Why Generating Traffic Alone Is Not Enough To Build A Successful Blog or Online Business

Is Traffic Alone Really The Currency of A Successful Blog or Online Business?

Have you ever wondered that “if I get all and more than the traffic that I ever dreamt of, what next, what will I do with them?”. You may not have reached your traffic goal yet and so may still be consumed with the idea of traffic being the all and all, for blogging success. However, top and successful bloggers (who have been where you are, chased traffic through all the nooks and crannies of the web, like you are doing now, and spent a lot of time daily doing that one single thing called traffic) have found out that traffic is not all it takes to build a successful blog.

Still doubt that? Today, I have ‘virtually’ twisted the arms of one of my favourite bloggers, to tell us the truth about the place of traffic in blogging success, and online business as a whole. Widely respected as an authority in Guest blogging, this blogger (Bamidele Onibalusi of YoungPrePro.Com) once believed that traffic was the currency of a successful blog and after he built a 8 months of writing over 300 guest posts and attracting over 10,000 visitors monthly (currently over 17,000 monthly).

Bamidele Onibalusi (aka Oni of YounPrepro) has written this guest post to share, from his own personal experience, “why generating traffic may not be what you need to take your blog to the next level”.

Read on…

Why Traffic Is Not All You Need For Successful Blogging

why traffic is not what you need for successful bloggingTraffic is one of the most important elements that can determine the success of any blog. So, no doubt a lot of people are on the lookout for the best new ways to generate quality traffic to their blog.

So many people see a top blog getting tens or hundreds of thousands of visitors monthly and how the blogger is making thousands of dollars simply from promoting affiliate products. So, they come up with the impression that since this blogger is getting a lot of traffic, and that traffic must be the reason for his success. Thus, they make up their minds that traffic is all they need to be successful as bloggers.

 

My True Life Story: “After a few months of hard work and massive guest blogging… reality struck me and…”

I also used to think in a similar way when I just started blogging, but after a few months of hard work and massive guest blogging I came to the reality that traffic isn’t all that matters.

It also became clear after writing a single guest post that sent me over one thousand (1000) visitors on the first day it went live. I was disappointed when I checked my blog stats a few days later to discover that my blog traffic had dropped to the usual average of 150 daily visitors I used to get – it was then that reality struck me and it became clear that traffic isn’t everything.

If you really want to get more results from your blogging efforts, instead of spending all day thinking that traffic is all you need why not take a look at some other very important elements of your blog you have to consider below.

To drive the point home that lots of website traffic may not always translate to lots of cash, Ana Hoffman of Traffic Generation Cafe wrote a blog post sharing her personal story of how her high traffic blog is not making money as expected.

Conversion is Important

Have you ever asked yourself that for every 100 visitors to your blog, how many become a subscriber? Have you ever asked yourself that for every 100 visitors to your sales page or for every 100 clicks to your affiliate link, how many result in a sale?

The truth is that by making a few tweaks to your blog, posts and sales page and you will see a significant increase in conversion even without getting additional traffic.

Conversion should be your number one goal as a blogger. There is no point in having a blog with high traffic if those visitors are not resulting in your end goal (which can be subscribers, sales or shares of your posts).

You need to define and understand what your major goal is and what your major reason for blogging is. Once you understand this goal and reason for doing what you’re doing, try to tweak your efforts towards getting the end result instead of towards driving more traffic.

For example, if you want to get more clients for your services; instead of trying to get 200 visitors who still don’t buy, try to identify the reason why most of your readers are not buying and then tweak your (sales or content) copy to be able to bring about more clients from less traffic.

Only Quality Content Can Make Your Traffic Stick

You need to understand this first before trying to drive more traffic because there is no point in driving more traffic when it doesn’t stick because you will only have to be driving traffic for the rest of your life.

Great bloggers take a look at their efforts to see which one brings the most results and then capitalize on that. The high number of guest posts you’re writing will bring a lot of great traffic but the reality is they won’t bring the most traffic.

The only thing that will be the most traffic is the quality content you’re writing so instead of obsessing over driving traffic alone start focusing on ways you can improve your content.

The better content you write, the more traffic you are likely to get.

