Blogging, a term derived from weblog, is the act of sharing information with others, typically through an online platform. Blogging started back in the early 1990s’ but didn’t reach massive popularity until the early 2000s.
Today, there are millions of people across the globe who blog about anything from their hobbies to business information.
For a small business, blogging is an important part of building your online presence. While consumers need to know about your products or what services you offer, reading a business website full of sales information isn’t always enough to gain their trust and turn them into paying customers.
Since a blog is usually informal, it allows a more personal, human side of your business to shine through. Many successful businesses have already realized this and continue to run successful blogs.
However, with the instant connection and gratification that social media brings, others may question if a blog is still needed for business exposure.
The answer is a resounding yes. Just as having a business website offers more options than social media, blogging also brings a lot to the table and shouldn’t be overlooked. In fact, studies have shown that companies that blog typically have doubled their website visitors.
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1. Google Algorithm and Blogging
Google algorithm is a keyword processing tool that sifts through information after people perform a search query. It then finds the most appropriate results and lists them in order of importance and relevance via search engine results.
The ranking of the results relies on several factors, such as the frequency of the keywords used on a landing page, the amount of original content on the page, and how the page interacts with other readers.
Previously, it was easy for anyone to end up on the first page of the Google search results even if the content was weak, plagiarized, and spun. Google, being proactive to the complaints of poor search engine results, created Panda, followed by Penguin.
Panda and Penguin are artificial intelligence programs that cipher out what seems to be “junk” material and instead boost more personal, informational content.
What this means for bloggers is that if you consistently create personalized content, you have a great chance of being pushed high into the ranks of Google’s search engine results, as the new algorithm consistently seeks out sites that involve interaction and personalization. Blogs are well-known for providing personalized content that engages others.
2. Blogging Drives More Traffic to Your Business Website
WordPress has unique tools that allow you to have your blog incorporated directly into your WordPress business website. This lets your readers learn about your services and access your blog without having to navigate to another site.
As previously mentioned, having a blog on your business website has the potential to multiply your visitor numbers by over 50%. People simply want to read interesting information that can’t always be presented just by viewing product and sales information.
By consistently adding new content, consumers will have a reason to come back to your website, which could mean more business for you. New visitors may learn about your services by simply finding your blog entry in a search query.
3. Blogging Helps Brand You an Expert
When you blog, you’ll have the opportunity to provide more in-depth information on your products and services; information that typically shouldn’t go on your website’s main pages.
For example, too much content surrounding a certain product or service can make your business website look messy and awkward. A blog, however, gives you the perfect opportunity to post detailed material.
Numerous Internet users search for tutorials and how-to information online. By creating comprehensive blog posts in your area of expertise, you are developing an open invitation for readers to flock to your site.
People love free information, and they especially love accurate information that helps them. By blogging about the areas you know about, you can become an expert in your field, which will help you gain trust.
Once you gain trust with your readers, paying customers usually follow.
4. Blogging Encourages Human Interaction and Engagement
One of the best ways to build trust and credibility is to actively engage with your readers. Blogging provides a perfect platform to do so.
By encouraging discussions and leaving open questions on your blog posts, readers are afforded the opportunity to get involved with you and your business, which makes them feel more appreciated.
Best of all, you create opportunities for an array of different discussions with each new blog post you publish.
5. Blogging can Cover Questions and Complaints
If you receive a lot of emails or calls asking the same questions, a blog is a perfect place to provide detailed answers. If a question has been asked several times already, chances are that new visitors may have the same question.
By providing an FAQ blog post, your readers can refer to your post instead of emailing or calling. If a question necessitates a more comprehensive answer, consider dedicating an entire blog post to that single topic.
In addition, complaints and suggestions will always be a part of the business. If someone has a valid complaint, don’t sweep it under the rug or send out a rushed reply.
Instead, consider writing a detailed blog post addressing the complaint. Not only will the readers feel appreciated, but you’ll also help your business in the long run by addressing issues head-on.
6. Highlight Promotions and New Products/Services
If you have a new promotion going on, you’ll want to give as much information as possible in order to bring in new service. Sometimes business websites don’t have a place for promotions without coming off as looking too "sales-like".
Additionally, promotions typically last only a certain amount of time, and it’s important to keep your business site as evergreen as possible.
A blog, however, is the perfect spot for you to tell your readers about your news, updates, promotions, and more. The most important product updates or promotions can be highlighted in your blog, which will also help the major search engines pick up your site.
7. Blogging Shows You Are Different from the Competition
If you own a small business, chances are, you have competition. Of course, you’ll need a way to stand out from the competition and showcase why your company is better. When you provide consistent, helpful material, you are already on your way to branding yourself an expert in your field.
When you combine a human voice with your business, you show that your business is not the same as the others and that you’re willing to communicate with customers and future customers on a personal level.
One of the biggest mistakes that small business owner make is not making their company stand out enough.
Blaring website ads and pushy sales tactics may make your company’s page stand out, but not in the way you want it to.
Blogging provides an ideal platform to talk casually while subtly highlighting the assets your company provides.
Tips for Better Blogging
Use Social Media Along with Blogging:
WordPress offers several social media plugins that lets you share each blog post with your social media followers. Be certain to utilize these tools as it will bring more exposure to your blog.
In addition, consider going to your social media accounts and creating a new post, announcing your new blog entry. This gets tedious and cumbersome, but the amount of exposure you’ll get makes it worth it.
As aforementioned, reader engagement is a powerful way to gain new customers. Make sure your blog posts provide an opening for your readers to communicate their ideas and thoughts with you.
Use Keywords Correctly:
Google algorithm seeks out pages with quality, unique information. If you use keywords too frequently in your blog posts, you run the risk of Google determining your content is redundant. Remember, though, keywords are important. You just need to make sure you use them sparingly and strategically throughout each blog post.
Mix It Up:
Be sure to post a variety of different topics on your blog. For example, one day you can create a tutorial, and then the next day you can discuss the benefits of a certain service. Also, pay close attention to your comments. An interesting comment can provide you the tools to create an engaging blog post, and at the same time you’re acknowledging your readers.
Most people are visual, and a high-quality image goes a long way on a blog post. Try to use an appropriate image on every blog post you create. This will liven up your post and increase interest.
Blogging is Long-Term:
It’s imperative to keep your blog updated.
Blogging is a long-term endeavor and should always be treated as such. However, keep in mind that quantity is not better than quality.
While you’ll need to post consistently, never post unhelpful information just for the sake of updating your blog. Make sure that everything you post has substance. The goal isn’t to quickly overload your blog with a ton of posts. Instead, you’ll want to create substantial posts that in time will grow.