16 Ridiculously Simple Ways To Get More Email Subscribers in Less than 5 Minutes

Businesses, bloggers, and entrepreneurs live and die by their email marketing.

“The money,” as it’s often said, “is in the list.”

That’s why there are so many great articles out there offering strategies for getting more leads and boosting conversion rates.

But what if you’re short on time? What if you’re not technologically savvy?

Since most list-building strategies are geared towards advanced users with seemingly infinite amounts of time on their hands, your Average Pat is often left out in the cold.

Not this time.

This article is for those sleep-deprived bloggers with day jobs. It’s for the parents juggling twenty things at once. It’s for the hopeful entrepreneur who is not quite ready for A/B testing, search engine optimization, and other gobbledygook.

It’s for anyone who needs easy list-building strategies that can be implemented in less than 5 minutes.

Ready? Let’s get started…

1. Add an Exit-Intent® Popup

Hey, did you know that over 70% of the people who leave your website will never return?

Did you know you can convert many of these abandoning users into email subscribers with one simple trick?

It’s called Exit-Intent® Technology. It detects user behavior and prompts them with an optin form when they’re about to leave.

Here’s How You Do It

You can create an Exit-Intent® popup in a matter of minutes.

Just follow our guide to create your first campaign. Then go to Display Rules » If… and choose “exit detected.” After that, choose the level of sensitivity you want.

Or, follow this easy video tutorial:

Don’t have OptinMonster yet? Click here to get started!

2. Add an Optin at End of Articles

Readers who reach the end of your article are primed.

Your headline grabbed their attention. Your introduction drew them in like moths to a flame. Your bullet points and anecdotes kept them on the edge of their seats.

Of the millions of articles they could have read, they read yours. And they read until the very end.

They like you. They really, really like you.

That’s why the end of your article is the perfect time to ask them to join your mailing list.

Here’s How You Do It

Adding a call to action in your author bio and the end of each article is a great way to strike while the iron is hot. Here’s how Jeff Goins does it:

But what if your blog’s theme lacks an author bio section? What if your website has numerous authors?

Then you can use OptinMonster to create an after-content widget with some enticing copy to compel your most-engaged readers to subscribe. All you need is an inline campaign and a compelling Call to Action (CTA). Lilach Bulloch uses inline forms to help her convert 57% of website visitors.

Case Study: See How Lilach Bullock Converted 57% of Visitors with Strategic Messaging Repetition!

Readers who make it to the end of your articles are focused. They’re engaged and looking for direction.

Direct them to your email list.

And while you’re doing that …

3. Turn Popular Posts into Lead Magnets

It has many names.

Lead magnets, giveaways, ethical bribes…

Whatever you call it, it’s mighty effective at compelling readers to subscribe to your email list:

“Want this neat bonus? It’s free! I just need your email address…”

But here’s the thing:

Creating lead magnets can be tricky.

What if you don’t have time to write an ebook or create a PDF checklist? What if producing an email or video series is more than you can do right now? What if creating dazzling infographics is beyond your current skill set?

If this describes you, it doesn’t mean you’re resigned to a fate of sitting on the sidelines while everyone else gains more email subscribers.

Not if you have 30 seconds to spare.

That’s all the time it takes to convert one of your popular articles into a handy, easy-to-print, PDF file.

Go to Print Friendly and enter the URL of the article you’d like to convert. Click the “PDF” button. Click “Download.”

Then all you have to do is offer it and deliver it to visitors. And that’s a simple process with OptinMonster.

Here’s How You Do It

All you need to do to deliver your lead magnet is to use one of OptinMonster’s Success Themes.

Go to the Success View in the OptinMonster campaign builder.

Choose the button on your optin and click Editing Button Element » Action. You’re going to edit the Action to redirect to a URL by entering the download URL for your lead magnet.

Here are some more ways to deliver your lead magnet when people sign up.

Pretty easy, right? Almost as easy as…

4. Using Content Locking

You know what’s a really quick way to get more subscribers without having to create new content?

Content locking.

It’s where you block off part of the content visitors are reading until they subscribe. And it’s easy to do with OptinMonster. In fact, Trading Strategy Guides added 11,000 new subscribers by using it.

Case Study: See How Trading Strategy Guides Added 11,000 Subscribers With A Content Locking Script!

Here’s How You Do It

First, you’ll want to identify which of your blog posts have the highest traffic. If you’re using WordPress, you can easily see your most popular posts in your dashboard by using MonsterInsights.

Or, you can use Google Analytics. Just click on Behavior » Site Content » Landing Pages. By default, it will show you data for the past 7 days. You can use the date range selector in the top right corner to get a longer view.

Create an after-post or inline campaign as described earlier, then go to Optin » Inline Settings in the OptinMonster campaign builder. Click the “Lock Content Below Campaign?” toggle to activate it, then choose how you want content to be blocked. You can either blur it with Obfuscation or remove it completely

That’s it! Once visitors subscribe, they’ll magically get access to the content, and you’ll have new subscribers.

You can check out our guide to gated content marketing for more details on this strategy.

You could also…

5. Use a 2-Step Optin

Want to know a neat psychological trick that’s proven to increase email signups? It’s the Zeigarnik effect.

This bit of human psychology just means we’re primed to finish an action we start. And it’s why OptinMonster’s 2-step optins are so successful.

Here’s How You Do It

Choose a popup campaign, go to Display Rules » visitor clicked MonsterLink™ to enable MonsterLink™. Then click the “Copy MonsterLink™” button to copy the code. You can add it to any page on your site.

When visitors click the link, your email subscription campaign will appear.

Here’s an example of a 2-step optin used by the US Student Loan Center. This is what visitors see when they click the link.

For more detailed step-by-step instructions, see our guide on how to use MonsterLinks to load your popup with the click of a button.

6. Try a Different Button Color

What color is your optin button?

If you answered “I don’t know” or “what does it matter?” you’re potentially missing out on an easy way to increase optins.

Did you know 85% of shoppers say color is a primary reason for why they buy a certain product?

Did you know the color blue creates a sensation of trust? Red a sense of urgency? Green a sense of relaxation?

By knowing how people perceive different colors and using this knowledge to your advantage, you can increase the likelihood someone will want to join your email list.

Here’s How You Do It

If you’re using OptinMonster, it’s pretty easy to change the button colors in any campaign. Just click on the button, and you’ll see the editing options on the left. Click on the color button to popup the color picker and choose your new color.

So what color should you use?

Research into color and conversions says it depends on the context.

All the psychology in the world won’t matter if your CTA color blends into the background, so be sure to choose a color that stands out from the rest of your blog or website.

And while we’re on the subject of buttons…

7. Split Test Button Copy

Do you use generic copy such as “Subscribe” or “Sign Up” for your optin buttons? If so, I have bad news for you:

It’s actually your CTA button’s copy – not its color or positioning – that matters most.

If you’ve never given your button’s copy a passing thought, it’s time to remedy the situation.

Provide value and relevance, but be sure not to exaggerate.

Keep it simple, but don’t be boring. It’s okay to use two sentences so long as they are short.

One particularly effective strategy is to personalize your optin button.

Joanna Wiebe of Copy Hackers suggests writing button copy in the first person. By personalizing the words, they become more appealing to the reader.

Let’s look at a few examples.

Which sounds better?

Which wording can you relate to?

Which button would you rather click?

The differences are subtle, but during her testing, Joanne found first-person pronouns (“I” and “my”) beat the competition by a whopping 24%.

Sometimes, “subtle” can be huge.

To get the same data on your button, you’ll need to split test. This is easy with OptinMonster.

Here’s How You Do It

Login to OptinMonster, and click on the three-dot menu to the right of the campaign you want to split test.