Consider Building a Base

This is the final but most important point.

Instead of having to drive traffic to your blog everyday for a whole year you can easily simplify the process that will keep on sending you traffic even years after you’ve stopped marketing your blog.

A great way to do this is by building an email list or cultivating a subscriber base so that all your marketing efforts will be directed towards building this base instead of towards generating more traffic to your blog. The advantage will be that you will be able to retain your visitors as you will already have a way to contact them over and over again so you have no need to worry.

Your subscribers are the most important asset you will have as a blogger, so start cultivating them today.

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About The Author:

Onibalusi Bamidele is an internet marketer who helps you learn how to market your blog. You can also learn more about how to make quick cash by reading his blog.

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42 thoughts on “Why Generating Traffic Alone Is Not Enough To Build A Successful Blog or Online Business

  1. Hi Stella
    You mention once you get your traffic it is what you do afterwards that counts. Couldn’t agree more. I am just starting to get a reasonable traffic flow and have just opened a affiliate window hopefully to help monetize my site. I started with Adsense a couple of weeks ago and two days ago I changed the position of my adds on the page. Don’t know if it is related as anti early but the click through rate changed the same day. That got me to thinking that maybe I have to look at tweaking as you put it everything to make sure I optimise what I have already done before I go any further.

    Great advice thanks lee

    1. You’re on the right track, Lee.

      Of course testing and tweaking are CRITICAL to the success of any internet based business. And it’s sad that many people just ignore it or just don’t know it. On this blog, I experience increased search engine traffic and clicks sometimes when I do things as simple as tweaking/ changing up a few words the title of a post.

      So, don’t even think about it – go ahead and make tweaking, testing and tracking part of your online strategy. And ensure to track the before and after the tweak, so that you’ll know if the change yielded a better result of the former.

      Good job, Lee. I wish you rapid success.

  2. The fact that content promotes traffic will never become outdated. Its true that one has to get actively involved with SEO works but users will always look for content. The search for content will never become lesser so the first priority is content.

    1. You’re on point, Gary – if we fulfill the users’ needs first, in the process we would be fulfilling a big part of the on-page SEO. That means our target audience can easily find us when they search on the search engines. In addition, if our contents solve their problems, then they’ll be closer to converting to sales.

      In essence, making our primary focus not to be traffic we can greatly increase conversion while not losing traffic.

  3. General traffic is great but if you are trying to sell something then you need to drive targeted traffic to your site. You have to give people what they want or they won’t come back. And they want value in your posts, something that helps them in their lives or businesses.

    1. You’re right, Richard. Only when you get traffic from those who want what you have (targeted) will you generate sales. Traffic from any and everywhere is of no use if your post is not of interest to them. Better to look for traffic where your ideal clients are hanging.

      Thanks for your comment, Richard and hope to see you again.

  4. Awesome post, Stella. You’re so right. Providing consistent quality content is what will make traffic stick to your blog and it’s what will make people to keep coming back day after day.

    Thanks for the tips you’ve given in this post.

    1. Hi Etieno:

      Good to see you around. Thanks for your comment. Sure, content is always king, as they say. It is the main reason for return (sticky) traffic.

  5. Hi Stella,

    This is a great post because it counter balance the scale traffic vs content. We need both traffic and great content. You still my hero.

    Thanks

    Mike

    1. Thanks Mike:

      I’m glad you liked the post and also reckoned with the purpose.

      I appreciate your taking the time to come read and comment. You’re such a and supportive good friend.

      Just read your post – and said “Wow”. You’re so damn on point about targeting the timing to present one’s offer to prospects. Those tips will ensure that marketers are not always pitching because every prospect sees the offer when they first enter the marketing funnel. Perfect!

  6. I do believe traffic helps a lot..but what good is traffic if the content is nonsense?
    People click on the site at tyms not bcos of the promise that they would get something in return, only to find out..the site does not even worth a single second to look at….

  7. Hi! I’m very excited to get to the stage where I can build a long term relationship with my subscribers. I’m still in the very beginning though and I need to build some decent traffic, so that I can have a sound subscribers base latter on.

