How to build a network of regular commenters on your blog
It’s completely natural to want comments on your blog posts. Seeing 0 comments on your blog post can feel like someone is holding up a sign saying ‘boring don’t bother read this!’
You probably started your blog full of nervous enthusiasm, eager to write about your crafty thoughts and ideas and promote your online shop. But do you find that more when you check your posts you often see 0 comments. So how can you encourage more people to comment? This weeks craft blogging tips post will help get your blog buzzing!
- Traffic – you need to build up your online presence. Using social networks can help as well as looking at improving seo.
- Comment on other people’s blogs! Find blogs you enjoy and become a regular commenter yourself – the author and other regular readers will come and check out your blog sooner or later.
- Respond to comments you do get – even if the person who comments doesn’t come back and read it -the next person to comment will see and may be encouraged to join in the conversation.
- Ask questions! “What do you think?”, “Have you ever found yourself in a similar situation?” , “What colour should I make the next one?” , “please share you xyz links” – The question should be relevant to the body of the post of course.
- Write posts that link to other bloggers or shop owners, like treasuries (Folksy Fridays!) and interviews. Let them know by emailing or commenting on their blog, more often than not a blogger will come and say thank you for the link. If you are lucky they may write a little post letting their readers know about the feature, or even add it to their list of press mentions. Any links from relevant sites back to your own will improve seo and give your blog readership a boost.
- Add an RSS feed of your favoruite bloggers to your sidebars and aim to comment on at least a few posts on a daily basis. Read this post on Craft Blog UK all about how blog rolls can help with networking (it’s old but the principles still apply!)
- Network, network, network. Blogging falls into the social media category of running a business so networking is important. Facebook, twitter, forums – you need to share your links in lots of relevant circles. More people visiting your posts will not immediatly result in more comments but if they are people within your niche market it’s more likely they will be actively interested in what you have to say (and more likely to want to buy your work!)
- Think outside the craft box. Where do people that will like your work and enjoy your posts hang out online – use google to find related forums. Search for forums on a particular topic. Having links going back to your blog from these relevant sites is excellent ‘link juice’ for increasing your visibility with search engines as well as bringing direct traffic.
- Make a profile up on as many networks as you can – most will allow you to add a link. Do be careful not to come across as a spammer when commenting on threads – many of these forums will be tight knit groups, try to find the ones you actually like the look of and feel like you could make some online friends – get involved and be chatty, it’s about building a network of people who will regularly come and visit your blog. If you have a link in your profile, or signature then you wont have to leave a link every time, people can click if they are interested.
- Follow a bloggers commenting rules as well as forum and social network guidelines about when, where and how often it is acceptable to post links.
- Write interesting content! (Doh!) How do you know what’s interesting? Use google analytics to check the activities of your visitors. Do they click through from a link, stay 5 seconds and leave? If so you are either promoting in the wrong place to the wrong people or you need to make your blog posts more appealing – think about the first paragraph and leading image, this is the one that will hook them in.
- Give people the opportunity to share your posts – blogger and wordpress both have widgets and plugins available for adding facebook likes and twitter share buttons or use www.addthis.com
NB! Comments themselves can also be good for seo as search engines will notice the relavant keywords in each comment. However, it is important to have good spam protection as spammy comments on your blog linking to spammy websites will work against your seo efforts and you may find your blog is downgraded by google. Your readers will also think you don’t care if you allow spam to remain in your comments – so be vigilent!
As in tip number 4 up there I wanted to ask the bloggers amongst you a question –
Do you get demotivated when no-one comments on a post or do you see blogging as an enjoyable activity regardless of who is reading and commenting?