18 Best Blog Tips: New Ways to Promote Your Blog, Increase Traffic, and More!

After six years of blogging, I’ve compiled eighteen of my best blog tips for you including how to promote blog posts and ways to increase traffic. I’ve learned a lot from the school of hard knocks. Maybe this will help keep you going until 2023!

18 Best Blog Tips

The first time I hit publish was in spring of 2011 as an attempt to build an author’s platform. I had an idea for a snarky book about living in Boulder and was told I needed to blog. Back then I was a hunter who pecked each key with her index finger and spent days typing each post. Editing killed me.

18 best blog tips learned through six years of blogging:

All of these tips may help you to engage readers and increase traffic. Most of them I learned by trial and error. I’m still learning, believe me.

Write in your own voice.

I write the way I talk. This includes slang when appropriate which is pretty much in every dang post. I have omitted profanity where I didn’t think it would add anything to the story and have *included cuss words when I needed to be truthful about how I felt.

Try not to over polish your writing since it kills the natural tone. Your readers will find it harder to get to know you if your words sound like an encyclopedia.

“What’s that?”

I mean, Wikipedia.

There will be highs and lows.

Highs:

I started high by winning three Freshly Pressed the first year and another two years later. For you new bloggers out there, Freshly Pressed was the original WordPress editor’s pick before Discover replaced it. The rush of comments and views exhilarated and inspired me. The awards gave me confidence in my writing.

Featured on Freshly Pressed

Low: At the end of December 2014, my views were exactly the same as 2013’s. The year’s top post was An Open Letter to My Boobs, and of all time was What’s in Your Future? Both won Freshly Pressed. I wrote a satirical post combining them with the complaint about my flat views called, I Predict More Stories about Boobs in 2015.

High: When I awoke the New Year’s Eve morning, I already had 100 views. I wondered if my lurid title drew readers. I felt guilty about the bait and switch title until I checked my top posts. The new one had less than twenty hits, but an old post about the song, Happy Birthday being owned by Time Warner was shared on Reddit in the TIL (Today I learned) category and blew up with 49,000 views in one day. It went viral!

An entire year worth of views on the day I complained about it. Ironic or what?

Then came the resounding sound of crickets.

The lows:

WordPress blew up with millions of new bloggers. Everyone has a blog. The number of editor picks diminished. I have yet to be Discovered. *drums fingers on keyboard*

The spotlight swung from blogging to Pinterest, Snap Chat, and Instagram. Podcasts and YouTube share the stage. With so much quick entertainment out there, bloggers have to throw an elbow to compete for time.

Can’t beat ’em? Join the fun!

Share your blog on social media.

Join Facebook blog promotion groups, Pinterest group boards, and Twitter hashtags and that’s only naming a few ways to promote your blog. Make sure you have your social media linked up to share when you post, especially Twitter. That way, when someone shares your hard work, your username is included in the tweet and you can thank them.

Be sure to link up your social media under Sharing in your dashboard, especially Twitter. That way, when someone shares your hard work, your username is included in the tweet and you can thank them.

Ask to join Continue reading

An Open Letter to My Boobs

Dear Bionic Boobs,

I know you’ve been adjusting to your new digs since the reconstruction surgery seven months ago. I’ve protected you from wild elbows, supported you with a bra, and exercised you by smooshing you girls together. (Doctor’s orders.) You seem happy enough and pretty perky.

I do have some concerns.

One night, I looked down and you had wandered off to the sides of my chest. You left four inches between you two. I almost had a heart attack. I thought I’d torn something while vacuuming.  As you know, I’ve started wearing a sport’s bra to bed to corral you at night, so I don’t wake up and freak out.  I wish you girls would stick together.

Although you’re shaped like hamburger buns and aren’t huge by any means, you weigh more than my old boobs. In fact, you’re a little on the hefty side. The doctor suggested some exercises to build muscles in my back to keep from hunching over.

I thought I’d never need to wear a bra again, but apparently some of your sisters have sagged. I’ve been instructed to wear one when I’m active. Bummer. You’re a little wrinkly when you’re just hanging out, but I refuse to get a fat transfer. You’ll have to get used to that.

You look totally fake and I’m sure some people will stare and roll their eyes this summer. They’ll think I had a boob job. I can always wear this t-shirt. Continue reading

My Father the Madman

Dad and Mom as newlyweds 

I can still see the blue smoke swirling above my dad’s head as he puffed on a pipe while reading the Sunday newspaper. Sometimes he entertained my sister Patty and me by blowing rings that lingered, then floated to the ceiling and disappeared. The sweet scent of pipe tobacco filled the living room of our small apartment along with classical music which resonated from the speaker on the record player.  Patty and I lounged on the white wool carpet while giggling at the comic strips.

He used a large magnifying glass to show us how color is separated during the printing process. We gasped in amazement upon the discovery of the tiny dots of red, yellow, and blue that blended to create the colorful funny pages. One time, he gave us each an egg filled with Silly Putty and flattened it out, then pressed it onto our favorite strip. We could see the duplicated image on its sticky surface. Back then it seemed like magic! Mom would fuss about the lint he would pick up on his black trousers after sitting on the floor with us.

Continue reading

What’s In Your Future?

When I discovered that the Chinese New Year begins on January 23rd, the first thought that popped into my head was, “Whoa! Another new year, another chance for a do-over!” The second was, “We should go out for a Chinese dinner Monday night.” The third was, “Oh wow! I should check out my Chinese horoscope!” Then it occurred to me that I hadn’t even checked my astrological horoscope for 2012.horoscopes Astrological signs

My fascination with astrology started in the 7th grade when a group of my friends and I walked from school to the neighborhood drug store. The glass display case we dashed to was filled with penny candy. After gazing at the myriad of choices, we each selected our favorite sweets. Then we discovered a cup on top of the counter filled with colored scrolls printed with astrological signs and horoscopes. They prophesied the future for the whole month! One of my friends knew all about them and we deciphered which sign we were. As an Aries, I was pretty excited about being a ram and a leader, but I wasn’t so crazy about the whole head-butting thing. Continue reading

Getting into Character

halloween2012

I anticipate Halloween more than any other holiday because I can be a kid again. As a child, I loved playing dress-up and remember the lovely gowns in our costume box. When trying on these voluptuous dresses with the crinoline skirts, I felt utterly transformed like Cinderella going to the ball – even if it took 5 safety pins to get the top to stay up! On Halloween night, my friends wore sheets to become ghosts or were super heroes complete with a tablecloth cape. My mother was a seamstress so my sister, brother, and I wore get-ups she sewed after dinner on week nights. One of my favorites was a witch costume she made from a McCall’s pattern. My mother sent the cape, dress, and hat with red braids to my daughter Courtney who ran around the house in it for months before the holiday. Soon it was worn in shreds as she cast spells with the words, “Spit, spat, wallerstat.” (I still have no idea where those words came from!) My sister’s favorite was a big black cape with a humongous hood. My mother made my brother a silver and black suit one year. He painted his face, glued on pointy ears and became The Metallic Alien. We proudly wore our costumes to beg for treats on frighteningly cold All Hallow’s Eve.

Decades later I still enjoy dressing up. Now instead of one box, we have a storage room in our basement full of unusual clothing collected through the years. Some hang on makeshift racks.  Costumes I sewed for my own children  along with many others fill containers to the brim. Continue reading