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Why Your Website Needs a Blog

Content is King written on napkin

We’ve got a website, why do we need a blog? What’s the difference?

If you haven’t got a blog, this is probably the first thing that goes through your mind. Well, on a practical attraction level, websites with blogs are simply more engaging than static websites and with new content presented in reversed chronological order it offers your web visitor something new and (hopefully) interesting to read almost every time they visit.

But blogging delivers marketing benefits WAY in excess of this.

Let’s think about driving traffic to your website:

Yes people could type in your company name, but that means you are already on their radar screen which doesn’t help drive new traffic to your website – and that’s what search engines are looking for as a sign of “active approval” by their users.

You could pay for traffic by purchasing a mailing list and then sending out information but that’s not only expensive it doesn’t usually have a great return.  Well, honestly, when did you last open an unsolicited e-mail?

You could run a series of PPC (pay per click) advertisements but this requires an ongoing input of money.

So how can you drive fresh traffic to your website without actually paying out for it?

The answer is to make the best use of a blogging/social media/search engine combo as part of your overall SEO strategy.

How it works via search engines and social media

Think about how many pages there are on your website. Perhaps 6?  And think about how seldom you update those web pages. OK, well that’s not helpful in terms of how search engines work, because they’re “on the lookout” for fresh content which confirms you are an active and current business.

So regularly writing a new blog post is the cue to Google and other search engines that your website is not just sitting there unloved, and acts a prompt that they should be checking in frequently to see what content you’re publishing.

What’s more, every time you write a blog post, it’s one more indexed page on your website and every new indexed page is one more opportunity for you to show up in search engines and drive traffic to your website through organic search.

Blog posts are also marketing gold for social media which of course is about helping not selling.  By sharing news about your new blog post (with a direct link to it) you’re potentially creating content for your followers to comment on and/or share via social media sites.  These positive signals on social media are good news for you as search engines do take these into account when ranking your website. What’s more that post drives traffic to your website AND can also bring your business to the attention of your followers’ followers.

There’s another way of promoting your business to a wider audience and that’s to offer your blogging platform to guest bloggers. This is a real win win situation. Not only will you get content written by someone else, your guest blogger gets an opportunity to spread the word about their post on your blog to their contacts.

Of course, if your guest bloggers add a small bio and a link to their website at the end of their post they are also creating an inbound link (or backlink) from your site…

But what’s so great about inbound links?

In a nutshell, search engines love them because a third party linking to your blog post indicates that your content is most likely to be useful and trustworthy. In fact they like them SO much that inbound links (or backlinks)  apparently make up 60% of the ranking weight which search engines use to decide where your content should appear.

So in the same way that a guest blogger of yours gains, guest blogging on someone else’s website will do the same for you. Of course you’re unlikely to be given this opportunity unless you have already demonstrated that your posts are well written and popular – for which you have to have a blog in the first place…

What’s more – by continually writing good, helpful and authoritative blog posts that you share via social media, your newsletters or your website, you will find that your inbound links will grow organically as other website owners choose to refer and link to the information which you have provided.

Establishing authority

Ah!  I see I have your attention now – we all like establishing a bit of authority! (This is also referred to as relevance…)

If you’re writing blog posts which address the concerns and challenges of your target market they will seek your advice over and over again.  How do you find out what they’re worried or concerned about? Well I rather hope your business has been set up to solve those things in the first place or you might find that it’s a bit redundant.

Having initially established that, you should be keeping an ear to the ground via social media on an ongoing basis and, of course, you will have checked out the keywords which your target market is using – won’t you?

Those keywords are vital to your blog post being found and to this end you should be at least using them in the title and first paragraph of each new blog post.

But all that work to write one blog post….

Yes, it requires dedication to keep up posts that engage, enrich and entertain. It also requires a certain skill to write blog posts in a way that is authentic, friendly, informal and conversational.  And that is KEY if you want to build a relationship with people to the point where they would like to newly work with you or continue to work with you.

How often should you post? Well definitely on a regular basis – perhaps a minimum of twice a month but as I read many years ago “you blog as often as you want people to pay attention to you.” When it comes to word count for your blogs, research also shows that Google prefers long blog posts of over 1000 words, but if this is too time consuming then why not just mix your content, writing the occasional longer blog post alongside shorter blogs of 600 words or so.

The thing is blogging does drive long term results…

If you take the time to research, write and publish a blog post on one day, you’re bound to get some views on that day and then the next and, yes, after that the fanfare may largely die down. Only it’s not done…

That blog post is now ranking in search engines which means, if you’ve written on a subject that’s relevant to your target market – and used the key words they would use for searching for advice on that subject – you will continue to get more traffic.

What’s more, of course, you don’t share links back to your blog posts just once, you refer to them over and over again on social media helping fresh eyes find something they previously missed. In fact it’s said that up to 70% of traffic each month comes from posts that weren’t published that month. So blogs posts are the gift that keeps on giving.

To blog or not to blog?  I’m hoping you’ll now see why it’s a great idea.

If you’re looking to add a blog section to your website, then please give us a call. We provide a fully comprehensive range of SEO services, including Off Page SEO, On Page SEO, Content Marketing and paid services including PPC and paid social media marketing. We have extensive knowledge of setting up and maintaining healthy blogs for our clients and have a highly experienced team of copywriters on hand. You can trust us to provide new content that’s on brand and linkable to other pages on your site, making the most of your website and ensuring that for you, content is king.

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