Select A/B Split Test,” then “Create Split Test.” Name your split test and you’ll get a duplicate of your campaign.

Then change one element of your campaign, like the button wording. Save and publish the campaign, and OptinMonster will automatically divide your traffic and collect data so you know which one works best.

8. Prominently Display Testimonials

Did you know OptinMonster is recommended by the likes of Michael Stelzner, Ian Cleary, and Yoast?

Of course you did.

OptinMonster prominently displays these heavy hitters on our homepage and Testimonials page. There’s no way you could miss them.

Why do we do this? Because it shows we’re the real deal.

People won’t give their hard-earned money or email address to simply anyone. They want to know you’re on the up and up.

Offering testimonials helps build trust, and more trust means more email subscribers.

Here’s How You Do It

Go find a great endorsement you’ve received.

Look at the reviews people have given you. Browse through your comments and emails. Search for mentions on social media.

Be A Better Blogger found its featured testimonial when the great Amy Harrison tweeted the following:

This tweet was turned into a testimonial that’s displayed whenever a reader clicks on one of Be A Better Blogger’s MonsterLinks™:

That optin form? It’s currently sporting an awesome 26.09% conversion rate.

I’m no mathematician, but it would appear Testimonial + OptinMonster = More Email Subscribers.

Of course, all the awesome testimonials in the world won’t help you if readers can’t see them, so…

9. Remove Distractions

How many widgets do you have in your website’s sidebar?

How many different calls to action are at the end of your articles?

How many choices are your visitors given?

If you’re inundating your readers with options, how can they be expected to take the one action you want them to take?

Want more email subscribers? You need to cut down on the clutter.

Here’s How You Do It

The following screenshot from Henneke Duistermaat is a perfect example of a landing page that focuses on what’s important: getting that email address.

Per Henneke, this landing page has converted as high as 59.6 percent.

It’s easy to see why. Every aspect – from the headline to the testimonial – is designed to increase conversions. There are no social media icons, advertisements, or anything else to distract readers from the task at hand.

What lessons can we learn from Henneke’s landing page?

We should remove distractions. We shouldn’t prioritize our social media icons. We should move the “search” option (which few people ever use) to the footer. We should stick to one CTA for each article.

We should get rid of anything that doesn’t help us earn more email subscribers.

Here are some more tips on creating high-converting landing pages.

And while we’re removing unnecessary items…

10. Stop Asking for Too Much Information

On your optin forms, do you ask for “name” in addition to “email address”?

If so, let me ask you a question…

Do you need it? Do you do anything with that information?

If the answer is “no”, you need to stop asking people to provide it. A/B test after A/B test confirms the more information you ask from readers, the less likely they are to optin.

Keep it short and sweet.

Stick to the bare essentials. Only ask for the information you need.

Here’s How You Do It

Don’t need names? Don’t ask for them. Have no use for phone numbers? Don’t ask people to input them.

Just keep it simple.

The less data you request, the more email subscribers you’ll earn.

Customizing your optin form fields is easy to do with OptinMonster and it works on any campaign. Simply choose the fields you want on your form. It’s all drag and drop.

11. Share Your Campaign Everywhere

You know what the trouble is with some email campaigns?

There are limits to where you can share them.

It stands to reason that the more places you can display campaigns, the more chances you have to get more subscribers.

Luckily, this couldn’t be simpler with OptinMonster.

Here’s How You Do It

Once you’ve created a campaign you’re happy with, go to the publishing options. One of those is a Shareable MonsterLink™.

Grab the link, and add it anywhere you want to show the campaign – social media, author bios, email signature and more.

See how simple that was?

And speaking of places to add a link…

12. Link to a Campaign in Your Twitter Bio

Right now, what information is in your Twitter bio?

Your occupation? A personal quote that holds special meaning to you? Perhaps a hashtag or two or ten?

Why don’t you use that precious real estate to promote your email list?

That’s how Brent Jones used his Twitter bio:

Simple, effective, and takes minutes to implement.

Here are some more ways to get leads from Twitter.

Here’s How You Do It

While logged into your Twitter account, click the “Edit profile” button on the right-hand side of your profile page. You’ll then be able to change your name, profile and header photos, bio, and more:

Once you’ve added a link to your bio, click “Save changes” and admire your handiwork.

But there’s still somewhere else you can add that link…

13. Add an Optin Link to Your Email Signature

In a given day, how many emails do you send? Ten? Twenty? More?

If you’re like most people, the answer is: “A lot. I send lots and lots of emails.”

What if I told you each of those emails you send is an opportunity – either an opportunity lost or an opportunity gained?

By placing a hyperlinked CTA in your email signature, you have the ability to turn every recipient into a subscriber.

Here’s How You Do It

Each email provider is slightly different, but for Gmail go to Settings » General. Scroll down and you’ll find the Signature section:

The link in your signature could point to a landing page, your homepage (assuming it’s optimized), or an article with a particularly-appealing optin bribe.

14. Be More Social

Chances are you already spend several hours each week on various social media platforms.

That’s good – in a recent Social Media Marketing Industry Report, Social Media Examiner noted how a majority of marketers increase leads when they use social media for 6+ hours each week.

Ah, but there’s a catch.

How you’re using those 6+ hours each week matters.

Sharing videos of kittens and puppies won’t help you unless your business is related to kittens and puppies. Publishing photos of food won’t help you unless you’re a chef or restaurant owner. Live tweeting a Kardashian TV show won’t help you unless… well, it’ll probably never help you.

To see the lead-generating benefits of social media, you need to be purposeful with those 6+ hours.

Here’s How You Do It

Be helpful. Answer questions. Share worthwhile content. Reach out to people. Make connections.

If people find you indispensable on social media, they’re going to want more of you.

More helpful advice. More answers to their questions. More worthwhile content.

And where will they go to get “more”?

Your email list.

15. Add a “Subscribe” Check Box

If you’re a WordPress user, there are two plugins that can boost optins with little-to-no upkeep. Just ensure the plugins stay up to date and you’re good to go.

But don’t worry, you’ll be notified when there are updates available in your WordPress dashboard!

The first plugin is WPForms, which you can use to add a subscribe checkbox to any form on your site. This works with the most popular email service providers including MailChimp, Constant Contact, and AWeber.

With one simple click, readers can optin to your mailing list while submitting your contact form, or any other form. It makes subscribing very easy, and readers tend to like easy.

You can check out these step-by-step tutorials on how to add a MailChimp signup checkbox to your contact form or see the tutorials for AWeber and Constant Contact instead.

Ready for the second plugin?

16. Add a “Thanks for Commenting” Redirect

The second plugin we mentioned is Yoast Comment Hacks.

When someone leaves you a comment for the very first time, this plugin redirects them to a “thank you” page. Ramsay Taplin of Blog Tyrant uses this page to encourage subscriptions:

Check out these step-by-step instructions on how to set up an after-comment redirect on your WordPress site.

If you ask readers to subscribe when they are engaged (and it’s hard to get more engaged than “leaving a comment for the first time ever”), the odds of them taking you up on your offer are pretty good.

It’s Time To Increase Subscribers

You realize they’re yours for the taking, right?

Your ideal customer? Those readers who will hang on your every word? The people who will advocate for you and preach your virtues to their friends?

They’re all out there… ready to join your email list.

You just need to make it as easy for them to do so as possible.

OptinMonster can help, so if you’re not already a customer be sure to check out our list of features. For those who are short on time and tech savvy, we’re a breath of fresh, lead-generating air.

Next, check out our ultimate guides to email marketing, growth hacking, and SEO for even more success with marketing.

And be sure to follow us on YouTubeTwitter, and Facebook for more guides, tips, and tutorials.

The post 16 Ridiculously Simple Ways To Get More Email Subscribers in Less than 5 Minutes appeared first on OptinMonster.

