Blogging takes time and resources. It requires business owners to take time out of their day to write, edit and post an article, or they have to pay to outsource the job. Then the business blog needs to be maintained and shared across other digital platforms. Is it really worth it?
Every small business with a website or digital presence should have a blog.
Let’s talk about why.
A blog is a great way to create more content for your website, therefore helping it’s SEO and ranking on Google. Simply by publishing new content every couple weeks or so, you are keeping your website updated and fresh. Whether you run a non-profit or an e-commerce website, blogging will help you get in the spotlight of the internet.
Blogs are also a great place to incorporate internal and external links on your website, which helps legitimize your website in the eyes of Google. A single blog post can have several different links which creates a network of keywords, therefore improving your SEO. Even better, your blog post might be shared on another website. This is SEO gold!
Blogs are also wonderful marketing opportunities. You can share your blog posts on social media, which are more likely to be viewed and shared than a traditional advertisement. And if people visit your website because they clicked on the link to your blog post, you can then create a call-to-action and lead them down a sales funnel. Analytics will help you determine which blog posts are the most effective for this technique.
A blog is a great way to connect with your customers on a personal level. By sharing stories about your business you craft and promote your brand. And people like businesses whose values align with their own.
The company Outdoor Voices has been lauded for successfully connecting with consumers who seek alternative athletic ware. Rather than creating messaging about competition and struggle, Outdoor Voices has a brand voice that speaks to people who enjoy fun, recreational exercise. It’s all right there in the About Us page. Their blog, The Recreationalist, emphasizes that tone again and again through blog content.
Not sure where to start? These tips will help you get a your blog up and running!
With websites like WordPress, creating a blog is simple and affordable. Whether you create new pages under the umbrella of your existing domain or create a new domain, blogging is almost as easy as writing in Word or a similar word processor. Here’s a comprehensive guide to setting up your own WordPress blog. If you are renting a website through a company that has their own proprietary development software, contact them to ask about creating a blog and posting articles.
The most successful bloggers for their business will tell you to use your blog to answer your customer’s most frequent questions. For example, a small business owner could create a comprehensive pricing guide or talk about the newest trends in the industry. Blogging doesn’t have to involve a ton of research (although you should make sure that you have all of your facts straight). Use your own wealth of knowledge to create content that is easily digestible by people outside of your expertise.
When brainstorming topics for a blog post, don’t limit yourself to simple text articles. You can save time and energy by repurposing content you’ve already written to make video tutorials or webinars, infographics, slideshows, and more.
Here are a few more topics you might explore on your small business blog:
- Your story about becoming an entrepreneur and founding a business
- Talk about key features that set apart your products and/or services
- Company announcements
- How-to guides related to your industry
- Photo galleries of Instagram or Facebook posts featuring people using your products
- Industry updates and trends
- Community centered topics, whether it’s for the city in which you’re based or global initiatives
If your small business is location specific (like a retail shop vs. an online business or e-commerce store), writing blogs about your city can be especially helpful. By using those keywords, you are improving your local SEO. This helps you rank well when other people in your location search for your products or services.
You can also incorporate your blog posts into broader marketing strategy by writing about the same products that you are promoting in print or digital ads. You may also consider linking to the blog article on your social media feeds and then boosting those posts to drive traffic to your website where readers can sign up for emails with similar content. This is a great way to build an audience and entice people to sign up for your emails!
Too busy to write blogs yourself? Find someone else to do it!
You are busy running your business — and that’s ok! Chances are good that there is someone else in your office who has a deep understanding of your company and a knack for writing. Ask around and see if someone would be willing to help write blog posts or collaborate on video tutorials. You can even see if the person who is always taking pictures on their phone would be willing to put together an informal photo gallery of the store. Or you can talk to an agency or freelance writers about a professional blog package.
The important thing is to put your brand out there and generate more pages for your website in the process. A blog is a good tool for any small business and is important to any digital marketing strategy.