Once after you decide to start a blog you will choose an attractive domain name, set it up and start publishing posts. But that is not enough! You cannot just publish once in a month or two and forget about it during the rest of the days. Blogging is a daily hassle. There are many factors like SEO, Domain & Page authority, Keywords, traffic, Alexa ranking, etc which needs to be considered to run a successful blog.
The most asked question by every Blogger is ‘How to improve Alexa Ranking?’. I was one of them! My blog ran without having any knowledge about Alexa for almost a year. Once I understood what exactly Alexa Ranking is, it meant a lot more than a number.
It was late but not too late! Hence I have decided to pass on the knowledge to others. Sharing is caring, right?
Today we will see everything about Alexa which is required for every blogger out there.
So what is Alexa Ranking?
Let me put it in simple terms.
Alexa ranking is the positioning of your blog with millions of other blogs in the world.
Yes! Alexa ranking tells where exactly you (I mean your website) stand in the world of websites.
Alexa ranking is the measure of readers engagement, the popularity of the website, search traffic, bounce rate, page views, unique and recurring visitors, and Audience geography.
There is global Alexa ranking which means your position with the whole world! And also there is a location-based ranking which tells where is your blog in the respective location (Home country).
If you think Alexa is just the traffic rank (Traffic rank is evaluated based on three months of website traffic data and measured from different traffic data sources) then you are completely wrong! Alexa is way more than a traffic rank.
You can check your Alexa ranking at Alexa.com and also install Alexa toolbar (Google chrome extension) to be in the flow. It is a free tool for helping millions of people. If you have not installed the toolbar your Alexa ranking will not be shown/measured.
What are the measures for Alexa ranking?
Alexa doesn’t change in one day or a week. This is based on 3 months data of a website. Some people work hard to improve their Alexa ranking and stop after 2-3 weeks if there is no improvement. This shouldn’t be the case. You have to continue working on your blog, continue writing posts and keep sharing posts on social media.
Ranking within 20,000 to 100,000 is considered to be the best to make money. From 100,001 to 500,000 is said to be a healthy Alexa ranking which gives a good impression for Advertisers and other online sales. Even though your ranking is beyond 500,000 there is always scope for improvement. Alexa ranking is never static and keeps on improving if you put your time and effort.
Now let’s see what factors affect Alexa Ranking;
1) Engagement with the audience
This is the most important aspect of blogging. If the post is not attracting readers or not engaging visitors then it is time to look at what needs to be improved.
People click on the link if they find the title and description interesting. Once they enter your blog it is completely in your hand to make them stay.
Visitors should feel like it is worth reading, worth appreciating and worth revisiting.
What makes readers engaged;
1.1) Easy Navigation:
Once the reader lands on your website he should be well guided to take the tour of it. If he is lost or feels trapped then he will definitely leave the site.
1.2) Mobile friendly website:
These days most of the traffic comes from mobile. A lot of people prefer reading through mobile than desktop or tablets. Your website might change its look and feel when opened in a mobile.
Before changing a theme or making any design changes check for the mobile compatibility. Make sure your readers can read in mobile without any hassle.
1.3) Regular Blogging:
If the blog is updated 3-4 months ago then nobody feels to go ahead. Even though your old posts are too good people choose to exit if there is no activity on the blog.
You have a great design, simple navigation, blogging regularly still, people are not getting engaged? Then it is the time to revisit the content to check what is going wrong.
Most of the times people prefer content over blog design or navigation. Good content has a lot of power to ignore all small backlogs. If the content is itself not impressive then it is a waste of effort in improving blog design or social presence.
1.5) Comment section:
Today there are many comment tools like Jetpack, Discuss, Lazy load of comments etc which are very useful if you are using WordPress. Many Bloggers forget that comment section is the way to build boding with their visitors.
The comment section should not be very strict. Visitors avoid when there is compulsory login or inconvenient comments section. A simple comment section with Name, email & website link is advisory.
Engaging with readers by responding to their queries or expressing gratitude for the sweet gestures is one of the great blogging tips.
1.6) Presentation skills:
Grammer, vocabulary matters in blogging but not when you got great presentation skills. The way you convey your ideas without confusing reader keeps them reading throughout the post.
Long sentences & paragraphs, intertwined concepts, post with less than 1000 words, recurring phrases are the main factors for the reader to lose interest in the topic.
1.7) Secured website:
If your site is HTTP and says it is not secure users hesitate to proceed with the URL. Install SSL certificate to secure your website.
2) Popularity of the Blog
Most of us think that blogging means just writing posts. No, it’s not! Blogging means reading, engaging, conversing, involving and evolving.
You cannot just write a post, publish it and then go to sleep!! All the efforts will go in vain if the blog it is not reaching the right audience. That is why Alexa measures popularity as one of the important factors for ranking.
What makes your blog popular?
What happens with most of the bloggers(including me!) is, we publish posts frequently but forget about promoting. Social Media promotion is very important in order to diversify the traffic.
Popularity increases as more people get to know about your blog. you can maintain different social handle for your blog or publish in your personal accounts.
1.2) Friends and family:
They are the first one to support and encourage you! Being a beginner in the blogging world you hardly know people. It takes time to get to know fellow bloggers until then friends and family is the only way to spread the word. Ask them to share your blog link in their social accounts.
Paid advertisements might cost you a few extra bucks but they are very effective. Tools like Moz, Google Analytics, Bing provide paid advertisements to the blog.
