How To Turn Popular List Posts Into Traffic Goldmines

How To Turn Popular List Posts Into Traffic Goldmines

Last updated on
list posts into traffic

You can turn anything into anything… Apparently…

I‘d like to thank all of the bloggers that took the time to create the huge list posts that get’s lots of traffic and comments. You help me to do less work.

How is that? Well let’s take a look…

Ana wrote a great post on borrowing traffic from A-list bloggers and it got me thinking – are there other ways that we can use the traffic of others to our advantage? And yes there are.

At the core of SEO is keyword research. But keywords alone are nothing if we can’t convert those readers to customers. Typically this involves testing headlines or meta data or tweets over the course of weeks or months.

Frankly, I don’t have the inclination to do all that. So how to avoid it?

There are many types of blog posts, but the list post is loved by all. People love lists – they’re easy to read, they have a ton of info in a little package, and people will link to them. They also leave comments about their favorite ones.

So here’s an idea.

As a good blogger you’re commenting on those posts too. So while there, why not see which items are getting the most comments? Then, create a post devoted entirely to that item. You already know it’s popular, and more than likely people are going to want more.

All you have to do is deliver.

Let’s look at an example.

A post that Ana wrote – Link Building: What’s Naughty What’s Nice? – got 52 tweets, 33 shares, and 104 comments. That’s awesome. So how can we use that?

I notice a number of things from the comments:

  • People responded very positively to the post
  • They appreciate honest information
  • Some of the commenters gave some really high-level advice
  • Many are very against article marketing as a method of link building

That last point is the biggie for me. In the Internet Marketing world a lot of the products that “teach” you how to build links are all about article marketing – which we know doesn’t work well, or can work negatively as Ana experienced.

How You Can Benefit

From this you could write a post (using good SEO techniques, of course) purely about the dangers of article marketing. You could also tie in how many information products are out there right now claiming this to be the best way to get traffic.

It’s practically a public service announcement.

Would this upset some people? I’m pretty sure. Would it get you links and tweets and shares? I bet it would. Is there a chance that the people that read your advice would appreciate it and subscribe to your other great content? I’m sure you’d get more than a few.

And could you possibly help your credibility with the person that wrote the original post by linking to it in your post? I’m positive they would be happy about it.

The Gold In The Mountain

There are a lot of list posts out there with a lot of comments. They’re like mountains of gold just waiting to be mined.

Okay that one might be going a little far, but you get my point.

QUESTION: What do you think? Have you done this before? If so, how has it worked?

Let us know what you think in the comments. I’m looking forward to the discussion.

traffic generation cafe comment below

Google+ Comments

35 Comments (click here to leave a comment)

  1. Hi Robert,

    Thanks for sharing this awesome idea. I tend to use it every now and then, so I should really focus more on this :)

    Great post, Robert.

    All the best,

  2. Chrissy Jamie

    I have definitely seen more people share lists, because of their short attention span and the link grabbing headlines for sure. Top 5, 10 lists do the best because people want content but without reading through a whole article just to get the (for example) “top 10 ways to make money online” and etc.

    • Robert Dempsey

      We all love shortcuts. The Internet Marketing forums are full of people looking for them. People’s desire for shortcuts in this case can help us out big time. A definite win for us.

  3. The increasing use of lists in posts and articles could be seen as a result of the increasing competition for the readers’ attention. I’m not sure if readers would be too keen to spend much more time reading your blog if its just a series of lists though – finding the balance, as always, is the key.

    • Robert Dempsey

      That’s a great insight about list post Mariam. And I agree that too many of that type may turn off readers, which is why I suggest expanding a single item into an entire post rather than creating an entirely new list.

  4. Hi Robert,
    This is a great idea to get more traffic and comments. I have never seen it that way. I occasionally use the points in lists to get ideas. But mentioning the original writer is something I have not done. Time to experiment with it!

  5. Good point, Robert. I also often use the data in my popular post, comments and analytics to get the idea how should I write my next post. The thing is, we, professional bloggers, don’t write about what we are already know. Sometimes, we need to explore new area so that we can better assist our reader’s needs :)

    • Robert Dempsey

      It’s all about the readers. David Risley just did a post on the major issues he’s seen with some bloggers – #7 was being too self-focused. Sounds like you’re avoiding that in a big way.

      How are you leveraging your popular posts? Are you expanding on certain points in them or some other way?

  6. Robert Dempsey

    Hi Steve – the fact that you are here commenting and learning tells me you’re well on the path and ahead of those not doing so. Keep it up, keep learning, and most importantly try out what you learn to find what works best for you.

