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How Your Underperforming Blog Can Reverse Traffic Declines

I remember sitting in front of my computer and my underperforming blog on Blogger years ago. My mind was trying to think of something important to write. 

There I was in my dorm room. My goal was to complete an assignment due the following day, and I wondered why anyone would want to create an online journal.

I had one vivid, recurring thought. Why would anyone put their ideas online? After all, they were easily shared with a phone call or a conversation.

Those early days of content marketing were crazy. At one point, the best way to attract web traffic was to repeat every keyword you wanted at the bottom of each page. If you put in the most, you’d get ranked first.

Times have certainly changed. Blogging has become a complex and valuable component of modern marketing. Still, most blogs underperform compared to the investments put into the material.

Why is that? Do you need to do something differently with your blog?

If so, is it possible to reverse traffic declines to make your blogging a tremendous asset? 


Why Does an Underperforming Blog Occur for Today’s Businesses?

Content marketing requires consistency to be effective. You must regularly publish valuable information to maintain relationships with your readers. It is how you achieve search engine visibility.

If your blog fails to publish content consistently, it will eventually lose its audience. Should the traffic remain, the asset’s effectiveness does diminish with fewer clicks and conversions. 

Some additional reasons can cause an underperforming blog to develop. Are you steering clear of these issues with your content marketing efforts?


Poor Content Quality

Sure – AI content generators seem like a great shortcut. Here’s the problem. Everything you get from that resource is repetitive. Some programs have critical errors.

You need to filter the content that comes from artificial intelligence. Even if the material is 100% accurate, the reader will feel the information is robotic or emotionless.

Low-quality content adversely impacts your reputation and credibility. Why read something anyone can get with a simple question on a preferred generator?

Stop taking shortcuts. Invest the time it takes to compose a compelling blog post that reflects your expertise. You are important!


Neglecting Your Optimization

Ignoring search engine optimization (SEO) best practices often results in an underperforming blog. Without this organic marketing resource, potential customers could struggle to find your website. If they don’t see you, they won’t discover your expertise.

You want organic traffic! These visitors are more likely to buy something than any other leads except returning customers. If you see reductions in this area, it’s time to fix things immediately.

Look for the keywords people search for when looking for your offer. Then refine your past, current, and future content marketing plans. Try to target the most popular terms so that they relate to what your business offers.

A Lack of Objectives

Your underperforming blog needs clear goals or strategies to generate consistently meaningful results. It’s not like you’re hopping in a car to take a road trip to who-knows-where on a long weekend and don’t care where you end up.

Objectives like lead generation or thought leadership should be defined to guide your blog’s content. Let them serve as a roadmap for what you hope to do.

Too Many Sales Pitches

We know that promoting products or services with a blog is essential. Excessive self-promotion within your blog posts can turn off readers. 

Your content should provide valuable insights instead of becoming another advertising venue.

That doesn’t mean you must stop promoting your brand entirely when writing. Be strategic about the process!

Incorporate your expertise into an underperforming blog to discuss a specific subject. Do you have a product or service that addresses the pain points in that area which could benefit your readers? If so, talk about that value proposition without putting in the hard sell.


Let your readers decide for themselves if they want what you have. When you get a “yes” from that process, there will be more ownership of the decision.

Ignoring Your Analytics

I had a conversation a few years ago with a colleague who was frustrated by her underperforming blog. “I just don’t get it,” she told me. “Here I am writing what I know, but no one seems to be coming to my site.”

We talked about the analytics she had gathered from her previous posts. She was immediately dismissive of the idea of using data to develop content. “I write from instinct.”

Instinct is helpful, yet there should be other reference points to use when developing a content marketing plan with your blog. Imagine you have 1,000 people who love reading your posts about cheeseburger recipes. 

An article about the best salad you ever ate will get less traction than your take on a bacon-queso-avocado burger on a sesame seed bun.

Your analytics data reflect your audience’s desires. Listen to what they want by seeing where the information takes you.

Changing Your Priorities

A business sometimes needs to shift its priorities because circumstances unexpectedly change. The 2020 pandemic months are a great example of that issue. Restaurants turned themselves into grocery stores to survive. Private schools became daycare centers for essential workers – and there are many more examples.

Here’s the issue with changing priorities. When your focus moves to other marketing strategies, the result reduces attention and creates an underperforming blog.

That causes your content to lose momentum because it is no longer a priority. Even when you come back to it, neglecting the writing means you’re starting over with this resource.

Instead of losing momentum with a successful blog, consider how to build on top of what you’ve created if your priorities change.


You Have Zero Promotion

Creating incredible content is not enough in today’s over-saturated world of information. The average reader gets 5,000 marketing messages and hundreds of emails daily. Your blog must break through all that white noise to become relevant to that person.

