Have you ever heard of the summer slump? Much like many of us take vacations, scale back on projects, and leave our brains behind at the beach, blog traffic in the summer time is known to take a hit. Firstly, I want you to know this is not your fault, just a natural phenomenon that happens to most bloggers. Secondly, I want you to know we can fix it. Find out how the summer slump effects your blog traffic and how to fix it!
The Summer Slump: How It Effects Your Blog Traffic & How To Fix It
How it Effects Your Blog Traffic
While the summer slump may not be the official term for it, I like to think it fits perfectly what many bloggers are experiencing – a slump in blog traffic. The summer slump is the decline of blog traffic during the summer months.
Why does this occur? Many people are home with their children over the summer, meaning their child-minding demands have increased, their family activities have increased and the number of vacations increases. This is also true of those without children – think about it – most people love to get away in the summer. Where do they want to go? Places that are outside, beautiful and free of wifi – the perfect summer escape.
People are so wrapped up in what they’re doing, are more active outside, and genuinely spend less time on their phones. In the winter time, more people stay indoors and have more time to dedicate to social media. This is also a time of many holidays scheduled back to back.
What was that about holidays? Ah yes, holidays. During the summer months, there are fewer holidays and they are more spread out. What happens when a holiday is approaching? We often turn to search engines like Google and Pinterest for ideas from hosting, to recipes to gift guides. In the summer, this doesn’t seem to happen as much.
We Have a Teeny Problem
You may have already put two and two together, but ultimately the summer slump costs you blog traffic. Bloggers often notice a decline in summer months simply because of the above factors. While this isn’t the end of the world, it can hurt your analytics, blog traffic, and revenue from your blog if you are especially affected by this slump.
How to Fix it
You may not always be able to maintain the same blog traffic as you do in winter months, but there are definite ways you can help drive traffic to your blog to keep you afloat this summer! Below, I’m going to go in-depth and list numerous solutions to stop the summer slump from effecting your blog traffic, and of course, how to fix it!
1. Do Not Panic
While the summer slump can effect your blog traffic, it doesn’t mean we can’t fix it! It can be really easy to lose your mind as you see your traffic stagnate or drop off! TRUST ME – I feel that. It affected me so much last summer (in combination with a few other factors unrelated to blogging, I almost abandoned my blog altogether)! Just a reminder – your worth is not determined by your blog traffic. Your blog is not going to crumble from lack of blog traffic. There are several things we can do to boost your blog traffic, and this is also a time to spend more time with your family and friends as well.
This is not the time to panic-create content. I promise you, content and decisions done in panic won’t result well. Just remember it really isn’t you, there are actionable steps you can take to boost your blog traffic, and you’re not alone. Here are 3 key things you should stick to during this time:
ONE: Seriously do not panic create. Do not make rash decisions during this time. Instead, write them down and save them for later. If they’re still relevant when you come to a calmer state of blogging, by all means execute then.
TWO: Use this time to deep dive, soul search, and connect with your audience. These are valuable moments you will truly cherish, and getting more time to know your audience is never a bad thing. Use this time to learn things you haven’t had time to, fine-tooth comb your content and enjoy your summer!
THREE: Just like a flower, you can’t bloom all year round. It just doesn’t happen! There are periods of dormancy, growth and blooming. Think of the summer as a time of dormancy and growth – no blooms in site, maybe a few seeds and stems. Use this time to remain consistent, lock down your blogging strategies, and make plans for the fall!
2. Create Seasonal Content
When it comes to creating blog content, there are two type of content:
Evergreen: this type of content favours no particular season, holiday or time of year. Example: 10 Things That Don’t Determine Your Self-Worth – this content is relevant all year round, meaning people can and will search for topics like these throughout the year.
Seasonal: Content created with a season/holiday in mind. Example: 7 perfect-for-summer Rosés to help you celebrate National Rosé Day! This type of content is an excellent way to grab hold of a certain holiday or season that coincides with the type of content you like to produce. It can be a great way to attract extra viewers to your blog during these special times. While this content may not be relevant throughout the year, this type of content is still important to have on your blog.
Creating seasonal content within your niche can be an excellent way to get new eyes on your blog! Take advantage of seasons and holidays to create new content, create a new stream of traffic and take advantage of the search engine use during this time!
Ideas for summer content: round up posts (fashion, vacations, recipes), summer date ideas, summer cocktails, activities to do with the kids, reviews of places you’ve visited (campgrounds, resorts, national parks, etc.), summer beauty must-haves, etc.
3. Plan Ahead
This requires you to start thinking ahead before the summer arrives. Starting in March, you should start reviewing your summer content plan. What is going to be coming up next for you? What summer content do you plan on publishing throughout the summer?
