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3 Simple Changes to Increase Your Subscribers by 50%

This guest post is by Goddess Leonie of GoddessGuidebook.com.

In blogging years, I’m approaching my mid-life. Instead of having a crisis though, there’s life (and new tricks) in this ole goddess dog yet! In the last three months I’ve increased my subscribers by a whopping 50%. All with three simple changes. Because simple is fun and good, and really, it’s the best way to do things.

Are you ready to hear them? Hurrah!

1. Getting people in

I’ve SEO’ed the heck out of my website. I’ve commented like a fiend on all my favorite blogs. I’m aTwittering and FriendFace-ing with the best of them (a li’l “IT Crowd” joke in there for those playing at home). Want to know the thing that’s lovingly ushered people through the doors into my blog?

Guest blogging.

I had it on my to-do list for a bazillion years. “Yus yus yus, sooo important. OMG must be all ova dat! But mmm, can’t be bovered.” Every week, I put it off. Until I kicked my own butt (somewhat lovingly) into guest blog town.

  • I asked all my affiliates if I could guest blog for them.
  • I popped an “Interview me!” button on my blog.
  • I contacted all the places I knew that accepted guest blog submissions.
  • And I asked all my favorite blog peoples if I could write for them.

Whenever I wrote the guest blogs, I made sure I infused as much of my trademark ridunkulous silly and soppy language in them. Just to shoot up a little beacon of a freak flag so my right people knew I was a ginormous raving hippy, and that I was one of their kind.

And people spilled through the doors, and it was grand.

Mission Getting People In a success! Hurrah!

2. Making them welcome

But the next mission is just as important, and it’s one that we totally ignore.

We all know that the bounce rate on our websites is super-high. When you jump on a blog for the first time, it’s hard to know where to begin, or if you belong. We need a better doormat, people. And a lounge room to welcome them into. We need to help them recognize instantly that our blog is a home for them.

Some ways we can do that:

  • Add a New Here page to your blog introducing yourself, explaining what your blog’s about, and sharing some of your best posts to get them started.
  • Add a YouTube video to your sidebar welcoming new readers, and introducing yourself and your blog.
  • Do some brainstorming. If your blog was a magazine, what themes would it cover? Then make those themes prominent on your blog—whether that’s written in your banner, or as an image.

Here’s the one I popped together:

Mission Make Them Comfy complete! *confetti*

3. Helping them stay

How do we get our guests to become regular drop-in-aholics?

The best way I know is the What Would Seth Godin Do plugin. It appears the first five times a new friend visits your blog, and asks them if they’d like to subscribe by RSS or email.

Since using it, I’ve noticed a 20% increase in subscribers alone. Happy days!

Mission: Stay foreva, my one true reader-love = done.

3 simple changes = 50% more delight

It’s been dang glorious. And I’m pretty sure it’s been way more fun than having an existential blogging mid-life crisis!

Let us know your secrets for upping subscribers in the comments.

Goddess Leonie is the creator of GoddessGuidebook.com, a popular creativity and spirituality blog for women. She’s also the creator of the upcoming Become a Business Goddess ecourse.

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Comments

  1. Harrison Li says:

    Hey, nice tips there, I want to add something to your list, for people who comment on your blog the first you should send them to a thank you page for the comment, I use this plug-in called Comment Redirect on WordPress, it is great, whenever a new visitor comments he gets redirected to my thank you page! You should give it a shot too!
    Harrison

    • Harrison, I personally do not like receiving an automated thank you for my comment. To me, that is less satisfying than receiving no acknowledgement. I like a personal comment showing that the quthor of the blog took the time to read and respond to my comment. An automated thank you serves no personal purpose.

    • That sounds great! Customer service, even if it is something as simple as a “thank you for the comment” is so important in this very non-customer-service-oriented world we live in! I’m going to research and see if one is available for Blogger. I just installed the LinkedWithin gadget that gives a “you might like these other blog posts” with pictures pulled from that post at the bottom of the current post. Super easy to install!

  2. hashif says:

    Great tips, enjoyed reading..i am gonna try these tips to incraese my subscribers list..:)

    • I would also recommend tools such as Aweber and its autoresponder to greatly increase subscription numbers.

