In my first installment of the Bounce Rate Defined Series, Your Irrelevant SEO, I went over irrelevant seo and why it matters. Today we’re talking about making your blog sticky.
What is sticky?
Well, when friends drop by your home for a visit, offering them a really hot cuppa coffee, or tying them up and refusing to let them go, are great ways to make them stick around for a while.
I mean it’s nice to have visitors, right? People who will pay attention as you climb up on your soap box and spill what’s on your mind. People who will give feedback and tell their friends about you. People who will remember you as the go-to person for a special something or about a specific topic.
What does being sticky have to do with bounce rate?
Well, let’s look at the home analogy again. No matter how much coffee you offer me, I’m not sticking around if you don’t entice me to.
But, offer me a slice of cheesecake to go with my coffee, take me out onto the patio to enjoy my cake while you tell me something I need to know or just to crack me up, and I’ll stick around for a while.
Give your visitors a reason to do more than read, comment, share and run… and you’re really rocking your blog.
Why does being sticky matter?
You may be thinking “Having people share my posts to attract new readers is more than enough”.
Yes, everyone wants to grow their audience, but what’s the point if they just leave when they’re done with you?
How do you know they’ll be back?
And when it comes to bounce rate…well Google will rank you higher if your visitors are visiting more than one page on your blog. This signals to Google that you must be an authority in your niche if visitors are reading your other pages, cruising your other links.
So how do we make our blogs sticky? Here’s a list of ideas. Things I’ve done on the old blog and for clients’ websites, things I’ve been implementing here now and over the next few days.
Ways to make your blog sticky.
- Meaty content that makes your visitor want to read/laugh/learn more.
- Internal links within your posts to related posts. Make it easy for your visitors to soak up more of your great content.
- Great headlines that will make your reader want to check out that related post.
- A thumbnail related posts section below your share buttons. Think nRelate or SexyBookmarks’ Recommendation module. This adds thumbnails from related posts right under your social buttons, a great next stop for readers after they share.
- Decorate your home darlin’. Nothing but text is hard on the eyes. Utilize http://creativecommons.org/ or http://gratisography.com/ to easily find photos you can use freely in your posts.
- Add a related posts widget to the sidebar.
The Extras That Will Keep Visitors Tied To Your Blog
- As you read this post, a footer banner shows up. That banner is hard to miss and yet not annoying. Best of all, it’s promoting something awesome on another page of this blog. If your reader clicks through, it helps to reduce your bounce rate.
- Take a look at my sidebar. The very first box is an invite to receive my posts in your inbox. Notice there’s no field to add your email? It’s a picture and it reads click here. That will take the visitor to a signup page, hosted here on this blog. And once they’ve submitted there info, there’s a link to take them back to the blog.
- Scroll lower down and you’ll find there’s a free ebook on becoming a mom entrepreneur (revised 2013) available in the sidebar. When you click on the Image, it will take you to a page with an excerpt from the ebook with a link to download it. There’s also a link on that page that take you to an infographic embedded on a page on this blog.
Each one of these elements lead your reader to a 2nd page. This signals to Google that your visitors are staying long and cruising your site. You my friend deserve a lower bounce rate.
Have any suggestions on ways to entice visitors to visit other pages on your blog? Please share in the comments section!
Next installment of the Bounce Rate Defined Series, we’re looking at how to speed up your blog. If you haven’t already…signup for notification of the next post in your inbox.
Thanks for joining me and do a sistah a solid and share this post please!
Photos: Honey © Sergii Moscaliuk
Woman Whispering Secret © Scott Griessel