From Zero to 50,000 Visitors in One Month

Want to get more traffic to your site?

Every website once had zero traffic. Even the websites of successful bloggers.

The question is, what did they do to get the ball rolling?

And how can you do the same?

how to get more traffic

In this article I'm going to show you some of the secrets of successful bloggers.

Using these techniques they jumpstarted their blogs and got massive traffic within the first month.

You can use these same techniques to get more traffic to your site:

  • How to use forums to get traffic, build a following and establish yourself as an expert
  • How to leapfrog over successful content marketers
  • How to use Twitter to boost your blog's presence on the web
  • How to get famous bloggers to mention you, using a basic truth about human nature
  • How to get websites in your niche to link to your content
  • Why blogger outreach is the key to getting your blog off the ground and how to do it.

If you're starting up and wondering how to break out of no-where-land, these are the steps you need to follow to prime the pump and get traffic to your blog.

1. Jon Morrow

Waiting For Search Engine Traffic

It takes a long time to get a page ranked in Google. Weeks, sometimes months.

And unless you have backlinks from authority sites within your niche, you're going to be struggling to get page #1 rankings. SEO is a long-term strategy - it won't help you in your first month.

Thinking Epic Content Is Enough

It's easy to get excited about creating content.

But it doesn't matter how much epic content you create. Content on its own it won't bring people to your website.

I read somewhere that a successful blogger should spend 20% of their time creating content and 80% of their time promoting it.

Putting All Your Trust in Stories

Yes, people love stories, but yours would have to be extraordinary and you would have to be an amazing story-teller. Even then it won't bring people to your website - see Mistake #2.

Endlessly Re-designing your Blog

As long as it's readable, people don't care what you're blog looks like. They just want to know if you have the answers to their problems.

Writing Every Day

If you don't have any traffic, writing every day is not going to change anything (see Mistake #2).

Spending Hours on Social Media

It's easy to get distracted and spend masses of time posting on Facebook and Twitter, but if your audience on those platforms is tiny, it's not going to change anything.

Waiting For The Snowball Effect

Beginners often believe it's just a matter of time. Jon points out that time is actually working against you. The blogs that become successful grow fast. They usually reach several hundred visits a day within a few months.

So if none of these 'silver bullets' works, what is the solution?

The single most important thing you can do, says Jon Morrow, is to listen to your audience.

Hang around the forums, read the comments on popular blog posts. Find out what their problems are, and then give them the answers they need.

This is a tried and tested way to to get more traffic to your site.

Summary

Jon's worked with hundreds of new bloggers over the years and he understands why some blogs succeed while others don’t. He’s narrowed it down to this single factor - listening to your target audience.

As it happens this is the exact same message of our next successful blogger, Matthew Woodward.

2. Matthew Woodward

matthew woodward blogging

Matthew Woodward is a good example of what Jon Morrow was talking about when he said that successful bloggers don't build up their traffic little by little.

Matthew launched his blog on 3rd August 2012. By 2nd September he'd had 2125 unique visitors to his website. From there, his traffic grew exponentially.

Matthew decided to keep his traffic building strategy really simple. It was based on just two techniques.

Create Awesome Content

Right from the start Matthew was committed to providing his readers with the best possible content:

[su_quote]I also had the mind-set that each piece of content I produced would be the best piece of content on that topic period[/su_quote]

Answer Questions on Forums

Answering questions on forums is time consuming but is very powerful.

It works on a number of levels:

  • Brings traffic to your blog.
  • In forums that use the Dofollow attribute you’ll get link juice back to your blog.
  • Gets your name known in your niche and builds you a reputation as an expert
  • By reading forums and answering questions, you get to understand your target audience, what their problems are and how to solve them.
commenting on forums

Matthew used tools such as Boardreader and Omgili (stands for 'Oh My God I Love It') to find forums with questions relevant to his tutorials and posts.

I've used Boardreader and it's a great way to find forum questions based on keywords.

