7 Tips For Getting More Blog Subscribers

blog subscribersAre you wishing you had more blog subscribers?  If that’s your goal, you have to improve your opt-in rates.

However before we go any further let me just say that whatever you hope to achieve with your blog, it all starts with churning out great content; without that there isn’t much hope for boosting subscribers or anything else.

But I’m going to assume you’ve got great content and simply need to give more focus to getting your readers to your opt in box.

So let’s dive right in.

If you already have an opt-in form on your blog but it’s not turning your visitors into subscribers, you may have two things going wrong.

Either the form is not in the right place, it’s not attracting attention, or maybe both.

“I’m guessing that you’re already using a good email autoresponder like Aweber which I prefer because it not only hosts all your email lists, it has lots of cool email opt-in forms to choose from that are easy to add to any blog.   

If you haven’t already you’ll need to set up an autoresponder account, if you’re shopping around for an email autoresponder service be cautious, some accounts have restrictions on the type of email you can send out, so read the fine print first.”

The 7 Tips that I use for Getting more Blog Subscribers

Tip 1. Your Opt-in Form

Your first step is to get yourself a high converting opt-in form.  Of course what converts for me may not convert for you so you may have to test that with different forms but there are a few basic strategies that all opt-in forms should follow.

- Form Placement. Your opt-in form should be directly beneath your blog or website header, preferably on the right hand side just above your sidebar. Keep the form above the fold, in other words your visitor shouldn’t have to scroll down the page to find it. If you have two sidebars then test which side is best.

-  Make your form stand out.  Use colors and graphics that draw in the eye.  Don’t have a form that blends with your site.  It should have an attraction quality all its own. Try testing that by objectively looking at your page yourself. If you can’t be objective ask others to look at it and give you feedback.

- Make it Friendly & Inviting. Now that you have all eyes on your form, is it inviting?  Take a look at what Adrienne Smith has done with her opt-in box.  Can’t miss that!  It’s friendly and inviting and moves a reader to act.

- Keep it Simple.  Unless you’re involved with mass mailings or in depth marketing studies, you don’t need any more than a subscribers name and email address.  Some bloggers only ask for an email.  That works too but I prefer to customize my emails so asking for a first name helps you do that.

Tip 2.  Give visitors a reason to subscribe

Visitors aren’t simply going to hand over their email address if they don’t see a benefit.  In other words why should they subscribe? What’s in it for them?  What can they hope to gain from giving you their email?  Giving your subscriber something free that they would love to get their hands on is a great way to get them to act. Create a free special report, video or tutorial in exchange for their email.  Another incentive is draw them in is to share a special industry secret.  Ileane of basic blog tips uses this idea very well.  Her opt-in offers to share her secret for getting 10,000 visitors a day to her blog.  I’d love to know that wouldn’t you?

Tip 3. Give visitors multiple opportunities to sign up

Additional places for your optin form would be either above or below every post on your blog. As a pop-up or in your footer. These options don’t work for everyone so these are things you’ll want to test.

If you’re using WordPress, try the WWSGD plugin and customize it. This plugin will display a message to new or first-time visitors inviting them to subscribe to your RSS Feed by default.  I use the plugin above to encourage subscribers to my RSS feed.But you can add code in there to display your opt-in form with an invitation to subscribe.

Tip 4. Create a Squeeze Page

Along with having an opt-in box on every page of your blog, also create a squeeze page.  A squeeze page is a landing page specially designed to get a reader to opt-in.  Anyone landing on your squeeze page will either sign up or they won’t, there are no other options but that.  Incidentally, squeeze pages have a much better conversion rate than simple opt-in forms.

So for example when writing articles, guest posts, making comments etc, you can send visitors directly to your squeeze page to sign up for your newsletter as opposed to your home page where there are distractions that may keep them from signing up.

If you don’t already have a squeeze page, here’s help for how to create a squeeze page that compels email subscribers.

