One of the most frequently asked questions I get is “how do I do roundups?”. It's a great question, and not one many people really talk about in the way I am today, yet the BIG traffic for many bloggers is coming from roundups!
Ultimate Guide to Roundups
There are many ways to do roundups, but my favorites are listed in this post. If you are looking for a fairly simple way to boost your blog traffic, this is it. Notice I didn't say easy…
NOTE: This post goes along with the Zoom chat Roundups 101. Join our VIP membership for access to all Zoom chats. This post contains affiliate links.
What is a roundup?
A roundup is exactly what it sounds like: a selection of tips, tools, and/or links to posts on the same topic, all featured in one blog post. We've all seen them, even if we don't realize it. Buzzfeed does these types of posts often, and they go viral. Why? Because people like a LOT of information, and MANY choices, in one blog post.
A roundup keeps your reader from having to search and search to find a little gold mine of your chicken recipes. It helps keep everything in one spot for the best user experience (which makes Google – and your readers – happy).
Benefits of Roundups
The best benefit of roundups is TRAFFIC! We all know traffic equals money, so using roundups is a no-brainer. The problem? So many bloggers phone it in when it comes to roundups (we are all guilty of this from time to time – myself included!), so they end up being crap content.
The traffic still shows up, but not in the numbers we want – or it dies quickly because we haven't optimized our roundups.
Roundups, when done properly, help with long-term traffic and SEO building. If you write so much about one topic that you can create a roundup of those posts, Google will start to see you as an expert on the topic. This is especially important with the latest EAT update.
Roundups also help lower your bounce rate, if you link to your own posts. If you link to all outside posts, your bounce rate will go up.
Still not convinced? Even Neil Patel recommends roundups! See: How to Create a Roundup Post That Will Skyrocket Your Traffic to High Heavens. His roundup is a little different than the types of roundups we are doing, because we don't interview experts in our niche very often… but you get the idea. Perhaps the way he does his roundups will work for you, too.
Types of Roundups
There are many types of roundups, and you can mix different types to create the perfect roundup for your blog. We are going to talk about the three most common:
- old school/traditional roundups – the ones we all started with
- roundups with blurbs – the ones we learned how to do when we realized SEO was important
- roundups using Mediavine's Create plugin – a new way to do roundups when you have Mediavine ads on your blog
- expert roundups – sharing advice from experts in your niche
Old school roundups basically have an intro with a bunch of links. While these can still bring lots of traffic, they aren't the best for SEO.
Improve these roundups by adding a blurb about each item on the list. For example, if we wrote a blurb about each item on a 17 point list, the post could easily turn into 1,000+ words.
Roundups With Blurbs
Roundups with blurbs are awesome for SEO! Sometimes it's difficult for me to think of what to say for each link, so I visit the blog post and get ideas. If it's your own work, feel free to copy and paste a few sentences for each.
Roundups Mediavine's Create Plugin
Fairly new, Mediavine's Create Plugin makes roundup creation a breeze.
The Expert Roundup
This is the type of roundup Neil Patel and most other SEO gurus are talking about when they mention roundups. You gather tips from dozens of experts in your niche and share them. Readers know they're going to get massive value from a post like this. It would be worth making a video to go with this type of roundup.
What's the best type of roundup to do?
The best type of roundup is one with as much of YOUR content as possible. If your blog is about travel, write a Bucket List for a certain state or activity, or something you have written about frequently. For example, your roundup can be titled Top 17 Parks for Families in Colorado – each park gets its own stand alone, in depth blog post, and then you tie it all together by linking to all of them in your roundup.
How many links should a roundup have?
I'm a firm believer in “bigger is better”, which is why I'm currently working on a massive roundup with 101 tips, ideas, and links. With that being said, don't feel like you HAVE to do that many. People are easily overwhelmed and many will steer clear of huge roundups like that.
With that being said, if you're just starting with roundups, pick a number like 17. There's no rhyme or reason to it, but you won't be overwhelmed (nor will your readers) and it is a big enough number to get them to click. If you just do 7, the number of clicks you get is going to be much lower. People want a lot of information and if they feel you won't have enough, they will click on the next roundup that does.
Quality is more important than quantity, but with a roundup, quantity is important, too.
Sadie's Top Tips for Roundups
I have created hundreds of roundups for my blog and for my clients' blogs. Some have gone viral on Facebook and Pinterest, while others have brought in thousands of pageviews to blogs that usually only get hundreds. Here are my best tips.
Be sure to include a STRONG call to action in the MIDDLE of your post. Do not wait until the end of the post to tell people to sign up for your email list, share, etc. Give them some value, ask for the share/sign-up, then deliver the rest of the value. This is not going to help with traffic, but it helps with making a one-time reader into a loyal one. Get them on your email list and you can send them your next roundup, too.
Don't get too carried away. While I mentioned my 101 roundup earlier, it's going to take me a month or more to get it finished, and there's no way for me to write the 101 posts myself in that time so I will need to link to outside sources. It may be better for you to do a post of 35 instead, and link to all (or almost all) of your own posts.
Ask permission before you use anyone else's images. Creating a collage for your roundup is a great idea, but before you do that, you must get permission from the image creator. You can find roundup groups on Facebook, full of bloggers who are happy to let you use their images in exchange for a link back! Finding roundup groups is easy: simply search “roundups” or “blogger roundups” on Facebook and you will find them.
You do not need permission to link to someone, you do need permission to use their image – even in a collage
The majority of the links in your roundup should be links to your blog posts. The goal is to increase pageviews so let's turn one view into 3, 4, 5, or more by having readers go to your related posts.
I'll continue to add to this post as I get questions and come up with more ideas. In the meantime, use the tips I provided to create a fresh roundup. Leave a link to it below and I'll be sure to pin it for you. Must be a NEW roundup! 🙂