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How to Increase Traffic to Your Online Content
Writing is a Profession Just Like Any Other, It Requires Strategic Planning to Produce Positive Results
Are you a professional writer?
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Why Strategy is Important for Writers Looking to Profit from their Work
If you are a writer who wants to make an income from your passion, you must treat your writing like you would any job.
Just like a doctor wouldn't do an operation without all the necessary preparations, writers should not begin writing until they have strategized their approach.
What kind of writer do you want to be? Who do you want reading your work? Do you prefer fiction writing or more factual pieces?
These are all questions that successful writers have answered, and then have used to create a framework for their practice.
It is crucial that you view your writing as a business. Ask yourself, "if I was running a store, what would I do to bring people into my store?" View your writing portfolio as a brick and mortar business, and concentrate on keeping a clean and tidy shop.
Lots of people want to be writers, many people try to be writers, but a small fraction of those individuals succeed at writing as a source of income.
So what separates the writers who earn steady income and writers who can't seem to generate any steady traffic?
I'll give you a hint, it's not talent.
With the Plethora of Writing Online, How Will You Make a Name for Yourself?
Find Your Niche
No, talent isn't what separates successful writers from unsuccessful writers.
Although talent plays a part in determining whether or not you will be able to attract readers who keep coming back to your work, larger factors that contribute to your success as an online writer include the specific topics you choose to right about, as well as the way you approach writing about those topics.
Do you enjoy writing arts and crafts articles? If so, you have a lot of competition. Try searching what arts and crafts articles are already published, and find a unique way that you can approach the topic.
For example, an article about how to knit is going to have much more competition than an article on how to knit a patterned sweater. Another example of an article that would have a higher success rate is an article such as "Money Saving Tips for People with Food Allergies" instead of "Ways to Save Money at the Supermarket".
By narrowing down your audience, you can actually increase your traffic, because you offer readers a unique point of view that other writers don't offer. The less competition you are competing against, the more likely you are to attract larger amounts of traffic.
Is Your Writing Intriguing? Is Your Writing Unique?
Define and Target Your Audience
Before you beginning writing online, you need to ask yourself one question, who are you writing for? Obviously the first person should be you, but who do you want to read your material?
If you don't know your audience, your readers will be able to tell. This is what separates the writers who succeed and the writers who don't.
Once again, picture your writing as a business. If you were a paper company, would you try to target companies that use a lot of paper, or would you target small businesses who pride themselves on their eco-friendly paperless system?
It seems like a no-brainer, but I have seen writers make this mistake far too often. With the plethora of analytics available today, not only can you make informed decisions to help you build an audience that is reliable, but you can track the progression of your traffic.
Who is reading your material more? Is it women or men? What age range do you receive the most traffic from? What areas of the globe seem to come to your pieces most?
This information is vital to your success as an online writer. Don't just dismiss analytics because they confuse you, or because you don't know how to use them to your benefit. Ask questions, post on forums, and learn the ins and outs of these figures - after all, that is what they are there for in the first place.
Just Like Any Other Art Form, Writers Must Find Their Own Style That Makes Them Unique
Did this hub provide you with any information you didn't know before?
Encourage Readers to Keep Coming Back
Your focus shouldn't solely be on gaining traffic - a key part of being a successful online writer is attracting readers who have a desire to keep coming back for more.
Are you writing in a way that does this? To you structure your articles in a way that is intriguing, engaging and informative? If you aren't, then odds are you will only be attracting "one time shoppers".
This doesn't mean that you don't have the right people reading what you write - it means that you aren't writing in a way that makes them rely on you for that information.
You could be the most knowledgeable person about a certain subject and still not gain returning readers if you don't focus on the way you structure your writing, as well as focus on the information you provide.
Here are a few ways to encourage those who read your work to become regular visitors:
- Be specific; provide in-depth information readers are not likely to find elsewhere, and find ways to stand out from the crowd. (I would tell you examples of ways to stand out from the crowd, but that would defeat the point since as a writer, the way we each stand out is completely unique to us all).
- Avoid fluff; although word count is important, quality is far more important, so 600 words of useful information beats out 1300 words that mean nothing every time.
- Show your readers who you are as a writer; long gone are the days where neutral pieces were preferred. Because of the quantity of information available, showing your personality through your words can be one of the best ways to build a connection with your target audience.
- Use calls to action at the end, but don't be lame. Every writer knows the importance of ending with a "call to action", however unlike other professions, the best call to action for writers are ones that blend into the piece and leave the reader wanting just a little bit more.
Social media is also a great way to find people who may be interested in what you write. Social media isn't just about sharing your writing with friends, it is about sharing your work with the world.
Successful socia media use targets authoritative social media users with huge followings. Look for bloggers, businesses and organizations who share your interests and then share your work with them. Utilize hashtags and learn how to best use each social media platform to its fullest.
Discover What You Want to Write - Think About Who Will Want to Read It
© 2014 Kathleen Odenthal