You can also search for forum threads on Google. Just type in any one of the following string searches plus your keyword:

"Powered by Phbb" your keyword
"Powered by vBulletin" your keyword
"Powered by SMF" your keyword
"powered by IPB" your keyword
"powered by PunBB" your keyword

When you find a question that relates to your content, post an answer like this:

Hi,

I saw your question about __________.

I just recently wrote an article that answers your question. You might find it useful: http://www.yourdomain.com/your-content/

Let me know if it helps!

All the best,

Your name.


Matthew made it a practice to spend an hour a day answering questions in forums.

And every time he published a new post he spent 4 hours promoting it on the forums.

The result? Within 30 days he'd received over 2000 unique visitors.

Summary

Organic search engine traffic takes a long time to kick in.

When you're first starting out you need results fast.

And this is the way to do it - hang around the forums and answer people's questions.

Use this technique to get more traffic to your site while building a following and establishing yourself as an authority.

3. Brian Dean

Brian Dean - link building

Since it first appeared in May 2013 this article has become something of a classic on link building.

As we all know, backlinks are vital for establishing domain authority, which in turn is key to getting page #1 rankings in the search engines.

But creating amazing content is not enough to get quality backlinks. You have to go out there and look for them.

And that’s exactly what Brian Dean’s skyscraper technique is all about.

The skyscraper technique is simple but ingenious:

  1. Find existing content that has masses of good quality backlinks
  2. Improve on that content
  3. Approach the people who have linked to the original content and suggest they might like to link to your improved version

Step 1. Find popular content

Let’s say your blog is about Home Coffee Machines.

Just go to Google and type in a relevant keyword, e.g. ‘best home coffee machines’.

Any article that appears on page #1 of Google for that search query is guaranteed to have a lot of high quality backlinks.

Let’s take the page that appears in 3rd position of the organic results. We’ll call this the ‘sample content’:

how to get more traffic to your blog

Just click on that listing and copy and paste the URL from the address bar of your browser:

http://www.expertreviews.co.uk/home-appliances/coffee-machines/1403158/best-coffee-machine-2016-buying-guide-and-top-picks-1

Now head over to a backlink checker such as Ahrefs, MozPro, or Majestic.

I’m going to use the free version of MozPro.

Within MozPro, go to ‘Open Site Explorer’ and paste in the URL of the high ranking content.

Then hit ‘Search’.

In this instance I see that the sample content has 529 links from 10 different domains:

finding backlinks

Now click on the ‘Request CSV’ button and download the CSV report containing all 529 links:

Once the report is downloaded, open it in Microsoft Excel.

The only data you need for this exercise is the first column which lists the URL of the webpage containing the link to the sample content:

finding backlinks

This article has only 10 referring domains. In a more crowded niche you can expect a web page ranked at No. 3 to have many more referring domains.

Step 2. Improve on the Content

The next step is to produce a piece of content that is similar but much, much better. In the words of Brian Dean, “you’re going to slap another 20 storeys onto the skyscraper”.

By the time you’ve finished, your skyscraper (your content) is going to dominate the skyline.

There are three main ways of doing this:

  1. Make It Longer
  2. Update It
  3. Better Design

If the existing content was 1,500 words, make yours 2,500 words.

But make sure the extra 1000 words are packed with high quality information and not fluff. Research the topic in greater depth than the original piece. Go the extra mile! Over-deliver not just in quantity but in quality as well.

There's huge opportunity out there, as Brian Dean noticed when he first used this technique. Because a lot of high-ranking content on Google is simply out of date.

The third way to improve on the sample content is to simply present it in a smarter, better-designed format. The sample content may contain valuable information but if the page is cluttered and hard to read, you can easily improve on it.

But don’t simply copy it – you should definitely do your own research and write something new that improves on the original content.

Ideally, use all three methods: make it longer, update the information, and present it in a cleaner, smarter design.

Step 3 – Reach Out to the Right People

Now reach out to the people who have linked to the sample content, and ask them if they would like to link to your content.

Because of the research you did in Step 1, you already have a list of blogs and websites that are potentially very interested in your content.

You know that:

  1. They run a site in your niche.
  2. They’re interested in your topic.
  3. They’ve already linked to an article on that topic.

