If your website lacks a strong blog section, you could be missing out on multiple opportunities to expand your business. Ask yourself these questions:
- Are you informed and passionate about your industry, service, and/or product?
- Do you stay on top of changing trends, new products, and services for this industry?
- Do you find that your prospective clients and current clients ask some of the same questions? I don’t mean that a single client asks the same question, but how many times in a month would you hear “how long does ______ take?” or “Why do I need to have a blog?” (see what I did there ;)? ).
If you answered yes to some or all of those, guess what? You should probably consider adding a blog to your site.
A blog with quality content gives you a powerful long-term promotional channel to help your business grow in a highly competitive marketplace.
Originally a blog was simply an online journal – “blog” is an abbreviation of “web(site) log” – blogs have evolved into a necessity for businesses to showcase their brand.
And they can work just as well or even better for your Connecticut business as they do for large corporations – if you get it right. A blog with thin content that provides little or no value to the reader can be worse than no blog at all by reflecting poorly on your company.
So, we’ll be looking at how to ensure good content for your blog, but first, let’s take a look at some of the reasons you need it.
Benefits of Good Blog Content
Blogging with quality content is one of the best investments you can make in your business website. This is why so many blogs from businesses proliferate the digital landscape today.
Businesses operate in a world of ever-changing technology and higher expectations from customers. Consistent blogging with useful content gives you an effective means of connecting with these digitally-focused consumers.
A strong blog lets you build brand awareness while giving your existing and potential customers relevant and helpful information.
Benefits of quality blog content include:
- Helping to establish your authority. The best business blogs solve problems and/or answer common questions their current and potential customers may have. If you know your target audience and consistently create content that’s useful to them, they’re likely to regard you as knowledgeable and, possibly, an expert in your field – crucial to build confidence and increase your customer base.
- Long-term results. Blog posts can help to generate traffic and leads for years to come. In fact, many sales may well come via older posts, particularly evergreen content that’s not time-sensitive and retains relevance.
Driving Traffic to Your Website
Each blog post you create is one more opportunity for your business to show up in search engines and drive traffic to your site through organic search, which – unlike paid-for online ads – costs you nothing.
Blogging on your website can also help to strengthen your social media presence. You – and others – can share your posts on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest, maybe introducing yourself to a new audience.
A further option is using a blog to produce an infographic or an explainer video. You could also think about pitching your article to a local newspaper.
Internal and External Links
A further benefit of a quality blog post is that it gives you the opportunity to link to a lead-generating call-to-action on your core site pages, turning someone interested in your products or services into a paying customer.
One word of warning on this, though: don’t get pushy. A blog should primarily convey valuable information that helps to establish your expertise and build confidence in your brand – it’s not the same as the more sales-driven product or service pages on your main site.
Linking to another page on your site – particularly the home page – will also appeal to major search engines like Google, and so will adding links to other, authority sites.
You can also drive more traffic to your site by using broken links (404 error) on a higher-ranking site to get a valuable backlink.
What is Quality Blog Content?
As we’ve seen, good blog content offers useful information – in your case, to people using or considering acquiring the types of goods or services your Connecticut business offers.
We’ve also mentioned that evergreen topics are always a good idea. These can include blogs such as:
- How-to… articles. This type of blog post is hugely popular and favored by top digital marketers because it addresses issues close to the heart of a wide range of consumers – including your customers. Example: if you run a home upgrade business, one obvious topic would be: How to avoid a renovation nightmare”.
- Listicles, including advice in the form of tips, are often featured in blogs and typically use devices like a series of bullet points – perfect for dealing with the very real issue/problem that most online readers tend to have a short attention span.
Using Reviews as Blog Content
Not all blogs have to focus on obvious evergreen content to enjoy a long shelf life, and reviews fall nicely into this category.
For instance, keeping an eye on developments in your industry will allow you to share your insights – and show your proficiency – by commenting on news stories or recent trade publication articles.
You could also:
- Review a product or service you think is useful for your clients or points to ways your business can help them in this area.
- Share someone else’s video, with your take on why it’s beneficial for your customers.
How Long Should Your Blogs Be?
There’s a strong case for long-form blog content, and some content marketing gurus advocate posts of at least 2,000 words. For some reason, there is a correlation between the length of a blog post and the “value” that Google assigns to it. The longer the post, the more faith Google appears to place in it. But, we’re not talking empty fluff here, these long-form blog posts are chock-full of information.
However, shorter blogs have their place. Many posts are around the 500-word mark, and they can still offer useful information to help you connect with existing and future clients.
Writing thousands of words can be a daunting prospect and incredibly time-consuming, particularly when you factor in the extensive research likely to be needed to produce something worthwhile for your audience. This is why many businesses outsource this type of blog to a professional writer.
On the other hand, writing fewer words is maybe something you could handle yourself. Short blogs ranging from 300 to 600 words typically focus on a single idea, and it’s a lot easier to create a brief overview of a topic or quick tips that don’t require much explanation.
On the downside, short blog posts aren’t great for getting good Google rankings or attracting valuable backlinks, and readers may regard you as less of an authority on the subject.
A short blog-entry can be a useful tool as a follow-up item with a prospective client, providing more value than just a standard follow-up. Being able to send a note along with “I know we talked about how to improve the quality of your iPhone videos, here’s a link to a short post I wrote on that topic. I thought it might be helpful.”
Keep it Simple – But Get the Basics Right
Whether you opt for long blogs or shorter posts, you don’t have to be a Shakespeare or Dickens to get your point across. In fact, short and simple sentences are best for all web content, including blogs.
Nevertheless, you need to have a pretty good grasp of grammar and spelling. Mistakes in these areas will infuriate some readers to the extent they’ll simply stop reading and look elsewhere for the information they want. Relying on inbuilt spelling and grammar checkers doesn’t always solve this problem – none we’ve ever used are perfect, by any means. Tools like Hemmingway or Grammarly do offer more substantial feedback on your writing, but it still can’t replace the value of having a friend or family member review your article. In fact, there’s nothing wrong with reading your piece aloud to “hear” any issues you may have missed.
Tell Your Story!
With its journal-type origins, a blog can be a form of storytelling that humanizes your business and explains the passions that drive you and what sets you apart.
This can give small businesses a major advantage over big-budget corporations when it comes to blogs. You can showcase your understanding and belief in your local community in a way that speaks honestly and directly to your audience.
For a business like yours, this helps to make blogging with quality content one of the most cost-effective investments you can make in your website – and your business overall.