Posted by: Donna Cunningham | September 2, 2009

Tips for Bloggers 2—Backlinks and other Tactics

©2009 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

I have to admit it’s kinda nervy for me to be giving out tips when I’m fairly new to the blogosphere myself—posting only since December 22nd, 2008.  In my defense, I’ve been avidly pursuing the learning curve, because I love this blog and want to make the most of it that I possibly can.  I’ve avidly sought out advice from long-term bloggers and subscribed to sites by the really big professional bloggers. I’d like to share some of what I’d learned with my fellow astrology bloggers here.  Where I learned the most was from my daily emails from ProBlogger, especially his series Give me 31 Days and I’ll Give You a Dramatically Better Blog… Guaranteed now in workbook form at: http://www.problogger.net/31dbbb-workbook/.  

 

goodnews-a2dI also regularly follow posts by  SitePro News, copywriter nick usborne’s blog and VAssistant Services. To straighten out some glitches and make my blog work optimally, I consulted VAssistant Services’ coach and web-designer Suzanne Bird-Harris, who proved indispensable and whose user-friendly posts contain valuable nuts and bolts tips.

 One of the valuable techniques I learned from ProBlogger’s Darren Rowse was that it’s a good practice to create back links to earlier posts that shed light on the current topic.  It works–it creates a flurry of interest in older posts that would otherwise get buried under page after page of newer pieces.

Need graphic proof that this practice is effective? The line graphs in the blog stats that plot daily and monthly progress tell me at a glance how I’m doing.  By following hints from some of the Big Bloggers you’ll meet later in this post, my stats were gradually climbing in the months before I learned to do backlinks. But look at this screen shot of what happened to my stats suddenly after I started retrofitting my posts to include links like these:

blogstatgraphmonths2009

Here’s a simple way to backlink.  I created a document that has a list of posts, complete with links, for each topic that I frequently write about, which makes it simple to cut and paste the titles into all the pieces on the same subject.  For instance, at the end of a piece about Saturn published on August 21st, (Quotes about Saturn’s Issues—Wise Counsel from our Elders), I included a list of posts about Saturn and Capricorn from the previous 8 months:

In the week that followed, several articles on that list got a respectable number of new visitors for a tidy total of 97 new page clicks.  Do that with enough of your posts and it adds up.  (I’ll keep adding my newest posts about Saturn to the list.)

Not every topic is a winner, however.  Paying attention to the list of your top posts of all times in the blog stat pages can help you narrow down the topics your readers really to know more about. For instance, after noticing how many readers gravitated to the few pieces about the Moon on this blog,  I’m planning a Lunar Week  with several features about daily, progressed, and natal Moon signs at the next New Moon. And, you betcha, the pieces for that week will all have backlinks!

 In another post (Readers’ Favorites–Skywriter’s Top Posts of all Time), I talked about what we can learn from the blogstat page that can help us respond to our readers needs and increase the number of visitors to our blogs. It included links to the top 20 highest ranking posts of the eight months I’d been blogging. (If you’d like to read some of them to analyze why readers liked them, look for the blue-ribbon graphic shown here, and also go to the category “Readers’ Favorite Posts.”)

 The day that retrospective was published, my stats went through the roof because so many readers clicked on links to promising sounding posts they’d previously missed. (Work on your titles, folks! It’s really important in intriguing visitors enough that they continue reading. You’ll see a couple of links to good articles about titles by the Big Bloggers later.)

Here are the numbers of new visitors the five topmost articles received in the month after that list was published:  

Another example of retrofitting that I enjoy is a feature on ElsaElsa.com where she regularly reprises a bit of what appeared on her blog a year ago that day.  Maybe when I’ve been blogging a whole year, I’ll occasionally do something like that. 

 As you see, creating backlinks can really boost your stats.  Readers don’t seem to be able to resist clicking on links of articles that add to what they’ve learned.  I’m no blogging expert, but by now I’m no newbie either, and it is always my joy in life to share what I’ve learned with others.  Here are some more posts on Skywriter with tips for bloggers:

MORE TIPS FOR BLOGGERS ON THIS SITE:

Some Helpful articles by the Big Bloggers:  Typically their sites hold hundreds of posts, so if there’s some area of blogging you need to know more about, use their on-site search engines.  Also check their lists of recent posts. If you like what you read when you visit them, sign up for a subscription.

 If you’re a blogger and have found some techniques that help bring readers to your blog, please share them with us in the comment section.  We can all grow so much faster if we share what works for us.

 

FREE EBOOKLET FOR SKYWRITER SUBSCRIBERS ONLY:  a 50-page excerpt from my out-of-print book, The Moon in your Life, also known as Being a Lunar Type in a Solar World.  Read more about it here: NEW: FREE BOOKLET FOR SKYWRITER SUBSCRIBERS!   If you’re already a subscriber and want a copy, forward the most recent email post to me at moonmave@spiritone.com. To sign up for a subscription, go to the top right hand corner of the blog and click on “Subscribe.”  Then send me an email with your subscription confirmation or an email post.

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Responses

  1. Thanks for sharing this, DC!

  2. Hello Donna, you are helpful indeed. I have had one post that has received over 48,000 hits over the year. If the post has substance and is interesting people tend to read it over and over.

    kingsley

    • Wow! 48, 000? Well, I can only hope that when I’ve been blogging a year I have a post that’s brought a tenth of that! What was is about? Can I see the link? Donna

      • Here ist the link Donna

        http://kenoath.wordpress.com/2008/08/17/anti-social-planets/

        I believe you have written a well researched article of a similar subject if my memory serves me? What I like about blogging is being able to express myself creatively without pressure from having to be too propper.

        best
        Kingsley

      • Thanks, Kingsley. It’s a delightful article and I can understand why it’s gotten so many hits. It’s about the people we love to hate, or at least hope that they get their comeuppance in some kind of public way.
        I did write about Uranus-Saturn aspects–an article for The Mountain Astrologer that I expanded for a chapter in my book, The Outer Planets and Inner Life, volume 3. And, yes, I suspect that as you say, Uranus square Saturn is the more antisocial of the aspects between the two planets. There’s more urgency and force behind the need to rebel against social conventions. The conjunction winds up having to find a solution that merges the two planet’s energies, and often does so in a socially constructive way–better the older (more Saturn) we get.

  3. Thanks! I’m going to try it!

  4. I like your idea of keeping a list of articles under a topic. Even though I kept categories, sometimes I found I had to rely on memory to keep track of blog posts, not the best way to do it!

  5. http://www.psychictarotreadings.net/

    thanks a lot for information of successful blogging. i can only dream to be as good as you one day. maybe you would like to look at my blogs and give me some advice.

  6. This is very helpful. After a year (and a few months) of blogging spending time freshening up my blogs with backlinking and focusing on the title of my posts would be great tactics; and such a good way to channel my energy as my first Social Security check is being sent my way! Perhaps a good Saturn project as the old-one transits my 9th house?
    Thanks again, Donna

    • I wrote that many months ago, and to give a progress report, my stats took a gigantic leap upward after I did that and stayed at a whole new level the more I do it. It’s very helpful to the reader who comes looking for material on a particular topic to have easy access to additional related material. Donna

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