    After I do have such a base, I consider switching my efforts and dedicating my time to add value more to existing subscribers…

    Susane

    1. Hi Susan:

      First, thanks for taking the time to read and leave a comment. I appreciate it.

      I’m also happy for your excitement to working towards the next stages of your building a relationship-led blog with huge traffic.

      Just a quick advice here:
      (1) Do not wait to get ‘a decent traffic’ before starting to build a subscriber base 9that’s if you have not started. Your subscriber base will grow as your traffic grows. The best time to start building subscribers is when a website / blog starts. Here’s a post I wrote for beginners to start building subscribers from scratch. Get it here: List Building From Scratch.

      (2) If you start now building a subscriber base PLUS having your readers connect on Facebook and Twitter, you can also spend about 10 minutes daily to interact with them over Twitter/ Facebook; spend 20 to 30 minutes a week to send them an email, even if it’s just about a new blog post. Practice makes perfect:)

      By the way, here’s a good free report to help you rapidly get more traffic. Click here to get it: Free Traffic eBook

      Is the “runwaymodel’ website yours? I just checked it out and it’s got good stuff there. I hope to see you around again, thanks for coming:)

  8. Speaking on turning website visitors into affiliate link clicks and affiliate revenue, I’d have to say that success in that department (although it can be tweaked slightly) IS largely a function of total traffic…

    1. Hi Nica:
      Yes, I agree with you – if there’s no traffic then there’s nothing to convert to sales. But again, this post is about the one-way traffic generation without taking a break to evaluate the ROI on traffic already acquired (which is in the clicks).

      Thanks for your contribution – I really liked that angle you brought in.

      I liked your “how to make a magic wand” steps for kids. Lots of other kiddies crafts ‘how tos’ on your site. Good job!

      1. Thank you very much for the compliment! (I’m not Nica, by the way. She’s just a crafter featured on the site). Hey, check out our twitter page, and let me know if you’d like us to Follow each other!

        (I like the Wibiya options you selected. Very similar to my selections…)

        1. Hi, thanks for coming around again – always a pleasure:)

          Wow – sorry about that, I saw Nica on that post. Noted:) I’m glad you like my Wibiya color scheme – thanks.

          Sure, I’m interested to follow you on Twitter, I’ll be sure to follow back (mine is @stellaanokam). I just liked your Facebook Page (Liker #7).

          Thanks again for taking the time to come by, I look forward to seeing you also on Twitter and more again here. Happy weekend!

  9. Once again Stella awesome content and makes so much sense you just took allot of traffic generating stress off of my back.

    Paying more attention to the people that pays attention to me is definitely the way to go.

    1. Thanks Wadell, I’m glad you found some strategic points in the post. I’ve seen some bloggers brag openly on their blogs and elsewhere how they’re only chasing after the tails of big name, popular bloggers and stressing that their readers must have to jump their high hops before they (readers) can be ‘accepted via follow back’ into their ‘prestigious Twitter club’. And I wondered aloud are you really building your own tribe OR neglecting them to be a perpetual tribe follower?”.

      I, like you, am generating traffic but then identifying those who show me care and paying attention to those that pay attention to me – that’s how to build a tribe and convert the traffic you generate ELSE you’re just ‘sending them away’ through your actions and /or words, knowingly or unknowingly.

      This just caught my attention: “Paying more attention to the people that pays attention to me..”. You know why? Just yesterday, I read 4 different pieces that emphasize on what you just said. Here are excerpts from 3 of them:
      a.) A mail from Jon Morrow of CopyBlogger (I’m on his list) where he says: “Traffic does not build a popular blog, what does is those die-hard fans who
      b.) Michael Todds of michaelqtodd[DOT]Com: “I am looking at different techniques as to how to define who my real peeps are and looking to give them more attention and shout outs”.
      c.) A recent CopyBlogger post titled “Guy Kawasaki’s 5-Step Guide to Becoming an Enchanting Authority” advises: “Start showcasing the people who like you, even if it’s one at a time. Don’t wait until there are thousands who drool at your feet”.

      Thanks Wadell, for joining this discussion and I love your thinking. By the way, I’m loving your new blog post topic directions. Will visit soon to read some more.