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Application Web Hosting 101

The post Application Web Hosting 101 appeared first on HostGator Blog.

You’re still working out the details for your website and you’re facing two related decisions: what application will you use to build your website, and what type of web hosting will you choose?

While it’s possible to build your website without using one of the popular applications available, using an application such as a content management system (CMS) is an extremely popular choice for good reason. They make website creation and maintenance easier and can help you implement more of the elements and features you want on your website.

What Is Application Web Hosting?

To understand application web hosting, you should start by understanding what web hosting is.

Web Hosting

Every website you encounter online is made up of a number of different files and elements arranged in just such a way to create your website experience. While we tend to think of the things we encounter online as existing somewhere outside of physical space (we even call it “cyberspace”), all of the different parts that go into making up each website do take up space.

And it all has to be stored in a physical web server that’s powerful enough to hold the many files that make up the website, and to deliver them all up to every visitor that comes to the site. That requires a lot of space and bandwidth on a platform, which makes web hosting something that few website owners can handle on their own.

Instead, the vast majority of websites are hosted by companies that provide web hosting on a subscription model. These companies maintain the buildings required to house thousands of physical web servers. They do regular maintenance on the servers, provide the climate controlled environment required to keep them in good working condition, and put protections into place to keep them from being hurt by bad weather or accessed by malicious hackers.

In exchange for paying a set amount of money each month or year, you can rent out a space on one of these servers (or a whole server with dedicated server hosting, if you need it). It’s a necessary service all websites need in order to be accessible online.

Application Hosting Packages

The short version: application hosting is the term used to describe web hosting plans that specialize in providing hosting services for websites built on a particular application.

Many websites are now built and maintained using popular applications. This includes popular CMSs such as WordPress or applications specifically designed for building forums like phpBB.

While many types of web hosting services will work fine for websites built with a particular application, application web hosting plans provide specific features and benefits related to the application you built your website with. They can make it easier to install the application software when you’re getting started, and provide special compatibility that ensures your web hosting account and application software play nice together.

How Does Application Hosting Compare to Other Web Hosting?

The main difference is that you never have to worry about compatibility issues between your application and your web hosting service. Application web hosting plans often include easy one-click installation of your application, so you can get the two services working together on a single platform without any real effort or difficulty.

In addition, an application hosting plan may include features that allow you to more easily access or use the application’s features within your web hosting account, to make the experience of working on your website more seamless and efficient.

In short, while other web hosting services may work just fine for your website, finding an application web hosting plan that supports the application you use can make your life a little easier.

What to Look for In an Application Web Hosting Plan

If you’ve decided to seek out an application web hosting plan for your new website, there are a few main features you should look out for:

Compatibility with your preferred application

This is the whole point of getting an application-specific web hosting plan to begin with. Make sure the application hosting option you consider works specifically with the CMS, forum, or wiki application you’ll be using for your website. Application hosting isn’t one-size-fits-all, so find the option that will fit your particular needs.

Easy setup

A web hosting plan that offers one-click set up for the application you use will vastly simplify the set-up process. But also consider how intuitive the web hosting company’s account management and cPanel tools are. And look into what kind of resources they offer to help you get started using the web hosting service.

Your web hosting account will be where you complete important tasks like domain name management, setting up redirects, and managing your web hosting billing. You want to make sure it’s all easy to learn and use.  

99% uptime

One of the main jobs a web hosting company has is keeping your website up and available on the web. Realistically, web hosting servers do occasionally have to go offline for maintenance. And sometimes they go offline for other reasons, such as issues caused by improper maintenance, repair needs, hacker attacks, weather-related disruptions (the server warehouse floods, for example), or hardware glitches.

One of the main differentiating factors between different web hosting providers is how much of the time their service is affected by these kinds of issues. If you choose an unreliable application hosting provider, your website could end up offline frequently while they deal with various issues. Ideally, you want to find an application hosting provider that promises at least 99% uptime and backs that up with a guarantee. Some of the most reputable web host providers go even further, such as HostGator’s 99.9% uptime guarantee.

If you want people to be able to access your website every time they visit, make uptime a priority in your decision.

24/7 customer service

Working with websites, no matter the application you use, will present challenges and issues on occasion. When that happens, you want to be able to identify the issue and fix it fast. If your application hosting company doesn’t offer customer service at all hours, you could be stuck waiting for hours to fix a serious issue with your website, delivering your visitors a disappointing experience all the while.

Look for an application web hosting company that promises 24/7 customer support. And check that they provide your preferred option for communication when issues arise, whether that’s live chat, email, or phone.

Security features

Website hacks and data breaches are nearly everyday news lately. And the most popular website application are often targets of hacks because of their popularity. Website owners should always be on the offensive when it comes to security. While there are a number of steps you can take to keep your website secure, one of the first and most important is choosing a respected web hosting provider.

A web hosting company that invests in the infrastructure to keep their web servers protected and sets up firewalls to keep hackers out is the first line of defense you have. Many application hosting packages will also offer additional features or add-ons such as an SSL certificate or security software that makes your website’s protection even stronger.

Security should be a priority for every website owner today. If your website will be collecting any personal visitor information, such as names and emails, it’s even more important. And if you’ll be running an eCommerce store that collects customer financial information, it’s indispensable.  Do your due diligence when choosing your application hosting plan to make sure security is well covered.

The 6 Main Types of Application Hosting

As we mentioned previously, you don’t want a general application hosting plan. You want hosting that’s specific to the type of application you’ll be using. These are the six most common types of application web hosting to consider.

1. WordPress Hosting

WordPress is the most popular CMS in the world, with over half of the market share. That makes WordPress hosting the most common type of application hosting website owners are likely to consider.

Websites powered by WordPress are easy to build, update, and maintain, even for people that don’t know to code. You can make changes to the website through the WordPress interface rather than having to update the page code directly. And with a library of over 50,000 WordPress plugins and thousands of themes, you can easily add a lot of features and functionality to a WordPress site.

There are many reasons to choose WordPress hosting for your website and it is a smart choice that makes maintaining your website that much easier.

2. Joomla Hosting

Joomla is another popular CMS option that falls behind WordPress in the number of users, but still dominates a certain segment of the market. Joomla is a bit harder to use than WordPress, but it’s a little more powerful and customizable, which makes it a popular choice for website owners and designers who want a step up in functionality.

Joomla also has a comprehensive library of themes, extensions, and educational resources to learn how best to use the website. For anyone that chooses Joomla as the best option to build a website with, Joomla hosting is an obvious choice.

3. Drupal Hosting

Drupal is the third most popular CMS is in the world. While it lags behind WordPress and Joomla in number of users, it has a reputation for being more sophisticated and powerful than the other two. The tradeoff is that it’s harder for any beginners or amateurs to use, meaning it’s mostly used for websites that have professional developers behind them.

If that describes your website and you choose to go with Drupal, you can keep the web hosting part of running your website simpler by choosing a Drupal hosting plan.

4. Magento Hosting

Anyone building an eCommerce website will need an eCommerce app that enables shopping cart and checkout functionality on the website. The most popular option for that is Magento, an open source shopping cart option that’s currently used by over 240,000 websites.

Magento’s eCommerce features are both customizable and easy for even beginners to set up and work with. Magento is the obvious choice for anyone building an eCommerce website, and by choosing compatible Magento hosting you can ensure that your web hosting service works well with your eCommerce software.

5. Wiki Hosting

While slightly less popular than some of the other most common types of websites, Wikis are an important part of the web. They deliver valuable information on a variety of topics in a way that’s easy to browse, search, and contribute to. The most popular Wiki apps, such as MediaWiki, TikiWiki, PmWiki, and WikkaWiki all help users create functioning Wiki websites.

