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Are you missing hidden opportunities to grow your real estate blog readership?

If you?ve started blogging for your real estate business, it?s likely the major reason was to grow your online presence or lower your monthly communication costs with potential clients. Both are very important byproducts of blogging. However soon after you start publishing posts the question comes up, ?How can I get more visitors to my blog? And how do I retain more of my current traffic??

Although there are many strategies for attracting new readers to your real estate blog, one basic strategy is to closely follow your website analytics software. If you don?t already use one?start now! I use three different analytics packages: Google Analytics, Clicky Web Analytics and CrazyEgg. Google Analytics is free up to 5 million page views a month. Clicky and CrazyEgg both have a limited free version and a few tiers of paid plans.

However before you jump in to your metrics and get overwhelmed, start by asking yourself a few key business questions about your real estate website or blog that you would like answered. The questions could be:

  1. How do I convert more visitors with my IDX MLS tool?
  2. How do I gain more subscribers to my Buyer or Seller eBooks?
  3. How do I get more visitors to search local communities on my blog?
  4. How do I get more visitors to subscribe to my RSS feed?

Once you?ve come up with the questions, you can analyze your data to help find the answers. This method should prevent you from being overwhelmed by the aggregate data and make better use of your time.

Next I will explore specific ways analytics software can help build a broader audience for your real estate blog.

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Ideas For Getting Readers For Your Real Estate Blog: Part 2

Besides writing thoughtful, innovative, resourceful and creative real estate blog posts that keep your visitors coming back for more, here are a few more ideas for gaining readership for your blog (view Part 1 of this Idea List) :

  1. Build your online networks: at ActiveRain, Facebook, MyBlogLog, LinkedIn and Zolve. Create and maintain a profile, add your weblog address, RSS feed, etc. Although these communities may have different features, all provide blog and blogger exposure by helping you reach out to your colleagues and client sphere?ultimately yielding a readership gain!
  2. Put a live link to your blog in your eStationery. Your blog address should be on all your real estate print marketing AND email marketing. So if you have eStationery or an email signature, be sure to make the most of it by including a live link to your blog. I favor custom eStationery headers like the one below. Suggestion: Don?t add more than 2 links as it may begin to trigger spam filters.

  1. Participate in blog writing contests: Step up your blog writing game and enter your recent posts in blog writing contests. The Carnival of Real Estate is a great place to start! You may not win but you?ll expose your crafty blog to readers who have not otherwise considered your ramblings a newsworthy source. Who knows if you raise your game enough, Lani Anglin may even award you the coveted Nacho Blogger Award! Note: Enter to win an Odysseus Medal or Black Pearl at your own risk. Apparently, my writing style is not up to par enough to be mentioned in the list of entries.
  2. Submit your weblog to online directories: Online directories take website/weblog links that are submitted by the author and categorize them. This strategy is easy because once you have submitted your site, there is little or no additional maintenance required. Usually directory submission is free, but a few do charge for their service or require a reciprocal link. Here are a few good ones to get you started: dmoz, Yahoo directory, Best of the Web.
  3. Talk about it! Whether I?m at the grocery store, a holiday party, presenting to clients, or stranded at the airport, my blog seems to work itself into the conversation every time. If you don?t already have a 3 minute elevator speech promoting your blog?work on one, and make sure you have business cards printed with your weblog address. Live it, Blog it, Promote it!

Got a helpful idea you?d like to share?tell me about.

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Ideas For Getting Readers For Your Real Estate Blog: Part 1

Is there a science to getting readers for your blog? Do you have a plan when it comes to gaining readership and blog exposure? Whether you pick and choose your strategies to create a thoughtful plan, or round up every tactic in the book?..there is a method to your madness. We may not go about it the same way, so I?ve decided to collect as many ideas for gaining blog readers as I can find, or stand. Take ?em, leave ?em or add to them. I?ll keep the list going as long as I can, and with that, here are the first 5.

  1. Add your blog address to your business card & other marketing. Whether you are farming an area, marketing to your sphere, or meeting new potential clients, this is a sure fire way to get the word out. And with the holidays approaching, be sure to have a stack of cards on hand for all those special events.
  2. Got RSS? You have an RSS feed on your blog, but are you making good use of it? I suggest downloading an RSS feed image that is obviously recognizable and place it toward the top of your blog so your readers can easily subscribe. Don?t make feed subscription a game of hide and seek. Try Feed Icons or Bittbox for RSS icons and trick out your feed with Feedburner.
  3. Custom Widgets: Create a custom widget and place it on your blog for your current readers to download and place on their blogs. Now your content is accessible to people that may not otherwise know what great info you have to offer. To get started creating your custom widget, visit Widgetbox or Spring Widgets.
  4. Social Bookmarking & Tagging: Using social bookmarking sites like Digg, del.icio.us and StumbleUpon not only allows users to store, organize, share, and search ?bookmarks? of web pages, but there are other benefits to be had. Two possible benefits of social bookmarking are helping a website rank better on search engines, as well as increasing the amount of natural links to the website. And a fabulous benefit of tagging is that you can see how others have tagged their content and see which tags are most important. From here, you can see which tags are most popular, and how to incorporate those tags into your content to become noticeable to the most people. To learn more about Socical Bookmarking, watch this.

  5. Comments: If you are truly trying to create community centered around your blog, then you need to participate in the act of creating community. One way to do this is to join the conversations that are happening on other blogs. Visit other real estate focused blogs and make comments on articles you are interested in. Whether you support or disagree, let your voice be heard. The best commentators will take a stance and add upon it with another benefit or helpful resource. Before long, you?ll notice new visitors and comments on your own blog!

These ideas may seem simple and obvious to most, but they are only as good as the user that implements them. Stay tuned for Ideas #6-10 next week.