Visit their website and get their email address and then send them an email along these lines.

Hey [Name],

I was searching for some articles about [your topic] today and I came across this page: [insert the URL from your Excel doc].

I noticed that you linked to one of my favorite articles – [title of Sample Article].

Just wanted to give you a heads up that I’ve written a similar post. It’s like [title of Sample Article], but more thorough and up-to-date [URL of your content].

Might be worth a mention on your page.

Either way, keep up the awesome work!

Cheers,

[Your Name]

Summary

What's cool about this technique is that it leapfrogs over something that is already doing well. The content that you're improving on already has a page #1 ranking in Google and already has a lot of people linking to it.

Various bloggers have used this technique with great success, including Ryan Robinson and David Vallance. This is a tried and tested method to get more traffic to your site.

4. Peep Laja

Peep Laja - getting traffic to your blog

Peep Laja is another blogger who mastered the art of quickly getting massive visitor numbers to his site. He managed to get over 40,000 visitors to his blog in the first month.

He did it with these three strategies:

  • Writing Epic Content
  • Social Sharing
  • Mentioning Well Known Bloggers

Writing Epic Content

Peep did some quick research of his own and discovered that the most linked-to content is over 2000 words in length and is rich in images, videos, and lists.

He started creating content that fits the above criteria.

These were not quick posts put together on the fly. On average he spent 8 hours creating each blog post.

Social Sharing

Like other successful bloggers, Peep recognized from the outset that search engines were not going to deliver any traffic to him in the first month of his blog's existence.

So he promoted every blog post he wrote on the following social media:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Reddit
  • StumbleUpon
  • Hacker News

Because he over-delivered in his content (spending 6 to 8 hours writing each post), his posts were picked up and shared by key influencers, giving him added exposure.

Meanwhile, he made sure to convert as many visitors as possible to newsletter subscribers (remembering the old adage that 'the money is in the list').

Mentioning Well Known Bloggers

Peep Laja made good use of these two truths about human nature and the blogosphere:

  • The sweetest sound to anyone’s ears is the sound of their own name.
  • Entrepreneurs, bloggers and tweeters have (really) big egos.

He filled his blog posts with references to well known bloggers and then let them know, via Twitter or email, that he had just mentioned them in a new blog post.

The result was as he had hoped. These blogging celebrities tweeted to their followers about his new blog post, giving Peep Laja even more exposure for his new post. Another tried and tested technique to get more traffic to your site.

5. Alex Turnbull

Alex Turnbull - getting traffic in the first month of your blog

Alex Turnbull of Groove increased traffic to his company's blog by 12,024%.

One of the techniques Alex mentions grabbed my attention.

Groove spent a lot of time building relationships with Influencers who became the launch pad for their traffic explosion.

This is how they did it:

  1. Find a few pieces of content that have performed well in your space
  2. Go to BuzzSumo and enter the URL of the content in the search field
  3. Click on 'View Sharers' and you'll see a list of influencers who have shared content similar to the content that you did the search on.
  4. Now reach out to those influencers to ask if they would like to share your content as well.

As you've probably noticed, this is a variation on the skyscraper technique:

Again, a great way to get more traffic to your site.

6. Henri Junttila

Henri Junttila - 5 Proven Ways to Get Traffic to a Brand New Blog

Henri Junttila, a successful blogger who earns his living online, outlines the 5 key techniques he used to grow his blog from zero to 1,012 subscribers in 101 days.

Before we get started, I want to highlight two bugbears that Henri mentions. These two mindsets can really do your head in and prevent you getting started:

  • The amount of information that's out there on how to drive traffic to your blog is overwhelming - you don't have to cover all of it in order to succeed.
  • Some people are forever looking for a magic bullet of traffic generation. There isn't one. The point is to choose 2 or 3 strategies and go for it. Its more about perseverance than choosing the right strategy.

These are the five strategies that Henri used.

Content

Obviously your blog needs content before you can begin promoting it. Browse the forums in your target audience and find your audience's pain points.

Then write at least 5 posts that address those issues. That should be enough to 'prime the pump'. Of course, you'll need to write more posts down the track.

