12 Blogging Strategies That Will Keep Your Readers Longer On Your Site


12 Blogging Strategies That Will Keep Your Readers Longer On Your SiteEvery blogger lives in dread of a high bounce rate. We all want to keep those readers on our site, perusing content throughout the pages, for as long as possible. After all, we know that the more they read from us the more they like us, and the more they like us the more they send their friends to like us.Here are 12 blogging strategies that will keep your readers longer on your site and lower your bounce rate so the better the chance of making a sale and achieving your goals. Here are twelve  strategies that will keep your readers longer on your website or blog.

Strategies 1-5 – It’s All About How You Write

I. The KIS Principle

While it may sound trite, “keep is simple” is probably the soundest advice a blogger will receive. Readers, no matter their level of education, expertise, or technical prowess want to be able to get the gist of what you’re saying by merely skimming the text.

Forcing your readers to slow down and re-read big words and technical jargon is as good as creating a pop-up box that says, “Don’t bother reading my blog; just go ahead and click that back button on your browser.”

II. Be Human

Remember those high school science textbooks? They were so boring that you’d catch yourself nodding off while studying! Chances are that it was not the content itself that bored you, but the tone and style of the writing.

Even on a technical or niche blog, sounding academic is just plain uninteresting. Readers want to hear from real people, who have thoughts, feelings, and opinions on the facts they present. Before you post, read over your own words to see if your personality comes through at all. If it doesn’t, re-write.

III. Be Succinct

You’ll hear lots chatter about word counts. It should be more than 500 words. Definitely stay under 1200 words. You need enough time to really grab the readers’ attention, but be careful not to drone on so long that you lose them. While suggested word counts are a useful guideline, keep in mind that they are just that – a guideline.

What’s important is that you make your point effectively. Be clear. Be understandable. Use illustrations and examples, but not long, drawn-out stories. Google’s definition of succinct: briefly and clearly expressed.

IV. Break It Up

The longer the sentence, paragraph, or section of written text, the more likely you are to lose someone’s attention.

Write brief sentences. Keep paragraphs short with one main idea. Use headings and subheadings to divide sections/main ideas. Look at what you’ve written and ask yourself, “Is this appealing to the eye?”

V. It’s All In The Title

If your title is ambiguous, unclear, or ridiculously long, many readers will leave before they even begin reading! It’s fine to be witty and clever sometimes, but in the grand scheme of things, readers want to know what a post is about (and decide if it’s relevant for them) with those first few words.

Strategies 6-12 – It’s All About Using The Technology

VI. Related Posts

Say you wrote the most informative, step-by-step post on How to Grow Your Own Herb Garden, and your readers bookmark it for later reference. Don’t you want those readers to stick around and read other great posts you’ve written about herbs, gardening, or other do-it-yourself projects?

Providing links to related posts will draw readers further into your blog, and keep them around longer. This is simpler than ever, with related posts plug-ins available for virtually every blog hosting site.

VII. Top Posts

Attracting a new reader to one post is easy. Convincing that new reader to become a regular reader – not so easy. Readers don’t typically subscribe to a blog until they’ve encountered valuable content on the same blog several times. So your job is to show them where that great content is on their first visit!

Also an easy-to-install plug-in, a list of your top posts (those with the most page views and/or the highest number of comments), should be prominently displayed near the top of your page.

VIII. Free Resources

Have you ever agreed to an hour-long sales presentation of something that you had no intention of buying? Think vacuum sales pitch, time share tours, and the like. It’s hard to turn down an offer of free stuff! (We’re even willing to endure an hour of unpleasantness in order to get our freebies.)

What do you have to offer your readers as a resource? Perhaps a series of posts on a specific topic that can be made into a printable PDF. Maybe a handy list of links to sites that would be useful for your readers. Figure out what you have to offer, and then give it to your readers. You’ll keep them coming back for more!

IX. Subscribers

Subscribers comprise your most loyal followers. They come back post after post, they comment, and they send their friends. Subscribers are invested in you and committed to you, and as such will stay on your site longer, reading with more depth.

So how can you get those who stop by to sign up?

Make your subscription box visible (above the fold, in newspaper speak) and easy to use. Allow your readers to subscribe in the way that’s most comfortable for them – email, RSS, Atom, following, Facebook, etc. Nobody likes being told what to do, so don’t tell your readers there’s only one way to get your content regularly.

X. Navigation Buttons

Most websites and blogs these days have a nice little menu across the top of the page. If you don’t, it’s one more easy plug-in to add! However, what happens when your reader gets to the end of your blog post and s/he wants to read more? Do you think s/he will scroll back up to the top of the page and use the menus to find more interesting fodder? Don’t count on it!

