How To Make Your Blog More Sticky

Making a blog more sticky requires you to do two things: getting your readers to stay on the site longer and getting them to come back more often. You can find out how long your readers are staying and how many pages they’re reading by using a stats tools like Google Analytics. For John Chow dot Com, the average visit length is 3 minutes 18 seconds and the average visitor views 1.8 pages. This is significantly higher than the industry average. Here are some thing you can do to stick your blog.

Have a Unique Blog Design

Stickiness has a lot to do with branding and it’s pretty hard to create a brand when your blog runs the same WordPress theme as a million other blogs. I will not disagree that free is a very good price. However, it maybe costing you in brand power.

Getting Unique Blog Designs to make a custom theme for this blog has been one of the best move ever in terms of traffic, income and stickiness. A custom theme makes your blog stand out from the crowd. And with 117,000 new blogs entering the blogsphere everyday, it’s pretty crowded.

Have Lots of Interlinking Pages

A high page view number is a good sign of reader activity. It’s pretty hard to do with a blog because there’s only one page in most cases. You can increase the page view number by interlinking as many older posts as possible. This blog features my most popular posts and most recent posts on every page. Even if I’m writing about dining on a toilet, a new reader can get an idea of what I’m about by checking some of the popular articles.

Another thing I do to increase page views is to have a random post link at the end of all my posts. Clicking the link will bring up a random post, making the reader stay on the blog longer and increasing the page views. You can grab the plugin here. I also run a related post plugin that shows other posts I’ve written that are related to the current one.

Encourage Comments

One of the best ways to get readers to stay longer and add page views is to encourage them to comment. The more interactivity you create between the blog and your readership, the better. Commenting helps to bond readers to the blog. It creates a sense of community. This will make your blog more sticky.

To encourage comments, I reward my top commentators with a link on the side bar. This is done with the Show Top Commentators plugin. I also offer many contests where the way to enter is by commenting.

Make It Easy for Readers to Subscribe

One of the best way to increase the stickiness of your blog is to have a big RSS subscription base. If your RSS base is big enough, not even Google can take you down. RSS allows you to stay in contact with your readers even when they don’t visit the blog. Make it as easy as possible for a reader to subscribe to your blog. Offer multiple ways to do it.

Think of your RSS as your customer base. New readers visiting your blog are potential customers. You should do everything possible to get them to subscribe. A magazine’s ad rates are largely based on how many subscribers they have and not on how many copies they sell on newsstands.

Offer a Free Newsletter

In addition to RSS, I offer a newsletter as another way to stay in contact with my readers. I use Aweber as my newsletter provider. Their prices are really inexpensive for the amount of features you get. My favorite feature is the Blog Broadcast. This will generate a newsletter based on your blog posts.

I encourage readers to subscribe to my newsletter by offering the Make Money Online with John Chow dot Com eBook for free if they subscribe.

Offer a Free eBook

This falls into the branding category. The Make Money Online with John Chow dot Com eBook has been one of this blog’s greatest promotional tools. The book links to my blog from every page and help establish me as an expert in the field.

Follow Me On Twitter

While it’s a big time waster for most people, Twitter is also be a great marketing tool. In addition to allowing two-way communication between you and your readership, Twitter is great for announcing new blog posts and getting instant feedback to questions.

Right now, I’m promoting my Twitter feed with a personal request to follow me at the end of the post. However, I will be featuring Twitter more prominently in the future.

Post More Often

Increasing the frequency of your posts can have a positive effect on blog stickiness. However, it is possible to go too far. I try to keep my posts at about three per day. This gives everyone enough time to read and comment to it.

Many blogs have a problem increasing their posting frequency because they’re in a very narrow niche (or the blogger is lazy). The solution would be to widen the niche a bit. For example, you can add camcorders to your digital camera only blog. John Chow dot Com is a personal blog so I can pretty much talk about anything.


112 thoughts on “How To Make Your Blog More Sticky”

  1. Good sound advice again!

    Thanks John. I think many fail to increase blog traffic due time constraints either real or self imposed. I have found in my brief attempt at running a blog that my traffic dies quickly when I fail to post regularly.

    1. Jacky Supit says:

      Actually John have said about those points on separate posts before. it’s like a recap here πŸ™‚

    2. OCGolfCourse says:

      All excuses about no time is BS. I have a primary job, run two blogs and have a life. Everyone should have time..

