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10 Ways to Exponentially Grow Your Traffic in 30 Days

This is a guest contribution from Marcus Taylor of Venture Harbour.

In Western cultures, there is a prevailing belief that you ‘work your way to the top’, ‘climb the ladder’, and make slow and steady efforts to achieve success.

This way of thinking is undoubtedly a smart approach, particularly for bloggers. However, there is an equally smart, yet opposing, belief that’s more common in certain Eastern cultures: leapfrogging straight to the top.

1-exponential-trafficAt the beginning of 2014, I decided to get smart about my blogging. By concentrating on the things that made the biggest difference, I managed to exponentially grow my traffic, quadrupling it within 90 days.

How to grow your blog exponentially

Exponential growth happens when you’re effective, which is very different to being busy. We know from Pareto’s Law that 80% of results are often driven by 20% of our actions. To grow your blog exponentially, you’ll need to Identify the 20% of the 20% of the 20%, so that you’re always focusing on the one thing that will have the biggest impact.

Below are 10 examples from personal experience that can lead to exponential increases in traffic. While not all of them will be relevant to your situation, my hope is that they’ll help to get your creative juices flowing and enable you to come up with some ideas that will enable your blog to grow at a faster rate.

1. The aggregation of marginal gains

In 2010, David Brailsford had the tough job of coaching Great Britain’s cycling team for the Tour de France.

He believed in a concept called the ‘aggregation of marginal gains’, which states that if you make a 1% improvement in everything you do, they will compound into incredible results.

He started by improving the obvious things, such as the rider’s nutrition, training program, seat ergonomics, and tire weight. But he didn’t stop there.

2-aggregation-marginal-gains

David went on to discover which pillow offered the riders the best sleep, and taught them the most effective way to wash their hands to avoid infection. He searched for 1% improvements everywhere.

To cut this fascinating story short, the British team went on to win the Tour de France after just three years of using David Brailsford’s strategy.

If you made a 1% improvement in every aspect of your blogging, from your headline writing skills, to your email signup rate, and page loading speed, you’ll soon notice a compounding effect on your desired outcomes.

2. Only 30% of the World population speak English

It’s estimated that 30% of the World’s population speak English. This implies that more than two-thirds of the planet speak (and search) in non-English languages.

There is, unsurprisingly, a disproportionate amount of blogs competing over English-language traffic. This represents a huge opportunity for bloggers wanting to target traffic in non-English speaking countries.

One of my favourite case studies on exponential blog growth is of a blog that reached 1.4m visitors in under six months by targeting Japanese search terms. The strategy was simple: there are relatively few website targeting Japanese, which makes it easier to rank for competitive keywords.

A client of mine runs the site BinaryOptions.com. After noticing that his market was growing in the Middle East and Asia, he decided to translate his website in Hebrew, Chinese, Japanese, and a handful of other languages using the WPML (WordPress Multi-Lingual) plugin.

Within a matter of weeks, his traffic from non-English speaking countries had almost doubled. That’s not bad for 30 minutes work installing a translation plugin.

Ideally, your content shouldn’t just be translated, it should be localised by someone with a cultural understanding of the countries and languages you’re targeting. However, in the interest of effort and reward, translation plugins can be an effective short-term solution for exponentially increasing the size of your audience.

3. Systems are the secret to scalable results

If you want to see exponential growth, you need to become ruthless with your time and build systems that run themselves. This is the only way to shift your focus away from low-value tasks towards the high-value work that you’re great at.

For virtually all of the projects that I run, I have a degree of social media automation using a combination of tools like IFTTT and Buffer, with a virtual assistant.

I’m also a huge fan of using email autoresponders and marketing automation tools to keep the communities active even when i’m not. One of my sites has had very little attention for over two years, but they still continues to grow due to ‘evergreen’ autoresponder chains that keep the community engaged.

3-email-auto-responders

 

4. Look Forward to Google’s Algorithm Updates

The majority of webmasters fear the unpredictability of algorithm updates. If your strategy is aligned with Google’s mission to deliver the best and most relevant result to users as quickly as possible (and increase their shareholder value), then they can be an event to look forward to.

One of my sites that I haven’t touched in over 18 months doubled in traffic during last month’s soft panda updates. Why? Because four of my main competitors all got wiped off of the search results for being overly short-sighted with their strategy.

