How to Keep First Time Readers to your Blog – Part I

If you’re getting some good traffic to your blog then you’re probably excited to log in every day and see which of your loyal followers managed to leave the first comment this time. You enjoy interacting with these followers and you spend a lot of time trying to meet their content needs, which is as it should be. But let’s not forget about that first-time reader. He’s even more important than your band of loyal followers.

This is the first in a 4-part series of articles. After they’re published you’ll be able to find Part II, Part III and Part IV right here.

If you’re focusing your content then each of your posts will only answer one question, but when you’re searching for information one question often leads to another. The average searcher will conduct multiple searches before he’s satisfied his curiosity, so it’s a given that every first-time visitor is going to want more. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to keep him on your blog while he’s satisfying his curiosity.

At some point, each of your loyal followers hit your blog for the very first time. And the reason they turned into loyal followers is because they immediately liked what they saw. Remember, you only have a few seconds to grab the reader’s attention, and if they don’t like what they see on their very first visit, chances are they won’t come back. So never, ever underestimate the power of well-written, high-quality content. In the eyes of the reader it’s what separates the experts from the amateurs.

Your repeat visitors are important. These are the people who not only click on your links and buy whatever it is you’re selling, they also help promote your blog by sharing your content and linking to you. Your loyal followers are the people who bring those first time readers to your blog, so the more repeat visitors you have the more first-time visitors you’ll bring in.

The question is: How do you keep those first-time readers on your blog long enough to convert them to repeat visitors? The most obvious answer is to always provide that well-written, informative content they’re looking for. But what does that mean?

Too many bloggers think all they have to do is get the facts right, put them in the proper order and check their spelling and punctuation. If everything checks out then they’ve written “quality content.” Again, no niche is without competition these days. Simple fact recitation or regurgitation isn’t enough.

High-quality content” is a relative term. Its meaning changes from audience to audience. You need to present the facts and information in a way that’s relevant to the people who visit your blog.

For example, if you’re blogging about couponing and your audience is young, stay-at-home moms, then you’d want to give them information on how to save money with baby formula coupons and where they can find the best bargains, but they probably won’t be interested in a coupon that saves them money when they buy bulk oil so they can do their own oil changes. No new mother has time for that.

This relevant content is important for your repeat visitors but it’s also important to attract those new readers and keep them on your blog. Who do you think sent those first-time visitors? Your loyal followers. Chances are they’re from the same market segment.

I could go on and on about creating high-quality content but that’s not the only thing that makes your blog sticky. I’ll be putting together a series of blog posts to give you some tips on addressing one of the most important issues in blogging – Keeping first-time readers on your blog. So stay tuned. In fact, if you haven’t already, you should subscribe to my updates so you don’t miss a single post in the series.

Stéphane Kerwer
Article written by Stéphane Kerwer (1995 Posts)
Bonjour from a french guy. My name is Sté Kerwer and Dukeo is my blog. I do most of the heavy lifting in here but from time to time, you may see some guest posts. To receive updates from Dukeo, follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook.
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7 Comments (Add one)

  1. Craig Iskowitz

    I think that you’re using the term “high-quality” when what you mean is “relevant”. But you’re right on both counts. Blog content should be relevant and high-quality.

    You made an excellent point about blogs being well-written. Too many people just cut and paste content from websites or other blogs and don’t do a very good job of combining it into a compelling story. Understating how to write well and avoiding boring your readers or embarrassing yourself by using poor grammar or too many cliches is difficult. It requires extra effort that many people don’t bother putting in.

    I’m going to read the other parts of this series. Well done!

    1. Sté Kerwer

      Thanks for your comment Craig

  2. Scott Simmerman, Ph.D.

    Well, one approach is obviously give them only PART ONE of the information and make it so it is seen as somewhat helpful. On the other hand, one should not write things so that the user feels like they were INTENTIONALLY given only some of the information so that they HAD to come back to see if the other information is worthwhile.

    I find that I like getting information I feel is useful, and thus I attempt to do that. It is good to add humor and illustrations, so I use cartoons about how organizations work and share ideas for how one can actually make improvements in the workplace.

    The other side of the issue is to make it so that people can easily find the rest of that information by clicking around… SHOW people that you site has good information that they want.

    1. Sté Kerwer

      Thanks for your comment Scott. You’re describing what I’m doing with this post series: giving the first part of some helpful information on a topic to encourage readers to come back for the follow-up posts later :)

  3. Keith Matthews

    I’m in the process of Total Blog Makeover, and I want you to know that this series, along with some other posts of yours, is going to be an integral part of that makeover. Oh, fret not, I won’t be occupying your niche. I’d hate to see you on the street corner with a sign saying “Will Blog For Food.”
    ;>)

    1. Sté Kerwer

      haha Keith. Planning to put me out of business? If you feel like it, just join me in that niche. I’m personally convinced that competition is a healthy thing.

      1. Keith Matthews

        No, m’boy, I’ve learned early in life to “stay in your lane.” As we say in the ‘hood, “When a pimp got the corner on lockdown, keep your ladies on the other side of town.” (Just a little American culture to enrich your European life…)

        Competition, no. Future collaboration…maybe?

        I’ve already made the move to WordPress, see how your influence works?

        You Da Man, Ste`!