      1. It comes down to your priorities. If you put the blog 1st (or second) you have time. If there are other things in your life that you think are more important, then you have less time. And, if you have a lot of other things that you think are more important than your blog, then you don’t have time.

    3. Abdul says:

      If you want to people to give you time, you have to give time to get them and maintain your blog in an effecient way

    4. I think one should only truly have a blog if they know for a fact that they’ll have time to post.

      1. Agreed. If you aren’t posting at least once a day, then really you are only writing for yourself and not others. If you want others to frequent your blog, then you really need to post often (but not too often that you overwhelm!).

  2. Tyler Ingram says:

    Wow so when I see you have an average of 1.8 pages/visit then I don’t feel so bad when I have 1.5. But then again depending on your advertising you don’t really want them to stay long right? You want them to click on the ads and pass through your site πŸ˜‰

    Though i like when people read multiple pages on my site and I try to entice them with various interlinking links too such as the related posts, or random posts if no related posts are found. Comments are great and fun to follow and contribute too as well.

    1. OCGolfCourse says:

      I would be careful about the pages per visit because if your site doesn’t have tons of traffic, your own clicks on the site probably account for a lot of the extra page views.

      1. Brendan says:

        You can set up Google analytics to disregard traffic and pageviews from yourself.

        1. OCGolfCourse says:

          I know but what’s the fun in that? If I do that I probably can’t count my co-workers visiting my blogs since they are in the same office and IP 😈

        2. Thiago Prado says:

          Google analytics is one of the best tools made for webmaster check out the website information. Love it!

          1. Agreed. It’s way better than any other statitistics information site I’ve used.

  3. I think a problem with the many millions of blogs out there is that most of them do not have useful content. There are too many blogs that look like a Facebook account or they’re just echoing news stories. The tech tips on my blog are very popular because people all over the world are searching for solutions to the computer/software problems. No one is interested in my opinion, they’re looking for information.

  4. Felex Tan says:

    Currently i am using blogspot which does not has much of designs.Well,i am planning to have a new blog from wordpress and hope it will stand out and i m willing to invest money on design and the features.

    1. Jacky Supit says:

      actually using blogspot doesn’t mean you can get outstanding design. check my lemon blogger template (it’s still on the homepage now)

      all you need to do is just modify some little parts here and there, and you’ll get an outstanding design for your blog πŸ™‚

    2. OCGolfCourse says:

      Blogspot should have some interesting templates also and you can always do custom with blogspot. Of course wordpress is better though πŸ™‚

      1. Abdul says:

        I agree wordpress is better, but I use blogspot, I think my blog’s design is pretty cool (its custom made), click here to check out the design!
        But blogger does not offer plugins like wordpress, and thats why its not as good!

        1. OCGolfCourse says:

          I think the main thing for me is that wordpress is more popular so there are tons of people that have plugins that help you monetize/build traffic. You can’t think of everything and if other people are doing your work for you, why not?

        2. I used to use Blogspot years ago, but it’s way too limited for my tastes.

  5. It’s easy that way πŸ™‚
    Just kidding, you need hard work, luck and much more
    to get your blog sticky! πŸ˜‰

  6. soares says:

    i shoukd say john …your work and way of writting inpressions me
    and you seem to know many things and thats good for me …

  7. Emo Clothing says:

    Sometimes giving away a free t-shirt helps πŸ˜›

    1. OCGolfCourse says:

      Actually giving away anything helps πŸ™‚

      1. Especially if it’s money. People love their money.

  8. “John Chow dot Com is a personal blog so I can pretty much talk about anything.”
    Thanks for clearing that up for all the whiners.

    1. Thiago Prado says:

      Some people complain when John post something not related to make money online , but I think this is OK because we can see how John chow is in the real life too.

      1. OCGolfCourse says:

        People complain because they are jealous. Simple as that πŸ™‚

        1. Abdul says:

          I agree, when People can’t get to the spot he’s at, they get jealous and I’m pretty sure John knows that

      2. It seems to me like the people that complain never actually took the time to read the top where it says “Miscellaneous Ramblings”

    2. Terry Tay says:

      I don’t mind him posting about eating from a toilet…

      …just as long as he doesn’t start posting about, especially video, what he does when he sits on the toilet. πŸ˜†
      ~Terry

  9. m.dinesh says:

    I have never tried google analytic because i din’t know about that before, Thank you john, for some great tips

    http://www.technoinvent.blogspot.com

  10. Nima says:

    Thanks for the post John. It was very helpful. I will be updating my blog with all those pointers and next time i comment I will put my URL too. πŸ™‚

    1. OCGolfCourse says:

      Commenting is one of the great ways to bring awareness to your blog πŸ™‚ Try it!

