How to Increase Your Blog's Pageviews and SEO with One Simple Change

Just one thing can improve your blog traffic and visitor pageviews.How often do you search Google for the post that Seth Godin wrote in January 2009? Or, ask Bing to find a post Chris Brogan wrote in November 2008? Never? You’re normal. Nobody searches by the date a post was written. They want specific content.

Godin and Brogan are established bloggers who have high volumes of daily traffic to their blog. Presumably, they have all the traffic they want because neither follows best practices for blog usability. Both list their archived posts by date written.

Notice in the image below that Godin has several months listed for his archives. (Red Arrow) This is a waste of prime website real estate. It does nothing to encourage a visitor to look for more information.

Seth Godin uses blog archives instead of categories

Brogan’s waste of space is worse. His monthly archives go back to March of 2004. (Red Arrow) It shows us that he has been blogging for a long time, but that doesn’t provide value for the reader. Wouldn’t you prefer topics or categories to help you find other posts?

Chris Brogan uses blog archives instead of categories

If you aren’t a power blogger, you need to do things differently.

You need to take advantage of every opportunity to increase your search engine rankings and keep your readers reading and clicking. Changing date driven archives to categories helps your readers find other posts by providing topics. It also allows you to optimize the keywords on your blog. The search engines read the text on your blog. Unless your target audience searches for “January 2009” on a regular basis, test changing the dates to categories. Monitor your pageviews and search rankings for a month to see the effect. I guarantee you’ll see an improvement.

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  • Z. Kelly Queijo

    Debra, dropping date archives is, perhaps, my favorite piece of advice when it comes to blog usability. I never saw the point of date archives and I certainly would never wonder what someone published in a particular month. Give me key word named categories and relevancy any day. I don’t use tag clouds or category lists any more. I select the categories that represent the best and most relevant topics I’ve covered in my blog and promote them. I know from knowing my audience what’s important to them and I push out the articles on those topics to them via my sidebar menu, related content within a blog post, Twitter, Facebook, through email and via email newsletters. Much of the content on my site is evergreen content — assigning it to an archive is the equivalent of bury it in the dirt.
    .-= Z. Kelly Queijo´s last blog ..CampusChat- Flying to Visit College with Fleet Aviation =-.

  • Debra Ellis


    You’re following the best practices. Tag Clouds look cool, but most people don’t know what they are or how to use them. We have so little time to capture a visitor’s attention, we have to use it well. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  • Slava


    that’s an excellent advice! 🙂 I’ve actually removed archives on most of my blogs for the same reason. Why would someone be looking for something I wrote in some month? That’s stupid!

    Thanks for spreading the “THINK!” attitude!

  • Debra Ellis

    It frustrates me that the archive default for most blog publishing applications is date driven. The developers should know better. Thank you for visiting and sharing your experience.

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