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May 27, 2017

New Social Networking Site – Your Website!

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Since December 2016, Facebook has become the ultimate publisher. News and content sharing websites that have been active on Facebook have seen a steady decline in their reach and engagement. This giant whale’s platform has a complex algorithm that isn’t easy for a layman to understand. Therefore it might be difficult to infer the exact reason for this decline. What is evident is that publishers are not able to engage with their customers like before on Facebook or other social media platforms. Platforms like Twitter and Facebook want to absorb the internet and are allowing readers to only consume news in their own platform.

Are social media platforms turning publishers into ghost writers? Click To Tweet

The real struggle faced by publishers is to figure out how to grow their own audience. It cannot be a single prong approach anymore. They can’t abandon social platforms because its reach is way too big. But emulating them in the hope to engage with their readers is a losing battle.

So what do you do if your presence and engagement are not giving the desired results?

How to get readers to come to your website to consume news?

How do you engage with them actively?

How do you retain them and have them coming back for more news?

Simple questions. Not so simple answers!

Facebook, for example, is no longer a social network. It has evolved to become a social ecosystem. It features such as like, share, comment, emoticon, events and the works are engaging for the readers to use. Publishers are trying to recreate Facebook inside their platform. Creating news feed into their website, making users log in etc are a wrong approach. By emulating the steps Facebook has taken hoping to be successful is like swimming against the current. They can’t go too far. How to make your website more engaging so that readers will come back to you. Here are 5 ways to create more engagement on your website for readers to consume news.

Create quality content

Create content that reaches your audience’s audience.

The first step to creating a great user engagement is to produce quality content consistently. Google wants to reward high-quality sites that contain original content. Low-quality content will result in poor SEO and push your site below in rankings. Des Dreckett said, ‘Writing quality content is one thing, but not embellishing it with quality images or video is a crime.

Create content that your audience would like to read. Make it visual. Share data and statistics to validate your story and you are halfway there.

Make your site responsive

Why does responsiveness matter? 60% of business happens on mobile devices and if your website is not responsive, you are losing potential customers. From 2015 April, google has Google started rewarding sites that were built responsively for multi-device support. Morgan Stanley Research states that Mobile Users surpassed Desktop Users in 2012. Which means if you are mobile friendly, your search engine results improve too. If you’re not able to reach your audience through mobile, or if you are unable to provide a good mobile experience it is evident that you are losing out to competition

Allow Social Sharing

It isn’t enough to just create interesting content for your readers. In order to increase engagement, you need to make sharing of your content easy. Social sharing is vital for building an online community as it not only increases engagement but also your blog readership. The Vuukle’s power bar has a beautifully designed share count feature, that, along with social icons work as a psychological trigger for readers. Designed specifically to allow publishers get more numbers of shares by allowing readers to share the story/post in easier and straightforward way, this sharing tool loads fast and is easy to integrate.

Embed videos within your story

Videos communicate the story better than anything else. It is effective, engaging and gets your message across quickly. When someone looks something up online, they are more likely to click a video link than a text link. In 2013, ReelSEO released a report on the effect of Video Marketing. According to the study, 82% confirmed that video had a positive impact on their business. According to the research from Hubspot, an average user is exposed to an average of 32.3 videos in a month in 2017.

“Video is the future of content marketing. That is, if it’s not the here and now.” -Chris Trimble, Axonn Media

Embed videos in your story to make it more engaging for your readers.

Integrate a good comment plugin

A good comment box will drive more engagement to your website. Vuukle’s comment box plugin is highly customizable, responsive and suitable for all devices. With over 5000 publishers using this plugin, it is a reliable option to turn to. Here is an interesting read on how to increase audience engagement using comment section. In addition to that, you need to create compelling content, ask your readers opinion, start a poll, survey or a debate. With auto-moderation in place, you don’t have to worry about spammy content at all. What more? Vuukle’s comment box will allow you to monetize your website because the tool reduces bounce rates and exponentially increases internal referral traffic.

These five ways are rooted in powerful psychology principles and will be effective in increasing engagement on your website. Why do you have to rely on social media networks alone to engage with your audience while your website can be one?

Bavani Srinu

Bavani Srinu is the founder of two start-ups, Ichiqoo and Swapp. She is also a free-spirited writer, a marketing professional, a mother and an avid travel enthusiast. Follow her on Twitter @bavanisrinu