      • Hi Leonie,
        I agree with Chris’s tip about Aweber I have used Aweber for two years now and it is wonderful to have new visitors stopping by and choosing to stay in touch ‘automatically’ Any questions on Aweber ask me I have helped a number of friends with it.

        Also, for what it is worth I am running a high speed connection and yet your home page took a long time to load. I checked to see if it was my imagination or not and Pingdom tools showed it took just over 15 seconds to load. I think that is slow – anyone else want to comment?

        Just thought I would mention this since you are working on SEO and Google loves speed!

        Enjoy a wonderful day,

        David

  3. Hi Leonie!
    I’m so glad you finally took the guest posting plunge. Guest posting is the best thing that ever happened to me. So many wonderful opportunities that I wouldn’t have had access to were made possible only by guest posting. I didn’t realize the impact it would have, I was just doing it to get a little more exposure to my name and my blog – I didn’t know there were so many hidden gifts.

    I wrote a guest post for the former owner of my blog and he liked it so much, he asked if I’d be interested in taking it over. At the time, I didn’t even know that he had too many commitments and was looking for someone pass it along to – needless to say, it was an opportunity I couldn’t let pass.

    All thanks to guest blogging!

  4. Hey Leonie

    I like the way you wrote this post. Definitelly managed to get your unique style over in a very clear way, different to all other bloggers I’ve read. also didn’t know about the seth godwin plugin, going to have to give that a look

  5. Hi Leonie,

    I am so glad that you have highlighted guest posting to be #1. Yup it is! I cannot list all the benefits I enjoyed with guest posting, and I must say that I am addicted to the effects of it.

    I have increased my subscription rates by 200% on months whenever my guest posts appeared on Problogger (2 so far). And also with other blogs, even with the very little ones, I always get a handful of subscribers who turn out to be loyal readers (they don’t unsubscribe after downloading my ebook, lol).

    Seth Godin’s plugin is great too!

    Cheers,
    Jane.

  6. Thank you for sharing the word “ridunkulous” with me. Great article, but one question…is that Seth Godin plugin a pop-up box that the reader has to exit out of? As a reader of blogs, those annoy me and I immediately click out of them every time.

    • Hi Stephen! The Seth Godin plugin just puts a message you designate at either the top or bottom of your post. I put a reminder to subscribe. Feel free to visit my blog just to see in action!
      Bernice

    • George says:

      The Seth Godin plugin doesn’t pop up. It is a simple HTML box that you can put a message to new visitors in. After 5 visits it goes away.

    • To answer that no. I use it as well I have it set to appear right above my post a lot like wp greet box very unobtrusive and you can customize it.

      Steve

  7. Benny says:

    Your post was short but right to the point. Enjoyed that. Glad to hear that guest posting was so powerful for you. I’ve gotta get on that this week!

    And I love the look of your website. So unique!

  8. Ali Jay says:

    Hi Leonie

    Beautiful post, a bit of humour. I thank you for sharing with us some strategies that you have successfully implemented, I will give them a go. Guest posts in my opinion are the biggest traffic bringer to any blog, and this guest post at problogger will get you an influx of subscribers including me. :)

  9. Rob says:

    I’d love to guest blog – if only I had something to say….. *sigh*

    But great post Leonie. Readers, pay particular attention to the SEO comment in part one! I SEO’ed a client’s press release today and it had over 3200 views in under 2 hours. Her previous un-SEO’ed press release managed several hundred. The hard hitting headline may make an immediate short term impact, but good SEO will offer sustainable traffic into the future. Cheers.

  10. really helpful suggestions, I’m just thinking about blogging,

  11. Goddess, your post is one of the most helpful ones I have read. You stayed on-message and kept it short so that I didn’t start scrolling down to see how much longer I had to pay attention. When do you know that you are ready to guest post on a blog? I am still a newbie (4months now). Thanks! Miriam

  12. Glynis Jolly says:

    Leonie, this is an award-winning post. I got the Seth plugin but have hesitated to use it. Not anymore. I love the image in the header idea. And the interview me idea is one I need to try.

    Thank you for these suggestions.

  13. Brad says:

    Hey Goddess Leonie,

    Good post. I dig it’s rather lengthy approach. These are the ones that us ADD folks, or as I call it, random multitasker, can really get behind. Keep up the good work and stay away from the pixie dust and hippy lettuce. I hear it changes people into AWESOME.

