How To Drive Traffic To Your New Design Blog

Recently I’ve been getting emails and friends asking for advice on starting up their own design blog, how to get initial traffic and how keep it consistently coming. Below are a a few tips and techniques that has helped me in the early stages of my blog to bring in traffic, and hopefully continue in the future.

Get people involved and excited

One of the first thoughts that went through my mind when starting TDC was, “How do I get people to visit my site?” So what better way to get people to visit than to make them want to visit.

Posts such as, 26 Business Cards of Graphic & Web Designers and 40+ Creative Logos Submitted By The Designers Themselves not only helped other designers gain exposure, but helped TDC get off the ground. It’s a win/win situation, but how do you find people to submit and get involved…

Become active

Although I stated in the second paragraph that these were in no particular order, social networking and getting others involved was hands down the key to TDC’s initial exposure. After discovering other designer’s to follow on Twitter, I was not only able to find other talented designers to chat with, share information, and help out, but by making friends and the power of the retweet, TDC was able to gain exposure, readers and participants.

Notice I said to help others and not just promote your own blog. Lend a hand to the design community and more often than not they will return the favor.

Other valuable social sites:

  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati

Submit Articles

Submitting your articles to various design-related submission sites is another great way to reach a wider audience. Check out 40 promotional design sites where you can submit your blog articles for a fantastic starting point.

Giveaways and Competitions

Who doesn’t enjoy winning FREE stuff? Host a competition or giveaway free stuff for commenting or subscribing.

Also, you can ask others to help you out by offering up free prizes or services in return for some exposure or link love.

Use your sources

Linking to other peoples blogs and articles is another great way to gain exposure. Ask other blog founders of similar interest and popularity if you could add then to your blog roll in exchange for a link back.

A few good examples of link love include:

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Improving your search engine ranking by making your blog search engine friendly with SEO tricks and tips. If you are using WordPress, make certain to install the All in One SEO Pack plugin.

Comment On Other Blogs

Not only will this leave a link back to your site (if you leave your website URL in the form field), but also gives you the opportunity to shed some insight on other posts, thus making you valuable and informative.

Try keeping your avatar/picture consistent throughout your social networking sites. A gravatar is an image that ties into your email address whenever you comment on the web… this helps to brand your blog and yourself.

Add A Link To All Your Marketing Material

Start by adding your blogs URL to your business cards and email signature. The more the better.

Write Guest Posts

Writing for other blogs of similar interest and readership is a great way to reach out to a wider, new audience. Try writing to your best ability when doing guest posts — you want to impress!

Host Guest Writers

Allowing other’s to write the occasional blog post is a great way to provide other insight and a new, fresh perspective on topics. Agan, you’re getting your readers and community involved.

Link To Other Articles

If you look to the above paragraphs, you will notice a lot of relevant linking going on. Not only is this valuable to your readers, but it’s a great way for other blogs to notice you — and we all appreciate a good trackback.

Put A Face To Your Blog

I’m not sure if it’s coincidental or not, but putting a face to your blog helps bridge the gap between a standard website and a community.

Many of my favorite blogs I enjoy reading, I feel I have a connection with the writer. It makes me feel more welcome and invited to interact.

Blogs are typically personal so why not make them more personal? Add a photo of yourself someone where on your blog.

Write Interesting & Valuable Content

While this one seems to be a no-brainer, when writing or coming up with an idea for a post ask yourself “Would I want to read this?”

Write short, concise articles. Readers LOVE lists! Don’t ramble and appeal to the masses (well unless that’s not what you are going for). Also, don’t just preach. Instead, help people. Share your knowledge, expertise and experiences.

Post Regularly

Three things are extremely important when first starting your blog:

  1. Have a few quality articles posted on your blog prior to the launch.
  2. Have a few quality articles on the back burner so you can quickly post through the first few weeks.
  3. Post on a regular basis. Why would readers want to visit your blog or subscribe if you are only posting once a month? Give them something to look forward to.

