I don’t think it’s any secret that I love blog graphics. I’ve been talking about them for a while here on the blog and for good reason. You need them to become a successful blogger. Not maybe. Not you’ll be fine without them. Not you can scrape by with mediocre quality graphics. Listen up.
You NEED awesome blog graphics in order to be successful.
It’s an absolute necessity to grow your blog. As a childhood dance teacher of mine used to say: Get it, got it, good.
But I’m no tyrant. I don’t want to just shove facts down your throat without any kind of explanation. We’ve all heard the term show not tell right? Well, I’m about to show you exactly why you need to focus on graphics. Buckle up kids. It’s about to get fun.
Graphics drive more traffic to your blog
Um… who doesn’t want more traffic?? As much as we say we don’t care about numbers, the truth is, we do. Of course we do! We started our blogs as a place to discuss books with others. And we can’t do that without driving traffic to our blogs. We can’t make new friends without giving them a way to find our blogs in the first place.
All of us have goals in our heads even if we don’t speak them out loud. Maybe we want a certain number of followers or a certain number of blog visitors per month. Goals are great to have! Now it’s time to execute them.
Driving more traffic to your book blog can be a challenge at times. Many book bloggers hang out on Twitter, but here’s a secret. Twitter moves so fast that only a small portion of your following see that blog post you tweeted out. And 5 minutes later it’s gone. Lost in cyberspace.
Pinterest however, has a much longer lifespan. In fact, blog posts on Pinterest have an evergreen life. That means they stick around forever. You could write a post, pin it on Pinterest and have it repinned hundreds of times. Years (yes, I said YEARS) later, people are still visiting your blog to read that post because it continues to get repinned.
But in order to be successful on Pinterest you have to have amazing graphics. It’s a very visual search engine. And yes, I’m calling it a search engine, not a social media outlet. It’s really not social media. But more on that in a future post. (In fact, you should probably subscribe to my email list so you don’t miss it.)
Pinterest is very visual and you have to have amazing graphics in order to be successful. It can be a huge source of traffic to your blog. You can see that Pinterest is my #3 traffic source, right after organic search and direct links. It ranks significantly higher than Twitter. There’s the proof for you right there.
One of my pins on how to create a beautiful bookstagram has over 100 repins so far and I’ve actually gained over 150 new email subscribers from that post alone. And a ton of those subscribers came directly from Pinterest.
The proof is in the numbers people. My graphics and the power of Pinterest drive more traffic to my blog.
Have an aesthetically pleasing blog people will want to stay on
I don’t know about you guys, but I’m totally guilty of judging a book by its cover. And I do the same things with blogs. I know it’s horrible and I shouldn’t do it, but I can’t help it!
People are very visual. (Let’s count how many times I say that in this post.)
If a blog design, which includes your graphics, isn’t appealing to me, I’m too distracted to focus on the actual content. If the graphics seem to be all over the place, (i.e. one bright pink one and then further down the post a yellow one and then in the next one an orange one and then in the next one a different shade of green… you get the point) I leave.
It makes the blog feel inconsistent. If the graphics and the branding are off, then I (perhaps wrongly, but still) assume the content is going to be all over the place as well. People want to have certain expectations when they go to a blog.
I know that when I go to Cait @ Paper Fury’s blog I’m going to get funny, sarcastic posts about books and writing. I know when I go to Ashley @ Nosegraze’s blog I’ll get super honest reviews and incredibly helpful blogging tips.
The reason I know this is because I’ve followed both of these wonderful ladies for a long time. But if I had first landed on their blogs and the design was all over the place, I probably wouldn’t have stuck around and I would have missed out on all the awesome content they have. And they would have missed out on having me as a subscriber. It would have been a tragedy on both sides.
First impressions are
important vital to obtain new subscribers. Make a good first impression with your design and people will stick around to read your awesome content.
Develop a brand that people will come back to time and time again
This goes hand in hand with my last point. You need to develop a strong book blogger brand in order to stand out on the internet. Think about your close friends. Every one of them has a unique personality, right? And a unique style? You could probably pick your friends out of a crowd even it was pitch dark and you could only hear them speak. Or maybe you could just see what they were wearing.
You need to have the same recognition for your blog. And you can do that by developing a really strong brand. You want people to recognize your graphics so they click on them over and over again. You want them to recognize your book blogging voice so they can tell people how sarcastically hilarious you are. Or how beautiful your reviews are.
Develop your book blogger brand via your online personality and your graphics and you will begin to build your tribe.
Increase your ranking on Google
When people are searching for new fantasy books to read you want them to land on your blog, right? But how do you do that? It’s called SEO which stands for search engine optimization. There’s a lot that goes into SEO, but one thing is graphics.
Google knows that people don’t like to read big blocks of text. They know that people are very visual and like things broken up to make it easier on their eyes. So in order to rank higher on Google, you’re going to want to include graphics in your post. Your main blog post graphic, maybe an infographic, etc. Something to break the text up.
Do that and you’ll notice yourself slowly starting to rank higher. It takes time, but it’s super important to grow your blog organically. Meaning you’re not hustling to get people to your blog via Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc. People are searching and just finding your blog without you having to do anything.
Graphics make your post easier to read
Like I said in the last point, breaking up your text with graphics makes it way easier for people to read. People are naturally skimming when they’re reading a blog post on the internet. They don’t have time to read every single word. And if you have a blog post with a huge block of text, they may not even bother. They may just leave right away without a second thought. Because who has time to read a post like that?
That’s not to say you can’t write a long post. In fact, you should write long posts (Google likes them better). You just have to break that text up with some pretty images so people don’t get so overwhelmed. Then they’ll read your post, realize just how awesome you are and subscribe. But that will never happen if the post looks overwhelming. So do yourself a favor and sprinkle graphics throughout.
Increase your social media engagement and traffic
Did you know that visual content is over 40x more likely to be shared on social media than other content? Facebook posts see 2x more engagement when a relevant image is attached and tweets saw a 150% more retweets than tweets without images. (source)
If those stats aren’t enough to sell you on the importance of graphics, I don’t know what will. 40x more likely to be shared!! You know how you get a post to go viral? By getting people to share it. And images make it way more likely for people to share.
Make your graphics and use them on every single social media post. Twitter in particular moves very quickly so you have to find a way to stand out. Throwing an image in there makes people pause and wonder what it is. They take a second look, click on your link, read your post, subscribe, go back to Twitter and retweet you for a follower of theirs to do it all over again. And so on, and so forth.
Social media is a powerful way to drive more traffic to your blog and get new subscribers. Utilize it! Add images to your posts to fully capitalize on the power of your Twitter or Facebook account.
What’s one thing you learned from this post? Are you going to finally get serious about your blog graphics? What’s one thing you want to start doing right away?