Category Archives: Search Engine Optimization

6 New Ways To Get People To Visit Your Author Website | Web Design Relief

Ideally, you’ve designed your author website to project your unique author brand. You’ve maximized your bio, included a list of books with blurbs and reviews, started a blog or newsletter, and provided the necessary contact information. Since your author website was launched, you’ve been driving as much Web traffic as possible to this hub of all your promotion and marketing activity. But with the Internet always evolving, Web Design Relief asks—are you sure you’re taking advantage of any new opportunities available?

Six Up-To-The-Minute Ways To Get More Visitors To Your Author Website

Use Hashtags To Boost Web Traffic

You’re probably already using social media to announce new releases, blog posts, sales, and personal appearances. Escalating the reach of those posts, however, can help expand your audience and increase the number of visitors to your home page.

Hashtags are a way to sort and see all posts on a single topic. For example, the announcement of a book giveaway can reach far beyond your own followers if you include hashtags (#freebook, #bookgiveaway, #freebiefriday, and #freereads) on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram posts.

Craft Blog Post Titles That Optimize For Keywords

Smart writers use blogs to provide fresh content on their website on a regular basis. But how much time do you spend on the title of your blog? Maximizing your blog title for keywords can make a big difference in how high the post ranks in the search engine results. The higher it ranks, the more people will see it and presumably click.

One effective way to check for relevant keywords is by using the Google Keyword Planner.

Cross Promote

Guest blogging and inviting other writers to blog on your site are great ways to promote cross-audience Web traffic and increase the hits on your website.

Another way to cross-pollinate is to do a multiauthor giveaway with one or several other authors in the same genre. You can promote the giveaway on your blog or newsletter, and the other authors will do the same, sending highly targeted visitors to your site.

Tweak SEO

Stuffing the content on your site with massive numbers of keywords is sure to make you sound like a robot. Fortunately, you’re a professional writer, so you know how to hook readers with scintillating text and hold them fast. Do that—except give your content an SEO keyword makeover by using better, laser-targeted keywords relevant to your book categories and themes.

Do a little housekeeping as well. Go through your author website to make sure all your links are live, your graphics have correctly coded alt-tags, and your title tags and metadata descriptions on each page are optimized for relevant keywords.

Speed Up Your Website

Are large video, music, or graphics files slowing down your website’s loading time? Do you have too many plugins? Selectively paring these items will allow search engines to crawl through the content on your site faster, creating more organic Web traffic. Wait times of as little as three seconds can make a reader flee, so speeding up your website can also help you keep casual fans engaged just a little longer.

Share Your URL

Are you broadcasting your author website everywhere you can? Consider these places you may have forgotten to put your Web address:

  • In your email signature line
  • In the front and back matter of every book
  • On your business cards, bookmarks, postcards, etc.
  • On swag: pens, notebooks, book bags, etc.
  • In your Twitter, Goodreads, BookBub, Pinterest, and Instagram blurbs, and the “About” section of your Facebook Business page

Whatever techniques you decide to use to increase traffic to your website, make sure you monitor the effectiveness. Track your Google Analytics both before and after and keep an eye on traffic, unique visitors, page views, and pages per visit in order to determine which techniques are working best.


Question: Do you use or follow hashtags in social media? If so, what are your favorites?

Are People Visiting Your Website And Clicking Like You Want? | Web Design Relief

You just launched your brand-new author website and you’re posting on your blog frequently. Now the question is: How can you know for sure that people are visiting your website—and how can you get more to do so? At Web Design Relief, our designers know all the online tools that will track whether people are visiting your website and who they are. You can also learn which pages of your website are most interesting to viewers and are visited most frequently. One of the most comprehensive online analytic tools available is Google Analytics.

Using Google Analytics To Track Your Author Website Visits

Google Analytics is one of the most powerful free-to-use tools online today. With Google Analytics, you can measure everything from real-time site visits, to social media referrals, to average time spent on any particular page, and much more. Google Analytics even gives you tips on how to optimize your site for better results. Everyone from self-published authors to large publishing companies use Google Analytics to keep track of visitor data.

At first, the Google Analytics interface can seem a little intimidating—but once you know what kind of information you’re looking for, it’s quite easy to find. Google will help you to set up your new Analytics account, and in most cases, you will receive your own unique code that will help your website and Google Analytics communicate. After setting up your Analytics account, you’ll start receiving data in just a few hours.

On the front page of Google Analytics (as of July 2017), you’ll find several charts:

  • Audience Overview
  • Users By Time Of Day
  • Real-Time Report
  • Acquisition Report
  • Location Overview
  • Active Users Report
  • Cohort Analysis Report
  • Mobile Overview
  • Pages Report
  • Goals Overview

Each of these categories delivers very specific data that you can use to evaluate your author website. Most of these reports are fairly self-explanatory, and you can even change dates to cover a specific time frame. For example, there may be an instance where you would like to see a larger timeline of data—so you can switch from a seven-day report to a thirty-day report. Most of the data is presented in line, bar, or pie graphs with accompanying key charts.

Two Google Analytics Charts You’ll Want To Check Daily

Audience Overview

What is it? The Audience Overview includes the number of sessions during a time period, Page Views, Average Session Duration, Bounce Rate, and New Sessions.