4-double-traffic

While SEO is a complex area with hundreds of constantly-changing ranking factors, it can generally boiled down to a few simple principles:

  • Create the best content you can – and proactively promote it.
  • Offer the best user experience you can. Make your site beautiful, fast, and easy to use.
  • Think long term – build a brand and become the authority on your topic.

The next time Google prunes its search results, will you benefit from the short-sighted websites dropping in the ranks, or will you be one of them?

5. Could you increase your content output tenfold?

One of the most obvious ways to exponentially increase your blog’s traffic is to exponentially increase the amount of content you produce.

When growing KISSmetrics, Neil Patel found that each additional blog post he added to their blog increased weekly traffic by 18.6%. What if instead of publishing one blog post per week, you published 10, or 20?

Or, what if instead of increasing your posting frequency, you increased the length of your content?

This point ties in nicely with point three about building systems. One of the big leaps that many bloggers make is moving from it being ‘their blog’ to building a system of writers and contributors that fuel the content engine. Is it time for you to boost your content output with a team of writers?

6. Could you improve your content quality tenfold?

One counterpoint to the suggestion above is that instead of increasing your content output, you could just improve the quality of your content, multiplying its effectiveness.

While content quality is somewhat subjective, it’s fair to say that the more time we invest into a piece of content, the better it will be. Let’s say you currently spend three hours, on average, writing a blog post. What if your next piece of content took you 30 hours?

By definition, we remark upon things that are remarkable. Any blog post that takes 30+ hours to create is likely to be quite remarkable.

Ask yourself whether the last 10 posts you wrote represent your very best, and if not – would it rock the boat to write a few extremely well crafted blog posts?

7. Could one person transform your blog’s success?

“Relationships help us to define who we are and what we can become. Most of us can trace our successes to pivotal relationships” – Donald O. Clifton, and Paula Nelson.

When I first read the quote above, it hit me like a tonne of bricks. In my case, virtually all of the significant events in my career to date are owed to five or six people. I imagine this trend is true for a lot of us.

Choosing the right professional allies is incredibly important. As a blogger, you’ll unlikely achieve great success without some good allies. I recommend spending some time to identify the relationships and alliances that could skyrocket your blog’s success. Invest in those relationships.

8. Could one blog post transform your blog?

I recently discovered that Mashable wrote one article in February that generated more links and shares than 87 of their articles written in 2013 combined. Imagine if, instead of writing those 87 articles, they had written just ten of those mega-successful articles?

One of the common responses of successful bloggers when asked what they’d do differently if they started again is that they’d work smarter instead of harder.

If there was one blog post that could completely transform your blog’s success, what might it be?

9. Should you zoom-in or zoom-out?

A few years ago I met Gary Arndt during one of his trips to Melbourne. Gary is the man behind Everything Everywhere, which is generally considered to be one of the earliest travel blogs.

He told me that most travel bloggers fail because they’re too late. According to him, it’s near impossible to be a successful travel blogger starting out nowadays, as there’s just too much competition.

I agree. I think it’d be extremely difficult to be a successful ‘zoomed out’ travel blogger i.e. a travel blogger who covers every type of travel, every country, or every aspect of travelling. However, there’s probably a lot of opportunity to be a ‘zoomed-in’ niche travel blogger e.g. one who specialises in glamping, Fiji travel, or travel for yogis.

A good question for many bloggers to ask themselves is are they too zoomed-in or too zoomed-out? When your blog becomes a big fish in a little pond, it’s often healthy to expand the size of the pond – and enter additional niches.

When you’re a small fish in a big pond, it’s usually more sensible to swim in a smaller pond – and completely own that pond for a while.

10. Ten minutes planning saves one hour in execution

Brian Tracy wisely said that “every minute spent planning saves 10 minutes of execution”.

When I analysed how successful blogs such as this one, Mashable, KISSmetrics, and ConversionXL reached millions of readers, I noticed a common theme among several of them: planning.

Nick Eubank’s case study perhaps highlighted this the best: in six months he reached 1.4 million visitors by using analytical models to identify tens of thousands of keywords that were uncompetitive yet high in search volume. Through extreme planning he was able to reach an enormous audience in an incredibly short space of time.

