Assuming you have a functional website and a good digital marketing strategy in place, blogging is the one thing that makes the most difference to the effectiveness of your online marketing efforts. How can that be? Check out ten of the ways that blogging benefits your website, your marketing, and your business.
- Blogging increases the value of your website to your visitors. You may have nice pictures on your homepage and a snazzy tagline, but people look on the web for actual information and entertainment. Answer the questions you know your target market needs to have answered, and your website will be more valuable than your competitors’ websites that don’t answer any questions… even if they have an equally snazzy tagline.
- Blogging increases the value of your website to the search engines. We’re often contacted by companies that showcase lots of products on their homepage and don’t understand why they don’t show up well in search. Here’s the sad truth: that grid of awesome photos with captions like “USB Cable, Multi Portable 3Ft USB” is meaningless to search engines. Search engines need hundreds of words, not a couple dozen, and product titles don’t provide enough natural language for search engine algorithms to work with. You can certainly provide informative, keyword-rich pages, but blog posts give you a lot more scope.
- Blogging provides regular fresh content. We have built some websites that relied on a few super authoritative articles to establish authority in narrow niche markets. If you are absolutely the best source of information on some arcane musical instrument or something, you may get all the web traffic there is for your particular area of expertise. But all things being equal, having fresh, original content added to your website frequently is the best way to get search engines to visit you often — and it’s also the best way to get people to come back and visit you often.
- Blogging lets you rank for more keywords. Some of our blogging clients are all about providing great reading for their visitors, but some frankly don’t care whether anyone actually reads the great stuff we write or not. Having a thoroughly researched post about every single product you carry makes you show up repeatedly as people search for information along their path to purchase. By the time they’re ready to buy, you’re their go-to spot for information, so you’re probably their first choice for shopping, too. You can’t get close to that with a long list of products on your homepage.
- Blogging lets you engage with customers. Your voice comes through. Add photos of your team and you’ve made strides toward building a connection with your customers. Answer blog comments and you’re on your way to building a community around your product or service.
- Blogging brings visitors back. One of the big differences between useful articles and a blog is that your blog promises to have new stuff regularly. When your visitors discover that you have lots of useful or entertaining information on topics that interest them, they’ll come back — or click through your emails and social media posts, which still translates to coming back. If they feel that they’ve gotten all they can from your website, or they return a couple of times and there’s nothing new, they probably won’t come back. And that might mean they’ll forget all about you. Note that this only works if you actually have regular new blog posts.
- Blogging builds authority. If you have good posts on lots of things your visitors wonder about, they know you’re a good source of information. Competence and warmth are, according to at least one theory, the main things consumers want to see in a company. Smart blogging shows your competence. You can get into the details of your field, take strong positions, or answer questions — there’s no better way to establish thought leadership. Several of the blogs we write for clients have shown up as references in major news sources this quarter, and you literally can’t pay for that kind of authority boost.
- Blogging shows humanity. There is some evidence that companies overestimate how much consumers want to cuddle up to brands. But they do want you to be warm. They want to feel that you care and that you understand them. They want to be able to like you. Blogging lets you show that warmth. And in some industries self-disclosure is very appealing.
- Blogging gives you scope. You can tell a story on your home page and you can be witty in your Terms and Conditions page if you feel like it, but your blog gives you room to spread your wings. You can have another thousand words a week in which to make your points. How great is that?!
- Blogging builds your website. We already said it builds the value of your website by adding more good content for visitors and search engines to find and use. but all things being equal, a larger site is more respected and ranks better than a smaller one. Regular blogging is the easiest and most efficient way to build a beefy website.
So you know it’s good for your website, for your digital marketing, and for your business. But knowing is one thing and doing is sometimes another. After all, you already have a job. Let us help. We provide magazine-quality blog posts on a regular basis, no matter how busy you get.