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Top Content to Write in the New Year

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The new year is here now, and with that comes the anual tradition of the new years resolution, which for many of you will have something to do with working hard on your website. We all set ourselves targets for the new year, but we rarely think about the steps that we have to take to get there. For most of us, the ultimate target is more money, which comes from more traffic, and these posts will help you to reach your target.

The Ultimate Top List

Without a doubt, the best way to get traffic to your website is to write an awesome top list. With the new year, there’s plenty that you can write about too, but you have to follow a couple rules. Firstly, it has to be about people or websites. Basically is has to be about something that the people in the list can talk about with their following and share, which results in your website getting traffic. Secondly, there has to be a slight element of controversy to the list. Don’t chicken out and call it ’20 Best…’, you have to call it ‘Top 20 Best…’ and then order them 1-20, so that everyone has a rank. The reason that you do this is because people are going to disagree with you, and they’re going to be much more likely to comment and share it at the same time. It sounds a little bit twisted, but I assure you, it really does work. For every person that doesn’t agree with you, there’s going to be 10 others who are happy to just see the content.

When you write your top list, you need to make sure you do it properly if you want it to succeed. That includes using the right formatting, a good sized description, and an image. If you want to really understand how to master a top list then read more about it here. Once you’re done, post it on social media, and let everyone on the list know that they’ve been included. If they’ve got enough loyal fans, they’ll be told multiple times by others.

Best of 2011

This is a really good way to ease yourself into the new year, without having to work too hard, while providing your readers with excellent content. And you know it’s excellent content because you’ve already written it. So long as you’ve been around for more than about six months, then you should have enough content together to write a ‘best of’ for your website for the year. I’ve done this on ExpertPhotography, and I did it a last week on here. This is a great post to write because not only do you get to share all of your top content with your fans, which will improve their time on site and pages per visit, but they’re also going to get access to your most popular content, so it’s win-win.


Infographics have a very viral nature, and they’re a great way of sharing information with people, in easy to digest chunks. A proper inforgrahic really need to be made by a graphic designer, or someone with a good knowledge of photoshop, because it’s not as simple as putting together a bunch of text. I recently attempted my own, and it took some time, but didn’t quite work out the way I wanted it. I took a good amount of time, and made it look good in a large image, but it still didn’t have the ‘wow factor’ that attracts most people to infographics. I knew it wasn’t going to be shared as much, and I knew it wasn’t technically an infographic, but I called it one anyway, and I used it for an equally important purpose. Don’t get me wrong, it was by no means a failure, because I got lots of people liking it, but it didn’t go viral.

What I ultimately decided to do with it was share it with my Twitter followers when they followed back. I used to send them my beginner’s guide to photography, but it wasn’t really working out that well because they were the wrong people to be sending it to. If they’ve listed something about photography in their blurb, then there’s a good chance that they don’t need to learn all that much. When I was sending them that link, I was receiving about 30 clicks a week from the direct messages, but now that’s way up to 150 this past 7 days. The great thing about the post is that it links to other tutorials and lists at the top of the page, so once I’ve got my new followers on my page, I can keep them there.

I’ve gone slightly off point here, but I think it was still relevant. If you’re looking to have a proper infographic made, then I suggest you get it professionally done, which can be done for around $500. There’s plenty of people out there that will do it for you, have a look at these guys.

Guide to your Niche

This is similar to a ‘best of’ post, but instead of simply listing the most popular content of the year, you put together guides for people to help them to learn. This is very similar to top lists, in that they have the same effect of encouraging your readers to explore multiple posts in a single visit. They are however, a lot better, because they don’t go out of date. I’ve put together a beginners guide to photography for my website, and I link to it throughout the internet on different forums, and I’ve even had people enjoy it so much that they link to it for me.

These guide collect together your ‘bread and butter’ posts into once easy to read post, which explains how they all link together. It’s much easier to link to a single post on the internet, rather than many, and it’s likely that it will be bookmarked and shared with lots of other people. Since this post has been published, it’s been my most popular tutorial, accounting for 4.33% of my traffic, and it’s not likely to end any time soon. So long as you can keep the content relevant, then you can continue to share the post, which will soon have it picked up by Google.

Amazon Associates Post

This is a great way to start making money early on in the new year, to help make up for the money you spent at Christmas. For those that don’t know, Amazon Associates is a way to make a commission by linking to Amazon products on your website. It’s easy to set up and you can start earning commission straight away, but to do so, people have to click on your custom links. A great way to do this is to do another top list, but instead of linking to people, you link to products that you recommend instead. You could also do in depth reviews of products, that you personally like and recommend, so that people will be likely to buy them. I’ve done this a few times, and I’ve sold five products worth nearly $500 each, and with a 4% commission on electricals, it starts to add up quite nicely. Just think of it as being paid to write content on your own website… starts to make more sense, doesn’t it?


  1. Great post, I’m new to the blogosphere and so far my posts have been quite impartial and lack in controversy. I can certainly see how controversy causes people to react more and give their opinions. Obviously there is a balance between being controversial and plan p***ing people off but certainly gets people to react!

  2. As someone who has just started to understand IM , I find all your posts so useful and without all the hype….whistles and horn blowing so loud that other blogs become such a distraction to my purpose….thanks Dallas

  3. Interesting. I was thinking about writing about amazon products on my blog, but I don’t think it would go well with my blog. 🙂

    still a lovely post.

  4. victordairo says:

    Awesome post josh, You’ve got me all fired up once again.

  5. Technology blog says:

    pretty super Josh Dunlop. Keep it up..thanks for sharing.

  6. Jamie Northrup says:

    All 5 are great ideas for posts, and from each one I could easily make 5-10 posts, I think I may have completed some holes in my editorial calendar for my main blog. Thanks Josh.

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