The adage “content is king” coined by Microsoft founder Bill Gates in 1996 has been repeatedly challenged by experts in the SEO industry in recent years. Traffic, communication and the customer have all been touted as usurpers to the Internet marketing throne. The points made in each of those things’ favor are well and true, but I do have to remind readers that the arguments do not make the case that content should be forgotten.
I have gone through the same exasperating experience of writing my own blog that barely had any readers. For months, I wrestled with constant disappointment over little traffic, until I swallowed the bitter realization that it was my content that was the problem. I found ten factors that contributed to its overall weakness, and I’d like to share them to fellow bloggers who might be dealing with the same predicament.
1. Derivative Content – As much as I wrote for that blog, committing to a tight schedule to the best of my abilities, none of the posts I published had anything original to offer. Thus, I realized that there needs to be something in the article that makes it stand out among the rest. You need to give visitors a reason to keep visiting your blog instead of a hundred other blogs with the same content.
2. Lack of Identity – Much like having something unique in your content, you also need to have a distinct voice in your writing to set yourself apart. I was just one of the many faceless bloggers in the vast ocean of Internet blogs writing in a monotonous tone that did not display any personality whatsoever. You need to build a connection with readers, and it starts with having an identity they can recognize and relate to.
3. Uninspired Writing – This problem usually stems from the first two, but it merits its own discussion. I did not look to engage any potential readers with my writing style, which was simply just a chore to read. Avoid that pitfall by writing in a way that is easy to understand while also compelling readers to act.
4. Uninteresting Topics – This should be obvious, but even I have to admit to writing about dull topics for a popular keyword. Take the time to read up on what gets people talking and sharing on social media, and tap into that well. Just remember to add something to the conversation and not simply regurgitate what has already been said.
5. Scattered Topics – Another major mistake I made was try and write about a multitude of topics in one article, more than once attempting to place unrelated keywords in a single blog post. I was shifting between one subject to another, losing whatever interested readers I had in the process. So keep each entry focused on one or two topics to sustain your visitors’ attention.
6. Unnecessarily Lengthy Posts – In connection to the previous problem, I would pack as much information as I could to one post, going over a thousand words almost every time. Just like confusing your readers with too many different subjects, going on in length about one particular issue can strain their focus. There are certain topics that call for detailed explanations, but not all of them do.
7. Poor Titles – The title is the first thing that people see, and they will not even bother to read content if the title does not interest them. I had a bad habit of making “poetic” or “clever” titles that obscured the purpose of the post. If the audience needs to get a reference to appreciate the title, that article is bound to be left unread. A good title also helps you ground your post so you don’t veer off into irrelevant topics.
8. No Tangible Benefit – For all the posts I published, any readers I had ultimately received nothing useful after they read my articles. Each piece felt like a waste of time. So approach each one with a clearly defined purpose that leaves your readers with the feeling that they gained something in the end. That will give them a reason to continually seek out your work.
9. Too Focused on SEO – All the best SEO techniques in the world will not amount to any concrete results if the content being read is of poor quality. I can attest to that, having experienced a temporary boost in page rankings after applying everything I had researched about SEO to mediocre posts. I was not able to maintain the high visibility because I could not deliver quality content that encouraged visitors to actually stay.
10. Barely Any Effort– I started blogging only because I wanted to make extra income, investing just enough of my time to produce content even I believed to be average at best. I was perfectly content surviving in mediocrity for months until I realized I was wasting my own time for little reward. Do not let yourself fall into that mindset of complacency because that will guarantee nothing but eventual frustration.
On a final note, I’ve since discontinued that blog, but I learned as much as I could from the experience. You had the patience to read through this article so that means you are willing to learn. Do not give up, and do not stop working to improve.
image credit: angelapaige.com
30 thoughts on “Why Your Blog Posts Do Not Attract Traffic”
Well tips Jared!
The highlights for me personally were the eighth and ninth points.
Interesting, and that’s a fact, that many writers or bloggers are more concerned with SEO rather than the usefulness of their post for readers.
Btw, nice tips and much useful!
Good advice, especially #9. I have Yoast SEO plugin on my site which is always warning me that my language needs to be simplified. Okay, but my posts often contain snippits of texts for language learning purposes, which are vital to include as examples for students.
I can totally relate to what you are saying here. I do my best to not ever force a post to my readers. Also, having something interesting and outside the box of conventional thinking.
Naziman Blogger Malaysia
Number 5,6,9 and 10 is my mistake also. Too focus in SEO and want to make extra income. Beside if i make one post, my post will get too long.
Great post Jared..Even though the post was a bit long I was still engaged and focused on the material you provided. As long as you get your information across then your fine. Great tips.
what great post really that’s very helpful advice content is king yes i totally agree thank for the giving me useful tips
Thanks & Regards
Great points Jared! Especially the 7th point as post title is snapshot of the whole post. It should be so much attractive as majority of people first read the title, make a perception about the entire content then read it fully if they find it interesting. Some time your post is great but you lost attention just because of poor title.