  11. I haven’t used Unique Blog Designs before but every site that I have seen that has used them looks great! A good looking blog design makes a huge difference in readership. A design that is cluttered or isn’t eye appealing won’t attract readers to it.

    1. I’m not a big fan of Unique Blog Designs, they obviously know their coding but their design style looks quite amateurish. Their prices are pretty reasonable though so they’re a decent choice if you’re on a budget.

      1. Thiago Prado says:

        I’m kind of mad at them because I asked for a quote and they didn’t answer my email. πŸ˜•

        1. How long ago was it? I hate it when people take a long time to answer emails, it’s extremely unprofessional. The designer I’m working with now always responds in less than a few hours, and it makes me want to work with him even more because the service is so good.

          1. OCGolfCourse says:

            Who do you use? I’d like to look into this.

      2. I think they’re alright. The designs they’ve done for the blogs I’ve seen suit the owners pretty well.

  12. Christina says:

    I love this site. I love my email updates. I greatly appreciate the advise, which applies not only to blogs, but to any business site and internet marketing in general. Thank you John! πŸ˜†

  13. I’m sure interlinking is one of the best, since it makes me click on about every single link there is πŸ™‚

  14. Flimjo says:

    Good points. How much does Aweber cost?

  15. Hi John – another great post. In it, you state that you do about 3 posts per day. Many of your posts have links and videos (some of which have had time spent editing)….I’m wondering how much time per day you spend on the blog, including other related business activities?

  16. Kabatology says:

    It true, a good design makes your blog particular and sticky. If you are looking for a free and clean design then check this one out. πŸ˜†

  17. Binary Ant says:

    I agree with all of them John. But it is easy to say and difficult to achieve. Every ot these points needs time to develope, people think that blogging is an easy activity, they don’t know how many hours are needed to get some good results.

  18. Pixel Head says:

    So your going to be promoting your twitter feed. Have you thought about using Plurk in addition to or instead of Twitter?

    1. OCGolfCourse says:

      Great referral links 😈

    2. Binary Ant says:

      Twitter has a lot of technical problems and quite often. Perhaps Plurk is a good option, and it is said it has more features

      1. I love Twitter because it is so intuitive and simple and not distracting like Facebook, however unless they get their technical problems solved they won’t go much further.

        1. OCGolfCourse says:

          The only technical problem they have is really that they don’t have enough servers. Money will fix that but how much can venture captialist blow?

  19. Good post. But john, sometime I find it difficult to post a comment at your blog. Your page sometime takes ages to load and to post a comment. Usually I have to try a few time before I could get me comment posted.

    1. No kidding! John’s blog has been rather slow for the last couple of days. I wonder if it’s an increase in traffic or if it’s just slow hosting or another technical problem?

      1. Terry Tay says:

        There is just so much stuff loading that it takes awhile for it all to load. If thee is one thing that bothers me about this blog, that is the only thing. PErhaps in the future they’ll make the intertubes of the internets much faster at loading tons of stuff. πŸ˜†
        ~Terry

      2. It loads fast for me. Then again, I cleaned up my registry & everything is going fast.

  20. Carl says:

    What is so unique about uniqueblogdesigns? All their designs look almost exactly the same, with just some colours changed.

  21. Reed says:

    3 minutes? Thats astounding! Most visitors stay for an average 30 seconds, at least thats the case for my website. Those that do stay however read everything, but they are still in few numbers.

    I am making an ebook, but before I do that I have been considering adding a forum that will be as unique as my content, one where topics I bring up can be discussed beyond the blogs comments. Just something I’m pondering…

  22. Good points here , Twitter is a time waster indeed. I`ll have to raise my posting frequency to at least 2 post per day. (now I am managing only one or one every two days). My blog is a personal blog too , MMO (make money online) and photography mostly , but what I do really think that people should know more things about the author not just treat him like a Star , and there are a lot of blogs out there , successful ones , that have anonymous authors. Trying to combine more categories into one blog , is always better , for the readers and for the author as well. Why ? Because things can get linked up and do a nice job this way. But mainly a blogger should focus onto one big subject , mine as I said is Photography and generally making money online by all means.