If you’re specifically building a Wiki, then you’ll want to use one of the Wiki apps to get your website up and running. And for that, investing in Wiki hosting is a solid choice.

6. phpBB Hosting

User forums are another important part of the web, enabling users from all over the world with common interests to find and communicate with each other. For websites that are either forum-based or plan to include a forum, phpBB is the primary application available for building online communities.

phpBB is an open-source bulletin board software that makes it easy to build a space for users to communicate with each other online. If you choose to build an online community with phpBB, consider phpBB hosting to provide easy accessibility to your users.  

Choose the Right Application Hosting Provider

You have a number of choices when it comes to finding the right web hosting plan for your website. If you’re using one of the applications described here, you’ll benefit from finding a provider that specializes in the application you use.

HostGator is one of the most respected application hosting providers in the industry. We offer hosting plans for all the most popular applications, and have a variety of plan options at different price points that are compatible with each. We provide a 99.9% uptime money-back guarantee, and 24/7 customer support. We can offer both compatibility and reliability for your website. Sign up today.

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How to Create An Impactful About Page For Your Website

You need to put lots of thought and effort into every page of your website.

But your About page is arguably one of the most important pages by far.

Is it really that big of a deal? How many visitors will actually take the time to check out your About page?

Well, here’s an interesting statistic.

According to a study from KoMarketing, “52% of your visitors want to see an About page.”

Without one, you’re instantly creating some distance between your company and over half of your visitors.

That’s why an About page is more important than you may think.

And here’s something else I’ve noticed.

A lot of brands (even some of the bigger ones) lack in the About page department.

Some fail to include an About page altogether, and others halfheartedly slap one together without putting any real thought into it.

Such About pages often miss the mark, which throws a wrench in the overall sales funnel.

I want to be fair and say that not everyone needs an About page. But most companies, individuals, and websites do. It’s a standard thing to do.

And it can be really valuable. As long as you do it right!

Put yourself in the mindset of a website visitor who is reading your About page.

They’ve already stumbled upon your website, so they have a general idea of who you are and what you do. However, they may not be ready to become a customer yet.

This is the perfect opportunity for you to convince them. I see many About pages on a daily basis that are boring and don’t provide any value to a website.

It’s as though some companies write their About pages as fast as possible because they think it’s just a requirement to be fulfilled.

You put much effort into scaling lead generation through blogging, which you have to update on a regular basis. But your About page will be much easier since you don’t have to update it as frequently.

If you do it right the first time, your About page will help you get more conversions and sales.

In this post I will explain everything you need to know about how to create an About page that is well crafted and that will resonate with your visitors.

Redefining an About page

First of all, let’s start with a formal definition of an About page.

According to Your Dictionary, it’s

a type of web page commonly seen on websites, containing general information about the person or organization that is responsible for the website in question, usually a description of the site’s history and mission or purpose.

Most people probably would say this definition is spot on.

But in my opinion, it has one fatal flaw.

It talks about only the person/organization and doesn’t address the needs or concerns of visitors.

Of course, you’ll want to talk about your company, its history, philosophy, values, achievements, etc.

But there’s more.

A great About page will answer some major questions for your visitors.

What types of questions should I answer?

Copyblogger nails it in this article.

Here’s their take on things.

Some of your visitors’ unanswered questions are:

  • What’s in this for me?
  • Am I in the right place?
  • Can this person help me with my problem?

Don’t send your readers screaming for the exit by talking only about yourself. Instead, make them want to pull up a chair, chat with you a while, and keep in touch long after the party.

How many times have you clicked on an About page only to hear a company ramble on about how awesome they are without ever answering any of the pressing questions of their visitors?

I see it happen all the time.

What you should aim for

The point I’m trying to make here is that the term About page can be a little misleading.

It shouldn’t be just about you. It should be about your audience as well.

And now, here’s my formula for telling a gripping story.

Know thy customer

I’m sure you’ve heard the Ancient Greek aphorism “know thyself.”

It speaks to the importance of an examined life.

But when it comes to an About page, you want to thoroughly know your customer.

And I’m not talking just about gender, income level, education, etc.

You need to know where your average person is at in the sales funnel.

And if they’re looking at your About page, it’s safe to say they’re in the earlier stages of the sales funnel.

The large majority will be prospects with some level of interest and minimal awareness of your brand.

Most are looking to become more familiar with you.

Not only do they want to know more about your product/service, many want to know if you share their values and beliefs.

Try to put yourself in the shoes of an average prospect and figure out what specific information they’re seeking.

This will guide your efforts.

Start with a strong headline

Your headline is everything.

If it pops, visitors will want to read on.

If it sucks, many will leave never to return.

What makes a great headline?

You should make your headline simple, clear, and benefit-driven.

Don’t waste space and be repetitive. The website visitor has already clicked on the About section of your homepage, so you don’t need to use that as a headline as well.

Instead, use a headline that enhances your perceived value.

Check out this About Us page from SAXX:

I love this headline because it speaks to the potential customer. SAXX is a men’s underwear brand. So the headline of their About page reflects consumers’ wishes.

Active style. Extraordinary comfort.

This headline is intriguing to say the least. It’s also enticing enough to make the reader continue on the page. If you have a boring headline, people may not even read your content.

The same idea is behind writing a blog introduction that makes the rest of your post irresistible.

I also share this example because SAXX uses multiple headlines on the page. As you read on, you see the second title, “How our story began.”

This makes it clear to the reader what this section is going to discuss: the founding of the company.

You will learn about it through a story rather than cold facts which is always more appealing to a reader.

Here’s another good example from Yellow Leaf Hammocks. You can instantly get a sense of what’s being offered and the benefits. In this case, high-quality, comfy hammocks.

And here is one more great example from Gini Dietrich that uses a benefit driven headline:

Be authentic and transparent

You want to be professional with your About page. That’s a given.

But some brands are overdoing it to the point of sounding stiff and almost robotic.

Unless you’re in a super formal industry (e.g., you’re a lawyer or an insurance broker), I think it’s a good idea to “let your hair down” a little.

Paint a realistic picture of what your company is and what you do.

If you’re snarky, be snarky. If you’re quirky, be quirky.

No matter how teched out we get, business is still ultimately founded on people buying from other people.

And they naturally want to do business with someone they like and trust.

Authenticity and transparency are two major elements in gaining that trust.

I think that Pete Adeny (a.k.a. Mr. Money Mustache) does a great job of doing this on his About page:

His page instantly allows his readers to get a sense of who he is, his philosophy, and his sense of humor.

Provide a brief but compelling back story

You don’t need (or even want) to go into elaborate detail, but I recommend giving visitors an idea of where you came from and how your company came to be.

In other words, tell them your brand’s story.

Stories keep people interested, ensuring they will read through the page.

If your content is stale, nobody will want to read it. You’ll miss out on tons of potential leads.

Not sure how to tell a story? Just be honest, and talk about how your company got started. You don’t need to go over financial details or anything like that unless it’s very entertaining.

For example, if you found a way to turn a $20 bill into a business, that could be an interesting read. But nobody wants to hear about your startup loan negotiations at the local bank.

Tell a story that focuses on your company’s mission. What was the inspiration for starting your business?

Here’s an awesome example from the TOMS About Us page:

People may or may not be familiar with this organization. Their concept is pretty simple: for every pair of shoes bought on their website, they donate a pair to a child in need.

The inspiration behind TOMS came from the experience their founder, Blake Mycoskie, had when he saw poor children with no shoes. Witnessing that inspired Blake to form this company.

It’s easy to learn how the company became what it is today since it’s told as a story.

It’s heartwarming and touching and stirs a variety of other emotions in a reader.

Potential customers may be moved by this story and inspired to help these children as well by purchasing shoes from the website.

