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3 Things that Visitors Should See on Every Page of Your Blog

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Assuming someone comes to your blog, how do you make sure that they enjoy their visit?

In a comment last week, Lewis LaLanne suggested that I write this post to answer the question, “what needs to be present on every page of your blog in order to have the best chance possible of getting first time visitors to do what you want them to do?”

I’m convinced that there are only three things that need to be on every page of your blog. If it’s not part of these three things, it’s a distraction.

1. A First-Thing-They-See Headline

When you’re lost in the mall and you walk up to the mall map, what’s the first thing you see?

“You Are Here”

Your headline is the “You Are Here” circle for your web page.

How to Emphasize Your Headline

It should show people where to start and get them excited to consume your message.

  1. Make it big, bold, and colorful. A lot of sales page headlines are big, bold, and red because, scientifically, that is the best way to attract your eye.
  2. Include a post image. A good post image attracts your eye immediately and subtly summarizes the main point of your blog post. I chose the post image for this post because it highlights “3 points” while emphasizing that everything else is ticky-tacky.

But Nick, all of my blog pages have headlines? Really? Because I saw 50-60 of your websites and very few of you have non-blog post headlines on the homepage. And even fewer have proper headlines on your “About” page.

2. A Valuable, Persuasive, and Trust-Building Message

Once you nail down the headline, it’s time to deliver what it promises.

Every page on your blog is an opportunity to give something while building trust with your audience. Too many people clog up their blogs with content that doesn’t do either.

How to Effectively Communicate Your Message

As far as I know, there are four ways to deliver a message through your blog.

  1. Text – Most popular because it’s the easiest and it indexes properly in search engines. But since so many people simply write, you need to do an extraordinary job in order to stand out.
  2. Images – A series of photos, images, or an infographic is a great way to creatively and uniquely communicate your message. Plus, if your blog has lots of fancy graphics, people will perceive you as an authority because it takes dedication to create those images.
  3. Audio – If you want to run an interview series or a podcast, post the audio. The Audio Player plugin works well for this.
  4. Video – Outside of talking with someone face-to-face, video is the most effective channel for building trust with someone. Why do you think people like celebrities?

3. A Call to Action that Accomplishes Your Goals

Your call to action should always be at the end of the post, but you need to decide what it is before you write a single word.

How to Accomplish Your Goals through a Call to Action

Is your goal to:

  1. Keep someone on your site? List your related posts. The popular posts in the sidebar also helps keep people on your site.
  2. Get someone to comment? Ask them a question and make sure that they know that their response is meaningful.
  3. Get someone to click an ad? Put your ads there and make sure that they’re relevant to the content.
  4. Get someone to opt-in? Place an opt-in box and tell them why they should subscribe.
  5. Get someone to buy a product? Put a link to your sales page or someone else’s sales page and make a final recommendation on why they should purchase.
  6. Get someone to take your advice? Tell them exactly what to do and emphasize the importance of taking action immediately.
  7. Get someone to trust you? Add an author bio with a mix of personal and professional details.

My goal here is almost always to get you to comment. One, I enjoy learning more about you. And two, if you comment, I’ll typically reply. When you see that I reply, you’ll comment more often. Then, every time you comment, you’ll return a day or two later to check your comment.

Pretty soon, Income Diary becomes part of your browsing routine. You read more articles, subscribe, begin acting on the advice, see the results from taking action, and eventually buy a product.

That’s how it works, my friends.

The Final Word

When you first clicked to read this post, you probably expected me to tell you, “every page needs to have an image, some content, and an opt-in.” That’s the crux of it, but more importantly, you need to understand why you need those things.

Everything else – your author bio, comments area, social media links, popular posts sidebar widget – should all work together to accomplish the goals of your blog. If they don’t, why are they there?

What’s something on your blog that’s probably distracting people from doing what you want them to do?

Photo by: warein.holgado

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  1. Hey Nicholas,

    Good post, your headline really is the sticker when it comes to keeping people on your site when they first come.

    Not so sure about using the standard red bold font these days though, you really needa capture the attention of your readers and be unique otherwise they’ll think its the “same ol’ same old”…

    …That’s really the main reason we brought out our headline plugin, so bloggers alike can really capture the readers attention with a graphical headline without photoshop.


    • Nicholas Tart says:

      Yeah, I was going to comment more on the “Big Red Headline” philosophy in the post, but I figured it would stir up some debate. I’m not a fan of it either, Matt. Millions of split-tests have proven that it works, but it just doesn’t feel right. What’s the name of your headline plugin?

      • Just starting to see alot of the people who preach using the big red headline moving away to something different. Ryan Deiss, one of the main guys behind the “myth” of it, hardly uses it these days in his sales letters.

        Plugin is:


        • Nicholas Tart says:

          I’m confused, Matt. What you’ve created is cool, especially because I can’t fathom how it works. But it seems like you’ve broken away (just a little bit) from the Big Red Headlines, only to replace them with something that’s equally as flashy. Don’t you think that if you can’t sell your product with normal-looking headlines, that there’s something wrong with the product, not the sales page?

          • Yeah I do agree, but these days with so many products on the market place you need something to stand out from the rest. That is usually your headline…

            …People are drawn to “pretty” looking things. You can see that in split test where you just use a “simple” looking sales page, compared to something that’s been jazzed up a bit.


  2. Anthony Kpodo says:

    This is an eye-opener in many ways. The best part is item #3, “A Call to Action that Accomplishes Your Goals.” That is where the whole meat is in my opinion. For example, if you want to “Get someone to click an ad? Put your ads there and make sure that they’re relevant to the content.”

    This particular one strikes me as very relevant because I see on many blogs ads that have no connection at all with the content. In fact we are all learning all the way. Thank you Nicholas Tart for the post and Income Diary for providing the platform.

    • Nicholas Tart says:

      That’s one thing that Michael has taught me, Anthony. He puts so much emphasis on mutually beneficial ads for his clients. That’s the most important thing to him when he sells ads. How are you going to use that concept personally?

  3. Nice Post, Especially the 2nd point. The opening of a post should be really effective and persuasive for the user to continue reading..

    • Nicholas Tart says:

      What are your favorite ways to open your posts to get people to read them, Mazhar?

  4. Hamza Siddiqui says:

    Now i’ll not comment :p……

    • Nicholas Tart says:

      🙂 I considered taking that part out because I didn’t want people to feel like they’re being run through a system. It’s not like that and perhaps I should’ve worded it differently. Blogging is beautiful because you can help someone at every point in their journey, whether they’re just taking your free stuff to learn the basics or if they’re at a point where they can pay you for the good stuff.

  5. Stephen Paul-Michael says:

    I just started my site/blog and am really at a point of knowing what to do bring and keep visitors. This post is one in time, thanks Nick. Will take the advice. haha say hi to Michael being a while.

    • Nicholas Tart says:

      Well, there’s plenty of info here that’ll help, Stephen. Congrats on getting started. Stick with it.

  6. How2Media says:

    A great article, we couldn’t agree more regarding adding some interaction in the form of videos, images and such to grab attention and ensure retention on the post.

    Some cracking tips!

  7. I’m just about to launch and this post has been pretty helpful. I’ll definitely be looking into a few images in each of my posts

  8. baja ringan says:

    Great tips, I like it, you make me clear…

  9. Caleb Thurston says:

    thank you! you always have great posts (interesting and helpful)

  10. I’m afraid you left out a key, fourth point here:

    4. Themselves

    People want to see themselves on your blog. So you should hire a programmer to write a small app that activates the webcam in the reader’s laptop. Then that feed should be automatically rerouted through to your post. Now, when the reader clicks on your blog, the reader will see their own face, in real time. They’ll be so shocked! They’ll say, “Wow! I didn’t know that I was on this blog! This is great!” and they’ll think that their face is streaming for everyone else also. They’ll think that they are famous. They’ll call up their mom and be like, “Mom! Check it out! I’m on the Net!” and mom will type in the Web address and BAM! That’s another reader right there! Come on, this is so obvious!

  11. Hi Nicholas

    As I am a complete newbie (just working on how to set up my site) I have done so much research. You have the knack of saying the correct things, which when looked at, should be obvious but very missable. Yours made me ‘see the light”‘

    I will be back often