I purchased Bluehost (web hosting website) to launch my websites, gave me free $100 credit for Bing and Google Adwords. There are many marketing tools where you can advertise to enhance site popularity thus reaching a better Alexa rank.
1.4) Blogging communities:
Communities like Blogchatter, Indiblogger, BlogAdda, Bloglovin, etc helps to meet fellow bloggers. Join such communities to get to know some awesome blogs and bloggers. Regularly share your content, read other blogs, share readable links and thus be a part of the community.
Reading is one important part of blogging. The more you read the more you improve. Keep reading other blogs. Discover blogs that are similar to you. You can share your opinion by commenting which helps to leave your footprint on other blogs. You cannot climb the blogging ladder alone. Certainly, you need to get to know people who can love your blog.
1.6) Guest Posts:
Guest posts are a great way to improve external links. Alexa rank improves if you have plenty of external links. Twitter is one great place where you can find people offering guest posts on their blog. Even you can ask people to write guest posts on your blog.
3) Search traffic to website
Search traffic is the main factor in Alexa ranking. Traffic is the collective measure of a number of visits, Pageviews, total number of sessions, average session duration, and bounce rate.
To generate plenty of traffic either your blog should be very popular or you have to spend generously on advertisements. Now don’t think too much! There is a shortcut for this.
Understanding every aspect of search traffic is the shortcut. This needs time, continuous effort, patience, diversity to test alternative methods and hard work. SEO is very important to get in the top pages of search results. Without SEO your website might go off track and search engines will never be able to crawl.
When we are talking about search traffic mostly it will be about SEO. SEO is a very vast subject. There are many factors which matters when it comes to SEO. You no need to be an SEO expert! Yoast SEO is very useful for beginners (& even for experts) which helps to manage SEO easily.
Your search traffic can be improved with the help of;
When a user enters their query in search bar loads of results will be loaded within seconds. Before writing any post you need to know about Keyword density.
For example for this post when I search for ‘Alexa ranking‘ keyword I could see 22.4K organic search which means many people are searching for this term. If you see the phrase match you will get to know search volume for different phrases. In this case, I can even use the ‘Alexa rank’ in this post because of its high volume.
Google Keyword Planner, Moz, SEMrush etc are some of the popular keyword research tools. You need to pay to get higher benefits. Basic keyword research can be done for free.
I also use Google to check the right keyword for my post. Enter your keyword in the search bar and see how many results are generating. Scroll to the end of search to see Keyword suggestions by Goole.
Use proper short tail and long tail keywords to get noticed by search engines. You should smartly insert these words in a post so that it will not disturb the flow or irritably repeated.
3.2) Reduced bounce rate
Google Analytics is a great way to check site performance. If you are using Google analytics you will be familiar with the term bounce rate.
A bounce is a single-page session on your site. In Analytics, a bounce is calculated specifically as a session that triggers only a single request to the Analytics server, such as when a user opens a single page on your site and then exits without triggering any other requests to the Analytics server during that session (Says Google).
In summary, once a visitor enters your website it is very important to hold him. Most of the times users click on the post and then exits if they find it is irrelevant to their interest. Bounce rate higher than 50 is not healthy for any website.
Add a good meta description, create a landing page that satisfies user query, Check which page or post is getting more traffic and work on similar topics, keep an eye on website speed, regularly check the analytics report and see what is working for your website.
3.3) Quantity and Quality
Content is the king. Good content can attract many visitors regardless of the design or popularity. You have hit jackpot once the user shows interest and decides to click on your link. If your content is not relevant or post is less than 500 words then it disappoints him definitely. he should be happy about landing on your website, he should get curious enough to explore the website, he should feel that it is a good website to revisit.
Add Chrome extension of Grammarly which helps to correct your spelling mistakes and is a great way of making blog posts grammar friendly. Before publishing read n number of times. I generally publish posts one day after drafting so that I can read it with a fresh mind to spot mistakes.
3.4) Sessions & Pageviews
If you see Alexa ranking thoroughly you can see daily pageviews per visitor and daily time on site. How many sessions are created, how many users are logged in, an average of time taken by each user, average of page views per visitor, idle sessions, active sessions all are calculated.
You cannot be just happy if your visitor stats are high. You need to check thoroughly whether people are really engaging with your website or it is just a click and close.
3.5) Internal & External links
Internal links are your own blog links used in different posts of your blog. External links are the ones which come from other websites. Both are not easy! You need to be very strategic to use internal links.
External links are also known as Backlinks/ Inbound links which help you to rank higher in the search engines. Since getting backlinks is not that easy as internal links one needs to put in a lot of effort to gain inbound links from other blogs.
If you find similar blogs ask them to link their posts to your and vice versa. Alexa ranking improves drastically if there are more external and internal links.
Don’t worry if your Alexa ranking is too low. Alexa rank improves very easily with the help of regular blogging. Also, don’t be very happy if your Alexa rank has shown drastic improvement. Look at the number, drink coffee and start working again!
What is working for others might not work for you. Every blog has a different niche. There are sites which are similar to yours. Make beautiful posters for every post, find attractive headlines thus you can be unique among others.
As already said Alexa ranking is the average of 3 months data. Thousands of blogs will be created in these 3 months. Keeping up the constant speed in this blogging race is really important. Find your pace and keep running!