Is your website engaging, creating an emotional reaction and a specific feeling from your users? Engagement is one of the things that is difficult to measure, although as of last October, Google has finally figured out the metrics. The amount of time spent (at least 3 minutes) and number of pages visited (4 to 5) are now being used in Google’s page rank algorithms. And getting these metrics right are the main factors that will just about guaranteed to convert the percentages that you need. The Analytics360 plugin can be used to watch these and other key analytics on a daily basis, without even having to visit Google Analytics.
As of last October, Google is including specific engagement factors in ranking pages.
Gina Gaudio-Graves (GGG) is a blogging expert, who advises on blogging for profit. Using her recommendations, Tim Bennett’s argonette.com has been getting 30% conversions from his visitors. GGG’s own blog, Howtoliveonpurpose.com has been recently exceeding these minimum engagement numbers. What are they doing that can be done to get a higher level of engagement for your blog?
Gina advises to think of your website as your own retail outlet. The iPhone’s success has led to the success of Apple’s retail stores, where someone greets you on arrival. This is the model that should be used for your blog. Your website is the place where you want to greet people and let them get to know you.
The basic mechanics of a blog include both themes and plugins. GGG believes that free themes can’t be used to create the look and feel needed for true engagement. She recommends My Instant Theme for Business, available at her website, which makes a site look like an online magazine.
In addition to “normal” sidebar opt-in form, each article should also have a call to action. A light-box popup should also be used. MyInstantPopup is an example. In this way, visitors have 3 ways to sign up for your list. It usually takes several clicks for people to actually take action, or opt-in to your list. People won’t usually subscribe on the first visit.
Below the opt-in box, you should have an option to subscribe to your RSS feed. This means your articles will show up in their RSS reader. Mailings are rarely opened (only 10%) even if they reach the inbox. 70% of RSS subscribers actually open your articles. Commoncraft.com has a series of videos which includes “RSS in Plain English,” to help educate users.
Recent posts should be in the sidebar along with categories and pages (near the bottom). One key, low-end product should be in your sidebar. Text links should be used for all your products near the bottom of your sidebar.
Start out your articles with a story, so people will “remember” the pain they’re currently experiencing.
Articles get a better search engine rank if ending in a question. The articles you write should focus on solving specific problems people have. These cause conversions. Start the body of articles with a “story.” This causes people to “remember” the problem they’re actually having. This is necessary since people are so inundated with information. The story causes people to actually listen to you, read the article, and will result in more conversions. Many additional tips are covered in GGG’s training offerings, which can be found at www.askggg.com/bsw2.
- The Ultimate Guide to Designing the Perfect Business Blog (hubspot.com)
- Monitor Blog Performance (prmarketingcommunication.com)
- 10 Amazing Blogging Insights Your Analytics Can Tell You (hubspot.com)
- The Importance Of Converting Every Visitor Into A Subscriber (blogpronews.wordpress.com)