It is Friday folks, and time for another set of questions and answers. Next week I will tap the questions that were sent via email, so if you sent one stay tuned.
If you want to ask a question, you can do that via the comments section on this post.
1. James Madara asks:
What are the best ways to attract readers to a new blog? How many posts should you have before attracting visitors?
Unfortunately there isn’t a list with the best ways to attract readers that would work on all new blogs. In other words, you will need to try a wide range of methods to see what works with your blog and niche, and what does not work.
A good place to get started is our Promotion category, and the Website Traffic Series.
If you have some money to spend on the promotion of your new venture, check the article 7 Ways to Promote your Site with a Bit of Money.
As for the number of posts that you should have published before attracting the visitors, I would say that 10 is a good number, and 5 the minimum you wanna go with.
Make sure those initial posts are top notch as well, because people will not give you the benefit of the doubt.
2. Yawza asks:
What type of security measures are taken for DBT to prevent browsing of subfolders.
If your website is hosted on a Linux server (and it should!) you just need to insert the following line on the .htaccess file:
3. Rarul Bansal asks:
After blogging for 2 years, I am thinking on making my blog my multi-author blog. Of course, all co-author will get revenue share but I am worried about readers. Will this change turn them off? We know that many top blogs are multi-author but they are all famous blogs like TechCrunch.
My blog is very small and also my co-authors are not so experienced. So please let me know what do you think about my decision?
It depends on the topic of your blog and on your writing style.
If your topic is pretty generic (say technology or finance) and if your writing style is neutral, bringing new authors aboard should not turn off the current audience.
If your topic is more connected with personal experiences (say personal development), however, and if your writing style is very idiosyncratic, then you would need to be more careful on the decision of bringing more authors.
Keep in mind, though, that the result of this decision is more closely connected with the experience and writing skills of the authors that you will bring to your team. I have seen very personal blogs that successfully introduced new authors because their content was outstanding, therefore readers rejoiced.
So the key factor would be making sure that whomever you are going to get as co-author will add value to the blog.
4. Cherran asks:
Do you think paid traffic (CPC or anyother ads) can be used to grow a blog’s traffic steadily?
In theory yes. But you would need to have very big pockets for that. Someone with a marketing budget of $10,000 monthly, for example, would be able to grow the traffic to a blog steadily only using PPC ads.
In practice, as you probably know, very few companies have such pockets, so the answer for the rest of us is “no.”
Even if you had a good money to spend on promotion, I would encourage you to use that money to hire some good writers and to put some outstanding content on the blog. Over the long run, as far as traffic and links are concerned, nothing beats quality content.
That being said, PPC and banner ads do can be used on the launch phase of any blog or website. They are good to send an initial flux of traffic, and to put a small reader base in place. Think about 1 to 3 months, after that you want to have traffic coming from organic sources.
5. Kelly asks:
As most bloggers do, I spend many hours researching, writing, answering email, responding to comments, etc. I’m seriously considering adding a “donate” option at my site. Do you think this will turn people off?
It might turn some people off, but they would be the minority.
One problem with that monetization method, however, is that it only works on particular niches. Personal development is a good example, because those blogs usually help readers with important issues on their lives, hence they feel more compelled to contribute financially to the blog.
If you think your content does help people on many ways, however, you could give it a try regardless of your niche. At the worst of the scenarios you won’t make any money, and you will just remove the tip jar after a while.
6. Medical Transcription asks:
1.) Sometimes I am noticing that you and your colleagues are making typos deliberately like “becomeing” “gasmes” etc. Is it a SEO move concentrating on typos in search words?
2.) How many times do you proofread as I could see errors creeping in on multiple occasions like this one on this post “If you are a RSS footer plugin?” (I think I’m not hurting you.) I remember you saying earlier that you do it two times. Is it that you’re becoming blinded to your own mistakes?
1) There are some SEOs that target common typos. But the examples you mentioned were not deliberate . The “becomening” one was my mistake. Despite my own advice of proof reading everything twice, I often times need to rush posts and end up publishing some typos. The “gasmes” one came from one of my writers on Daily Bits, and he got fired for that! (nah just joking)
Anyway to give you a more concrete answer, targeting misspellings is an advanced SEO tactic, and sometimes it works, but I don’t think it is worth spending time there unless you want to specialize on that.
2) When I proof read, I do it twice. That is what I recommend every one to do as well. Sometimes, however, I get pressed between too many projects and things to do, so I end up neglecting the proof reading part. Shame on me, I know.
I will try harder to avoid typos in the future, as I know you guys are watching me .
7. SEO Genius asks:
My website has been running for around about 9 months now, with in this time i have focused on getting high ranks for certain keywords.
However with lack of motivation being my top priority due to low levels of traffic and no money coming in from my website, although i have monetized the website i am wondering whether it is a normal occurance for the first 12 months of a blog running to have no money coming in from the website?
I am also finding it hard to monetize my site, as most advertising programs such as text link ads are built for some sort of blogging website where as mine uses normal html and css with PHP it is manually updated instead of using wordpress or any other software, can you recommend to me any programs which you have used or been recommended or highly appraised which would be easy to install on my website and could help with monetizing my site.
It is normal for websites not to make any money on the first 12 months of existence. That is when the authors decide to not monetize them and prioritize the traffic growth, however.
In other words, the traffic at least should be there. After 12 months I would aim for 5,000 daily page views. If you are not even close to that number I would reconsider my strategies.
As for the monetization part, most programs support all types of websites. You mentioned Text Link Ads. As long as you support PHP (any Linux server should) you can install them on your website. They are not built for any specific blogging platform.
So if the traffic is there, the monetization options are plenty.
8. Dave re-asks:
Update to my question: I’m now noticing that the WordPress-inserted “more” tag is not sending abbreviated text out my RSS feed. My bad – I thought that was the case, that it was just like a text summary break, only I could decide where the break happened.
Now it makes perfect sense why my feed subscription is much higher than traffic on the site. So my question remains: how to drive traffic to the site without arbitrarily using feed summaries.
There aren’t many thing that you can do to make RSS subscribers visit your website. They use an RSS readers exactly because they don’t want to have to browse each of their favorite sites individually.
You could try engaging the audience a bit more, by asking questions for example, to encourage them to visit the website either to leave a comment or to read other readers’ comments.
That being said, I don’t think those methods would have a noticeable impact.
So overall you just need to live with the fact that RSS subscribers will read most of your content on their RSS reader.
Does this mean that perhaps you should offer partial feeds or no feeds at all? I don’t think so, because those subscribers would probably just skip your content altogether (and not visit your website daily as one could wrongly assume).
In other words, it is better to have an RSS reader than no reader at all.