10 Reasons Why Your Blog Is Not Converting

by Jason Keath on Oct 18, 2011

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I met Derek Halpern (@derekhalpern) over 2 years ago, right before I held my first Social Fresh conference. I was telling him about this company I was launching called Social Fresh. It existed already, but mainly just in my head.

We stayed in touch and last month I invited Derek to speak at our 10th conference.

And he blew the audience away.

So we asked for Derek’s help to improve SocialFresh.com — and in the process share some of his insights here on the blog for you.

Would you like more traffic, leads, sales?

Derek writes over at Social Triggers and covers topics like getting traffic to your blog, getting leads from that traffic, and getting sales form those leads.

Besides being a Social Fresh Conference speaker, Derek is a very smart guy in his own right and we are glad to share his insights. In the video below, Derek gives us a ton of actionable things to improve about SocialFresh.com. So we listened to him and have already put a lot of his suggestions into action. And we are seeing results already.

All of these insights are things that ANY business can and should be doing with their own blogs.


(can’t see the video in your feed, click here to watch)

To catch more insights from Derek, stop by his awesome blog: SocialTriggers.com.

The below 10 tips are great, but the video has another 25 tips that you might miss, so watch the video above (or bookmark this page to watch it later).

1. Add an email opt-in form in your post footer

SocialFresh.com already has this, but Derek emphasized the importance of this tip. It makes perfect sense. If someone makes it to the bottom of your blog post, they got some value. Let’s be honest, people hate to read, so they love you if they are at the bottom of your blog post. Take that opportunity by giving them a place to provide their email. If they want more cool stuff from you, this is an easy, easy way for them to do it.

2. Get rid of your WordPress default categories and tags

Unless you need an organizational structure for people to navigate a database, like IMDb, you do not need these things.

3. Remove the “related posts” widget

This one through me back at first, but Derek was right (as usual), it did not match our main goal, which on Social Fresh is to get emails of our readers. It might get people to read more, but it was taking away from our email subscribe widget and competing with it.

4. Build more in-site links

This is one of those things most people know, that linking from your content to other content you produced helps your SEO efforts. It gets Google indexing more of your site more often and lifting your results in turn. Specifically Derek pointed out that in article links are a great way to steadily drive traffic to your resource pages or best converting pages on the site. For us, that is going to be our Facebook Marketing Training and other training resource ebooks. See, look, I just did it there.

Another benefit of this is that if and when scraper sites steal your content and publish it on their own blogs, those links come with it and you get more links to your site, which again is good for SEO.

5. Treat your home page as a landing page

Most visitors to your site will come into contact with your content pages first: blog posts, products, resource pages, etc. So where do they click next? A lot of times they click on the home page or your site logo. When they do this they have already gotten value out of your site, so give them a way to convert. Put an email subscribe box at the top of the home page, called a feature box. Look at the Thesis Blog as an example.

A feature box can be a bit over the top for some people, but you have to make that decision. Just remember most visitors are seeing your home page as the 2nd page they see on your blog. Why would they do that? Because they want more awesome. A feature box gives them an easy place to convert for you. For you to get an email and make that brief moment of loyalty into longer term loyalty. Longer term relationships.

6. Make your about page personal

Add some personal photos. Who is running this site? Where is their smiling face? Photos of people draw attention. They keep people reading and on the site. We like to look at photos of other people. It also builds an emotional connection with the reader. They can put a face or faces to a name/brand.

7. Make your about page a landing page

Your About page is another one of those common 2nd clicks. A lot of times if someone reads a strong article on your blog and, again, wants more awesome, they look for somewhere to click. “Hey this site impressed me, let’s find our more ABOUT it.” So they click on the about page to find out more. Use that opportunity. You have already made the about page more personal from the above tip, now add some email opt-in forms.

8. Get rid of sidebar distractions on landing pages

Derek suggested this for our About page and our Social Media Training resource pages. Once you have someone on one of these pages, you want to make sure you have an opt-in email form AND you want to limit distractions. Most of the time, your sidebar is full of distractions. Remove the sidebar on these pages and people will focus on the content and your opt-in forms even more. They have fewer places to look and click.

9. Get rid of comments and trackbacks on landing pages

This goes right along with number 8. Comments and trackbacks add little value to your blog on these landing pages. Removing them can focus your reader on what you want them to see and do.

10. Create Resource Pages

A resource page is basically a collection of links to other resources. Again, Social Fresh uses our training links in our main navigation above as resource pages. These pages have multiple articles and resources so they become more valuable to the reader. They create, as the name implies, a rich resource that they can return to. Derek does a simple resource page for list building over at Social Triggers. Another great example is Copy Blogger’s magnetic headlines page.

Readers will bookmark, link to, and share these pages more than a regular post usually.

Think of this as your greatest hits. Go find a bunch of quality articles you have written in the past on one of the key topics of your blog and bring them together in one post. And then, of course, put an opt-in form on that page so readers can give back a little and offer you their email.

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Thanks to Derek for taking the time to go through SocialFresh.com with us. These 10 tips are great. I probably can pull another 25 out of the video that we did not list here, so go watch the video for the full picture.

Pay attention to SocialFresh.com over the coming weeks as we listen to our own content and continue to make many of these changes.

Are you making changes like this to your blog?

 

 

 

Post Author

CEO and founder of Social Fresh, the social media education company. Jason is a social media consultant, a social media speaker and industry analyst. He consults with corporations and agencies on social media strategy, building community, and influencer...