Businesses need to actively promote their blog to reach a broader audience. Without effective outreach efforts using multiple channels, you may not see any traction with your content.

Community-building efforts are an essential component of any marketing effort today to save an underperforming blog. Have those one-on-one conversations when people leave comments on your social media pages. Respond to emails when someone asks a question.

Then invest time in producing valuable content. Even if the efforts don’t have immediate results, you could start the process of rolling a snowball down a mountain. It’ll start small, but who knows how big it’ll get when it reaches the bottom.

Keep working at it, and don’t give up!


You Have Internal Conflicts

If your leadership isn’t on the same page, your blog will reflect that issue. When there aren’t enough resources to create high-quality results, your readers will see less value in your offer.

When the team responsible for the underperforming blog does not have effective collaboration, the blog’s success may suffer. Resource allocation issues can cause a similar outcome.

You can have too many hands on the keyboards. Let one person, department, or committee control the daily conversations with your customers. That ensures you have a consistent voice reaching out to the marketplace. 

That can be a lot for one person to handle with a small business. Outsourcing these tasks to a proven and professional provider can free up time to complete the other chores that need to get done.


How to Create High-Quality Content for My Blog

Blogging is a lot like playing chess. You need to have your content be three moves ahead of your competition while anticipating what people need today and tomorrow.

When you get it right, the high-quality content for your blog achieves positive outcomes. It attracts or retains readers, improves search engine rankings, and establishes your brand as a niche authority.

That all sounds great – but how do you get the content to achieve those results?

  •     Know Your Audience. Your business needs to understand its target customers and what they want. Tailor your content to address each reader’s needs, problems, and interests. Try to use a tone that resonates with everyone.
  •     Conduct Thorough Research. Back up your points with credible sources and data. Research the topic you’re writing about to provide valuable information to your readers.
  •     Plan Your Content. Create an outline before diving into writing. This step helps to organize your thoughts while ensuring the information has a logical flow.
  •     Include Actionable Tips. Offer practical advice that each reader can implement right away with your blog. Value-driven content is more likely to be shared and recommended.

Once you’ve written your next blog post, I highly recommend having someone else proofread and edit the material. Although software options can pick up most typos, they aren’t 100% perfect.

You need to ensure your post is free of grammatical errors and formatting issues.

Edit your work thoroughly before publishing it to maintain a professional appearance. Don’t let one mistake cause someone to lose their “piece” of mind.


Does Your Underperforming Blog Link to Reliable Sources?


Blogs have better chances to thrive when they link to reputable sources to provide credibility. People can say anything they want online, so your claims require verification.

Linking to a reliable source, especially if it is on an older blog post, gives someone more material to read. They’re staying connected to your brand with each click!

While linking to reliable sources, it is still crucial to be original. Avoid plagiarism and focus on providing unique insights and perspectives.

Your authenticity stands out from AI-driven content. It is better than writers who re-write previous blog posts found with a search engine query.

Then try to have a good mix of links to your content and high-quality information from other sites. Search engines see this networking as a positive, especially when social media shares are part of the process. 


Steps to Take When Linking to an Outside Resource


Before linking to an outside site as an authoritative resource, here is what you’ll want to consider.

  1.     Before linking to any external resource, ensure it is from a reliable and authoritative website. Verify the accuracy and credibility of the information provided by the source.
  2.     The anchor text is the visible and clickable part of the link. Instead of generic text like “click here” or “read more,” use descriptive words that reflect your targeted keywords.
  3.     Internal links can open in the same tab. In contrast, external links should open in a new tab to avoid directing users away from your content.
  4.     Use the “href” attribute to specify the URL of the external resource.
  5.     If you’re linking to a website but don’t want to pass any SEO authority to that site, you can add a “nofollow” attribute to the link.
  6.     Provide context or briefly explain why you’re linking to that page. That helps readers understand the link’s relevance and encourages them to click.
  7.     If you’re linking to images, videos, or other media, ensure you can take that step. Some content is licensed for sharing or linking, so take a moment to verify this license.
  8.     If you’re using affiliate links, disclose that fact to your audience, as relevant laws and regulations require. Transparency matters!

Before publishing your blog content, it helps to test the external links you’ve included. Ensure they all work correctly.

Then regularly check your blog for broken links. These negatively impact the user experience and your SEO efforts.


Is It Time to Start Saving Your Underperforming Blog?


The decision to save your underperforming blog is the first step to correct your content. If it is underperforming, the action steps shared here can help you find your desired success.

Creating high-quality content takes time and effort. You can build a successful, reputable blog by staying focused on providing value to your readers. Keep striving to improve your writing skills!

Results don’t usually happen overnight. Trust your analytics. Develop a content plan that focuses on what your readers and customers want.

Although there are no guarantees, you’ll have more chances to reach your goals when you stay consistent and authentic. Let your customers see who you are.

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