Tip 5. Do a few Guest Blogging Gigs

Guest blogging or writing guest posts for other blogs in your niche is a solid strategy for gaining wide spread exposure, not only for your own blog but for building up your subscriber list.

Just remember that when you create your guest post use the link to your squeeze page in your byline, don’t use a link to your home page.  As I mentioned above, your home page can distract visitors and if you’re trying to accumulate more subscribers you want to send them to a landing page that encourages a sign up and nothing else.

Tip 6. Add Your Opt-in Form to Your Facebook Page

Add your email opt-in to Facebook. I just recently did this and have already started getting new subscribers to my blog.  It was actually pretty easy to do using the Aweber tutorials; however any good email service will provide instructions for adding your opt-in box to your Facebook account.

Tip 7. Make your Blog Content Easy to Share

Last but not least, add social icons to your blog and place them at the top of your content like I have them above.  This makes it easy for visitors to share your content and it goes a long way for expanding your reach.

I’ve experimented with several social plugins for this I like the WordPress Tweet, Like, Google +1 and Share Plugin the best.  I prefer it because it’s got the simplest most professional look and you can add custom buttons if you like.

To Sum Up…

It just makes sense that if you’re going to get more subscribers you’re going to have to give them incentive.  The best way to do that is to draw their eyes in, make it inviting, offer them an incentive and remind them often to sign up by placing opportunities in front of them often.

How’s it going with your opt-ins?  Any tips you’d like to add?

Blessings,

Photo: Stuart Miles freedigitalphotos.net

Comments

  1. Presented with a choice between subscribing to the RSS feed (and I’m led to believe newer readers will opt for email feed) or the blog’s email newsletter, does one command higher respect for you than the other? Meaning, you wouldn’t sign up for both by email, would you?
    Ari Herzog recently posted..30 Tips To Be a Digital Storyteller

    • Hi Ari,

      I guess that depends on your audience. I’m in an online business, writing and marketing niche so people are little more skeptical, they’d rather come to you as opposed to the other way around. Not true for everyone, but that’s something to consider.I like to have both options available.

      Thanks for stopping by Ari :-)
      Liz

  2. What a wonderful post, Liz! This came at a perfect time. I’ve read lots of posts that I should increase my subscription list, but they didn’t give me tangible information to do it. This is perfect!

    What’s better, I’m in the process of creating free special report, so your post about that was also helpful!

    Thanks!
    Elke Feuer recently posted..What’s YOUR Daily 5?

  3. Aassif Billah says:

    Wow, great post. Thanks ! I am collecting tips about how to get more subscribers. Well, you have to start somewhere!
    Aassif Billah recently posted..10 Free Best Keyword Research Tool

    • Hi Aassif,

      Good for you, but remember it’s not how many people you gather for your list, it’s the quality of subscribers, so use a double opt-in and also ask subscribers to white list your email. If they don’t do these things then they’re probably not very serious about being on your list. One you get subscribers treat them like your best friend, because they are :-) Strive to get folks that are loyal.

      Best of luck,
      Liz :-)

  4. Hi Liz,

    Good post. You have tried a lot of things to make it easy to read, visually attractive and interesting.
    You used pictures, quotes, short paragraphs, ordered lists, links etc. This means you are aware of the importance of the layout of a post. Also, this is the mark of an experienced marketer.

    1. Quality content is very important, indeed. However, what do you do to defeat the competition (the competition that produces quality content, too)?

    2. What really interests me is to find a plugin that slowly displays a message at the bottom of the screen (not the blog) and where I can put an opt in form,

    3. Guest blogging. This is the most interesting part. Could you tell me something about your experience with guest blogging? How easy it is to find quality blogs? How easy it was to convince the blog owners that your posts must be published? What can you say about the conditions, restrictions that were imposed. Did they ask for money ?
    What about the replies to comments part. How easy it was to reply to comments?