Commenting

Find forums in your niche and leave comments with links back to your blog posts.

Stand out from the crowd by making your comments longer and more useful than anyone else's.

Article Marketing

Henri recommends writing 300 to 400 word articles and submitting them to EzineArticles.

Connecting

To avoid getting overwhelmed, focus on just one social media platform to begin with, for example Twitter.

  • Sign-up for a Twitter account
  • Download TweetDeck
  • Start following your favorite people, bloggers and whomever
  • Tweet valuable links, tips and advice
  • Keep self-promotion to less than 1 tweet out of 10

Guest Blogging

This technique gave Henri more traction than any other.

But as he points out, you'll need to have written quite a few high quality posts on your own blog before being accepted as a guest blogger on someone else's site.

  • Find a few small blogs in your niche or ask someone you already know
  • Send them three relevant, great headlines as a pitch for a blog post
  • Be nice, short and clear in your initial e-mail

7. Eli Seekins

Eli Seekins - How I Got 103 Shares and 42 Comments When I Had Zero Traffic and No Email List

Eli Seekins used just one very powerful strategy to go from 56 page views a day to over a 1000.

After just one week of using this technique, he found himself being invited to write half a dozen different guest posts (without ever making a pitch).

He even found himself featured in a roundup on Huffington Post.

How did he do it?

Blogger Outreach. Here's how you can do it as well.

blogger outreach

STEP 1 - Make Your Hit List

Compile a hit list of your favorite influencers in your particular niche. These are people whose expertise and connections could radically transform your blog.

Don't worry...you're not going to be making contact with these people. I'll explain in a minute.

STEP 2 - Make Your Blogger Outreach List

Now create a spreadsheet in Excel or Google Docs with eight columns. The first three columns will be headed Name, Website, and Email, respectively. Leave the fourth column blank.

The fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth columns will be labelled Follow, Comment, Share, and Email, respectively.

In the first three columns enter the relevant information. In the last four columns enter an x to show that you've completed that particular action.

STEP 3 - Find Bloggers

Visit the blogs on your hit list and find the most popular post in the last 3 days, and failing that, in the last 7 days. But nothing older than that.

Then scroll down to the comments and record the names and websites of everyone who has left a comment on that blog post.

STEP 4: Find Their Emails

Now go to their website and find the commenter's email address. You'll find it in their Contact page, their About page, their Work With Me page, or the footer.

If there's no email address whatsoever you subscribe to their newsletter and get it that way. Failing that, you could simply copy and paste the link for their Contact form.

STEP 5: Make Contact

Before you make contact, follow the blogger on a social media platform such as Twitter.

Find one of their recent posts that you like and share it on Twitter. Then leave a comment in that same blog post. Try to make this a genuine comment that adds value to the blog our ti the discussion.

In the email:

  • Say that you're a fan of the blog where you found their comment
  • Say that you noticed they left a comment on that blog
  • Write a paragraph or two about a recent blog post that you wrote
  • Ask them for their feedback on your post.
  • Mention one of their posts that you enjoyed reading
  • Let them know that you shared it on Twitter (or other social media)

Eli Seekins kindly provided his own email template and you can use it as the basis for your own email.

But don't simply copy Eli's email. Make it your own by changing the wording.

This technique is all about networking and building quality relationships with fellow bloggers in your niche.

That in turn will result in more traffic to your blog and increased engagement with your blog.

Conclusion

Every new blog faces the same challenge - getting traffic.

SEO takes time, weeks, even months.

But you can't wait that long. That's where these techniques come in.

Follow these steps to quickly get more traffic to your site:

  1. Listen to your audience. Find out what their problems are and then write blog posts that solve those problems.
  2. Create awesome content. Use the Skyscraper technique to produce content that stands head and shoulders above everything else on that topic.
  3. Spend an hour a day answering questions on forums.
  4. Invite qualified leads to link to your content (see Brian Dean’s article)
  5. Become active on Twitter. Follow key Influencers in your niche. Share posts from your niche. Interact with other bloggers in your niche.
  6. Mention well-known bloggers in your posts and then let them know that you mentioned them. Chances are they’ll share your post to their fan-base (see article by Peep Laja).
  7. Do some serious Blogger Outreach (see Eli Seekins’ article).