Make site navigation easy from wherever the reader lands on your page. While you don’t need to have the whole fancy menu at the bottom, smaller navigation links should be available. Your job is to make it as easy as possible for any reader to find and view more content.

XI. Be A Good Host(ess)

Think of blogging as being the host(ess) of a party. When you’re having a party, you try to greet people at the door, make small talk with a variety of people, get into deeper conversations with a few, and bid guests farewell when they leave.

If you have a high-traffic blog, it’s impossible to reply to every comment or email you receive. But make an intentional effort to do so with several for each blog post you write. Pay attention to those who comment regularly, and engage in conversation with them in the comments. Even those you are unable to interact with are more likely to stick around for after-dinner coffee if they see you engaging others.

XII. Be A Good Follower

Obviously, you can’t follow everyone who follows you. Nor would you want to. But for those blogs you do read, read thoroughly and leave thoughtful and thought-provoking comments. Not only will you earn the writer’s loyalty, but you will attract loyal followers of that blog over to your own tribe as well.

When it’s all said and done, gaining and keeping a blog following and engaging those readers is an art. It’s a combination of personality, persistence, talent, and technology. These 12 steps will help get you headed in the right direction. The talent part though, and the personality – that’s all up to you!

Krisca C. Te is part of the team that manages Home Loan Comparison, a complimentary home loan comparison service and personal finance blog based in Sydney, Australia. Before she joined HLF, she was an Associate in Deutsche Bank Group under Market and Instruments Control Services

36 thoughts on “12 Blogging Strategies That Will Keep Your Readers Longer On Your Site”

  1. Avatar of Jason Acidre
    Jason Acidre

    I definitely agree with point #4. Creating content specifically for skimmers will entice them more in leaving a comment, as the content is very much readable. It’s also a good signal for readers to bookmark your content, particularly if your post is long yet written in a list form.

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      You are right Jason point #4 is a great way of getting ones attention breaking up your post into segments really do lots of good to me it even reduce the strain on your eyes while reading. Thanks for adding your voice to the debate.

  2. Avatar of Shabnam Sultan

    Nice read i agree withe points mentioned :). Point 4, 6 and 7 are good options.Showing top post or a related post does helps in bringing down the bounce rate of a blog.

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      Thanks Shabnam the reduction of bounce rate is something that we all need to pay some attention to getting our readers to spnet more time on our website is very important and i beleive we should focus more on this.

  3. Avatar of Tessa

    I almost agree with all points. Especially, points 1, 2, 4, 9 & 12 must be follow to reduce bounce rate & to increase visitors time on site. Read a great post. Thanks Lawmacs.

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      Thanks a lot Tessa for your kind words these are the words that inspires me to keep blogging Thanks for taking the time to add your voice to the debate here much much appreciated.

  4. Avatar of Art

    Great tips, I have to say I can be quite lazy and reduce bounce rate by putting parts of my blog entries behind a ‘more’ tag on my personal site.

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      That is another good way to help and reduce the bounce rate on our blog however we all need to focus more on this. Thanks for you comment and a warm welcome to my blog.

  5. Avatar of Petra

    You made some really great points in this article. The one thing I would add to your list, which I don’t think you mention, is showing only the excerpts of blog posts on your homepage. That way, your readers will have to click through to various pages of your blog in order to read the entire article. I think this could definitely be a useful strategy to keep readers on your site for a longer period of time.

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      That too is a valuable point Petra showing excerpts will definately attract readers and entice them to click and then it will increase the time they spent on our blog so the bounce rate will reduce. Thank for the point

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      Hi Tanmay Great to see you here and a very warm welcome to mt blog and i am glad that you found the post useful. Thanks for taking the time to add your voice to the debate here at lawmacs

  6. Avatar of Delena Silverfox

    I agree with Jason. Crafting posts to be attractive to skimmers just makes the environment all the more welcoming for different breeds of readers. The more your blog appeals, the more traffic you have, and the longer it will stay.

    And with #2, keeping it human, you hit the nail on the head. We hated reading most of our school texts because they were so dang BORING! Mix it up, make it exciting or dynamic. There’s something fun and appealing about it, otherwise you wouldn’t be blogging about it! Focus on those things that are fun or fascinating about it to you, and it will come through to your readers.