  7. Robert,

    I have often expanded on my own list posts, but I haven’t paid that much attention to comments on those posts….like duh!

    This would be a good reason to write more list posts yourself.

    • Robert Dempsey

      Oh yeah totally – definitely leverage comments on your list posts too. Great point Sheila.

  8. Robert Dempsey

    That is a VERY good point Ryan. With everything we do we need to be sure that we are being unique, and that means bringing us to what we write.

    Reading a lot of blogs has helped me too. One of the things I’ve done is simliar to you in that everyone gives a piece of the puzzle (and I’m not laying out $2k for a product) so read enough and you get enough of the picture to use a strategy for your situation.

    Sounds like we roll the same way. Rock on.

  9. Hi Robert,

    I was sure surprised to see you here. Good job getting out and about.

    A great, simple, and likely effective idea too! Its actually been a good bit of time since I wrote a list post & I am experimenting for the next couple of weeks… Yep, you talked me into it. Thanks for the idea!

    BTW, that picture might be the funniest thing I have seen today.

    Have a great day!

    • Robert Dempsey

      Hi Mark,

      I believe I got to your site through your comments here too! Ana has such a great connector site. Pure awesome.

      You never know where you’ll find me sir, I’m all over. I look forward to your list post and the ideas it can give everyone. Thanks for all your help too.

  10. Thanks for the inspiration …I just finished writing an article based on this post :-) sort of…

    Scheduling it for Monday. Im calling it Why Article Marketing Works for Black Hats and Not for White Hats.

  11. Robert Dempsey

    Thanks Dan I hope to be able to add some value here – I’ve been getting a ton of it. Please do stop by and leave a comment. It’s always great to connect with like-minded and hardworking people. Looking forward to it.

  12. Hi Robert:

    Kudos on the guest post. Excellent ideas might I add. So to answer your question if I have done this before. Yes! And actually it was with one of Ana’s posts, a massive list she created on ways to generate traffic. I picked one of her tips and wrote a post about it. And go figure, people really enjoyed that post and it was one of my first posts to start bringing in more readers! (hmmm..thinking I need to do this again soon)
    Robert it’s always a pleasure to read your content!


    • Robert Dempsey

      Yay proof! Thanks Lisa. Super cool it worked out now do it again! And I love your content too – thanks for the delicious comments and posts. I love your style, and believe I met you through your comments here.

      Comments FTW!

      • I believe we did indeed meet over here at Ana’s house Robert! See, not only do we find useful content in the comments, but we also find friends, business partners, and all around great bloggers. We’re kind of rockstars us bloggers and all!

        Thanks for the kind words as well Robert

    • I am going to give you a chance to make another post based on that humongous list, Lisa – I am going to post a challenge on Thursday. :)

  13. I agree with you when you say that it’s practically a public service announcement implementing this strategy. Thanks for letting me know how to take advantage of list posts.

    I never even thought about doing this but it seems like a very simple process that can bring in a lot of traffic when done right. I am excited to give this one a try and see what happens. Thanks for the tip, I’m sure it will work very well for me.

    • Robert Dempsey

      Hi John definitely try it out and come back and let us know how it worked out.

      And don’t forget to let the people on the other blog know you’re written about the topic, either using your keyword research or in a comment over there.

  14. Robert,

    Interesting (and powerful) way to grab ideas for list posts. is a proven fact people are far more likely to read the, “10 reasons to…” Rather than just an article it states 10 reasons to do something. Using a good and vibrant comment section to glean ideas either pro or con the original article is really a sharp move and a good idea.

    • Robert Dempsey

      Hi Steve great to see you. I see the CommentLuv link in your comment takes me to an article ripe for the picking :) Thanks for those posts.

  15. list posts are the best when it comes to traffic. easy to read + more information covered in a single post + and keyword research done all the hard work in end.

    • Robert Dempsey

      I’m a big fan of working less (as I work a lot) and this can save you tons of time for sure.

  16. Wow, Robert!

    Talk about teaching others how to pick the low hanging fruit! I love the clever idea and I’ll be definitely using it. I’m almost embarrassed that I haven’t figured this one out yet, with it lingering right under my nose!

    And with most bloggers proudly displaying their popular posts in the sidebar to keep their readers exploring their content, there’s virtually no research necessary to find the sweet spots!

    You’re a genius! Thanks for sharing this information!

    • Robert Dempsey

      Thanks Heather I hope it helps. With the number of comments many blogs get (including this one :) there is a virtually never ending source of content ideas.