Why do so many companies have a blog? Simple. It increases website traffic, improves SEO, and dramatically increases your sales leads. Oh, it also makes you look less like a soulless entity and more like a regular human being. Yay!
If you already have a blog, the chances are it could be better.
Reasons why you might not have started a business blog already:
- As a small business owner, you just don’t have time to do it yourself.
- You don’t have the technical know-how.
- Outsourcing writers/web experts sounds like a daunting task.
- You are waging an ideological war against the internet…
Combine the first and third point and you’re in a dilemma. No time to write and no time to hire an expert. Thing is, it doesn’t have to be difficult anymore. It’s easier than ever to get the ball rolling. Hopefully this guide will set you off in the right direction…
1. What is the goal of your blog?
Drop the “money is my goal” mentality. It’s important to focus on providing quality content that informs your readers.
However, don’t just go steamrolling ahead with all of those ideas swishing around in your brain. Take your time to do some research. Develop a plan.
A good place to start forming a plan is with SMART. If you’re a business owner, you may have heard of it. But sometimes it bears repeating…
SMART stands for:
Specific: Well defined, clear goals on what you want to accomplish.
Measurable: How are you going to measure your progress towards achieving your goals?
Attainable: Your goal needs to be realistic.
Relevant: Are the goals relevant to your overall company objectives? Is it relevant in 2019 for your business to have a blog? (Yes)
Timely: Super important. Set a deadline to work towards. Once you have your resources in order figure out how much you can do before that time.
Apply this goal-setting criteria to blogging, and you’ll have a better idea of how much time and money you can allocate to it. And, you’ll be better prepared to do it the right way from scratch.
2. What should you write about in your companies blog?
Here are some areas you can cover in your new business blog and the resulting benefits to your business. Producing a mix of all three will put you in better standing with Google.
Up to date industry news
- Improves SEO.
- Can provide an influx of traffic to your website.
- It’s a good way to plug your own new product launches.
- This kind of post doesn’t have much long-term value, but will provide a consistent stream of content ideas.
Your own internal business developments
- Shows that you are a proactive company.
- Informs customers on your business goals and commitments.
- Adds a human element to your business.
- Informs search engines that you are an active, operating business.
Informative guides on products
- Leads to sales – if someone is looking for in-depth product information, chances are they are looking to make a purchase and just want some confirmation before taking the leap.
- Makes consumers trust you more – you are proving that you have extensive knowledge and experience in this area.
- Adds authority to your website which improves SEO.
3. Choose a blog format
There are a number of blog formats you can choose from to convey your message. Some of the most popular formats include:
- How-to posts – great for explaining things to your potential customers.
- The listicle – this article is one example of the popular listicle format. It’s easy to digest and a favourite among businesses.
- Curated posts (“ultimate guides”) – these are huge guides that cover a broad topic. Ideal for SEO and bringing in long-term traffic.
- FAQ – a simple question and answer format, nice and easy for you and your readers.
Like everything in life, moderation is key. Start with one, but branch out into others to keep your content fresh.
4. Include relevant keywords
Now you’ve got the basics nailed down. It’s time to think about keywords. After all, you want people to be able to see the page. Keywords are words and phrases that people search for in search engines. For Google to understand where to put your page, you need to incorporate keywords that describe the subject of your blog post.
For example, someone might search “how to draw”. If you owned a stationery business, you could produce a “how to draw for beginners” guide to attract traffic to your website.
It’s essential to use keywords so people can find your content. But you should be careful not to repeat phrases in a way that is unnatural or doesn’t make sense. This is known as “keyword stuffing” – your website ranking will take a hit from keyword stuffing.
5. Optimise for search engines
You may have seen me throw the term “SEO” around a few times. That’s Search Engine Optimisation. Technically keywords fall under this umbrella term, but there are many other ways you can optimise your content to be search engine (and user) friendly. The more clear, accurate, and beneficial your content is to the reader, the better.
That means don’t talk rubbish. Make sure your credentials and experience as a business or individual are made clear on your website. Hire people with proven knowledge. This all affects your Google E-A-T rating.
EAT stands for Expertise, Authority and Trust. You build these things by ensuring the content is high-quality.
How can you ensure your company blog is high quality?
- Ensure grammar and spelling is perfect – that means proofreading and editing content is essential.
- Establish a company tone of voice and stick with it – that’s a writing style that’s unique to your business.
- Produce a variety of content in various formats (use the suggestions in steps 2 & 3).
- Provide accurate and well-structured information that’s easy to digest.
- Ensure strong internal linking throughout your website
- Hire people who have proven credentials and expertise in the topic they are discussing.
6. Post to your blog frequently
Pretty self-explanatory. Think back to our SMART goals. Did you consider how many posts you would aim for per week? Develop a consistent routine of posting. Pages are your presence on the internet. The more pages – the more presence. More presence – more readers. More customers. More sales. It just takes time. But that’s why we have goals!
Once you’re setup, you can move on to how to make your blog posts more compelling to read.