    Delena

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      You are right Delena we need to write to attract more and more readers an if that means sometimes we need to mix up our tones then so be it i believe that been yourself is the best way to do it after we were all born unique. Just be you

  7. Avatar of DiTesco

    Great tips Gary, definitely all are important for readers to have a better experience when visiting a blog. The KISS principle is something that many ignore yet, that’s the whole idea, keeping it simple 🙂 If I may add one thing, posting with compelling videos is another way to retain a while longer your readers. If you have noticed, my roundups always includes videos and since I started doing so, it decreased my bounce rate.

    BTW, not sure if I mentioned it before but cool skin… Guess Hesham got to you too 🙂

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      Thanks Ditesco the KISS principle is one that i believe we should all follow and i agree with you including videos in our blog post is a great way to attract attention and lengthen the time spent on our website. Yes you are right Thesisawesome is the missing ingredients for thesis.

  8. Avatar of Aswani

    Great piece of stuff. We all hope to see our readers stay on our site for long and thus reduce the bounce rate. The tips shared above can be very useful in achieving the same. I am following most of the tips as mentioned above and I hope to make it better through addition for few more widgets like related posts, top posts widget. Hopefully very soon. Thanks for such great piece of info. Keep writing!

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      Thanks Aswani reducing bounce rate should be one of our mian goals keeping readers glue to our website is very important and is area where we need to focus. Thanks for your comment.

  9. Avatar of Web Design India
    Web Design India

    I agree with you on all the point, thank for sharing such informative post! I just wanted to make a quick comment to say I appreciate your efforts on writing such great posts.

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      Thanks for your kind words sharing of information is the prime reason for every bloggers i will continue to do that as much as i can thanks for your input much appreciated.

  10. Avatar of Fran Aslam the Onlinewriter
    Fran Aslam the Onlinewriter

    Liked reading your post. You have used all the strategies that you have talked about in this post.

    I will keep these in my mind and apply it too.

    Thank you

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      Thanks Fran i am happy to know that you find these post very helpful this is one of my Guest writers who has written a brilliant post here. Thanks for taking the time to read and comment.

  11. Avatar of Ashvini

    Hi Gary.
    Why don’t you have a convert to pdf button on the post? 😉
    This is one of the post, I would love to take for offline reading. These tips are solid and worth reading all the time. Though I do everything that you have mentioned here but I still read it twice just to make sure that nothing was missed.

    Great post… keep writing.

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      You have made a valid point Ashvini i have beem comtemplating about writing an e-book for the past couple of months now so it is something worth thinking about. Thanks for adding your voice to the debate here.

  12. Avatar of harryseo5

    Thanks for taking this opportunity to discuss this, I feel fervently about this and I like learning about this subject.

    1. Avatar of lawmacs

      Glad you feel this way about the topic and i do hope you come back and continue to participate in the debate here your visit is much appreciated.

  13. Avatar of packing peanuts
    packing peanuts

    thanks Lawmacs..i really enjoy visiting your post..it’s really give me lot’s of ideas and this time i found this very interesting in the way of creating good blogs and how to use this 12 strategies..thanks for details..

  14. Avatar of siding cost

    I enjoyed reading your article, i gives me a lot of idea and techniques for my blog… i always follow your blog…. to get more idea…. you’re awesome you have a brilliant mind… thanks for sharing you’re great talent…. you’re the best man…..

  15. Avatar of hardie board siding cost
    hardie board siding cost

    Thanks Lawmacs, your blog is really cool your idea is cool.. the template is very nice… you’ve just made a perfect blog… I really admired your blogging techniques and your idea to get more readers to get high traffic… some times I’ve wonder how my mind can be like yours…It could be happened?? lol thats a freaky question….

  16. Avatar of siding cost

    For me the best idea to keep readers longer in your site… Knowing the test of your audience… If blogger know about it readers will always keep coming back to you site…Thanks lawmac for sharing this 12 blogging strategy, i will always keep this for my new aspect of my blogging strategy..

  17. Avatar of Rahul Chowdhury

    Thanks for the tips man, I’m gonna focus on these, but can you tell me the names of some plugins for WordPress that will keep my readers engaged?

  18. Avatar of DreamDildos

    I think a catchy title, especially lists or “top tens” tend to be the best traffic drivers to blog sites, and those posts tend to be retweeted and posted on Facebook.

  19. Avatar of Cherry Creek real estate
    Cherry Creek real estate

    Having a killer headline is really important in your blog post. You should make an eye catching title that would create interest to your readers to read your post. It’s very effective in increasing site traffic to your site. More site traffic means more chances of getting a sale from your readers.

  20. Avatar of Adam

    When writing my articles, I do the KIS approach. I learned the KIS(S) method year ago, while in college. Also, using shorter sentences and about threee to four sentences per paragraph is perfect.

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