Im in a niche not often talked about (Photoshop), Ive applied some of my learnings from WF, added in some tweaks relevant to my audience and increased my activity. Here's a look at the traffic spike experienced as a result:
(Wordpress Site Stats)
Yep. There is a direct relationship between content creation and traffic!! (In this case..)
Without further ado, here's the breakdown of how I did it...
My articles can take up to 4 days to produce.. they are behemoths. Our main traffic generators are visual Photoshop tutorials, complete with screen-caps, dialogues and instructions.
At times I create art and write the tutorial on WP simultaneously, at other times I produce the art and then write the tutorial retrospectively (using the layers in Photoshop to 'step backward' through the steps).
Some Warriors may feel this is a bit excessive, spending up to 4 days on one article - however these walkthroughs have tremendous viral / reposting value. Do a tutorial well enough, a lot of high traffic design blogs repost in their 'Top 10 Features'. In my instance, value always wins.
Being a visual site, we do get a fair bit of traffic via Google Images. I always have the major keywords (usually the post title) in the image file name and then a more descriptive phrase is used for 'Alternate Text'.
I don't usually bother with Caption or Description (aesthetic purposes).
Wordpress Post Optimization
I use 'All in One SEO' plugin to optimize my post. I get a great feeling from this plugin, been using it a while and it really does the trick for me.
Ive become more adept at tailoring my post titles with keywords in mind, however it isn't the be all and end all for me. Using All in One Seo, I input longer description and keywords, as well as porting the keywords into the tags section.
That's pretty much it. This step is very important and I never skip it.
Submit Tutorial to 'Tutorial Index' Page
Within our site, we have a 'Tutorial Index' page, where viewers can easily navigate to what they want by going to the required section.
Each new tutorial submission is added to this page as soon as it's done.
My Twitter strategy consists of two main accounts, personal and SurrealPSD. Prior to a tutorial submission, I usually build up a little anticipation by releasing 'work in progress' images and little teasers.
Once live, I get the word out on my personal and site accounts. Hootsuite is used to manage the multiple twitter accounts, however I haven't touched upon it's full functionality yet.
Google+ is a sleeping giant. Even though I don't participate on there - I always use the +1 button on my posts, using personal and site Google accounts. It's also a very quick way to syndicate my content right across to G+ as clicking the button allows you to repost over there.
DeviantArt is my biggest traffic source so far. Im extremely active on there, I post and comment often. Aside from this factor Im also an ex-gallery moderator and senior admin of a massive range of groups.
I post the image file, add description with link to the tutorial and always fill in the tags. Post something on there that captures peoples imagination, and the traffic goes insane.
Tutorialized, Pixel2Life & Good-Tutorials
Submitting my tutorials to these aggregate sites is fairly new to me, however once I saw their referral traffic - I immediately ported all my relevant content across. This is particularly responsible for my recent traffic jump.
Thumbnails, descriptions and links are created for my new tutorial, then submitted for approval.
The good thing about this form of syndication, is that a lot of other aggregate sites and design blogs cruise these directories for fresh content. If the content is of high enough quality, a lot of others will include them in their compilations or features.
I hate Facebook and avoid whenever possible. Fortunately I have a buddy who runs the site fanpage - so that's how our content gets ported over there
I increased my tutorial output from one a month, to once a week - Im certain that this increase of effort has really taken the site to the next level. Yes, these articles are extremely hard to do - but I have abundant proof that folks are enjoying it, and sharing with others.
This is encouraging and makes me want to write more.
I have Google Adsense, and at present the results are.... underwhelming. Alas, I know you need much bigger traffic (probably in a more profitable niche) to make it good with Adsense. It is a good learning tool though.
Fortunately, my strategy is to release a premium video training package early next year. Thanks to WF, I got into email list building, and Im getting a healthy number of subscribers. The site's sole advertising efforts will be directed toward this aim. With growth like this, Im quietly confident that it may turn out ok.
I hope some of you may find this post useful