In Summary

It’s said that there are no shortcuts to success, only direct paths. I think that, more accurately,  some direct paths are shorter than others.

Despite some of the outliers, growing a blog takes time. It will be an ongoing sequence of plateaus followed by growth spurts, followed by plateaus.

I hope that some of these ideas will translate into the next growth spurt for your blog’s traffic. If you have any thoughts on any of the ideas mentioned, or have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below or reach me on Twitter.

Marcus Taylor is the founder of Venture Harbour, a digital marketing agency that specialises in working with companies in the music, film, and game industries. 

 

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Comments

  1. Hi Marcus,

    Absolutely sensational post. I’m modeling my new blog’s campaign on many of these fundamentals, 2 of which are paying dividends immediately; making posts longer and decreasing frequency as well as posting in depth, helpful comments on authority blogs.

    I agree with posting less often but making a serious impact each time you post. This boosts your online rep quickly. People’ll know that each post you publish will be dripping with quality, so they’ll naturally subscribe, and in time – or sooner – will become rabid fans and followers of your blog.

    I am seeing the necessity of posting less and spending more time on outreach these days too. If I publish Monday, Wednesday and Friday to my blog and spend much of my time – instead of publishing daily – posting comments like these to blogs like problogger, many more people will see my content than if I did the daily bit.

    More important than that, I’m building bonds with authority bloggers, learning from them and connecting with them. This is the smart way to do it. Although in some cases, ramping up to a daily posting frequency may be the way to go, for your breakthrough. For me, it’s all about 3 in depth, 2500 word or longer posts each week then reaching out through a helpful blogger outreach campaign to build friendships.

    Increase your content output by either posting more frequently or by going in depth, versus a less robust approach, and you’ll see immediate returns. I’m fielding as many interview and guest post requests in the past 2 weeks than I had received in the prior 6 months just by making these small tweaks to my campaign. Amazing, how quickly you can boost your traffic and expand your presence with a few seemingly small adjustments.

    Thanks Marcus.

    I’ll definitely be tweeting this one.

    Ryan

  2. Priya Ranjan says:

    Thanks for the post! While you have touched each aspects of traffic generation scientifically, I specifically liked the idea of creating few quality contents rather than too many posts.

    Web is full of contents these days. Now the quality will make the real difference and game changer.

  3. Joel Brown says:

    What an awesome article. Thank you for sharing this in depth information Marcus. I am going to have to try the WPML Plug-In again. I had a few issues with it and I found it difficult to have my 800 articles or so translated into other languages efficiently. But I can now see it is well worth it if I put the time aside.

    Thanks!

  4. You had me at “aggregation of marginal gains” Thank you for the great advice.

  5. Rahul says:

    I am struggling in getting traffic to my blog. But this post has given me immense info to get traffic in short. I have to create some unique and quality content.

  6. Ruban Kt says:

    Hey Marcus Taylor,

    This is called out of the box thinking, You have looked everything in a different way.

  7. Rabin says:

    Hey Marcus Taylor,
    The above are some awesome tips that if a blogger follow sincerely, then he/she will get success surely..

  8. pavan kumar says:

    Good strategies for off page optimization..keep it up marcus taylor..and like your saying “work smarter instead of harder”

  9. I would never think that making your blog acceptable to different languages and countries would increase traffic so drastically. Sonsime. Great tips

  10. Sunday says:

    A very interesting piece. The 10 ways of increasing traffic exponentially are readily revealing. The first tip shared – “The aggregation of marginal gains” – is quite revealing. What David Brailsford did for the British Cycle team is inspiring. I guess I may have to apply the incremental 1% strategy.

    I upvoted this post in kingged where it was shared for Internet marketers.
    http://kingged.com/10-ways-exponentially-grow-traffic-30-days/

  11. Really liked the post but can you come up with a good guide to setup the WP multi lingual plugin. I am asking this because I am scared that it would drop my current traffic and lead me down or I might even be penalized for duplicate pages on the site.
    Someone once told me that it’s too difficult to setup, that’s why I haven’t tried it yet!

  12. Zohaib Jahan says:

    great tips but
    if blog language were different (not English), then it’s difficult to earn a handsome income online

  13. Worli says:

    In other words, content is still the king. Search engines loves new and fresh content, try as much as possible to update your blog regularly. Your readers also would always come back to read new entries of information you publish.

