Earlier this year, Google announced that its algorithms would be tweaked to devalue “over-optimized” websites. Even earlier still in 2011, Google launched its Panda update – which specifically targeted websites with low-quality content (think: duplicated and/or spam content). Google readily admits it’s doing everything in its power to promote high-quality content that values the user-experience. To those ends, it has been ramping up efforts to remove blog networks from its index.
There are many different blog networks that have unique rules, genres, and policies. However, they all serve the same purpose — building links. When you post an article to a blog network, that article will appear on blogs from around the web that are affiliated with the network. By including links back to your site within the article, you can quickly get hundreds of in-bound links after you submit the article to the blog network. This has several inherent problems.
Firstly, you need to pay a membership fee to join a blog network. That means you are paying for links — which goes directly against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. Secondly, when hundreds or thousands of blogs post the same article, it creates a major duplicate content issue. Thirdly, the very existence of blog networks has prompted people to create loads of low-quality content just so they could submit to the blog network and quickly get a lot of links. In reality, Google’s crackdown on blog networks should come as no surprise.
Note that blog directories — which provide lists of relevant blogs for searchers — should not be confused with blog networks. High-quality, relevant blog directories can still be a good way to legitimately boost your blog readership. Ultimately, if you keep producing original, quality content for your website, you’ll do just fine.
Of course, writing interesting and engaging content is a major part of increasing the readership and popularity of your blog. But from the standpoint of being indexed by Google and found via search results, there are several tactics you should be using for each post:
Promotion: When you launch a new blog, you can leverage the popularity of your main site to boost the visibility of the blog. Include links back to your blog on your main website and in marketing emails.
Social Sharing: As above, you should also update your social media accounts when you add new content to your blog. Although the links you post on social media sites are usually no-follow links, they still have a good chance of traffic and being shared by others.
Join Directories: Most people only consider joining a directory when they are launching an entirely new website. However, there are directories just for blogs that can increase your traffic. For starters, check out
Update Frequently: Google favors fresh content and active websites, so you should update your blog frequently and consistently. In most cases, one to three new posts per week will suffice
Combining these tactics with your engaging content is a surefire way to increase your visibility and blog readership.
Coming up with compelling topics can be one of the most difficult aspects of maintaining your blog. When the blog is new, you may not know where to begin. If your blog has a long history, you may feel you’ve already written about everything. The need to come up with new ideas is ever-present. However, these tips can make the going easier:
Make the most out of simple ideas — as they say, the simplest explanation is often the best one. The same can be said of blog posts. Explaining and examining the core concepts of your business or industry, or answering frequently asked questions from your customers, can make for popular blog posts.
Listen to what other people are saying — speaking of listening to your customers, listening to other writers is also a good way to get ideas for posts. Find out what topics your contemporaries are talking about and offer your own original spin.
Use Google’s tools — Who knows more about search results than Google? You can utilize Google tools to generate ideas for content. Google Insights can provide you with hot new keywords you can target, while Google Alerts can keep you plugged in to the latest developments in your industry (see above tip).
Repurpose old, popular posts — You can breathe new life into old topics once you have spent enough time away from them. Times change, and perhaps you or your industry has a new perspective on something you’ve written about before. Or perhaps the topic itself has evolved and needs to be re-examined. In either case, it’s a chance for you to flex the writing and blogging techniques you’ve developed since the last time you wrote about the topic.
Don’t forget, if your business is struggling finding the time, resources, or inspiration to keep your blog consistently updated, MoreVisibility offers expert SEO copywriting services to help your site be successful.