Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, and other ways to increase traffic.

I like to think of my blog as a studio diary. I record what I’m working on, and I post about what interests me as an artist. It’s a great way to bring my work to an audience that I would never have before social media existed. The opportunity to interact with other artists has been highly enjoyable and I believe beneficial to me as an artist.

One of my guilty pleasures when it comes to blogging is checking my stats. When I first started my stats were very low, and I found it very frustrating trying to figure out ways to increase visitors to my site. My stats are still low, after all this is an art blog, but I’ve been steadily increasing traffic to my blog and these are a few things I’ve found helpful.

Facebook is a great way to get traffic started on your blog. Set it up to share automatically when you post. I’ve found that having a fan page is also a good way to bring readers who might like your work, but might not know you.

Twitter has been great for bringing traffic to my blog, and also something I’ve found very enjoyable and informative. I’ve actually come to like Twitter much more than I was expecting to. I’ve made connections with many diverse, great, and interesting artists. I tweet all my posts, and it’s really impressive how often people will retweet or mention each others’ posts. It’s really a supportive community, and I highly recommend it as a way to generate traffic and meet other bloggers, or in my case other artists.

Google+. I’ve really not had much time to figure out Google+ but I’ve noticed hits coming from the Google +1 button. It’s another tool to help promote your work and to make connections so I think it’s a good idea to share your posts just like you would on Facebook.

StumbleUpon. I’ve still not completely figured out StumbleUpon but I’ve been submitting my posts and my traffic has jumped alarmingly. I need to find more Stumblers to follow me and like my likes because one of the ways StumbleUpon works is the more people who support you the greater the number and more consistent the number of Stumbles you receive. This past July was the best month I’ve ever had and if you look at the total hits on my blog 1/3 of those hits came in July and most of those hits came from StumbleUpon.

Reviews. I have found that posting reviews of things that relate to my blog such as art materials, art books, local museums, public art, and tools, generate many unique hits each day. The review that brings in the most hits is a review I did of a Fujifilm Finepix camera, I’ve been surprised at how often someone has gone to my review, and looked through the photos, and then wandered through other posts. Reviews of art books also bring in many unique hits, and the art book review that has brought in the most hits has to be the one I did on Tracey Emin.

Lists. I do a list each Wednesday of ten things I like, and it is really interesting how many hits it gets. If you are new to blogging or trying to increase traffic to your blog I highly recommend doing some form of a top ten list and do it regularly.

Comments. I’ve found commenting on other bloggers’ posts that I like is a great way to increase traffic and make interesting connections at the same time.

Sharing. It really does help when someone shares a post that they like on their Facebook page, retweets something to their followers, or submits it to StumbleUpon or other services. So if you do see a post somewhere that you like: kindly share it. Every little bit helps.

So, what do you like and not like in the ways bloggers use social media? What works for you to attract readers to your blog?