’s my rationale behind why I shifted my view point on this.
Marketing talk says you need 7 touch points (or emails) before someone buys from you or acts on your call to action.
This is a broad, over simplistic number.
If I had a highlighter, I would circle that 20 times in bright red to emphasize that.
There’s also no standard timeline or formula as to when a subscriber becomes a buyer.
Someone can take 2 days or 2 months.
Some people are ready to turn from a subscriber into a buyer all in a single day.
They are probably further along in the journey.
They may also understand better how your product or service can help and they are ready to act on it.
So why not present your offer to someone who is ready and willing to take that first step in the relationship?
Do you get where I’m coming from?
And true enough, many people have taken me up on my trip wire offer immediately after sign-up.
But when I offer it again 3-4 days later after a dedicated email sequence, the conversion skyrockets.
This has boosted my blog income tremendously.
It’s a combination of:
1. A dedicated series of emails that leads to that pitch, and/or
2. Familiarity with the product because they’ve already seen it.
My favorite email marketing quote form Ciceron states that:
The first 48 hours are when subscribers are the most engaged with your brand
So if you provide something for them to buy…
and if they experience your small ticket item and are happy with it…
they are more likely to open their wallets to you for a higher ticket item.
There’s a bit of psychology at play here.
Add an Upsell
The same strategy applies to an upsell. An upsell is an add-on product that you present to the buyer after they have purchased something.
Since someone already is in the frame of mind to ‘buy’ they will be willing to top up their purchase if it’s a complementary offer.
Present your product on a sales page
I’ve seen several people selling their products on their blog page.
While there’s nothing wrong with that, having a dedicated sales page (which is a landing page) makes a world of difference.
I recommend Thrive Landing Pages because it’s a one time fee of $67 for a 1-time license and comes with 180+ templates. And make sure you present a promise on the sales page.
More on that below.Does your sales page make a promise?Click To Tweet Related: How to get started with landing pages without losing your mind: The beginner’s guide for the clueless blogger
5. Reverse Engineer your content
Everyone who comes to your site is at a different place in the journey.
Some may be aware of the problem your service or product solves.
Some be be actively shopping for a solution.
Some may be at the very beginning and have no idea that they even have a problem to solve in the first place.
Depending on the stage your reader is at, they require different pieces of content to move them from 1 stage to another.
Your content, be it email, video or posts builds a relationship with your reader by empowering and educating them so that they inch towards your solution.
To effectively move your readers from one stage to another answer the question:
What keeps my audience stuck in this phase and what do they need from me and my content to move forward.What does your audience need from your and your content to move forward?Click To Tweet
Create different pieces of content to fuel the reader journey.
I talk about this in a podcast episode with Martine Ellis. You can have a listen here.
Now that we’ve established the need for different pieces of content, always determine how each piece of content is going to fit into your entire blog and business.
What do you want each post to do? How is it going to contribute to your goals? Before you work on any post, ask yourself what’s the goal of the post.
Here are a few of my examples:
Goal: Promote affiliate product. When someone opts-in, I redirect them to the affiliate product course sales page.
Goal: To opt-in them into a funnel that pitches my email course at the end because of the content upgrade I have at the bottom of the post
What do you want each opt-in freebie to do?
Umm my opt-in freebie grows my list.
Well yes, but you need to get more specific than that. A freebie that grows your list but is disconnected to the goals of your blog is a terrible freebie to have.
For instance, the goal of my ‘Start a blog’ free Teachable course isn’t to grow my list but to introduce readers to services and products that I’m an affiliate for like Siteground.
Whereas, my Blog Start Simplified free email course introduces them to my ebook Blog with A Plan.
If you’re creating a piece of content and you don’t know how it relates to your conversion goals, think again.
Does it have a place on your blog? Would a different channel of distribution (e.g. LinkedIn, Medium, Guest Posts) be better?If you're creating a piece of content and you don't know how it relates to your conversion goals, think againClick To Tweet
Because remember, you want to maximize your efforts and your site with the little traffic you have.
6. Optimize gatekeeper pages
Gatekeeper pages are those that require a certain action…examples are your sales and landing pages. These pages directly contribute to your goals which is why they require a special mention.
- Does your headline state a promise or transformation?
- Does your page state why you are the best person to teach them this?
- Does your sales page dissect everything that they will learn or get?
- Does each point convey a change or transformation?
- Is there urgency?
- Are there authority signages? (testimonials, quotes etc)
- Are there mock-ups of the materials.
- A tool I use is Smartmockups and this lets me effortlessly create product mock-ups
- Clear steps as to what happens after they purchase
- An FAQ section
- Does it remove objections and mind barriers?
- Does your headline pass the 5-second test.
- Would someone know at a glance whether this freebie is for them?
- Is there a mock-up of the freebie?
- Does your page dissect everything that they will learn or get from the freebie?
- Are there authority signages? (testimonials, quotes etc)
After you’ve optimized these pages, drive more traffic to them by making pins of your product on Pinterest.
7. Capture traffic and keep them longer
Remember you have a very small window of opportunity to get someone to be a subscriber before a person leaves your site.
You have a few options depending on what you’re comfortable with.
- Have an exit intent pop-up
- Have an info bar
- Have a content upgrade at the bottom of each post.
- Add a landing page to your navigation bar
You could also work on keeping people on your site longer.
The longer your readers are on your site, the higher the chances of them signing up for a content upgrade or lead magnet.
Here are are tiny things you could so.
How do you make use of the whitespace in a sidebar after a reader scrolls down a certain portion of the page?
You can do this by adding a sticky widget such as the Q2W3 Sticky widget that follows along the length of the page with the reader.
8. Add a call to action in your email
Your email list is an asset.
Your call to action in each email has to be clear.
What exactly do you want them to do? Start practicing to ask your email list to take tiny actions.
Not every ask has to be a ‘buy this now’.
These could also be an ask to take a survey or reply to an email or check out a blog post.
Asking doesn’t come easy but it’s worth practicing from the start so that your audience gets used to it.
And when you do finally decide to sell to them, it won’t come as a rude shock because they know that you’re in business.Asking doesn't come easy but it's worth practicing so that your audience gets used to it.Click To Tweet
How it all comes together
Having little traffic is not a death sentence.
You just have to work smarter to convert and monetize that little traffic you have.
But working in this way also means that you start to attract a more targeted audience because every content and call to action on your site is intentional.
It’s purposeful and relates back to the goals you have for your site.
What stumps you about your page views? Let me know in the comments!