The good news is that people are clicking on your blog. But, when you check the numbers, they’re only spending a few seconds. They simply are NOT engaged. If you are not keeping them engaged, then the truth is YOUR BLOG ISN’T GETTING THE JOB DONE!!
It just means you haven’t done what it takes to keep your users interested, reading the blog, telling their friends to read it and coming back for more posts.
Why it’s so important to keep them engaged
You need to watch this “bounce rate” (the percentage of visitors who leave your website after looking at a single page for a few seconds) closely. Usually, they moved on because they were disinterested or disappointed in the content. If you don’t keep your readers engaged, your bounce rate will undermine all the work you’ve done on your blog and your website, because if your visitors aren’t looking at your content, then it might as well not exist.
That bounce rate can also affect your Google rankings. Plus, it means your prospects and customers don’t like what they’re seeing, either.
Creating great content that encourages high engagement can lead to it going viral. That means even more people will discover your content through social and organic search. Getting people to engage with your blog’s content is key to creating a big following and wider reach…and people will keep coming back for more.
Timing is everything
As we said in a recent post, “Deciding on the frequency of your blog posts is much like the experiences of ‘The Three Bears.’ After you’ve decided on posting blogs regularly, you have to decide exactly what is too often to blog, what is not enough, and what is just right for you. There is no right answer that works for everyone.”
That’s why it is so important to set a realistic schedule and stick to it. Consistency is critical for small business blogging. So, once you start blogging, post at regular intervals. Your visitors will expect it…and search engines will give higher preference to regularly updated websites. Daily blogging? Too much! Weekly or several times a month is probably just right for most small business owners, who are also concerned with running a business.
When you update your blog regularly with engaging content, you’re in a great position for more website traffic and increased lead generation. In fact, Hubspot data shows that companies that blog 3 to 5 times a month, or around once a week, have more than twice the traffic of companies that don’t.
Now for the ways to keep ’em engaged…
15 tips and tricks to keep ’em coming back for more
Here are 15 super-easy ideas that are designed to increase user engagement and decrease bounce rate.
- Keep paragraphs short and sweet. On the Internet, people do not read long paragraphs. So, blog paragraphs should have 1 to 3 sentences each. Long blocks of text often overwhelm readers and make them leave your site at breakneck speed.
- The more white space the better. Spacing out your paragraphs into smaller chunks is an excellent way to build up to something, make an impact, and keep people interested.
- Watch your linking structure. Appropriate linking structure is good for search engine optimization (SEO), decreases your bounce rate, and generates more page views per visitor. In the previous sentence, for example, the anchor text “search engine optimization” links to a relevant Solamar blog post.
- Speed up your page loading time. Admit it…we’ve all clicked on an interesting looking link and waited and waited and waited for it to load. After 15 or 20 seconds, you decided that it wasn’t worth it and left before even looking at the post. Your post should take only a second or two to load, which you can measure using a free tool called Pingdom. Using GIFs or JPEGS that have been optimized for the web (and are smaller in size) as your images will significantly lower your load time, while utilizing a free browser caching plugin (like WP Super Cache), or a CDN (content delivery network like MaxCDN) will also improve things. Browser caching speeds up your site by allowing the users browser to store information and content in the browser for later, so it doesn’t need to load each time, and CDNs speed things up by hosting your content on a separate network which is optimized for speedy delivery.
- Remember K.I.S.S. (and keep it super simple!). Use a simple writing style appropriate to your audience and avoid a busy, distracting look with too many fonts, font sizes, colors, or widgets. Busy, confusing posts are interest killers.
- Capture them quickly. Have an opt-in form or CTA (call to action) at the end of every post to recycle your traffic, while growing your email list.
- Get social. This is especially important after recent Google updates. By adding a social sharing plugin and maintaining dedicated social profiles for your website, you can get a higher ranking.
- Structure your content with categories, subheads, and tags. It will flow better and keep users interested.
- Ask questions. This engages readers by getting them to comment.
- Keep it conversational. Using “you” and “I” makes blogs read more like a one-on-one conversation.
- Offer fun and sharable content.Everything you post should be easy to share. This will increase brand recognition.
- Personalize their experience. You can use platforms like Commerce Science to easily personalize your user’s experience.
- Use charts and graphs:These devices are powerful for storytelling, and help people visualize and better understand material.
- Keep it current and up-to-date. Relate your posts to what’s going on in the news.
- Talk to the pros at Solamar. The most engaging tip to engage your blog readers is to give us a shout. We’ll help you create a blog that keeps them coming back for more…and more…and more.