This post was most recently updated on July 8th, 2020

Rob Powell
Follow Me

18 thoughts on “From Zero to 50,000 Visitors in One Month”

  1. Amazing article Rob.

    I found this article from a retweet by Matthew Woodward and from that instance I knew that it’s gonna be something great (he doesn’t retweet regular pieces of contents).

    After reading this I’m boosted and I think I myself can boost my daily pageviews to 1000.

    Thanks for putting this up.

  2. Hi! I know this is somewhat off topic but I was
    wondering if you knew where I could get a captcha plugin for my comment form?
    I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having trouble finding one?
    Thanks a lot!

  3. Hi Bradley,

    Glad to be able to help!

    The best Captcha plugin for WP is probably the one by Google:

    Google Captcha
    https://wordpress.org/plugins/google-captcha/

    Other popular Captcha plugins are:

    SI CAPTCHA Anti-Spam
    https://wordpress.org/plugins/si-captcha-for-wordpress/

    Captcha by BestWebSoft
    https://wordpress.org/plugins/captcha/

    Captcha Bank
    https://wordpress.org/plugins/captcha-bank/

    Blue Captcha
    https://wordpress.org/plugins/blue-captcha/

    Conditional CAPTCHA
    https://wordpress.org/plugins/wp-conditional-captcha/

    Math Captcha
    https://wordpress.org/plugins/wp-math-captcha/

    HumanCaptcha by Outerbridge
    https://wordpress.org/plugins/humancaptcha/

    All the best,
    Rob.

  4. Nice article to read. I am starting a new dating web site. Could you please give me some pointers on. Where to begin
    Ann

  5. Hi Ann, thanks for your comment. With regard to starting a dating site, the most important thing IMO is to decide on a well-defined (ie. fairly narrow) niche. Examples of niche dating sites are datemypet.com (for pet lovers), trekdating.com (for Star Trek enthusiasts), stachepassions.com (for women who like men with mustaches). Maybe the niche doesn’t need to be that narrow but you would certainly need to differentiate your dating site from the others (eHarmony, Match.com, Badoo, Zoosk, OkCupid, PlentyofFish etc). The next thing would be to settle on a business model, i.e. paid subscription (e.g. Match.com) versus advertising (e.g. PlentyofFish). Hope this helps. All the best with it, Rob.

  6. Great article Rob,

    Have been looking for an article like this for the past 8 hours…

    Just started my new blog and have published only 1 content on it because I’m looking for a way to get the best out of every content i published. ***There is no need publishing more articles without anyone reading it***

    Thanks for the article, now i know where to start.

  7. Hi, thanks for your helpful article.
    we have an educational site in which we solved hundreds of general physics exam problems. we established it about 2015. from that time we have no traffic.
    In this niche, guest blogging, commenting, finding influencer seems does not work! We don’t know how to drive traffic to our site. Now, we have ZERO traffic!!!
    Please address a proven way for these problem and solution websites like us…
    Thanks in advance.

  8. Hi Ali,

    Thanks for your question. I also tried the techniques you mentioned, over a period of many months. The technique that finally worked for me was organic search – writing articles that rank on page #1 of the search results.

    There are three key steps you need to follow to rank in the search results:

    1. Find your seed words. Seed words are the starting point for finding long tail keywords. Please read my article on How To Find Seed Keywords In Your Niche

    2. Find long tail keywords, using your seed words as the starting point. Please read my article: Using the KWFinder Tool To Get On Page #1 of Google

    3. Research and write articles with high topical authority. For this aspect, please read my article: How To Get Your Blog Post on the First Page of Google

    I hope this helps.

    Wishing you every success!

    Rob

  9. Hi Ramunas,

    Thanks for your question.

    I had a quick look at your site. It’s a good start but you need about 5 times as many articles as that before you could expect to generate much traffic.