Being this open about their story on the About Us page helps TOMS generate new leads.

Here is another example showing how Dollar Shave Club does this with its own signature brand of humor:

Be clear about your values

This is a biggie.

You want to offer insight into your company culture and what distinguishes your brand from the rest of the pack.

Yellow Leaf Hammock pulls this off flawlessly as well:

As you can see, there’s a strong emphasis on being socially conscious, sustainable, and adventurous.

Wild Friends Foods effectively conveys its values as well:

The bottom line is to show visitors what you believe in.

Use terms everyone can understand

Your About Us page should definitely be professional.

Make sure it’s checked for grammatical and spelling errors. Don’t swear or use slang.

While it’s important to make sure your About Us page is clean and proper, you don’t want it to sound like a dissertation written by a professor.

You want to make this page as readable as possible. If people can’t understand what you’re saying, you won’t generate new leads. This isn’t a legal document, so it shouldn’t sound like a team of lawyers wrote it.

Avoid using industry terminology.

Other business owners in your industry may know what you’re talking about, but they aren’t your customers. You need to put things in common language the average person can understand.

Read this About Us page from Apptopia:

Apptopia is in the mobile application industry. They help businesses acquire more customers with mobile app analytics tools.

This is something that nearly every business can benefit from, but not everyone will understand.

That’s where their About Us page shines. They acknowledge this space is a little bit complicated and people aren’t sure what to do with their mobile apps.

They mention all types of potential customers, including:

  • publishers
  • advertisers
  • brands
  • investors.

Their page explains that people use data to help them make decisions, but they aren’t sure how to get and analyze certain data.

This transparency can help their leads feel comfortable. It’s written in plain language everyone can understand. You don’t need an IT degree to decipher this page.

As a result, they’ll be able to get more leads. If their page was super technical, it wouldn’t have the same impact on potential customers.

It’s important to keep this in mind, especially if you’re in certain industries.

Add images to break up the text

I’m a big advocate of using pictures and other visuals to break up written content. If you’ve been reading my blogs for a while, you know I use pictures to aid my writing.

Apply that same concept to your About Us page.

Big blocks of text are intimidating. People aren’t on your website to spend all day reading. So write in short sentences with paragraphs that are only a few lines long.

Use pictures as well. Images can make your About Us page more appealing. It helps people scan content since the photos act as natural breaks in the page.

Here’s an example of how DeWALT uses images on their About Us page:

I think this idea is very creative. This page establishes a timeline for their company that dates all the way back to 1922.

For each company milestone, they have a quick description and an image to go along with it. This concept makes it really easy for people to scroll through and learn about the history of this business.

As you can see, the images add value to the written content as well.

Rather than just stating something about a particular milestone, they have photos to illustrate it.

It’s also really cool to see how the quality of these images changes over time.

Now, I realize that not every business has nearly 100 years of photos to use for a timeline. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t use images on your page.

If you’re describing an event, product, service, or person, add a picture to enhance the story.

Feature your best employees

All too often I see About Us pages that focus on the founders of the company. While there’s nothing wrong with talking about your personal accomplishments, it doesn’t mean you can’t showcase your employees.

The average Joe can’t always relate to a CEO. But they can connect with other workers. So including information about your employees helps humanize your company.

It shows there are real people representing your brand. Adding the names, positions, and photographs of your staff also helps add credibility to your business.

So if someone wants to reach out to your human resources department, they know exactly whom to ask for when they call.

Here’s an example of this strategy used by BuildFire:

At the bottom of their About Us page, they feature their entire staff, displaying photographs along with the names and positions.

You can even take this approach one step further and add a small biography of each member of your staff.

Make it memorable

Don’t be boring. If your About Us page doesn’t leave a lasting impression in the minds of the website visitors, it won’t help you generate leads.

Not everyone who visits this page is ready to be a customer at that moment. They need to let that information soak in before they decide to pull out their credit cards and buy something.

So you’ve got to come up with a way to leave a lasting impression. But don’t go too crazy or do anything that doesn’t reflect your company.

Check out this About Us page from Cultivated Wit:

It’s another example of showcasing employees and adding a biography, as I previously suggested.

Look back at the photos in our last example of BuildFire and compare them to the photos from Cultivated Wit. As you can see, there’s a drastic difference.

These aren’t typical or what you’d expect to find on someone’s website. While it’s a little bit out there, it’s done in good fun. Plus, Cultivated Wit is a comedy company, so it fits nicely with their brand.

Photographs like these may not work well for a company that specializes in retirement investments, but it works well in this case.

Depending on your industry and branding strategy, try to have a little bit of fun with your About Us page so it’s memorable.

End with a call to action

So a website visitor got through your entire About Us page. Now what?

You can’t expect them to navigate over to your ecommerce shop and start buying things. While that would be great, you’ll need to give them a sense of direction.

Just because it’s an About Us page doesn’t mean you shouldn’t continue to market your products, services, and brand.

Go ahead, pitch whatever you’re selling. You’ve already got the visitor primed to become a customer if they’ve made it this far. End with a call to action that seals the deal.

After explaining their background and company story, this is how the Cali Life Co. generates leads at the bottom of the About Us page:

They jump right into showcasing their top products. The Cali Life Co. even has a link to promote their Instagram page.

It’s obvious that their general marketing goals are to drive sales and increase their social media presence. So adding these two sections to their About Us page helps them accomplish those goals.

Conclusion

Let’s recap.

An About page isn’t just about your brand. It also needs to be about your audience and how you can solve their pain points.

You must address their needs and concerns and position your brand as a trustworthy resource so they can feel comfortable doing business with you.

The key elements of your story should include:

  • A killer headline
  • A brief back story
  • Your values
  • Answers to visitors’ three big questions

It’s also important to customize your About page in a way that’s interesting and that represents your brand.

Tell a story that keeps the reader hooked. Just make sure you’re speaking in terms everyone can understand.

Add images and instead of just talking about yourself, provide some information and quick bios about your staff.

Ending with a strong CTA will help ensure your new leads get hooked.

By hitting all the right notes, you can establish instant rapport, build trust, and motivate visitors to browse the rest of your site.

When it’s all said and done, this can positively impact multiple metrics, such as increasing the average time spent on site, lowering your bounce rate, and improving conversions.

Follow these tips, and your About page will start generating more business for your company.

 

Continue Reading How to Create An Impactful About Page For Your Website

5 Smart Ways to Boosts E-commerce Store Sales

Over the last few years, I have dabbled in the e-commerce space and have owned a few different stores. Although finding things to sell takes a bit of digging into, the return can sometimes be substantial if done right.

With the eCommerce business being the fastest growing market projected to hit 4.058 trillion in sales in 2020, many have been stepping into this industry but get stuck along the way in various aspects, one being how to boost their sales. Just like Daren DeMatas rightly said, “Building an e-commerce business takes more than choosing a brand name, writing product listings, and starting to sell products online. Even the best business ideas can flop…”

This is something I have at times struggled with, and continue to work on to boost the revenues of my stores over the different quarters.

In the e-commerce industry, consumer habits change continually, and this is the reason why methods that once worked soon become obsolete. In other words, to continually gain new customers and generate sales, you just have to keep up with new trends. There’s no magic to it.

Having studied and analyzed the dynamics of the business and have used my connections to connect with some of the best in the industry, I have come up with easy and practicable tips that will help you boost your store sales.

Whether you’re entirely new to E-commerce or have been in the business for years, the tips I have shared here will hopefully work perfectly for you.

Here are 5 smart ways to boost E-commerce store sales:

  1. Simplify your checkout process
  2. Ensure that all buttons are functional, especially the back button
  3. Kill the idea of offering too many choices
  4. Put Email marketing to good use
  5. Use paid traffic

Simplify your checkout process

Simplifying your checkout process eliminates the friction associated with the “wear and tear” of potential buyers.