  10. Thank you very much for sharing this stuff. This will certainly be very helpful to all the bloggers out there especially to those who do not know much about blogging. I think that this is a very informative post and bloggers should consider this one to help them create a good site.

    1. You’re welcome, Jaimee. Thanks for coming by – I appreciate your time here.

      I agree, the tips inside this post will help all categories of bloggers (new and veterans) to increasing their outcomes from blogging and marketing efforts.

      Just checked your blog – great contents. I left you a comment on the ‘100 free dating sites':)

  11. Hi Stella,

    You give sound, sensible, and actionable info on your blog. I’ve added you to my RSS reader so I can keep up with your articles. :)

    Very good advice by your guest blogger, Mr. Bamidele. I agree with both of you that quality content is the “first order” and conversions must take a higher position in the total scheme of things.

    Though there are many schools of thought in the blogging world, I tend to bring with me the lessons I’ve learned in offline business which include nurturing the audience and customers you have already gained, which will (maybe slowly) steadily influence the ones you want to gain.

    1. Hi Vernessa:
      It’s a pleasure to see you around. I appreciate your taking the time off your busy schedule to come read and comment:)

      I’m glad you like the guest post by Bamidele (aka Oni).

      I agree with you about working the traffic you already got so that they can influence any new traffic. That’s a great tip for sustainable business but again I agree with the school of thought that says that one should get traffic from places where your ideal customers and prospects hangout. Where your traffic comes from has a lot to do with the conversions, even if you are the best conversion agent in the World. You know many bloggers get over 90% of their traffic from the wrong places, in the name of looking for comments, and like you pointed out in the other post comment, some would gather for mere discussion (round table) not because they are interested to buy.

      In a market where everyone is selling, who would buy? It’s a good practice to mix traffic sources and focus more on the ‘hungry market’.

      Thanks Vernessa, your comments are always rich:)

      1. Hi Stella,

        Now what you say here …

        one should get traffic from places where your ideal customers and prospects hangout

        … that is what I am working on. :)

        As my first ideal customer is one who has an offline business (not just trying to make money online), I am slowly uncovering them. Many of these business owners are not yet online (which is good for me, as my second ideal customer is one who has an offline business and wants to create an online counterpart).

        While the lessons I’ve learned are always factored in, I still have room to learn stronger conversion tactics. (Who doesn’t want a hungry market? :) Glad I’ve found you (I should say, glad Ileane interviewed you) . . . you’ll see much more of me around here. :)

  12. Hello Stella,
    Thanks for sharing your guest blogging story. I have been telling myself that I need to start guest blogging for almost a year now…but reading your story made me realize that I need not give myself a hard time about it.
    Are you using squeeze pages to build your list also?

    J

    1. Hi CartoonCoach, thanks for dropping by. I appreciate your time.

      You should start guest blogging soon, as you’ll be able to get lots of new traffic and subscribers too.

      Yes, I’m using squeeze pages to build my list PLUS free reports to give as gift for my new subscribers; also I have optin box on my blog as yo can see. Click to read my post on: How to build a big profit list AND How to create an eBook to give your subscribers as thank you gift.

      The guest post was by Oni, the top Guest blogging expert who wrote 300+ posts in 2010 (last year). Since you’re yet to start guest posting, I highly recommend you read his guest blogging guide (guestbloggingguide (DOT) com). It’s detailed.

      Hey, I just finished looking at your family reunion pictures – very cool and all pretty faces. I like that most of you had a uniform Tee Shirt.

      1. Hey Stella,
        Thanks for your thoughtful reply. I may take your advice into consideration. I am getting pretty good results already from my daily routine, but I will check out the article that you recommended.

        Thanks.

        J

        1. You’re welcome. Great that you’re seeing good results from what you do. You should continue doing them.

          Feel free, any time, to check out those 2 posts – you may pick one or two new good tactics to add to your arsenal.

          Thanks for coming around and I look forward to seeing you again. Enjoy the best of today!

      2. Hello Stella,
        I just saw your compliment about my family reunion pictures. Thank you so much!

        J

        1. You’re welcome, always:) Those were really cute pics and I was looking out for you in there but didn’t spot you in a ny.