  14. I rarely bookmark an article. However, this one had so many invaluable points that I really have to follow. Thank you.

  15. Hi Marcus.

    Awesome guest post, thanks for sharing.

    I can definitely relate to a few of your ideas because they are my main focus right now.

    My blog is still in its youth, so right now I’m the little fish swimming in a big sea.

    In the early days of a bloggers career I don’t believe increasing the output of blogs posts is the smartest thing to do, because your content only gets read by a small number of people…

    Improving the quality of your content however, is a much smarter move. That way, it’ll get shared more, and who knows, it may even go viral.

    Personally, and this is the direction I’m heading in, I think guest blogging is the smartest way to increase and credibility, especially during the start-up phase.

    It just makes sense to improve your quality of writing and then publish it on established sites who already serve your target audience. :)

    Thanks!
    Kerry

  16. Abhishek says:

    hello marcus,
    Thanks for providing such good tips,i will surely implement these tips and try to increase the amount of traffic on my blog.

  17. Adam says:

    Hi Marcus

    I’m glad I found this blog and your article in particular. You have really looked at things from an all around view and not concentrated on one thing.

    I love the touch on David Brailsford story I watched his interview and was really mind blown and when I had time to think of it, what he was staying just made sense

    I have already added a translation to my articles because reading this post, I never really thought of it as a big factor until reading this. You have me thinking about it a lot.

    I also read Neil Patel’s case study on the adding more content each week, and honestly I really can’t justify posting 10-20 times a week to my blog, as I feel like I would run out of content to add very very quickly.

    I’m sorry for the long comment. I really liked your article. Thank you for opening my mind and giving me more incentive to carry on with the effort of “earning an income online”.

  18. George says:

    I love the concept of leapfrogging. Compound improvement seems like a great concept. Creating systems is always a great idea, a system to create more content.

  19. Thanks for yet another powerful post!
    I love the concept of aggregation of marginal gains and have been applying this in earnest since launching my website. You may be surprised to learn how gains in all aspects of your life will positively impact your business. Some non-business items on my list include:
    - watching less TV
    - going to bed earlier
    - waking up earlier
    - exercising more (even very marginal gains here make a world of difference)
    - spending more time with my kids
    - and many more

    Since implementing these measures (and constantly pursuing the next 1%) I’ve noticed I have more ideas, can concentrate better, am less prone to procrastination (keyword less), and I’m still discovering positive gains every day.

    After reading this post, my next gains are going to be on posting frequency. I’ve got to step it up!

    Christian

  20. Ryan Thomous says:

    This post is excellent! I would like to thanks for share a great topic post. I was finding a suggestion to increase blog traffic in a few days so you provided good information to me.

  21. NomadGirl.co says:

    great tips, this is just what i have been looking for ! thankyou

  22. Anurag says:

    Hi Marcus,
    That first point that improving 1 percent in 1000 areas is better than improving 1000 percent in one area. I read this first in the book, you can win but didn’t think that this would work in blogosphere. Will try it out now.
    And all of the points are unique that’s the best part of this post, you did not repeated the tactics that everybody does.
    Thanks for this post! Have a nice week ahead.

  23. Narendra says:

    Great article Darren, i will follow all the steps as you suggested and let’s see how it turns.

  24. Search engines loves new and fresh content, try as much as possible to update your blog regularly. Your readers also would always come back to read new entries of information you publish.

  25. Josh Hunt says:

    Outstanding article!

    When it comes to building traffic and growing a blog, I think people tend to fall into a habit of process. They read a few blogs or guides and see that to build a successful blog they need to build a social community, build an email list, rank highly in search results etc etc.

    The reality is, in the beginning, none of these things are in place and it is a painfully slow process to build them. This is an inefficient use of time and effort because the “build it and they will come” method is almost certainly doomed to fail.

    People creating new blogs need to think differently. As an example, I’ve recently created a new blog, I haven’t been aggressively promoting it and my traffic levels have been modest to say the least (which is fine as I’m happy for it to be a slow burner due to work commitments). Then all of a sudden, one of my articles got shared on Google+ by someone extremely well known in the internet community, and drove thousands of visitors to my blog in a matter of hours.