  14. Hi Leonie,
    Nice post, with all three genuine methods to increase your blog subscribers.
    As i mentioned in my comment in a previous post, guest blogging has a lot benefits and every blogger should be a regular guest blogger.
    Seth Godin plugin is a great to increase your subscribers.

  15. balkony says:

    i like your post.. it is time to me to practice,,, thanks,,, love it..

  16. Hi Leonie,

    thank you for sharing your thoughts!

    How long did it take to reach a 20% increase in subscriptions?

    I installed the WWSG Plug-in and am now curious as to the readers’ reactions -).

    BR,
    Emil

  17. I saw my email subscribers increase when I created a “sales page” for my free newsletter. It seems that selling free stuff is a requirement. People don’t sign up for things just because they are free.

  18. Liked the style…
    More importantly, something new. I have read these kind of articles like 1000 times, but none of them appears to be so convincing. I will give WWSGD plug in. Can you share people reaction to that?
    Good job..
    Keep it up.

    Thanks
    Anurag @knowliz

  19. Leonie,

    Do you get many subscribers to your blog who are men? Your site header says that it is for women. I am just wondering from a marketing and business perspective if sites that are geared towards a sex limits your audience or enhances it?

  20. Contests are also a great way to give visitors an incentive to subscribe. People love free stuff and are eagerly willing to sign up to a newsletter, like your Facebook page or follow you on Twitter for a chance to win.

  21. This was great Leonie. I’m printing it and making it my to-do list.

  22. Terry says:

    Some excellent ideas here especially the “new here” page for new visitors to your site. As a site grows it can become cluttered and confusing for new visitors and we don’t notice because we look at it every day and know how it is laid out etc.

  23. Precious says:

    Thanks for the tips, I want more tips on how to set up a better blog, again thanks

  24. Kent says:

    Haha..This was an interesting post. I like your energy and your style.

  25. Just a heads up. I think you might want to check google because someone has stole the content from this site. I saw it on another site earlier today.

  26. Amanda says:

    Great post, thanks Leonie. I must admit I’ve never considered guest posting, but obviously I’ll have to put some thought into this. I also like the “New Here” page idea and am just now off to get the plugin. Thanks so much for some fresh ideas.

  27. Great post, Leonie!
    I like the nuances, the creativity and the freshness of your style. Thanks also for the proven strategies you have shared.
    Ros

  28. Chloe says:

    Great ideas and I liked your style Leonie.

    I’m another that had never heard of the Seth Godin plugin. Anything Seth thinks is a good idea – or even anything that someone else thinks Seth would think is a good idea! – has to be worth looking at. I don’t like those pop ups that come up too quick – like half a second after I’ve arrived! Hopefully it has settings for that sort of thing.

  29. ckata says:

    I blog Phonics on “how to learn basic English Reading” in our native language Bahasa Melayu and it is estimated there to be approx 300million using this language. Out of 300m, only a handful trickled in to visit my blog! Sigh!

    The way I am going about, something is definitely so wrong…

    Thanks for giving me this wonderful tips..

    Cheers

  30. Chris Jones says:

    Thanks for the tips . I’ll try to increase my subscriber number with that. oh! i like the missions you did.

  31. Terry says:

    Free Ebook !!

  32. Usama says:

    Thanks for such a nice tips i think its a great article and a detailed one too :)

  33. Zach Crawley says:

    I like this guy .. lol

    but yea, I feel you on the guest posting .. keep telling myself to do it but won’t take the time to. Anyway, some fantastic tips here that I’m definitely implementing tomorrow!

  34. PsychicJim says:

    There are lots of people looking at career change right now. It is very IN right now to transition to a better and more rewarding career.

  35. Alex says:

    Hey Leonie,

    I cannot speak highly enough for the power of guest posting and what it can do for your online presence. I for one would be nothing without it.

    I really love your writing style, I think you definitely infused it with something :)
    You also touch on a very important and often overlooked part of this process and that is in how you actually capture that traffic once it starts to come.

    Great post, well explained and eloquently put.

