A key tactic to drawing traffic to your website is with a great blog. Not only does a blog enlighten the digital world of your brand and its products or services, but they also have great SEO benefits. So pick up your pen, man your keyboards or sharpen your quill, because there’s plenty to be said. Here’s Upperdog’s guide to writing great blog content.
There are two alternative purposes to a good blog; to inform or to sell. Both types of blogs have the potential to draw traffic to your website, but for different reasons.
Industry blogs, or blogs that are designed to inform, should be the backbone of your content strategy. These are the kind of blogs that attract visitors as a result of interest – what you have to say as a professional in your industry is worth reading and is credible. Expertise adds depth, but you’ll need to capture an ever-shortening attention span. Top tips, tutorials, tricks, hints and guides are all perfect formats to provide concise yet engaging content.
The other purpose of blogs is to market yourself. Whether you’ve got an up-coming promotion you wish to push or a new range of products hitting the shelves, this type of blog has the primary objective of selling. The content will still require substance and some depth though – no one likes to be bombarded with ‘spammy’ discounts. Create the demand by exploring the benefits of your products and/or services.
Hook, line and sinker. First impressions are important – especially on the internet where everyone’s fighting for an inch of space. So what headline is going to kick-start your audience’s desire to click-through to your blog?
The titles of industry and sales blog post tend to let the reader know exactly what they’ll get from your blog. Bear in mind the formality and style of your post; websites with content that aims to entertain uses very different, informal headlines such as Buzzfeed –“You won’t believe how awesome these content tips are” doesn’t sound particularly professional nor credible for an industry blog.
Your introduction is just as crucial in maintaining attention, so make it punchy and sell the post.
When writing the core of your in-depth and highly helpful blog piece, there are a few SEO tricks of the trade to include to make the blog as effective as possible.
Firstly, within your core, ensure you weave in your keywords. These should flow naturally as you talk about your relevant topic of interest. By integrating your keywords you’re more likely to been seen by Google as a relevant source of useful information.
Secondly, ensure you incorporate links into your blog. Relevancy and usefulness are the two key requirements for your links. If you’re discussing an example or referring to a particular product, a link to the source is like a digital helping hand.
Short, sweet, concise and scan-able. Refrain from going off-topic or face losing your reader and any potential engagement. Nobody sees a huge chunk of congregated text in an article and thinks ‘awesome’ – readers want to be able to find the information they need and continue with their lives with the acquired knowledge and a sense of satisfaction.
Call To Action
‘Call to action’s are most appropriate for sales blogs. Having generated the demand for your product and service, what’s the next step? A call back? A quote? A completed form? Whatever it is, make sure you give your audience the stepping-stones to the next phase for your benefit too.
A call to action can still be relevant for industry blogs, provided that YOU are the answer to the reader’s next need. Writing a blog about crafting great content? Let them know you’re the expert at that.
In order to maximise the buzz about your blog piece, share it on your social media channels such as Twitter, with relevant hash-tags to add like-minded audiences in the loop. It’s also a good idea to enable comments on your blog to encourage discussion and feedback (we’ve also got a blog about dealing with negative blog comments, should you have to cross that bridge!). #Easy!
Just before you hit ‘Publish’, just add the finishing touches. Don’t forget to include meta data, tags, imagery/pictures and the author’s name. The metadata and tags will help your SEO visibility, imagery will brighten the page up and reinforce your points, whilst the author’s name will contribute to the piece’s credibility and allow for Google authorship.
So there you have it – a how-to blog about writing how-to blogs. Whilst blogs can be simple but effect part of your SEO strategy, it’s always best practice to get the professionals in.