    I got more traffic in 2 hours than I had received in the prior 2 months. As a result my social channels had a huge boost, my newsletter subscribers went through the roof, and now I have a much larger audience to release new material to.

    When people think outside of the usual processes, they’ll see that there are countless opportunities to experience fast growth. They just need to be willing to veer off the established blogging path.

    Thanks for posting the article. Great read!

  26. Opens up my mind quite a bit. Might start a blog in my local language I guess. :)

  27. Brad says:

    If it where only that easy to increase traffic. Good read though, nice out of the box ideas.

  28. David White says:

    Very helpful article. My blog has experienced drastic decrease in traffic so some of the methods here are very worth trying! Thanks for providing this article.

  29. Sushain says:

    These were great and useful tips.Thanks for sharing them.
    Basically the key behind the growth of traffic is behind the content that is needed by the people not by us as the formalities.

  30. Jason Lee says:

    Incredible value in this article. I like the study Niel Patel did, those are impressive numbers.

  31. Hey Marcus Taylor,
    Great post.This is my first visit on your site.I agree with your opinion Sir. No doubt all these tips are very much helpful for bloggers.
    Thanks for sharing nice post

  32. I really enjoyed reading this article, particularly liked the point about making a 1% improvement in every aspect of your blogging which is something everyone could do.

    Increasing your content output is an ‘obvious’ one but probably not something everyone is really interested in putting in the time to do. To kick start my blog, I’m currently doing 30 posts in 30 days….it’s going to be interesting to see how my traffic changes over that time.

    I think another point, although it’s longer term, is consistency. People like to know there will a new article each week or 2 times a week as it gives them a reason to return each time. Minor point but an important one when it comes to increasing and maintaining your traffic.

  33. Quinn Eurich says:

    Great advice . . . especially about the planning. Loved the info on the 1%. Will retweet this for sure!

  34. Nigel Dobson says:

    Thanks Marcus for sharing your insights. Appreciate the encouragement.

  35. Rob Newman says:

    Wow, awesome detail and research.

    I approach this with the idea of “continuously improving”. I’m sure that some of those attempts at 1% improvement didn’t help at all, but no doubt some of those attempts did improve.

    Keep trying and learning and improving. Keep what works, and eliminate what doesn’t.

    Cheers!
    Rob

  36. Lynn Brown says:

    Hi Marcus,

    I will be using the WPML (WordPress Multi-Lingual) plugin. Translation is a great way to increase traffic.

    Thanks for the great tips.

  37. Jayanta says:

    Great post Marcus!
    My 2 cents to add to this post – I have observed having blog post series in “installments” draws engagement. Particularly if there are number of aspects to cover as a part of the post, I think it makes sense to have it in parts, rather than put it all together. Also not to forget to mention within the post asking the audience to stay tuned for the next update.
    Thanks and keep posting such great stuff!

  38. Carole says:

    Excellent post, Marcus! Each of the tips is valuable in its own right, but I especially liked the 1%, because each of us can improve something, anything, everything by 1%!

  39. Andy says:

    Hi Marcus,

    Thanks for this really detailed post. It makes a ton of sense to me and has actually helped me discover a few areas in my own busuness that can be greatly improved.

    The WPML (WordPress Multi-Lingual) plugin looks interesting. Why haven’t I thought of this before? Translation is a super way to get more traffic to my sites.

    Thanks,
    Andy

  40. Sam says:

    Hey Marcus,

    Excellent post, this is just what I needed to read. These tips are very valuable. The recommendation to look into the WPML (WordPress Multi-Lingual) plugin looks is something I have to add to my to do list. There really seems to be a lot to take in sometimes which is why using the odd tool here and there would help.

    Cheers,
    Sam

  41. John Anthony says:

    In my newbie days I once asked a more advanced friend how to get 100 more visits to your site; what secret SEO methods to use to increase my traffic so drastically. So then he responds with “write 100 new top-quality and useful articles and if you do it right you get 100 more visits per day” – Obviously you don’t have to take this literally but the point remains: If you create quality content regularly and WILL get traffic without having to engage in weird and questionable SEO practices.

  42. “Think long term – build a brand and become the authority on your topic.”- well said. Will try to do it exactly. Thank you very much.