  13. Great post because it’s a reminder that while traffic is important, the bottom line is still the conversion. If you are not converting, you are not in business :)

    However, I do have a question. Do you first focus on traffic and once you get a decent volume, is it then that you look at converting or is it done simultaneously?

    I somehow feel that maybe I need to work on getting traffic first before worrying about conversion. It’s dilemma of which comes first, the chicken or the egg :) Hope to get your feedback and advice.

    Many thanks,
    Diana

    1. Hi Diana:
      Always a pleasure when you grace my blog with your visit:) I’m glad you like the post by Guest Blogging expert, Oni of YoungPrepro.

      My answer is this: (i) when learning to become a blogger, first learn traffic basics and next learn simple conversion basics such as crafting good call to actions, writing good headlines and email subject lines etc (ii) on a daily basis, do both simultaneously NOT until you get a decent volume of traffic.

      Example is when you start blogging newly, you are advised to start building list – but it’s only when your blog visitors (traffic) get convinced (via your call to actions on posts or optin box) that they take action to be converted to subscribers. You would not wait till you get a ‘decent volume’ of traffic to do this. Again, as they are joining your beginner’s list (one or two or more people) you’re going to start thinking of how to develop your marketing funnel because your blog visitors will pass through your contents to your list and you can think of helpful products that align with the topics you blog or email them and most importantly how to present your offer through contents in a way that will get them convinced to click through. Those conversion methods you should not wait until you get decent traffic volume. Practice makes perfect.

      Copywriting courses teach best ways to convert, as copywriters are the best at achieving high conversion rates. For landing pages conversion, I’ve been reading unbounce.com – excellent conversion secrets you may want to check out.

      Summary: You should start learning and applying conversion strategies NOW because you are already getting even that decent traffic at your 2 blogs. Think: conversion from visitors to subscribers, to fan page likers, to get them share your posts etc; conversion from subscribers to customers. Think what tools (such as subscribers magnet) and words to say where and when to move a reader from one stage to another.

      Let me know if I answered your question well, or if you want, I can get Oni to throw more light on that:)

  14. Hi Stella,
    Nice food for thought. It’s not really about the number of visits and pageviews. It’s more about the final actions taken..
    It’s good to find your blog from BMCT.
    Thanks for sharing this guest post..

    1. Hi Ikenna:
      It’s a pleasure to see you around – thanks for taking the time to come read and comment. I appreciate that deeply.

      Yes, I agree that the number of visitors that took the desired, final action, is what determines ultimate success for any traffic generation campaign – paid or free. That again points to the need for every blogger and marketer to learn traffic conversion secrets.

      Thanks, again, for coming around; I’ll be sure to drop by your blog to read some posts and leave you a comment:)

  15. Hi Stella!

    Thanks for inviting me back to your Blog…from The Blogging
    Mastermind Comment Tribe’s page. :)

    Once again, it comes back to quality, BUT quantity is needed
    too in order for that quality to step forward.

    What came 1st, the chicken or the egg? lol

    Have a highly inspired day…your tribal friend Steven Suchar

    1. Hi Steven:
      Thanks again, for your insightful comment. I am with you, 100% – although we should strive for quantity but the first priority should be the quality of the source of that traffic. That’s only when quantity will make sense, with respect to conversion. Again, like you said, you need to convert in huge volumes, whether sales or subscribers (from traffic), and quantity comes to play.

      Bottomline, is to learn how to convert traffic, but often a lot of bloggers do the traffic thing because it’s a common topic whearas many do not learn how to convert traffic because that is not a popularly blogged topic.

      BTW, Steve which one is the chicken and which is the egg? However, the order is get traffic and while on that, learn and start implementing conversion.

  16. Super epic, from the kind of guest blogging himself. Thanks for featuring Onibalusi here to teach more traffic generation code. :)

    1. Yes, Oni has done very well in the blogging industry and in this post, like all his posts, he speaks from personal experience.

      Thanks Ola, for coming around. I’ll be a t your site soon to read and comment on some posts:)

  17. Hi stella.. Thanks for sharing. Until now I am still trying hard to increase traffic to my blog..

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