Traffic Increased By 700% By Thinking Out of The Box

12 replies
  • SEO
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I have just finished a little traffic building experiment that I have been running over the past six months. The method described is slightly geeky but is a great illustration of what can happen when you think outside the box.

When I'm not at the keyboard I am normally out cycling. This is my big passion in life and as such I started a cycling blog 5 years ago so over that time the traffic has levelled out at around 150 uniques every day.

The blog posts are positioned to be helpful articles rather than all about me posts and as such I am constantly reading articles, magazines and forums to find post ideas. The blog wasn't setup to make money, it's just something that I enjoy doing.

As one of my goals for 2012 I decided that I wanted to increase the traffic to this blog and in doing so, grow my email list just in case I ever decided to monetise it.

Having tried all of the usual methods to build traffic in the past I set my brain to thinking and went out for a long ride to try to come up with ideas to build traffic.

There was one method that I kept coming back to time and time again - using forums to come up with post ideas.

I have been in this game long enough to know that forums are a gem for bloggers who need to research a post topics and ideas - when you spend time in a forum you get an idea of the topics that keep coming up and what problems people have.

Being a huge geek who is often too busy to follow forum threads, I decided that if I was going to build a scrapbook of post ideas I would need to automate this process with a script.

Using PHP Simple HTML DOM I build a scraper that would go out and analyse the post titles everyday, if a post met certain criteria (such as containing the words "how", "why", "when" or the ? character) it would log the title and post url in a database.

After running the script for a month I had more than enough data to be able to generate reports to highlight common questions and subjects.

Once I had build a list of 20 common post subjects for the next month, I then planned out articles (using the Google keyword tool to search for keywords) and the original post to research the content.

At the end of each month I would analyse the previous months keyword list and develop posts based on the data.

Using this method has helped me focus my posts to exactly what users are searching for. Chances are if one or two people are searching for "how to do something" then there will be hundreds, if not thousands of others looking for the same thing. The key seems to be creating a quality article.

As these posts are relatively easy to rank for (normally just competing against the original forum) you can almost divert the traffic from the original source to your blog.

The results have been epic - my average daily traffic has grown to just under 1200 a day.

As I'm not trying to sell anything then I should note that the traffic increase seems to be down to a few random keyword gems. 73% of the traffic increase has been down to 21% of the articles.

If anyone is interested in playing around with this then I would be more than happy to let you have a copy of some starter code - just drop me a PM to let me know!
#700% #blogging #box #increased #php #thinking #traffic
  • Profile picture of the author wenzel777
    Fantastic share! That really is some thinking-outside-of-the-box stuff. A lot of people will tell you to do research on forums, but it looks like you've found a really intelligent way to cut into your market as well as collect exceptional research in half the time. Well done!
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    • Profile picture of the author blackrabbit
      The other advantage in data analysis is that it allows you to spot product trends early. If you started getting lots of questions about a particular product or topic it highlights a lack of available info making it perfect for an ebook or affiliate site.

      Make Money Online Live Case Study on My Warrior Forum Blog -

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  • Profile picture of the author David Sneen
    Setting your brain....and a long bike ride. Fantastic formula to get info. Congrats, way to harness the power of your subconscious!
    David Sneen
    It's what you do when no one is watching
    that determines what you will be able to
    do when everyone is watching.
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  • Profile picture of the author JayKnight
    Great idea on using forums to generate quality content and traffic. Automating it makes it that much better.

    Yahoo Answers is also a great place to find subjects to write on as well, it just takes a bit of drilling down and searching.

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  • Profile picture of the author Rod Cortez
    Awesome share Blackrabbit. This is a great way to generate ideas. It's posts like these that help make this community what it is. My hat is off to you.

    "Your personal philosophy is the greatest determining factor in how your life works out."
    - Jim Rohn
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  • Profile picture of the author eternalwarrior
    Your idea is totally awesome! Congrats on your success.
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  • Profile picture of the author virtu
    Congrats on your results! But like the old said, no pain no gain. I think your 30-days pain for scraped those words have become your success right now. Thanks for a good share!

    YES, I am a graphic designer! Ready for hire! PM me...
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  • Profile picture of the author blackrabbit
    I think the real proof of this script working would be to start working in a new niche and use the script to generate content ideas and then make some bank from it.

    Might make an interesting idea for a case study in the future.

    Make Money Online Live Case Study on My Warrior Forum Blog -

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  • Profile picture of the author achukuttan
    Yes this is obviously thinking out of the box. The thing here is the PHP script...
    Hey, there is a great chance for you on that PHP script...
    Gold nuggets hiding there...
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  • Profile picture of the author JSProjects
    Great post. I hit the "thanks" button because the majority of posts these days are from people paranoid or complaining about the latest Google updates. I'd love to see us get back to actually sharing new ideas and information with eachother.
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    • Profile picture of the author blackrabbit
      Originally Posted by JSProjects View Post

      Great post. I hit the "thanks" button because the majority of posts these days are from people paranoid or complaining about the latest Google updates. I'd love to see us get back to actually sharing new ideas and information with eachother.
      I couldn't agree with you more. It seems the norm now that people fear sharing their ideas.

      If by posting this simple method it helps just one person expand their mind when approaching new ideas then I would say job done!

      Make Money Online Live Case Study on My Warrior Forum Blog -

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  • Profile picture of the author aaron86
    congratulations blackrabbit for the success of your experiment. Sharing your ideas to one person expands their mind. I do agree on that. Great job...
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