This practice is arguably one of the easiest and effective ways to boost E-commerce store sales. In fact, one company recorded about $300 000 000 increase in sales right after simplifying their checkout process. What did they do? They simply provided people with the option to check out as a guest.

Popular E-commerce sites like Apple, Nixon, Amazon and a few others use this tactic to greatly increase their conversion rate. You can see how they have done that comprehensively here. I love the way Catalin Zorzini, Founder of  ecommerce-platforms.com, has grouped these great sites up and explained every single step they’ve taken to set their checkout page right. He gives fantastic advice on what you should and shouldn’t do, for example he states, “one of the most common reasons for basket abandonment is forcing users to register their details before they checkout”. He then discusses how you can go about fixing it. I can hardly recall a time I’ve worked on a checkout page without making reference to his post for inspiration.

One of the most common reasons for basket abandonment is forcing users to register their details before they checkout.

Catalin Zorzini Ecommerce-Platforms

Other ways you can go about simplifying your checkout process:

  1. Reducing the number of form fields that customers need to fill in before checking out.
  2. Enabling checkout for un-registered customers (guest checkout).
  3. Keep the back button functional
  4. Offering too many choices
  5. Include a progress bar – This will greatly reduce the number of people that will back out of the checkout process. Knowing when the process will finish has a way of getting customers across the finish line.

These are really important tips to keep at the back of your mind at all times. Try them out on your store, and you’ll experience a rise in sales.

Ensure that all buttons are functional, especially the back button

Ask top level sale killers to put their arms up, and you’ll surely find resubmissions or automatic redirects sticking its arm highest. Less than a handful of customers will go ahead to restock the cart on your store once there’s a redirection and they lose their items. To avoid such situations, be sure to maintain a smart cart that will save customer items whether they navigate away from the cart or mistakenly follow a link out of the checkout page.  While this may seem too ordinary a task to make any difference to your store, I consider it one of the easiest ways to boost E-commerce store sales.

Kill the idea of offering too many choices

Not too long ago, Frank, a friend of mine asked me to help him take a look at his Shopify store. He complained of a decline in sales he had started to notice shortly after improving the mobile experience and adding extra products to his store. Immediately, I suspected the problem was from the new product categories he had added. I did some little tweaks here and there, and sales climbed up again. He had created the problem of choice unknowingly!

“Choice,” is a straightforward expression of free will, and customers love when they can find this expression. However, making too many choices available for customers could reduce sales. In fact, according to analysis carried out by Shopify: offering more products for sale will often get more people to visit your store but will cause very few to buy.

Well, you don’t necessarily need to take down your extra products if you already have them up. Simply sorting the products well enough to reduce the complexity associated with choice over a variety will boost your e-commerce store sales. Just categorize your products “seductively”. This tip worked for Frank, it will definitely work for you too.

Put Email marketing to good use

Email marketing is one of the most reliable and profitable ways to boost your E-commerce store sales.

It can be simple or complex (not difficult) depending on what E-commerce marketing strategies you apply. For example, you can simply get across to people who abandoned their shopping carts and get them to buy.

On the one hand, it could go as complex as preparing and putting out several campaigns that will work closely together to greatly improve sales. All the same, the aim remains to build trust with existing and all potential customers. Whatever be the case, there’re some great Email marketing apps you can use to make certain processes easier and smoother.

What we will look at here is the simple approach to growing your E-commerce store. To accomplish this, you need to have emails of people who have previously bought items from your store, or that are likely to buy.

If you already have an email list of customers (probably provided during the checkout process), that’s great! If you don’t (maybe because you’re new to the business), we’re still good but you’ll have to start by building a list. Here are 3 ways you can get people on your email list:

  • Use pop-up on your site that offers people a discount
  • Run ads targeted at selling a specific product.
  • Do giveaways with products related to what you sell on your store.

So, once you have got the email list, the next thing to do is sell the people on the list! Here are 2 ways you can go about that.

  • Upselling: This is the practice of encouraging customers to buy a comparable higher-end product. For example, if a customer bought an iPhone 6, you could upsell them to an iPhone 7 Plus.
  • Cross-selling: This is often confused with upselling, but they are two different things. Cross-selling involves selling products that go alongside products they have already bought. That is products that are complementary to previously bought items. For example, if someone has bought a tie, you can cross-sell them a pocket square.

If you plan on cross-selling, I recommend you start email marketing them a week or two after they buy a complementary product.

However, keep the words of Darren DeMatas on e-commerce marketing common pitfalls where he advised, “once you build a list of potential customers, resist the urge to blast them with generic sales promos!”, as this could turn them off. Darren offers a pretty detailed roadmap on the use of email marketing to boost sales on his website, be sure to check it out.

Once you build a list of potential customers, resist the urge to blast them with generic sales promos!

Darren DeMatas EcommerceCEO

Have it in mind that upselling takes a little more effort to close than cross-selling, as it requires some more convincing. You’ll definitely need some knowledge on building customer loyalty if you plan on upselling your customers.

In any case, these two methods will help you reduce abandoned carts, and go on to record fresh sales. However, as mentioned earlier, there’s more to Email marketing than I’ve discussed within the few lines above. If you’re looking to have all the nitty-gritty of Email marketing in your fingertips, there’s no better place to go than Ecommerceceo.

Paid Traffic

Most people have crossed out the idea of boosting sales via paid traffic from their to-do list based on negative stories they’ve heard. Stories of how people have spent loads of cash on paid traffic without getting any ROI. And frankly, paid traffic can be very expensive and yield you no result, but only if you’re going about it the wrong way.

If you heard of a machine that turns one dollar into more than $1, wouldn’t you invest in it? Paid traffic is such a machine, and you should invest in it. The reason lots of people lose their money through paid traffic is that they go all the way in without testing the waters!

What do I mean by “testing the waters”?  I mean spending little amounts of money running several campaigns to see which one makes the most hit, and then spending more on it.

“Spending anything within $20 – $50 on each ad variation is considered OK”

While running the campaigns and multiple ad variations, monitor the metrics to see which of them brings in the highest numbers. Once this is found, kill the rest and invest more in the winning campaign. This way, you will find boosting your E-commerce store sales more affordable and profitable.

That said, one other thing you should pay attention to while utilizing paid traffic is proper targeting. With advanced tools on great advertising platforms like Facebook, for instance, you can target people who are more likely to buy.

For example. Let’s say you sell T-shirts with stars from the TV series, Game of Thrones printed on them, and you want to run a Facebook ad to increase sales. The best thing to do is to target people who follow and like pages related to the TV series. The chances of selling are bound to be higher since the set of people already have an interest.

If your ads get to the right audience, there’s a higher chance of getting more bang for your bucks. You can generate tons of sales on your E-commerce store from Facebook ads, but there’s a lot to learn.

Conclusion

I love finding and trying out new ways to boost E-commerce store sales, skyrocket returns and build quality relationships with customers. And of course, ecommerceceo and e-commerce-platforms are two sites that help me achieve these.

I’ve tried out, and continue to use every tactic mentioned in this post extensively, and they work perfectly for me. If you put them to good use, they will work for you too.

Whether you’re entirely new to e-commerce, or you’ve been in the business and your sales are stalling, the way out is to try new tactics. Good thing you’ve come across this article through which I aim to help you explore practicable and highly effective methods that will increase sales on your E-commerce store.

Hopefully, reading this has provided you with the required skillset to achieve great results, all that’s left now is for you to get started.

Surely, there are several other smart ways to boost E-commerce store sales. Are there some you’ve tried that I’ve not discussed here? Which did you find to be most effective?