    Also, are you writing your articles around long tail keywords? This is crucial to getting traffic to a blog. This article explains how to use long tail keywords to build traffic to your blog:
    How To Use Long Tail Keywords To Get More Traffic To Your Blog

    I hope this helps 🙂
    Rob.

  10. Hey nice blog keep it up, I start a blog but no traffic maybe you can check it out? Thanks, healthytofitness.com

  11. Hi,

    I had a quick look at your site and it looks like you have about 50 blog posts. With that number of blog posts, you should be getting some traffic. Are you doing keyword research for each blog post? Each blog post you write should be aimed at a particular long tail keyword.

    I’ll take one of your blog posts and look at the metrics for that keyword: https://healthytofitness.com/gym-workout-plan-for-women-30-min-exercise/

    With this blog post, it looks like you are targeting the keyword: ‘gym workout plan for women’.

    I typed that keyword into KWFinder and these are the metrics for that keyword:

    KWFinder metrics for gym workout for women

    I noticed that your domain authority (DA) is 6 which is quite low. If you look at the DA for the websites that rank on Page #1 of Google for this term, they are all 52 or above. In terms of getting traffic to your blog, the first thing you would need to do is build up your website’s domain authority.

    To build up your website’s DA you need to get backlinks from high DA sites within the health/fitness niche. One way to do that is to write ‘top list’ posts. These are articles where you list the top players in a particular field. So, for example, you might write an article titled: ’25 Best Fitness Blogs to Follow in 2019′ or ’15 Best Women’s Workout Blogs and Why You Should Follow Them’. Once the article is live, you then email the owners of the blogs to give them a heads up that they were mentioned in your article. About half of them will either link to your article on their website or post it on social media. Google will pick up those links to your website and gradually your DA will increase.

    Once your DA is over 20, you can start getting your articles ranked on Page #1 of Google (as long as you go for long tail keywords with low competition).

    Another technique for building the DA of your website is to do ‘expert roundup’ posts. Contact 20 to 50 experts in the fitness niche and ask them a simple question, such as: “What’s the biggest mistake you see beginners making when they start a fitness program?” or “What’s the best training program for building muscle mass and why?”. When you have their responses, turn it into an article. Once the article is live, contact the contributors and let them know. Again, about half of them will either place a link to your article on their website or share your article with the social media followers. Either way, it’s going to build up your DA. It’s good to remember that you only need one ‘dofollow’ link from a high DA website to send your own DA 5 points or more higher.

    So, in a nutshell: I would concentrate on building your domain authority. See this article of mine for more tips on building DA: https://robpowellbizblog.com/increase-your-domain-authority/

    Hope this helps,
    Rob

  12. Hi Rob Thank you for delivering such great value.
    I have a question: I’m looking for to learn how to start a new digitla marketing agency and I realize that writing blogs is actually a must have skill but unfortunatelly I I have not written any article in my life, I have around 8 months where I will be available to learn and master a new skill, what would be your advice for someone who want to start his own busineness but unfortunately does not count with money to invest but time and determination? Thank you so much Rob.
    The only thing I have right now is my domain and the hosting. 🙂

  13. Hi Alexander,

    Thanks for your question. You’re quite right: writing blog posts is a must-have skill for anyone wanting to establish an online presence. The quickest way to learn how to write blog posts is simply writing blog posts. In other words: writing teaches writing. Have a look at this article of mine: How To Write Your First Blog Post – The Complete Guide.

    Also, have a look at these articles:

    How to Write a Blog Post in 2019: The Ultimate Guide

    7 Tips to Write a Blog Post That Converts

    How to Write a Blog Post: The Definitive Guide (2019)

    Four Essential Elements to Writing a Great Blog Post

    How to Write a Blockbuster Blog Post in 45 Minutes

    A key part of becoming a good writer is finding your own voice. And that only comes from practice. Part of finding your own voice is reading lots of articles by other writers. So my advice is:

  14. read 2 or 3 blog posts every day by as many different writers as possible
  15. write a new blog post every day, even if it’s only 600 words
  16. Hope this helps 🙂

    All the best with your blogging,

    Rob

  17. Not like the usual content I see every day. This is mastermind Thanks a lot. Very insightful

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