How’s your blog traffic lately?
If you answered that question with a number, I’m afraid I have bad news for you:
Numbers are not the answer to traffic.
You must have heard the saying, “Quality is more important than quantity.” In this case, it really is.
The quality of your content is important, of course. But the quality of your traffic is what keeps your blog alive.
Without well-aligned traffic, nothing you do on your blog will work quite as well as it ought to. Ever.
Here’s what you need to know to fix this problem:
The problem with low-quality traffic is that it comes from, well, just about anywhere.
These people aren’t readers of your blog. They’re passers-by who have stopped for a quick look in your window because something caught their eye –but they don’t really need what your site offers, so they quickly move on.
What does that mean for you?
It means that your traffic stats are deceptive, for a start.
Your traffic and your true audience aren’t the same thing.
If you’re relying on hitting a certain conversion rate, low quality traffic will make that harder to achieve. If you’re checking your blog comments, low quality traffic will drown out the voices of your true audience.
It means that you’re wasting time, too. Any time you spend on these poorly-selected visitors is a loss, because they aren’t your right people. So, let’s fix this now.
Look into your site’s analytics and check whether there are any traffic sources listed that seem poorly suited to your site.
If you’re getting a lot of traffic via a fishing blog when your site’s all about knitting, those visitors are probably not your right audience. And if your traffic via one particular source has a high bounce rate, those people weren’t right for your site either.
Once you’ve identified at least one source of low quality traffic, look at which pages or posts those visitors land on the most. These are the magnets that draw unsuitable visitors to your site.
You didn’t mean to, but you’ve attracted the wrong crowd to your party. Now it’s time to get rid of the low quality traffic magnets that brought them to your website.
If they’re all coming in to an old blog post from 2007 about how much you love cheese, consider whether your cheese fetish is important to your blog today. If it isn’t, then you can take the post down from your site. Of course, if you’re a specialist cheesemonger then you should keep the post up and make the most of your visitors’ interest in cheeses!
If you get a lot of hits from Google image search on images that aren’t relevant to your blog topic, consider switching those images for something more apt. A well-chosen image can have a big impact on the quality of traffic you get from image searches, as well as from image sharing on Pinterest and other social networks.
Now that you’ve removed the biggest attractors of low quality traffic, focus on appealing to your target audience with every single thing you add to your site. Attract quality blog traffic with consistently high quality content.
Soon you’ll see that even if your overall traffic is reduced by cutting down on low quality traffic, your reader engagement levels end up being higher than they were before.
So what are you waiting for?
Don’t cling on to traffic that’s weighing you down.
Log in to your blog now and ditch that dead weight!
Sophie Lizard is a successful freelance blogger on a mission to help bloggers increase their income by blogging for hire. Grab a free copy of her freelance blogger's cheat sheet, The Ultimate List of Better-Paid Blogging Gigs: 45 Blogs That Will Pay You $50 or More, and take a look at the free "How to Make A Living Blogging" Expert Interview Sessions!