    1. Binary Ant says:

      Twitter is not bad at all, in spite of their frequent overload issues…They had a very great “stupid” idea… Yep, Twitter is something a bit stupid but it works, at least for me πŸ™‚ , not as the level of JohnChow or Shoemoney, but it drives some traffic to my blog.

  23. Great tips here John , will have to use Twitter more in the future. :mrgreen:

    1. OCGolfCourse says:

      Twitter won’t be useful as a marketing tool unless you start building a good following so good luck!

      1. I do get some traffic through Twitter and also use it to find many an interesting post. It’s great to now have to go to every blog you’d like to read, but instead see if the author tweets a good post. It’s a time saver for me.

        1. OCGolfCourse says:

          Hmm… Maybe I’m just not using it right or have the whole following… Let me check you out. I’m MoneyNing on twitter.

  24. It’s always a great idea to be ahead of the curve. Thanks very much for your advice John!

  25. Chessmaster says:

    Another great post for us newbie bloggers. I wonder how true is this statement: “No one is interested in my opinion, they’re looking for information.” Johan Cyprich made a very interesting comment.

    1. Yeah that’s definitely true. Once you’re already huge you can afford to post a couple of personal things but for the most part, people who don’t know you will never care.

  26. ~Kat~ says:

    I don’t agree about the unique design. I think design is important, but there are so many free premium themes out there that I think a blog can have a good presentation with a carefully chosen theme.

    I think the most important thing to make visitors sticky is to have well written, interesting content.

    1. OCGolfCourse says:

      I think a unique look is important but a great look is not necessary. If your blog is just like everyone else’s, it’s hard for a reader to stick around and read the content. If you are going to use a cookie cutter template, it might be best if you use a very simple one since it actually works better.

    2. Content is obviously more important, but I’d be lying if I said a unique design doesn’t play too much of a role.

      I’ve had companies that were interested in partnering up with another site of mine & they always compliment the unique look of the site.

      Having a professional looking unique site does wonders.

  27. Koru Tondi says:

    That’s what I really need…sticky blog! And it seems we can use almost ‘anything’ to make our blog sticky… πŸ˜€

  28. Noobpreneur says:

    John,

    Good tips for a noob in blogging like me πŸ™‚

    Cheers!

  29. ElectroGeek says:

    John those are all good tips. I still need to get Aweber setup for a couple of my blogs. I think it is excellent the way Aweber sends out your newsletter. Very efficient and it requires little or no effort on your behalf. Working smart is good. :mrgreen:

  30. Affiliate17 says:

    great post john. I would like to invite you to read my post on facebook ads. Its useful. I want to get your feedback on what you think… if possible.

  31. 20s Money says:

    Great post. I look forward to implementing these strategies.

  32. A Great Read Again John, I have just added on my blog the top commentators plugin I agree this does increase blog comments and interactions as the top commentators get a link back to their site on all pages in the sidebar. πŸ™‚

  33. thanks for the tips john!!

  34. A Great lot of tips John, any idea how much it costs to have unique blog designs design a blog for you?

    1. $800. There are lots of other design companies out there though, you don’t have to buy only from them.

      1. $800 is pretty reasonable. DesignOutpost is a another good site to have a design done, but if you want it converted to WordPress, you’d prolly have to spend extra. I’ll bet they’d do it for you for a nominal fee though.

  35. Thanks for the tip on the Aweber Blog Broadcast – That is a great tool. Do you or does anyone know if Getresponse offers this service too?

  36. UBD did my Blog Design too. It was more than $800 though. I actually used to run a web design company so I know how to and could have done my own design, but I decided not to waste my time with something I haven’t played with for years and instead decided to just pay them to do it which allows me to focus on writing content.

    I’m very happy with the look we ultimately came up with together.

  37. Couldn’t agree more John, updating your website regularly is the key. Not just to attracting and keeping visitors, but from an SEO standpoint as well. The minimum for Google should be one blog post per day, so you should try at the very least to do that.