    Thanks for sharing Leonie

  36. Is there an equivalent or similar plugin for blogger, does anyone know?

  37. Well I’ve definitely had an increase in subscribers after I put the e-mail subscription form on my main page. The 3d plugin also seems nice, thanks for sharing it!

  38. George Tee says:

    Hi Godess Leonie, great post. Guest posting is really popular nowadays. It’s a way of welcoming other bloggers to your blog for the simple reason to get more traffic. Getting high bounce rate can be fixed by doing conversion optimization which have great benefits. I never knew about What Would Seth Godin Do plugin, I would definitely check it out.

  39. Vincent says:

    Great post, Thanks Leonie, Thanks Darren
    Great post and exactly what I needed right now.

    Be blessed
    Vincent

  40. Fantastic article, thank you for sharing – I’ll definitely be implementing some of these ideas.

    I love the idea of an “interview me” button and never thought of having some form of introduction before.

  41. Vi says:

    Thanks for the tips. Will give a try for “What Would Seth Godin Do” plugin.

  42. Brandy says:

    I love the confetti intro idea, I have an about page. I tried that plugin without much extra luck. I think I will have to do something cute for sidebar. I did have a video of something my daughter created, she was running around singing a little “jingle” for my blog and it was real cute but not many viewed it in the sidebar it seemed so I removed it for extra ad space.

  43. One of the best things Ive done to increase subscribers is to offer a good premium for subscribers only. It’s a useful, insightful ebooklet created from good material not available elswhere–and it’s created from an out of print book of mine that I own the rights to. I put a notice about it at the bottom of each post. I’ve sent out hundreds of copies the booklet on request, adding a personal, “welcome to Skywriter” note to the email it’s attached to.

    I like the tip about a “new here?” page. Many of my visitors–and even subscribers–are low-tech people who can’t even figure out how to get in on the comment exchange. And I also like the idea of featuring posts they may like. I create an index by topic of all the posts on my blog that I use to generate a list of articles related to the current post, so I could make that available on the “new here?” page.

  44. Hi Leone,

    I enjoyed reading your article here, with a full heart and wide eyes to be sure! All your ideas are fully implementable, which is a huge plus.

    However, I did notice in the description that your blog is “for women”. Then, I’m thinking, hmm.. now what? Am I going to have to finally bite the bullet and get that “operation” done?

    OK, I am joking here, basically, about the second part, at least, but seriously, does that not act somewhat as a signal for guys to buzz off?

    Curious. But again, I liked your writing on this piece. Thank you!

    Peter

  45. You asked your affiliates if you could guest blog for them? What was your success rate with that and how much value do you assign it?

  46. Spreading a word about your blog through guest posting and commenting really looks promising. Great ideas to put into practice, thanks Leone for sharing the experience.

  47. Love it!

    Thanks for the great tips to be still more effective online.

    Best,
    Christine Hueber

  48. Lyndal says:

    Goddess Leonie,

    Fantastic tips! Have just recently bought your Business Goddess Guidebook and so far it’s the BEST, most relevant, warm, funy and helpful bueiness guide to-date. Thankyou for being so absolutely generous and open in sharing your learnings and saving time and headaches for all those women and mothers in business who are time-poor and just BURSTING to connect with other women in the world. In the middle of turning my small blogger site into a much bigger and more bountiful WordPress based sanctuary for mothers.

    Meeting you has been PERFECT timing.

    Lotsa love and hugs,

    Lyndal

    xx

  49. I have an “About This Blog” page on my blog and it has the second highest views, very closely followed by my “About Me” page.

    Also, my primary blog is about interviewing other people (Etsy shop owners), but yet I never thought to put an “Interview Me” button on mine, lol. I did, however, conduct an interview with myself, cuz I’m crazy like that. The title of the interview is “Let Me Introduce You to Myselves” and is at http://www.cordcoversandmore.com/1/post/2011/03/first-post.html, which is my business site that is separate from Etsy. It gets lots of views!

  50. Ankush Kohli says:

    Hi Leonie,

    Nice article! I’m also using that “Seth Godin Do plugin”. In fact, I’m sure most of the middle & advanced webmasters are already using that plugin as it’s a great investment.

    For those, who are not using it, try at-least one time and I’m sure, you’ll love it.

    Thanks,
    Ankush