How to use it: This analytic lets you know how many people are coming to your site and how long they’re staying. Obviously the more Sessions and Page Views the better—but also pay attention to your Bounce Rate. If your Bounce Rate is high, the majority of people coming to your site aren’t staying very long. This could be due to lack of engaging content or maybe a slow-functioning website. Make sure your website is fast and mobile friendly. Also include more engaging blog posts and website pages to entice more people to visit your site and stay on longer.

Users By Time Of Day

What is it? Here’s where you’ll find the times of day during the week you have the most visitors.

How to use it: Plan your posts! Knowing the times when your author website has the most visitors and capitalizing on that is a great way to keep your site active. If you find that 4:00 PM on Wednesday is the busiest time and day for your website, then that would be the perfect time to post new blog entries or news.


Question: Do you have a blog on your website? How often do you post new entries?


Mistakes That Can Lower Your Website’s Search Engine Rankings


Your author website is the hub of all your marketing and publicity efforts. And the more fans who visit your website—the more newsletter sign-ups, event attendees, and book sales you’ll get! Since about 75% of searchers never scroll any further than the first page of search engine results, it’s important to optimize your website to get more traffic. Yet as many as 50% of websites unwittingly use bad practices or have common technical glitches that lower their search engine rankings.

Writers: Are You Guilty Of These Common SEO Mistakes?

Keyword Bad Practices. Choosing the right keywords is one of the trickiest yet most important ways to get more traffic to your website. Many people cherry-pick words or short phrases that rank high in popular search engine queries, which is generally a smart practice. Yet if the folks who find your author website in this way swiftly back-click to the results, search engines will assume that you didn’t fulfill the searcher’s needs. High traffic means nothing if your bounce rate goes through the roof.

A better practice is to consider longer, more precise keyword phrases that will lift your website higher in specific search rankings tailored for your targeted audience.

Another bad practice is keyword stuffing. Keyword stuffing is an old trick where the text on your pages is enriched with high-ranking keywords, often in unnatural or awkward ways. Google is on to this black-hat SEO tactic and now includes something called “keyword density analysis” in its algorithms. This bad practice will get you warnings, penalties, or even banned from Google.

Unresponsive Author Website. Web searches on mobile phones have escalated dramatically over the past few years. In response, Google updated their algorithms in 2015 in order to lift those websites that are platform-responsive higher in search engine rankings. Now, to keep your ratings up, your author website needs to look as readable and amazing on an old iPhone 5 as it does on a mini-tablet or a seventeen-inch desktop screen. Check out Google’s mobile-friendly test to see if your website makes the grade.

Tech Issues And Glitches. Technical glitches or unintentional oversights are the source of five common SEO mistakes that lower search engine rankings. Fortunately, once detected, most are easy to fix. Check your own author website to see if any of these problems are present:

  • Image Issues. Search engines gather the information written in your website’s image “alt-tags” to index those photos or graphics correctly for search engine queries. Empty or badly filled alt-tags will lower SEO, as will a broken link if your image is pulled from another site that no longer hosts it.
  • Title Issues. A title tag is basically a pithy, keyword-rich, one-sentence explanation for a particular page in your website. Every page should have a unique title! Search engines don’t like duplicate, wordy, or empty title tags, and your rankings will show it.
  • Website Description Issues. The short paragraph that appears in search engine results is a vital metadata description of your website. If it’s wrong, missing, or duplicated (rather than customized) on multiple pages, your search engine ranking will suffer.
  • Link Issues. Multiple broken links, whether they lead to another page on your own website or a page on someone else’s website, often lead to error messages that Google will notice. Too many links to (or from) unrelated or spammy sites can also make your rankings take a nose dive. 
  • Text Issues. A website that duplicates content on multiple pages can find those pages fighting against one another for ranking space. Google will then weed them out according to Google’s preference, not yours. The old trick of hiding keyword-stuffed text so that the reader can’t see it—by, say, making the text the same color as the background on the page—is also frowned upon. Yet Google also disapproves if there isn’t enough text on your webpages, so make sure you have plenty of quality content.

Taking care of basic technical maintenance issues, avoiding bad practices, and setting up a regular schedule to re-evaluate keywords, title, and metadata will go a long way to raising your website’s profile in a crowded online world. Then you can focus on what’s really important: writing more content for your readers!

Question: What platform do you use to build and maintain your author website? Or have you hired someone to build and maintain it for you?





How To Identify (And Focus On) Your Promotional Strengths

Your dreams of being a successful, published writer probably didn’t include visions of pounding the pavement and sending out email blasts, trying to sell your book. But whether you’re traditionally published or self-published, doing your own marketing is the new reality. The trick is to find out what you’re good at (and what you’re not!)… Continue Reading

Is Your Author Website On The Naughty Or Nice List?

Santa’s making a list and checking it twice—and it may surprise you to learn that author websites are on the list too! (We have insider info from Rudolph about who makes which list.) Wondering if your author website is on the Naughty or Nice List? Read through this collection of the worst and best features… Continue Reading

Sign up to receive our FREE four-part series, The Writer’s Essential Guide To Reputation-Building In A Digital World—the ultimate resource for building your online author platform.
YES! Send Me My FREE Guide!
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Live Chat Software