One of the worst things is that people just think about the SEO of the article and write their posts so that the search engines might like them, but not the users. When I see sites like that I rarely come back to visit them a second time!
Good posts btw 🙂
Blogs can gain traffic only if they have Catchy title and a good content with a well determined meta tag description.By considering all these factors one can always be listed on the SERPs as catchy title will attract readers and a good meta tag attracts the search engine.
Jerry D Ross
Good post. It’s easy to fall into any of these issues you mentioned; lack of identity, lack of effort in writing, etc. These are great points to consider and make sure we follow.
Thanks for sharing.
I get that spark of hope when I see comments on my posts. Then I realize everything is spam. You have to just keep posting right? It’s all about balancing SEO with what is actually readable.
Great one Jared. The points 3, 5 and 9 is what hits me hard. I think I need to rethink my writing style and strategy for long term benefits. Thanks for letting us know those stuffs that you learned via your own blogging experience.
Titles are what drag me into reading more! They need to be anything but boring and ordinary! I really enjoy a lengthy post if the quality and content is current and the writing is of a high standard. Staying focused on the topic of the post is critical and not meandering into other areas that are not relevant. Thanks for the tips.
You have shared an awesome article. Blog can get traffic if they have attractive title and good content with well determined meta tag description. These are factors one can listed on the SERP. Meta descriptions are the free advertisements webmasters get to include when their search results are included in a SERP. Thanks for sharing a valuable article.
Great post Jared
That’s very helpful.It’s easy to fall into any of these issues you mentioned.The points 5 and 9 is what hits me hard.When I see sites like this I come back to visit them a second time!
Nice Sharing Jared,
My blog is still new, I need learn something from this post to able to attract readers an traffic to my blog..
This is an excellent post, and I’d just like to add that, when people copy other people’s material, there is also the question of copyright infringement.
As writers we want to protect our own copyrights, so it is especially important for us to respect the copyrights of other writers.
You hit the nail on the head when you talked about Barely Any Effort! This was one of my biggest problems in the past I was only doing just enough to get by just to try & earn some profit. I wasn’t really engaging with my audience & helping them resolve any of their problems because all I was thinking about was money, money, money!
After being frustrated for quite a long time, I had to rethink my focus & put it on them & how I could help them resolve their issues, because that’s what’s more important.
“Content is King” I agree with this phrase and being unique in writing is a must if you want your blog post to have a traffic. I want to add an input to all the readers, write an article based on your experience or with others experience and believe me your post will come out naturally.
I too still go with the ‘Content is the King’ slogan. I have been into writing content for many sites and blogs for a long time now. I concentrate on writing articles which have some relevance to the current world. The articles may be about latest technologies or burning issues. I see to it that I give my best. We win the traffic attention this way.
There could be so many reasons to the fact that a particular does not attract any traffic or attracts very less traffic. All the points you have mentioned in the posts are completely correct. Both the content and the marketing is equally important for a blog or post to generate traffic. Being visible to other bloggers and readers is also a necessary task.
I still believe in the idea of ‘content is king’, because if you really put serious effort into a post, it will incorporate most of the realisations you listed above.
Nice post Jared and I am totally like the way you write this post and specially I like the 7th and 9th point. As I have only a little bit experience of this Blogging world I am confused why my post not get more traffic but after reading this post I klnow what I have to do now. Thanx for giving such innovatives ideas and I think Backlinks also play an important role on increasing traffic.
Great article, and one every aspiring blogger should read. The most important thing above all else is quality of content.
The major reason for the blog posts not attracting traffic is that they are not visible to the audience. Visibility of a particular content or site depends on how well the content is being promoted and if the blogger is using correct social marketing strategy to do so.
What I understand by the post is that the content needs to be all informative. If it fails to satisfy the readers questions then it is a waste of time for the reader as well as the writer. I think this is practical to a great extent, if the readers get disappointed after reading your post then what will make them come back to that post in particular or other articles posted by you. So the writer has to be very careful with what he is writing and for whom he is writing.
I agree with you Alex that the blogger has to be careful while posting his articles and it is right that if the reader is not interested in your blog then he wont be interested in reading any other articles also.Also i agree on the ninth point that over focus on SEO to make income can divert your intention and will not yield quality results.Lengthy articles can be quiet boring for readers and the blogger should focus on a particular specific topic instead of scattering his interest over multiple subjects.
You have shared an awesome article. Blog can get traffic if they have attractive title and good content with well determined meta tag description. Thanx for giving such innovatives ideas and I think Backlinks also play an important role on increasing traffic.
Great post, I think you hit the nail on the head about titles. I think it’s a good idea to craft your headline in a way that will intrigue your readers. You can promise them you are going to solve a problem, but put a little mystery in the title also. Another tip is to make sure your headline conveys a sense of urgency to get them to read it now.
But the thing is bloggers get disappointed when they do write quality content and covering all aspects that are needed to be successful but are still unable to get good traffic.
So i think, there should be one more thing added in the list that is the lost passion to work.
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