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Four Reasons Your Business Blog Isn't Getting Traffic

There are four major reasons your business blog's bounce rate may be high.

1. Bad Traffic - People aren't looking for or expecting what they get when they enter your blog.

2. Too Complicated - People get lost because there's too much going on and it's not easy to see where to start.

3. Poor Performance - Slow loads, error messages, unprofessional content, etc...

4. WTF - Visitors arrive at your homepage or blog post page and promptly say "WTF!" because the page is unorganized, off-topic, cluttered, etc.

Fixing each reason is easy, just follow these tried & tested tips...

Bad Traffic

How to Identify
Check how much traffic is being sent by weak advertising programs like directed traffic (people who are forced to go to your site), pop-under ads and unrelated paid search ads. If there's a lot, you may want to re-think these programs. Look at your site statistics package's search keywords report. If they are unrelated to your site, you've found the culprit.

The Fix
Make sure that links and traffic sources match the message on your page. In other words, create headlines and excerpts that succinctly describe the blog post and make sure any anchor text links used in blog promotion efforts accurately reflect the content of the referenced blog post or page.

Too Complicated

How to Identify
This one is hard to diagnose because your blog probably seems simple to you. You've got a homepage, a blog page and regular pages, right? Not exactly... You also have archive pages, author pages, tag pages, sidebar items (widgets), and perhaps a few other types of pages depending on your theme. So, what to do?
The Fix
Fixing a complicated page requires you to identify and eliminate unnecessary options, widgets, links, graphics, and aesthetics. Look at your blog's page structure & navigational system from the perspective of your reader. Give them what they want easily and quickly.

Poor Perfomance

How to Identify
Use a free service such as Google Webmaster Tools to identify broken links, slow loading pages and other potential errors which detract from visitor experience. Or, make sure your browser is set to show page load activity. Then, go through each section of your blog, each type of page, and watch the bottom of your browser to see if there is something that has to load which slow down page load time.

The Fix
Once you have identified the page loading problems, whether it is a poorly written widget or a over coded header.php, get someone who knows CSS and pHp to change the code and speed things up. If Google Webmaster Tools identifies lots of broken links, get to work redirecting those links.

The WTF Factor

How to Identify
Of all the problems, this is the hardest one to overcome and the most common. Why? Because many business blogs are crafted by a staff that is either overworked or under-trained (or both) and assume that their blog is easy navigate and their content is sufficient. Here's how to identify WTF problems in four simple but probably painful steps:

The Fix
1. Have someone you trust read a few of your key posts & pages out loud.

2. Ask them, "What do you think this page or post is about, what would you do next?"

3. Allow them to navigate the blog and notice if they can find the content they are looking for.

4. Let them debrief you with an honest appraisal of your business' blog and be willing to listen.

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About the Author

Mike Seidle, Virtual Payment Systems, Inc
5348 North Tacoma
Indianapolis, IN 46220

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