Your popular posts are popular for a reason. People must like them if they’re doing well, right? So rather than have them sit in your archives with the rest of your posts, why don’t you make them work for you? After all, they’re getting a decent amount of traffic, traffic that you can turn into fans and customers with a few updates. Here are some tips to make your popular posts work for you.
Determine Your Top 5-10 Popular Posts
Before you can put your popular posts to work, you’ll first have to identify your which posts they are. In order to do so, you’ll have to have Google Analytics installed.
Go to your Google Analytics dashboard and click on Behavior > Site Content > All Pages. Here you’ll see a list of the pages on your site with the highest traffic within the time frame listed on the top of the page. Now, you’ll probably have to do some digging as some of these links will likely be actual pages rather than posts. Go down the list and write down your top 5-10 posts as you’ll need to know them to implement the rest of the tips.
Want to make it easy? I’ve included a free worksheet below to help you make the most of your popular posts.
Include Related Links
As mentioned before, your popular posts are popular for a reason. People are obviously taking away some value from what you’ve shared. But what about your less popular posts? Surely they’re just as valuable. And if you blog about a limited number of topics then there’s bound to be some overlap. So let’s direct some of that traffic to your other related posts. After all, if people like what they’re reading, then they’ll probably be interested in reading more on the subject.
So first things first, skim over your popular posts. As you’re skimming, think back to your post archive. Have you since written a post that can be linked to within your popular post? Great! That’s an awesome opportunity to connect those posts together.
I personally like to add links to related posts below a paragraph or section of a post that I think people will enjoy based on the current post. For example, on my 13 Ways to Make Your Site User Friendly post, under the section on making your content easy to share, I added a link to my How to Increase Blog Post Shares on Twitter post. Because I was talking about how to make things easy to share, I figured a reader would be interested on how to incorporate Twitter into their site in order to implement that particular step.
A content upgrade is a bonus that is offered to a reader usually in exchange for their email address. They’re an incredibly successful method for growing your email list because they provide additional value on a topic that site visitors are already interested in.
While content upgrades are great on their own, pairing them with your most popular posts has the potential to really grow your list. Your popular posts are proof that people like that content, so providing a bonus for something people are already interested in is a no brainer.
So what types of content upgrades should you offer? Some ideas are a workbook, checklist, additional content, ebook, video, audio recording, and anything else you think people would find valuable.
Want to see a content upgrade in action? I’m offering one at the bottom of this post.
Add to Sidebar
Have you ever fell down a rabbit hole after reading a post on someone’s site? You know what I’m talking about. You came to the site to read a particular post, but then their sidebar grabbed you in and made you open a bunch of other posts in new tabs. I don’t know about you, but this happens to me all the time.
Displaying your popular posts in your sidebar is a great way to entice people to keep clicking around on your site. Putting your best posts on display shows people what you have to offer. And unless they start looking through your archives or come across an older post on social media, odds are they’ll never be aware of your treasure trove of content.
Start Here Page
A great place to showcase your most popular posts is on a start here page. First timers to your site can easily become overwhelmed with the amount of content available. That’s why a start here page is so beneficial. It gives people a starting point so they can know what to expect from your site.
Because of this, your start page is the perfect place to display your most popular content. Other people like the content, so it would make sense that new visitors would as well. Plus, your popular content is probably some of your best content, so why not start off first timers on the right foot. By creating a start here page and displaying your most popular content, you’re giving them a great introduction to your site.
Create Pinterest Friendly Graphics
If your popular posts don’t have graphics, or they have graphics that aren’t Pinterest friendly, you’re missing out! Pinterest is by far one of the best referrers of traffic. Just ask any blogger and odds are they’ll mention how amazing Pinterest has been for their traffic.
If you already have images included in your popular posts, but they aren’t Pinterest friendly, now’s the time to update them. A well styled post graphic goes a long way in increasing the number of times a post is pinned. If your posts are lacking an image, odds are you’re not gaining any traffic from Pinterest when you could be. You’re really missing a great opportunity on getting your popular posts in front of more people.
So what’s considered a Pinterest friendly image? The images that do the best on Pinterest are tall rather than wide. They also include text right on the image itself that’s both legible and enticing.
Looking at your popular posts, can you expand on any of them? Creating another post on the subject is a great way to create content that is bound to be popular since you already have proof that the topic is a hit. There are two ways you can go about expanding your content.
The first way is to simply create a part 2. This would include sharing additional content on the topic. So for example, if you have a post on 10 Must Have Tools for Creative Business Owners, you can create another post titled 10 More Must Have Tools for Creative Business Owners. Or if your post is called Google Analytics 101, create a Google Analytics 201 post where you go into more advanced detail.
The second way is to take a section of one of your popular posts and expand on that. For example, if I were to expand on this post, I could create a post on how to create Pinterest friendly graphics. If this post does well, that might be a subject that people want to learn more about. Plus, it gives me the opportunity to include a related link within this post.
Ready to take your popular posts to the next level? Grab your free popular posts workbook.