Continue Reading 5 Smart Ways to Boosts E-commerce Store Sales

How To Get Monthly Website Visitors With Top List Articles

Traffic to me is the simplest thing on the planet. It is so easy to get! All you have to do is provide people with a solution to their problem and they will come, read it and they will share it with their friends!

I have created over 100 ‘top list’ type posts which have been viewed by millions. They are so popular and well received that they have been featured on Reddit Homepage, New York Times, Yahoo News & one even became a Trending Topic on Twitter! The best part… I can get these types of posts created for just $25. Let me teach you how.

Why Creating Lists Will Drastically Increase Your Traffic

When you Google, think what you are typing in, let’s say you are looking for a cure for a health problem. Just for example, you are going to type in Cure Acid Reflux. That’s a big search term. Firstly you would be surprised how many people don’t name the article what people are searching for in Google. This blows my mind. Why are you calling your article something fancy and using words people don’t ever use, just to make yourself look smart. No one is typing that in Google, so you shouldn’t be naming your posts that.

I’m no SEO expert, there I said it. But I do get around 200,000 visitors a month from Google alone so it’s kind of a big deal for me.

Here’s what I believe: Google ranks sites which are naturally awesome. Forget everything about buying links and social love. Just imagine that your posts are so cool, people spend ages on your site and people love to share your stuff. That’s what GOOGLE wants! Great content because they are in the content industry. There job is to provide users with the right content and the best possible option, if yours is not that, then you don’t rank so well.

Back to my health post, I will call it :

10 Ways To Cure Acid Reflux

Somewhere I heard that odd numbers work better for open rates and marketing so I often will change the 10 for 7, 11, 13, 17 basically any odd number that looks good. I will decide how many I want before I even create the post. Ofcourse, it sometimes changes as I’m writing the post.

What you don’t want to do is call your article something like:

Surefire Ways To Eradicate Acid Reflux

I’m sure someone will type in Eradicate Acid Reflux every month or two but Surefire Ways? No Way!

You think this is an extreme example? Heck no, this is a nice example.

Tip 1. Name Your Posts Something People Search For!

Here’s where top lists dominate:

  • Firstly, they are quite long so people tend to spend a while reading them.
  • Each part is in section, for example, our Cure Acid Reflux post, its 7 cures, so we have 7 headlines with each option. Because of this, people can quickly decide YES, there’s something here I am willing to do, so I will read it all. I think a lot of articles don’t do well because people are not prepared to commit time to read a page if they don’t think it’s going to help them.
  • The title says exactly what you get, so you know what you are getting into.
  • When shared on social media, again, people know what they are about to get. Often people will retweet and share blog posts just because of the title, not even knowing if the article is good or not.

Step 1. To Dominating Any Industry

Post a large amount of amazing articles. That’s what I do, I show up in dozens of industry’s and just do the same old top list posts but for different industry’s. Here’s some examples:

Blogging/Make Money Industry

  • Top 30 Most Influential People In Blogger
  • 10 Reasons Why It Rocks To Be a Internet Entrepreneur
  • 10 Christmas Gifts For Entrepreneurs
  • 17 Tips To Cure Bloggers Block
  • 20 Bloggers To Follow on Facebook

Photography Industry

  • Top 30 Most Influential People In Photography
  • 10 Reasons Why It Rocks To be a Photographer
  • 10 Christmas Gifts For Photographers
  • 17 Tips To Fix Bad Photos
  • 20 Photographers To Follow on Facebook

Health Industry

  • Top 30 Most Influential People in Natural Health
  • 10 Reasons Why It Rocks To Be Healthy
  • 10 Christmas Gifts for Super Healthy People
  • 17 Tips To Cure Acid Reflux
  • 20 Health Experts To Follow on Facebook

Young Entrepreneur Industry

  • Top 30 Most Influential Young Entrepreneurs
  • 10 Reasons Why It Rocks To Be a Young Entrepreneur
  • 10 Christmas Gifts For Young Entrepreneurs
  • 17 Tips To Stop People Treating You Different Because Of Your Age
  • 20 Young Entrepreneurs To Follow On Facebook

See how easy it is?

And it doesn’t stop there. Each post can be done in so many other ways. For example:

10 Reasons Why It Rocks To Be a Photographer… you could flip this on it’s head and do 10 Reasons Why It Sucks…

Tip 2. Turn One Top List Into a Series of Top Lists

Remember our post suggestion: 20 Bloggers To Follow on Facebook

How about doing that with every social network:

  • 20 Bloggers To Follow on Twitter
  • 20 Bloggers To Follow on Youtube
  • 20 Bloggers To Follow on Pinterest
  • 20 Bloggers To Follow on Google+

Instead of doing a post such as “20 Ways To Improve Your Website” – you could split it into a series and niche each one down, so for example:

  • 10 Ways To Improve Your Websites Load Time
  • 10 Ways To Improve Your Websites Usability
  • 10 Ways To Improve Your Websites Blog Layout
  • 10 Ways To Improve your Websites Conversion Rate

Step 2. Getting Articles Created (20 at a time)

So in order to achieve a lot of success with our blogs, we need a lot of content… by doing basically no actual work. This is important because as a business owner we can’t be doing everything ourselves, so we need to outsource what other people can do for us.

The great thing about top list articles, is they are more or less just research. Almost anyone can write them. The first article I ever outsourced was way back in 2009 and since then, has recieved over 1,000,000 visitors. All I had to do is hire someone and pay them $50. Still to do this day, I get thousands of visitors to my website every month because of that blog post. So don’t just think about how much traffic you will get today from a post but how much traffic you can get in the future.

Right now, one of the easiest places to hire a writer is Fiverr. They have a huge selection of writers and you can get your post written in under 24 hours. So if you want to test this strategy out, click here to hire someone to write your articles for you!

Tip 3. Be Specific With What You Want

If you want great articles, you have to give great guidelines. When you hire someone, I always include instructions so they know what I expect from them. This is what I send them:

Guidelines For Writing Awesome Articles For My Website

The majority of people who write articles for us, will go on to write many more. Please follow my article outline and guidelines to ensure your article is well received and accepted. Failure to do so will result in your article being declined.

All posts should be well researched.

If the article is numbered, please number it 1. 2. 3. etc (not #1 #2 #3 or 1 – 2 – 3 -)

If the title is broad, for example, 50 Places to Visit in 50 States of America, then please give a broad selection of choice. So for example, don’t make all 50 places landmarks, split it up so their is variety, for example, Landmarks, Famous Restaurants, Bars, Theme Parks, Extreme Things To Do and so on.

Be consistent with how you lay your article out, for example, I sometimes see people write post titles with the attraction first, followed by location. Then there will be 1 or 2 titles without a location. Each title needs to be in the same format.

Below is an example of how I like articles to be laid out:
—————————————–

Headline

Introduction to post. (This needs to be informative and make them want to carry on reading.)

Subheadline, in h2 tags. <h2>Your Subheadline</h2>

<h3>Item 1</h3>

[IMAGE]

Information why you should do what this title suggestions.

<h3>Item 2</h3>

[IMAGE]

And continue.

[There should be one line between each element.]

—————————————–

Examples of successful posts written:

  • https://www.incomediary.com/21-life-lessons-from-steve-jobs
  • https://www.incomediary.com/top-earning-websites
  • https://www.incomediary.com/top-earning-blogs

Conclusion

As you can see in the final part of this post, I guide writers through exactly what I want. Even giving them examples of writers who have already followed our guidelines. This is key to having success with outsourcing article writing.

So just to recap what you need to do:

  1. Download our 110 top list headline templates, it’s FREE!
  2. Go through our headlines and decide on the 10 that you think will be most successful on your blog.
  3. Go to Fiverr and hire a writer or several writers to create this content for you.
  4. Publish content on your website and enjoy the benefits of top list articles.
  5. Repeat the first 4 steps over and over again.

