Ross asks – “What is more important, working on getting more traffic (digg, links from high traffic sites) or working on search engine optimisation? If you had 10 hours to spend on one or the other which would benefit you more?”
I think both strategies can be important for a blog – depending upon it’s life stage. They’re also really linked…
I’m a big believer in getting good SEO principles into play on a new blog from day one so in the very early days I’d work on some SEO above trying to leverage other site’s traffic. However most blog platforms come with fairly decent SEO these days and most of what I’d do on an SEO front after a few basic tweaks is while I’m writing a post (ie good titles, using keywords well etc.
In terms of leveraging traffic from other sites – a lot of this also happens for me in the writing process. Knowing the type of style and topic of posts that people like to link to is a big part of it. I don’t tend to actively promote many of my posts to other sites these days but instead let my readers do a lot of it.
Not sure if I’ve really answered your question Ross. So I’ll say this:
If it was in the first week of a blog’s life I’d work on the SEO of the blog (things like getting title tags right, looking at how it interlinks internally etc). In fact I’d work on this stuff before the blog was launched – but it probably wouldn’t take 10 hours. Once this stuff is set up it’s not something I generally spend a lot of time on – my focus switches to content creation.
In the coming weeks (and months) I’d work hard on developing key content that is useful, unique and attractive to other sites. I’d also promote some of that key content to other key blogs in the niche I was attempting to break into (keep in mind that in doing this you’re also really working on your SEO as incoming links play a big part in helping your Search Engine ranking). 10 hours a week doing this can really have a powerful impact!
What would you say is the most effective use of 10 hours as a blogger?