Discussion and Comments

+ Add to the discussion
  1. Suzane says:

    One thing I really like about StumbleUpon is that the traffic converts well. Stumblers are visiting by topic preference, and seem more likely to become RSS subscribers and return visitors. While Diggers are active commenters, big diggs don’t have much long-term impact on my readership. Reddit is becoming an important source of traffic for me. It performs like Digg, but a big Reddit spike is usually followed by an uptick in subscriptions. The last big Reddit blast at Lighter Footstep was on the order of 20k, which certainly rivals Digg in the server-humbling department.

  2. Emiliano says:

    Really an interesting article, thanks for the useful tips!

  3. your tips for how to get traffic to a new website was really informative

    keep up your job

    thanks hopping to look back again

  4. Eilonvi says:

    great advice – most of the tips i’ll try to apply to my own blog :) thanks!

  5. seo packages says:

    What a wonderful tips here! Yes, to get traffic and blog exposure need a lot of hard work.. Generating strong backlink with your anchor text help your blog in the search engines

  6. dresses says:

    I think Facebook is the major source now a days because 300 K visitors daily .

  7. samson says:

    nice ideal i will give it a trial

  8. samantha says:

    You can drive traffic to your site or blog by submitting articles. To get a list of articles site please click on the link above or on my name.

  9. Thanks really like you blog, great tips to drive traffic

  10. That’s great to read about that how we can drive traffic to our new blog. Well, this post is really informative. great stuff you shared.

  11. Nice tips on posting regularly. Most times people have great blog ideas, make a few posts then never write to it again or very infrequently. Like you say, post regularly and give people something to look forward to.

  12. Nice Article and very informative. I would like to add few points to your article, Designing and Creativity are the major businesses must concentrate on Presentation. Presenting yourself and your business will play vital role to improve your Business. Whether it’s through online or Direct Marketing or Referral Marketing. all it depends on how you presented your work to the visitors. this way you can expect good business and the second thing is to maintain the customer relationship. this also helps as a referral marketing. one satisfied customer can bring so many referrals to your business.

    Thanks for the information Brian,

  13. Ray says:

    Good insightful article. What about publishing articles to article directories and linking back to your blog?

  14. freda says:

    Nice tips. you are so write it is one thing to write a post and yet another to get readers

  15. Tamu says:

    very informative article. I’ve submitted articles for my blog, and I find this concept really does work well

  16. Kunal says:

    A helpful post indeed. Writing and commenting to others blog is the best way I would consider. Driving traffic using social networking sites like Facebook and twitter is another great way. I use twitter, digg, delicious and many similar kind of sites to drive traffic.
    The other way which you did not mention is adding blog to a blog directory.

  17. Ameen says:

    Great info. Normally I will submit my post to social bookmarking site such as Digg and Bebo to increase traffic. Plus, I use BlogCatalog and MyBlogLog widget for networking with other bloggers.

  18. aishwarya says:

    it was a great informative advise i will follow your golden
    tips while marketing my website thank you very much i advise other web developers to follow your tips


  19. Rojish says:

    Nice post. Getting initial traffic is one of the most difficult thing for newbie bloggers.

  20. Great info, certainly a treasure for a newbie..thanks for sharing this :)

  21. Very useful tips. the thing I takeaway from it is the need to ‘make friends.’ Printers and graphic designers need each other across all levels and can often help by collaborating on the same job so competition isn’t really the issue.
    Getting traffic to any new site has always been difficult for me but following these tips will get you there eventually.

  22. Vipin says:

    Great Post, will help alot of newbies in the blog world
    Thanks :)

  23. Recently I’ve decided to start my own blog in the next few months, and the first place that came to my mind for tips on blogging was TDC. This article was great, thanks.

Brian Hoff
About Brian Hoff: Designer, Writer and Speaker

I’m a graphic designer living in Brooklyn, New York who loves creating compelling and useful websites and memorable interactions across the web. When I’m not designing I can be found writing, speaking and occasionally part-time teaching at colleges — all on the subject of design. I started this blog to share my passion and experiences with designers and clients. I'm most active on Twitter; say hello: