I would like to share a real life experience which happened recently. I was on my way from Delhi to my hometown Mumbai. It made me think that a train journey can be compared to journey of a blog. You are meeting most of the passengers for the first time in your life. You share the same compartment with a number of fellow passengers in a train you not known before. As the time passes by you start to interact with your neighbors. It is more or less a formal conversation where you ask them about their family background and their occupation to start with. If you find them friendly enough then the conversation becomes more personal, you ask them about their likes, dislikes, eating habits,their neighbors, their city, etc. You may even buy something to eat or as gift for them during the journey just to show your appreciation.
It is very rare that you may want to exchange contact details with your fellow passengers so that you stay in touch with them even after the journey. You are friends with your fellow passengers as long as the do not reach their destination. As soon as your fellow passengers reach their destination, they will leave quietly even without saying a good bye to you. At this moment you start to wonder whether the friendly chat that you had with him was for real or simply time pass. You feel bad but cannot do anything except to ignore the person if you meet him the next time anywhere else.
So what is the similarity between the train journey and blogging? Consider train as your blog. There are number of readers that visit your blog. Most of them are first timers if your blog is a new blog. They want to know more about you and this blog, for this you should have provide enough media to let your readers communicate with you. As a blog author you are expected to respond to their comments or emails in order to make them loyal towards you. Even after doing all this hard work, only a fraction of the readers become loyal towards your blog. Rest of the readers may not visit your blog so often, some many not visit again at all. A blog can progress only when it has a group of loyal readers, it is this group of loyal readers that eventually determines the success and failure of the blog.
As a blogger one must thank each and every reader that has visited his blog even once. He must not get disappointed if majority of first time readers do not visit his blog ever again. This is bound to happen as most of the people envy others success and make sure that at least they do not add to others success. Hence you can see even the best blogs have a very high bounce rate typically over 60%. A conscious effort must be made by the blogger to increase his RSS subscribers count. RSS subscribers count represents number of loyal readers of a blog. Although it is difficult to monetize a RSS feed the same way as a blog, it is the main source of income for any blogger. Most of the advertising agencies take a look at number of RSS subscribers before making an advertising deal.
To sum it up there are many new visitors to your blog, you should have the best widgets on your blog in order to encourage them to communicate with you. This will give the best chance to make them loyal to your blog. All the advertisement clicks (especially PPC) on the other hand are recorded by the readers visiting your blog for the first time. Thus you should have a strong online presence among social bookmarking sites as well as search engine rankings to get new visitors to your site. For the loyal readers of your blog, you should always offer some sort of incentives as a token of appreciation from your side. Both newbie as well as loyal readers are important for a blog to progress and become successful.