    1. Binary Ant says:

      Totally agree, if someone wants to take blogging seriously he must add content on daily basis

    2. Agree with you on the SEO standpoint, but from a user experience standpoint, probably 2-3 posts per day is what one should shoot for, where 5+ may be pushing the envelope and could cause the loss of users due to their having trouble keeping up.

  38. these tips are what I am excatly doing. I am using blogsome as my bloghost. And now, I am getting a little traffic for my first two months in blogging.

  39. exband says:

    awesome tips! i need to get some of the plugins that you use.

  40. Geiger says:

    Would you suggest doing “Summary” posts where you comment on a bunch of other themed posts?

  41. A unique design is essential in making your mark with your blog. There aren’t any standard templates being used by major bloggers.

  42. Ronald says:

    ..and add the Cool ads after each post.. πŸ˜† thanks for the tips πŸ˜€

  43. JDepot.com says:

    John, great post once again! You’re ebook is excellent….going through it on a daily basis and using many of the techiniques you suggested (ala this post!).

    Gotta increase my post frequency or time stamp a weekend’s worth of posts!

  44. Hey John, I just checked Google Analytics for my blog and found that I’m getting 1.95 page views per visitor and they’re spending 3:19 per visit as well, slightly higher that you. Cool! That’s for only this month.

  45. Anil Gupta says:

    Writing quality content and having good relationship with our blog readers is the key according to me

  46. Cheap iPods says:

    I don’t think a lot of people realize the wealth of information available in John’s free e-book. I’ll admit it’s a bit frustrating reading people who want an exact a-b-c…1-2-3 for their particular niche. Thanks John for all the FREE information that you’ve cranked out so far. I hope to gleen as much knowledge from it as I can.

  47. Meangreen says:

    You forgot one thing, how about sticking to the topic of your blog, you write about food, your time of personal blogging is over right ?stick to the topic. I can imagine if your wife cooks for you that will make you brag about it anyway. This is just a suggestion to make your blog more stickier or is the cook at the restaurant your best friend. Is he fishing for complements again and you have to brown nose to get some free food. Stick to the topic. If you blog about food another time I will never visit your blog again, Thank you!!!!!!

    1. John Chow says:

      Here’s a suggestion for you. Learn to read what the topics are. It’s listed under Categories. Fine Dining is a topic of this blog. Don’t like it, don’t read it. I can’t make it more simpler than that.

      Look for a restaurant review real soon. 😈

      1. Terry Tay says:

        I think the topic right under John Chow dot com says “The Miscellaneous Ramblings of a dot com mogul” so pretty much what ever you talk about John, will be on topic πŸ˜‰
        ~Terry

    2. Do you know what “Miscellaneous Ramblings” means?

  48. David Cheong says:

    Hmm.. i notice that i manage to have the reader sticking on my blog at most 2 minutes 30seconds and 1.9 pages. But the way that you mentioned John, i think i will try out and hoping that reader will be sticking more longer. πŸ™‚

  49. fery says:

    Thanks John,
    Your very useful enlightment will burn my spirit.

  50. Thanks John these are very useful tips. I am working on my own blog design at the moment. It’s a lot harder than it looks 😑 , but it will be worth it I am sure.

    Good work!

    Simon

  51. Casey says:

    Great tips that will definitely help to make someone’s blog more “sticky”.

  52. Muscle Post says:

    This is a great post! I’m definitely trying to make my blog more sticky, and I think you’ve got some really good tips here for doing so. Posting often is a great way because if people see value in your blog and you post daily, they will come back to check it out at least once every day or two. If you only post once or twice a week, they may forget about your blog because there is no incentive for them to visit often.

  53. tyna says:

    I am studing your free Ebook now and following it step by step
    Tried to add the related post plugin but something went wrong some errors somewhere,couldn’t figure it out.

    1. Tyna – Feel free to drop me a line in my user forums (please excuse the default theme, I’m still skinning the forum section). I’d be happy to help you get the plugin working.


      Brad
      WebmastersEdge.Net

  54. Ms.Tris says:

    This is great info.. Today I came back to continue down the list, pondering how I can incorporate the suggestions into my blog…This whole site is like Blog school :mrgreen:
    “DatMoney” sent me here, and now I’m planted for a good part of the day…

  55. Austin says:

    Your last tip can be kinda hard to do but its important for any blogger to post often.

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