That’s all there is to our top list strategy. It works for us and it’s worked for thousands of other IncomeDiary readers as well, so why not give it a try?

The post How I Get Over 100,000 Visitors a Month With Top List Articles appeared first on How To Make Money Online.

Continue Reading How To Get Monthly Website Visitors With Top List Articles

How and Why To Create Foundational Content (Grow Your Blog Series)

Almost every day I get emails from bloggers asking if I think their blog is ready. Most of the time they are wondering if they can create a product or sell something from their blog. And I always say WOAHHH wait a minute.

– Are you getting consistent pageviews?
– Have you started an email list?
– Are your social media channels up to snuff?
– Is your blog/business branded?
– And most importantly, do you have foundational content?

Foundational content is awesome, interesting content that separates you from the rest. It’s informative or creative, or emotional, or all of the above. When anyone reads it, they are moved to follow you, share your content, or read more from you.

This post is totally updated for 2019 to give you the best possible ways to establish your blog and increase your traffic.

 

Basically, foundational content is what builds your blog. It makes people want to follow and share. Tweet this

This post is part of a new series on the blog called #GrowYourBlog. I mentioned this post the other day when I talked about my blogging mistakes. One thing I said? That a series would cover how to start a newsletter. Well, guess what? While I think starting a newsletter is a great (and necessary) way to grow your blog and make sales, the fact of the matter is, you don’t have to have one to have a successful blog. You do, however need content. So if you are new to this blog or just now reading this, my advice to you is to just START. Start writing and creating. Even if you think you aren’t ready. Newsflash: no one is. And you’ll never know until you try.

When I started my blogging journey I was certainly not intending to do this full time. But as I went on, I found how much time, effort, and enjoyment I got out of creating content. Iused to think it was all about quantity when it comes to posting on your blog. Thankfully, I was wrong. Quality is truly the key.

In order to be successful with your blog you need to create great content. So, what is that exactly?

The type of content that people crave: reminds us that we matter, gives us hope or faith in the bigger picture, explains or tells a story, shows your authenticity, pulls at our emotions, surprises us (in a good or bad way), confirms our assumptions, takes us on a journey, challenges our way of thinking, entertains us, shows us successes and/or failures, gives us a unique point of view.


As bloggers, we have the unique opportunity to post about topics that we love. But we need to do it with our audience in mind. When you start crafting your blog posts, take your audience and what they like into consideration. See what posts they tend to share more, comment on, or follow you after you post.

What if you could create a few pieces of content that would be the backbone to your blog? It would bring in continuous hits on your blog, establish you as authority, and create more opportunities? That, is what foundational content can do.  

Download your free 7 page workbook and checklist to creating incredible content for your blog:

FREE Workbook: Learn how to create content that counts!



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Why should you create foundational content?
Well, it’s what gets shared more than anything else. It becomes the backbone of your blog and can help establish your voice online. My blog posts that are foundational in nature have 10X the number of hits than my other posts. That’s because these posts are helpful, different, and engaing.

The main goal of your foundational content should be that your blog post helps to solve a problem. When you solve a problem you become a resource and authority on a subject. Let me give you some examples:

– The Absolute Best Way to Create Squash Pasta
– 7 Insanely Cool Ways to Wear a Blanket Scarf
– How to Start a Squarespace Blog From Scratch
– Photography Tips For Every Newbie Photographer
– Create Beautiful Handlettering with This One Simple Step
– How to Start an Etsy Shop
– Your Guide to A Healthy Lifestyle
– This Budget Trick Saved Us $500 a Month
– The Proven Method for Organizing Effectively
– The Ultimate Guide To Cleaning Your Home
– The 3 Rules to Creating the Perfect Wardrobe
– How to Pose Your Photography Clients
– 10 Ways to Effectively De-stress and Feel Good
– How to Paint Art For Your New Home or Apartment
– Step-By-Step Guide to Planning a Romantic Honeymoon in France

Every single one of these blog post titles is informative. It’s going to teach the reader something they need. In addition to all of these headlines above, they all have one thing in common: they have an interesting headline.

These headlines draw the reader in and make them want to click on your content, rather than just pass it on by.  Your blog posts should not only be informative, but they should have a title that immediately engages the reader.

You can write great content all you want, but if your headline sucks, no one’s clicking to read what you have to say. WE have to draw the reader in, give them idea of WHY they should click.


Examples of some of my sucky headlines:

If I Could Go Anywhere… – This is pretty vague and doesn’t really tell the reader what I’ll be discussing (travel).
6 Degrees of Jordan Speith – Unless you know who this is, this probably makes no sense. Actually, it still doesn’t make a lot of sense.
Pinterest For Your Blog – While I like this post, it’s pretty vague and doesn’t really show or tell how I’m going to help you with Pinterest.


Examples of some of my CLICKABLE headlines:

Why We’re Moving Back to America – This is a cliff hanger, even if you don’t know me, you might click that link.

5 Inspiring Bloggers (And How They Make Money)  – Explains what the post is about and tells you exactly what I’ll be sharing, with examples!
10 Ways to Drive Traffic To Your Blog Right Now – This post is timely so it makes people want to click.
How Bloggers Can Reach out To Business and Bloggers + Free Media Kit Templates – this was a question I got again and again, so I expanded on it in my blog post. Plus I created a free download (don’t worry, I’ll be going over that later in the series!)


Examples of super awesome CLICKABLE headlines from others:

How Often Should You Really Be Working Out – And How Hard – We alll want to know the magic for what really works for staying healthy. This headline gets to the point on what the article is about.

These are the Best Kept Secrets in Europe – I want to know the secrets! Don’t you?

20 Easy Healthy Meal Prep Lunch Ideas for Work – I love that this includes a number, it means you’ll be getting lots of ideas.

Now that you have great content and a great headline there’s just one missing piece: a clear, branded image. What I mean by that is an image that the reader can tell is yours. It’s an image that uses your fonts or your pictures. (Although, you can still use stock photos, here are 8 places to find free ones.)

Creating foundational content will help you grow your blog and establish you as an authority. You have multiple pieces of content that allow people to follow along and share your posts.

The three steps to great foundational content are:
1. Informative Content 
2. An Engaging Headline
3. A Clear, Branded Image

When crafting these posts, give it your all. Create exclusive, informative content that your readers GAIN something from. Make it something they cannot find anywhere else. And, most importantly,
the content you create should be something YOU care about. Something that makes YOU excited to write about. Otherwise, you won’t continue doing it. And that’s the whole point right?

When you create foundational content you can build on this content to then turn these posts to help you gain followers and newsletter subscribers.

Now on to the nitty gritty, the how-to of it all. The blog process can be a daunting one. So store your ideas. I use Evernote to capture and organize everything. Best part? Evernote is FREE! However you decide to organize make sure it’s simple. That’s the best way to make sure you’ll actually do something.

Before I get into the SEO, images, everything else. I just WRITE. I use my blog to do that. Then I go back and edit, and add in detail. The free checklist I’ve created will help you do that!

In order to create awesome foundational content for your blog I created a FREE 7 page workbook and checklist! Click below to download and grab you copy right now:

FREE Workbook: Learn how to create content that counts!



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While valuable foundational content is necessary, we also need growth through social media and shares. We all want likes, shares, and even comments. So in the next part of the series I’ll be showing you how to build traffic through social media. 

Check out part 2: Using Social Media Successfully 
Part 3: How to Create a Newsletter for Your Blog 
Part 4: How to Make Money as a Blogger

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The post How and Why To Create Foundational Content (Grow Your Blog Series) appeared first on Helene in Between.

Continue Reading How and Why To Create Foundational Content (Grow Your Blog Series)