February 05, 2009

Where is Your Focus: Subscribers or Traffic?

By Corvida Raven of SheGeeks.net (FriendFeed/Twitter)

James Duthie of Online Marketing Banter has a really valuable post on 5 important lessons that he learned from his first year of blogging. I think everyone could agree to having learned a lot of the lessons that he listed, myself included. However, his first two lessons really inspired me to think about where my focus is when it comes to my own blog. 

Lesson 1 - Momentum disappears damn quickly.
Lesson 2 - It's not all about the traffic.

With these two lessons in mind, I think that as a blogger begins to evolve they have have to make a decision: you can work overtime to keep up traffic to continuously build momentum or you can stop worrying about the traffic and shift your focus to converting the traffic that you receive into subscribers. Some people focus on both, which can be a daunting task. Getting people to visit your site in the beginning of your blogging career is no easy task, unless you have great connections.My decision was to worry more about subscribers than traffic. I figured that with enough subscribers, you can begin to have consistently decent traffic, without worrying about the momentum that disappears all to quickly for some of us.

Know Your Goals

For me, this was an easy decision because I don't display any ads on SheGeeks, nor do I care to. Though recently I've been dabbling in sponsored links. Being aware of what you plan to do with your site can help you better understand what decision would be best for you. The answer to the aforementioned question is all so dependent upon the focus of your site and what you are attempting to achieve. I want more conversation. With more subscribers I can easily generate more conversation. This is easier for me rather than trying to generate conversation by trying to increase my traffic. And no, high subscribers doesn't necessarily mean high traffic, especially if your content is few and far in between.

Know Your Audience

On another note, I'm aware that the majority of my readers user RSS feeds to access the site. I'm also aware that the majority of my readers are probably "skimmers", meaning they don't read everything in its entirety unless it's truly worth their time. So traffic is just a moot point for me the majority of the time. What does this mean? Be aware of your audience and the tools they use. To me, the aforementioned facts reeks of a low click-through rate. So really, why bother?

What's Your Focus?

Which leads me to ask the rest of you: where is your focus when it comes to your blog: subscribers or traffic?

Read more by Corvida Raven at SheGeeks.net.