Captivate New Readers: Make Them Browse Your Site
1. Link To Relevant Content
A large percentage of your first time readers will arrive on your blog via an organic search, which means they’re looking for information.
Since you can’t possibly answer every single question they’ll have in just one blog post, and since one question often leads to another, it makes sense then to assume that they’ll happily click on your links that lead to more of your informative content.
However, you know what happens when you assume… These people have never seen your blog before.
You’ve impressed them with that first post, but lead them astray with your links and they’re still going to leave.
You haven’t completely won them over yet, you’ve only piqued their interest.
Within the body of your content, only link to content that’s highly relevant, and if you don’t have any, create some.
For example, I could link to previous posts describing relevant content, or how to create a series of posts, but those aren’t the topics most closely related to this particular post.
Eventually, that new reader would be interested, but right now he wants to see “the rest of the story.”
Use plug-ins that automatically include links to lead the reader to related content deeper on your blog.
These plug-ins are generally triggered by either keywords, tags or categories and they take the post title and turn it into a link at the end of the blog post.
You can generally select how many posts you want to appear.
2. Invite New Readers To Subscribe
To you it might seem like wasted space to include a call to action inviting your readers to subscribe to your newsletter or your RSS feed.
After all, you have that big huge icon and opt-in form right there at the top of your sidebar.
Surely they can’t miss it and they’ll subscribe when they’re ready.
I know it’s hard to believe, but everyone on the planet is not a blogger and most people still have no idea what an RSS feed is.
Even more unbelievable is the fact that many people think that if they “subscribe” to something there’s a fee involved – like subscribing to a newspaper or magazine.
So even if they do know what that form is for they’re going to avoid it like the plague.
Let your new visitors know what those icons and forms are for and where they can find them.
In fact, set up a separate page for newbies and explain the benefits and mechanics of subscribing to both your list and your RSS feed and put the appropriate forms, links or icons right in the post.
Use pop-ups to help promote subscriptions.
Set them to appear on the second page a new visitor reads, not the first.
If it’s on the first, he’ll just think it’s annoying and leave.
But if he’s moved on to a second page then you know you already have his interest and he’s more likely to pay attention.
3. Include Avenues For Sharing
Everybody likes to be the first person to trip over something remarkable so they can brag about it to their friends.
Instead of assuming (there’s that word again!) that everyone automatically has a Facebook account and knows how to use it, take your visitors by the hand and show them how to do it.
Provide multiple sharing options: Contrary to Zuckerberg’s marketing hype, everyone on the planet does not have a Facebook account.
Check your stats to see where your traffic is coming from and provide options for sharing on those sites.
Make sure your buttons are visible: If possible, place sharing buttons in more than one location on your blog.
That slider over there on the left does attract attention – but for a limited time, only.
Eventually ad blindness sets in and people don’t even see it.
If it’s something you really want to promote, put a call to action for readers to share right in the middle of your post.
Why so concerned about sharing? Even a first time visitor will be happy to share if you bring it to his attention.
But even more important, each time someone shares your content they have the potential of attracting another first time reader who will eventually turn into another loyal fan.
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