Hello Happy Site Owners!
Today, we’re going to chat, just you and me, about how things are going with your site goals for this year. I know you all probably had a plan for the new year, like I did, but things can change, or get bogged down, or you are just ready for a shot in the arm of inspiration to help you stay the course. So let’s dive in.
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Do You Have a Plan?
Let’s start at the top. Do you have a plan for your site? Have you set goals for the role your site is supposed to play in that plan?
Not everybody has a plan, or even needs a plan. Some folks just wing it and literally fall into success. I did with my carving site. From that hobby, I ended up being featured in a bunch of magazines, becoming internationally recognized, and even got a book deal.
That was about 6 years ago.
I seriously doubt that I’d have the same sort of luck now.
Taming the Wild West
Around 2009, the internet was still the Wild West and anybody who posted regularly had a good shot at being found. That’s especially true if they combined their blog posts with social media, because Twitter and even Facebook were really taking off then too.
There just weren’t that many folks blogging, and everyone was still figuring out social media, and there just weren’t that many platforms for gaining attention yet either.
But it didn’t take long and folks that learned how to systematize their plan started gaining serious momentum and audience. Those became the first gurus who made a ton of money teaching the rest of us the system they developed.
Working the Plan
Here in 2016, the internet is a super crowded place with way too much noise competing for attention.
And, there are a lot more bloggers and marketers now, and a lot more platforms for them to use.
Each platform has been systematized like crazy.
Even the new ones don’t stand a chance for long. Savvy marketers jump on each new shiny thing and stake their claim and audience and bring their systems with them. Even though the culture is different for each platform, the underlying principles are still the same.
Getting Free Traffic
Now it takes more time to repurpose your content to make it appealing on the 5-6 platforms where your audience hangs out.
And some folks even go so far as to create unique content for each platform. That’s very time consuming.
Then there’s SEO and Google, and they keep changing things constantly too, so that takes up your time.
There’s nothing really free about free traffic anymore.
The platforms and services may be free. But working your plan on them certainly isn’t.
Are You Missing the Point?
All of this content creation and social media promotion is for one purpose – to drive traffic to your site.
And what happens when folks get there? You want to convert them in some way.
But is that really happening?
I had a client this week that was successfully driving 10,000 unique visitors a day to her site, yet she wasn’t converting them.
First, she was losing 40-60% of them to abandonment. Her site loaded way too slowly. So, 6,000 visitors a day were simply leaving without ever seeing anything at all.
She also had very few repeat viewers. In other words, they left and they never came back.
So, she’s working her hiney off to get that traffic, only to lose most of them before they ever see her high dollar beautiful design that she had created, or any of the lovely blog posts she took hours to produce, including all of the nice images, much less any of the ads on the site that are supposed to bring in the money.
Because monetizing a site with ads is all about numbers, she would have to quadruple her traffic to get enough conversions to make her goals.
Make the Most of What You Have
Instead, she got a site audit, and we fixed the slow loads and other issues.
Now more of her traffic is actually seeing her site, including the ads. And her click through rate is going up. And she’s making more money.
More organic SEO traffic is coming in too.
Her numbers are going up and she’s not working any harder.
Every single one of my site audit clients who got their site ship shape and dropped the number of ads they were displaying have more traffic and are making more money. Every one.
Getting the Right Help
In 2015, I dedicated myself to learning more about the promotional end of the business, especially about social media and repurposing my content.
But, by October, I realized that I had learned a lot, but that I still wasn’t very good at social media promotion. As Morpheus would say, there’s a difference in knowing the path and walking the path, Neo.
So, I hired help. And I’m so glad that I did. My social media performance turned around very quickly. I’m actually shocked at the stats, and wish to heck I had gotten help sooner.
My clients feel the same way about hiring me.
Keeping Up with the Times
One way that the internet has turned into the Wild West again is the dizzying array of things that site owners have to keep up with now.
It used to be that trying to keep up with all the new social media platforms and the changes on each one was the worst of it.
But since 2013, keeping up with site security, performance, and SEO has become a full time challenge too. I know, I do it.
Every day I work with clients who are still doing SEO and security that is three years out of date. Every day. And I’m only working with a drop in the bucket compared to what’s out there.
It really doesn’t matter how many tips I put into these weekly roundups either. Only a fraction of the folks listening to the podcast or reading the post are actually implementing those changes and keeping on top of everything.
Even Bluehost announced that 80% of the 2 million WordPress sites on their servers were not using the latest version, so they updated everyone. That’s more about keeping the server safe than anything.
And while 2 million sounds like a lot, it’s still a drop in the bucket. There are 36.5 million self-hosted WordPress sites. There are about 74 million total. The other half is on WordPress.com.
How to Get Ahead
The fact is, the internet is a crowded, noisy place. But, there are billions of folks using it every day. And a bunch of them are looking for exactly the kind of info you provide.
- make the effort to create wonderful content
- promote it in the places where your audience hangs out, including search
- ensure your site is secure and performs well
- keep up with the changes to the things you use
then you really do have a shot at having a site that is found, read, and acted upon.
And isn’t that your goal?
I’m Here to Help
I’ll continue to do my best to help you keep up with the changes by reporting the best tips I can find from the 80-100 blogs I read each week.
I’ve got a slew of new plugins to test and new SEO tests to run so you can have reviews you can count on.
And of course, I’m available to put a qualified set of eyeballs on your site to ensure that it’s secure, performs well, and educate you on how to easily keep it that way.
And, I answer questions live on Blab too.
Do drop me a note and let me know what you need the most help with and what kind of info I can deliver that will be of the most benefit to you. I’m always happy to have your feedback.
That’s a wrap for this week’s Tips Tuesday.
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