Convert Your Audience With Attractive Blog Content
Published By Lilach Bullock on June 27 2017
Blog posts that get a huge amount of traffic are like children: sometimes they’re planned and sometimes they’re happy accidents. However they happen to come about, such pages shouldn’t be taken for granted.
They are your unicorns: ultra-rare pages that through a combination of luck and design start hoovering up vast reams of web traffic.
It could be an opinionated rant against everything you hate in your industry that resonated particularly well. It could be a confessional in which you admitted to all the things you suck at which went down better than expected. Or it could be a comprehensive guide that you spent weeks plotting, keyword researching and crafting in forensic detail. Its resultant success came as no surprise to you because that was the game plan all along.
The point is, it doesn’t particularly matter what you did to notch up all the repeat traffic that puts your serious blog posts to shame. What’s important is that you have that traffic in the form of a steady stream of visitors who are alighting on your site and reading your words.
They’re here and for the duration of your unusually popular post they’re not going anywhere. What happens afterwards though is for you and them to decide. As the author of the post and owner of your domain, you are the hand that guides the reader in the direction they should go next, be it to a related post or to submit their details to access more awesome content. And as the reader of the post, it is up to each visitor to respond to your entreaty.
Do your job well and there should be no hard sell; the reader will want to stick around and join the party. Do it wrong, or worse still don’t do it all, and the only place they’ve got to go is back to where they started, which more often than not is Google. They return to Google and you’ve lost them for good.
How to make your blog posts convert
It’s a cruel fact that your most popular posts are often the ones that have the lowest selling intent. In some cases, the initial post wasn’t written with commercial considerations in mind, but rather to unleash. Sometimes these unfettered and unfocused posts are the ones that go viral and wind up reeling in shedloads of readers who otherwise wouldn’t have stopped by your blog. So what do you do with this spate of new readers you’ve suddenly acquired?
Well, one good thing about blog posts is that they’re easy to edit. You can repurpose a blog after the fact, so to speak, without ruining your SEO and alienating new readers. This doesn’t mean you should rewrite the entire post and mislead readers who click on the title expecting something else altogether. That’s a surefire way to send the bounce rate skyrocketing and your SERPs plummeting.
You can make edits to existing content, be it to incorporate new information or to improve its flow, but don’t go overboard. That post, for whatever reason, has landed in the Goldilocks zone where viral content lies. Not too complex and not too frothy but pitched just right so as to attract the attention of search engines and readers alike.
Making drastic changes to your content might be a no-no, but that’s not to say you can’t enhance the layout and formatting. Consider converting your blog post into a landing page, one that does away with sidebars and other distractions and which contains a clear call to action and a singular goal.
While you’re improving your blog post, consider adding images or graphics to further enhance it and to emotionally compel readers to take action. And while you’re at it, check how your page looks on mobile, compress any images that are slowing it down and remove elements that are detracting from the mobile experience.
If your blog post is not particularly salesy, and can’t justifiably be turned into a landing page, you can still improve its conversion rate.
Instead of inserting a conventional call to action at the bottom, why not add a short video? It’s common for creators of viral YouTube videos to retrospectively add a thank you at the end complete with links to the content viewers should check out next and an exhortation to subscribe.
What’s to stop you from doing similar with a high traffic blog post? Keep it short, upbeat, informal and not too pushy; the aim is to convey something of your personality – the personality of the person who wrote that awesome piece of content that the internet just can’t seem to get enough of.
Whether you ask your audience nicely to forward the article to a friend, to subscribe to your blog or to check out your other work is your prerogative. The main thing is that you do something rather than leave your blog post to end abruptly. Anyone who’s got it in them to read to the very end of your blog has already given you their attention; it shouldn’t take too much persuasion for them to give you their email address or a little more of their time.
If you’re camera shy or have a face for podcasting, skip the video idea and simply publish a short update in the conclusion to your post, one which expresses modest surprise at how well it’s done and guides readers to where they can check out more of your work.
Depending on the nature of your business, you may be able to do more than simply generate leads with your high traffic blog posts – you might be able to outright sell. If you run an ecommerce store, for example, featuring a couple of products in your blog post provided they’re relevant or linking to them in the keywords is a simple way to turn readers into customers.
You could also use a special offer such as a discount voucher to entice readers. Remember, the conversion rate of a high traffic blog post is almost always going to be lower than that of a properly optimised landing page. It doesn’t matter though: all you need to do is convert a fraction of that traffic to make it profitable.
When you create a happy accident and conjure a blog post that gets inordinately high amounts of visitors, don’t just sit there mesmerised by it – do something with it. Unicorns don’t come along often. When they do show up, capture some of their magic and use it to transform your post into a high value page that converts all day long.