    Have a nice day
    Silviu recently posted..How to Engage More People on Twitter with an Engagement Ship

    • Hi Silviu,

      1. Content can be a hard thing to compete with, but it depends on what you’re writing. If I’m writing a novel, I can’t compete. I’m a blogger so my style of writing is lighter and more educational so the more useful the information the better. For me to compete I can’t simply tell someone it’s important to have an email list for example, I have to show them how to do it or give them useful links to help them get it done and make it easy to understand.

      2. I’ve not encountered software or plugins for displaying an opt-in message at the bottom of your sceen that isn’t for a blog. But then again I haven’t looked for that as I use WordPress. If I see something I will let you know :-)

      3. For guest posting the key is to find sites that are popular in your niche that accept guest posts. Some are obvious about accepting guest posts, some are not For those that are not I just send them an email and attach the places I’ve guest posted. Professional bloggers serious about their business will respond.

      None of them have asked me for money, the restrictions are generally no more than you need an avatar or graphic of yourself. You must have your own blog and provide useful information, no generic info that you find everywhere on the web, it has to be unique and interesting. Many also want you to reply to all comments that come in.

      What I suggest is find blogs that you like, respect and visit every day. Get to know the owner, Follow them on twitter, Like them on FB, add them as a Google+ friend and then interact with them. Make it so they can’t help but get to know you, then send them an email asking to accept a guest post. Do not pay to do guest posts, there are too many good sites out there that will post if for free.

      Thanks for your great questions :-)
      Liz

  5. Hey Liz,

    Thanks for this mention, that’s so awesome to stop by here and see that you used my opt-in box as an example. I’m really proud of that one as you know.

    I always have been told since day one coming online that the money is in the list. I never doubted that for one moment but I also never knew how to build it and keep them there. It literally took me years to figure this all out for what I had to offer. I think once everyone knows that then they definitely better get that going ASAP.

    I didn’t know I could go through Aweber and they could help me figure out how to put one on Facebook. I’ve seen the squeeze page setups that way but I need to get one up there girl. Thank you so much for sharing this with me. I see a post coming after I’ve done that.

    Great share Liz, thanks again and I learned something new. Yay!!!

    ~Adrienne
    Adrienne recently posted..Thankful Thursday: SEO, Security, Pinging, Google Penalty & Social Media

    • Hi Adrienne,

      Hey, you’re a great example! Always happy to share good stuff.

      BTW, for the Aweber tutorial go to there knowledge base and type in ‘How Do I Add an Opt-in Form to My Facebook Page?’ The step by step instructions are all right there. Easy Peasy :-)

      Blessings,
      Liz

  6. Hi Liz,

    By the way I wanted to check your opt-in form on your facebook page, but didn’t find a facebook icon or link to go there. Did I miss it?

    As I was announcing in a recent post I am going to have an opt-in form in my header as soon as my writing tutorial is ready. I was inspired by Adrienne, indeed!

    For now I have one on my right sidebar, but what’s wrong with it is that my readers don’t want this stuff anymore, that’s why it was time for a new giveaway product.

    Thanks for the great tips, Liz.
    Sylviane Nuccio recently posted..Why Don’t We Always Agree With Our Actions?

  7. I agree with you that it is important to give your subscriber an incentive. To me one of the biggest incentives for all of us in responding to other blog sites is that it helps with SEO. Google likes to see new content and when we all respond to each others blog it becomes a win win situation for all. I do agree with your points and will look into them as well.
    Arleen recently posted..Become one of the Flying Wallendas for Your Business

  8. Hi Liz..
    Thank you very much foe the tips… “WWSGD plugin” is a new knowledge for me.. Thank you for sharing this…

    I think you forgot mention one thing that you have already done and that is, keeping the option “Sign Up For More Free Awesome Tips!” just below the “Post Comment” area…. :)

    It was too easy for me to post a comment as well as JUST click to sign up for your tips… :)

    I am going to keep this in my check list… :)
    Karmakar recently posted..Meta keywords: How important it is for your SEO campaign?

  9. I could definitely do more to promote subscriptions, especially with Facebook. Thanks for reminding me of that.

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