If you can, start writing and publishing these posts ASAP. Start creating new pins for relevant summer content in these months and begin circulating on Pinterest 2-3 months before summer actually hits (it takes time to get a pin going, give your pin enough time to gain the traction it needs to take off in the summer! By having a plan in place and getting your summer content launched well before summer, you will be ready before the summer slump hits.
FOR EXAMPLE: currently trending on Pinterest in the United States: 4th of July Parties. This trend started increasing the weekend of May 12 (see below). If you have your content out and circulating in early May, your pins will be ready to go when people start searching! If you wait until June 30 to post your content, you will have missed nearly two months of people starting to search for your content! You can find out more about Pinterest Trends here!
4. Continue to Be Consistent
While you may feel like you’re talking to crickets, you need to remain consistent. Stick to your original posting schedule and carry on posting as normal is a great way to continue that upward trend. Again, not everyone disappears in the summer months and some of your readers from different countries, time zones and continents will still be reading (and may not be experiencing summer at that time).
How to remain consistent and maybe take a little extra time off this summer: find out what you can schedule for your blog to remain consistent and have some aspects of your blog run in the background here!
5. Make Your Site Mobile Friendly
During the summer, people are on the go more so than during the winter. This means less access to laptops and desktops for browsing. By making your site mobile friendly, it will make it easier for your readers to enjoy their experience on your site, and not leave because of difficulties navigating and interacting. You can find out how to make your site mobile friendly here!
6. Find New Places to Promote Your Blog
During these months where traffic is low, you may want to try to expand to promoting your blog on other platforms. Some common platforms bloggers promote on are social media, however there are a plethora of places you can promote your blog traffic! Check out 30 places you can promote your blog traffic and challenge yourself to try something new!
7. Maintain Your Site
As everything slows down, you may find yourself having more time on your hands! Use this time to learn new strategies and maintain your site. Go back and update old blog posts, especially to focus on SEO!
Blog posts are never a one-and-done kind of deal. You ideally should be updating your content monthly to make sure it stays relevant (find out why you need to update old blog posts here). From pictures, to content to combing through and removing content that is no longer relevant, these are all things that will help keep your blog current and optimized for search engines!
8. Show Your Email List a Little TLC
Back to the part you may have more time on your hands, this one is important. Ideally, you should always be giving the love to your email list. These people subscribed because they wanted to hear from you! Leaving them in the dark is counter intuitive to your goals as a blogger. There are two reasons why you should be giving your list a little extra TLC during the summer months:
You May Be Attracting New Subscribers: remember all that seasonal content you created to get new eyes on your blog? It’s likely some of those people subscribed! If they never hear from you again, they’re not going to appreciate you inconsistently showing up in their email boxes only when you have a new launch or product!
People Have More Time: If people are on vacation, they may be looking for some leisure-reading. Opening up a fun-filled summer themed email may give them more ideas for things to do this summer, as well as inspire them to check out more of your posts!
If you haven’t started an email list, now is the time. Check out this post for help with your email list!
9. Try Something New or Work on Other Projects
They say insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. If what you’re doing isn’t working, you need to quit that shit. I mean it. Doing the same thing over and over while hoping for a different outcome is futile. Instead, let’s change the narrative and switch things up.
There are two things you can do during this time:
Try Something New: During peak seasons, I’m guilty of creating content I know will do well. I know I’m not alone in this, and also think the summer is a great time to expand! Maybe there’s a type of content within your niche you’ve wanted to write about but haven’t yet! Maybe you want to try a new style of blog post, pin style or Instagram preset. During this time, switching things up may be the little boost your blog needs, or will give you the confidence to branch out and give something new a try! Remember, the best growth happens outside of our comfort zone!
Work On Something Else: Keep up with your regular posting schedule, but throw your energy into something else. Try working on a project you’ve been putting off and give it the TLC it desperately needs. Working on behind the scenes tasks, projects and things you’ve been putting off is a great way to get ahead while the rest of the world slows down.
10. Take Time For Yourself
Missing a post here or there, scaling back slightly, or spending time with your family isn’t a blogging crime, it’s necessary for you. Resting and relaxing as a blogger doesn’t come easy, we constantly feel the need to be on and engaged. Taking time off can feel like giving up, but it absolutely isn’t. You need a break too, and sometimes a break is exactly what you need to come back refreshed, recharged and ready to blog!
You Are More Than The Summer Slump
Above, we went over the summer slump, how it effects your blog traffic and how to fix it, but I have one last little reminder for you. You are not the numbers your blog pulls in. You are not defined by your blog traffic, follower counts or vanity numbers. You are a badass blogger who will make it through the summer slump stronger, wiser and ready to take on the world! Don’t let this small moment in time define your blogging career!