It’s become apparent to webmasters, small business owners, and large corporations that blogs are an effective internet marketing avenue. Blogs are an excellent method of pulling traffic to their websites by utilizing well written content that leads into promotions for their products or services. The return that you get from blogging might not be quick, but with time your efforts will pay off. Blogs serve as the most effective platform to market your content and thus their role in search engine optimization of your content i.e. products and services, is huge. Don’t be fooled into thinking that starting up your blog is easy; many don’t realize the effort involved with generating quality content that will attract users. Read on to learn how blogging can help you in boosting your sales and how to effectively manage and promote your blog.
Determine the Purpose Of Your Blog
Decide what purpose your blog will be serving. Are you going to share news about things happening in the world that are somehow related to your products or services? Are you going to make it a news blog? Are you going to focus on sharing content only related to your products and services (newly launched products, change of terms, product feedback, etc.)? You can also use the blog as a tool to empower your customer support by interacting with your customers through blog posts and answering their queries; just make sure you have commenting available on your blog!
Decide On Your Blog’s Targeted Audience
Your blog needs to be targeted to the audiences you are hoping to attract. A well thought out blog can help you reach a multitude of people who could turn into potential customers, clients, or business partners. However, you need to be absolutely certain about the group of people you want to serve with your blog entries and decide about your themes, topics, and style according to their preferences to ensure that they will return to your website or even contact you directly after reading your blog.
Implement Trending Keywords & Phrases
In addition to ensuring the quality of your content, it’s important to integrate the right keywords. It is not easy to maintain the quality of your posts and other content while fitting in the keywords that will lead visitors to your site. Beware of putting keywords that are not relevant to your blog; the content should have a clear, concise message, with a natural flow of writing.
It is best that you write each post focusing on a different set of keywords or phrases. Use strings of keywords i.e. long tail keywords, in the posts. The title of the posts should contain your main keywords, and be contained with an H1 tag (HTML). In addition to that, your page title ( tag) should also contain the major keywords you are focusing on.
Of course, you can’t implement keywords or phrases based on guesses of what people are searching. There are many tools to help analyze what keywords are trending, but the best one to start out with is Google Adwords. Not only is the service free, but it allows you access to Google’s search data and can provide recommendations for other keywords or phrases. To get started, you will first need to create an account, and then take a look at their keyword planner tool. Aside from keyword planning, you could also utilize their service for paid search results. Of course, you will have to pay for every click on your ad if you go that route; it’s usually best to do a mixture of paid advertising (if you have enough marketing budget) and natural SEO through blogging / content generation.
Personalize The Content & Search Results
Blogs have been recognized as one of the most powerful online tools in changing the buying habits and patterns of people. Whatever you write a blog on can have a direct effect on your audience, and help achieve a sense of trust that you are knowledgeable in your field of expertise. Keep your tone natural in all blog posts and do not sound too rigid or boring. Also, the posts need to be of value for the reader. If they feel like they wasted their time reading through your blog, they will certainly not return to your site. Try to not only rant about your products, services, or knowledge, but inform your audience something of use for them or some interesting facts. Make your posts engaging, so the visitors feel like commenting on them. A good method of doing this is asking questions for users to help elicit a response from them. If your product or service is targeted to local customers, a good strategy is to focus topics about your town or city. For example, a company in Chicago could blog about events, occasions, or exhibitions taking place in there. You could even announce about event attendance and follow up with what you learned.
Another helpful tip is to focus on your meta-description (HTML) and implement structured data to improve how your page comes up on search results. Your meta-description should be 150-160 words long, and contain a concise summary of your blog’s content. This description is the snippet of information that appears when users utilize a search engine. Structured data helps with specific formatting for search results, and can include information such as reviews, event schedules, and prices.
Market Each Blog Post
An important step before your blog starts helping your website is to market the blog itself by sharing blog posts on your social media profiles. If you do not already have Facebook, Google+, LinkedIN and Twitter accounts, now would be the time to open and integrate them into your blog. Adding relevant hashtags to your posts and tagging sites or users with similar purposes and topics will increase the outreach of your posts even more. You can also share the same content multiple times on social media and include different concepts from the article in each post, just try not to spam your followers. Facebook followers are especially easy to lose if you keep re-posting the same content, while on Twitter you can post many times a day; it takes about 40 minutes before your Tweet is pushed so far down in feeds that it’s irrelevant, so Tweet to your heart’s content! You can also write for other blogs and forums so you can share links to your blog by topic. Proper back-linking strategies can be very time-consuming and detrimental to your search results if poorly implemented, so it is advisable to hire professional SEO services in order to market your blog through content and back links if you don’t have the knowledge or time to do so yourself.
Implement an Internal Linking Structure
Your links can destroy or build the architecture of your website. The internal links on your website play an important role in how search engines rank it. If all links are internally linked and the website can be crawled by the spiders as a river flows unimpeded, the website will be ranked higher. For this to happen, make sure you mention different blog posts or articles (such as your services pages) within your content. When you add new content, don’t forget to revisit your old blogs to add additional links! Old pages are also indexed constantly, so those updates will not go unnoticed. You can also use this strategy for selling products on an e-commerce website, by having articles leading into a snippet of information about your product with a link back to it. Be careful when doing this though, if your product promotion is detracting from the content quality, you’ll only annoy your visitors. Remember, blog posts are first and foremost about providing information to your visitors. If they value the information you provided, it’s more likely that they will click on a link to your products.
Track your SEO results and revise your old content
I constantly track what search queries are used to find my blog using Google Analytics. Not only does it help me see which posts are performing the best, it also helps me determine what I should write about next. If you have a post that’s ranking in the top 5-10 results (the positions often change – this is normal), you’re likely not getting too many people clicking through to your page. Most users will only click on the top 1-5 results, so getting to that sweet spot is crucial. Getting in the 5-10 range is no slouch, and with a little more effort you can boost yourself to the top. So how do you get there? Well, one way is to do a follow-up post that’s closer to the targeted keywords or key phrase; then review / clean up your original post, add in some new concepts, and link between the old and new post. You can also write another relevant article and post it on a blog from a different domain (preferably with a high Page Rank) and include a link back to your blog post.
If you have some blog posts that are performing poorly, you may want to consider increasing the amount of content on it, and add additional images to help illustrate your writing. Lately, Google’s search algorithm updates have been focusing on “thin” content. Aside from the implication this algorithm focusing on content quality, it also means that your blogs should have lots of content. How content you have is up to you, but a blog with 500 words or less certainly isn’t going to get you any visitors. Run your old and new blogs through a word counter before posting; I recommend 1000+ words at least, and if you have a 3000+ word quality blog post you’re almost guaranteed to get results.
Using the tips provided above, your blog can become a real powerhouse for generating traffic. If you don’t feel comfortable with writing your own content or have been struggling with attracting visitors to your blow, you may want to consider hiring professional SEO services in writing the content that is not only search engine friendly but also provides ample information to the readers.
If you’re interested in learning how Virgo Web Design can help you with comprehensive SEO strategies for your website and blog to grow your online presence and get your website to the top rankings of search results, please don’t hesitate to contact us.