How to improve your blog
Your business blog is a crucial portion of your business’s online presence. By carefully crafting a blog that is relevant to your target audience, provides value to potential customers, and increases brand awareness through consistent brand imagery and high-quality and shareable content, you’re creating an extremely valuable asset for your business. You probably realise that successful blogging is much more than writing a post every now and then and hitting “publish”. These are some actionable steps you can take to improve the quality and ROI of your business’s blog.
1) Improve your blog branding
The first thing you can do to hugely improve your blog is to ensure that your branding is consistent and visually pleasing. Do you need to create or update your business’s brand identity? Before the invention of words, our ancestors made sense of the world through seeing and observing – they perceived the world through their eyes. The result is that about 20% of our brain is dedicated to processing visual stimulation. It is something that is as natural to us as breathing.
Make the most of this deep and instinctive response in your blog readers by taking every opportunity to reinforce your messages with visual content.Ensure that your branding is telling a cohesive and powerful story about your business. The graphics, photos and images you use on your blog are a great way to show off your branding. On your blog, at every opportunity:
- Use up-to-date, branded imagery throughout your blog
- Watermark your photos and images with your business’s logo and URL
- Be sure that each image you use on your blog is relevant to your business and aligns with your brand identity
If at all possible, tell your brand’s story on your blog by creating an authentic and personal “About Us” or “Our Story” page. Today’s consumers enjoy supporting brands that they feel are authentic and personal, not stiff and untouchable. To start, try introducing some of your key staff on your blog or including the story of how your business got its start. Brand authenticity can be fostered in a multitude of different ways and will allow your business to connect with its customers more meaningfully.
2) Improve your blog reach with email marketing
If you haven’t started an email list for your blog readers, you need to start one now. Email marketing is an incredibly powerful tool to have at your disposal. Unlike your brand’s following on social media platforms, you completely own your email lists. With social media, key performance indicators like reach and engagement are vulnerable to algorithm changes. While social media marketing can be a powerful business tool, the results you receive from it will never be as stable as what you will receive from email marketing. You have complete control over your email list. Start building your list today.
3) Improve your blog ranking in Search Engines
SEO, or Search Engine Optimisation, may sound a lot scarier than it actually is. While some more advanced SEO tactics get a bit technical, you can absolutely learn the basics of SEO and apply them to your blog content strategy. If you’re unfamiliar with the basic concepts of SEO, just think of SEO as a set of tasks that will allow search engines to understand your website more clearly and rank it higher in search results.
Even implementing a basic SEO strategy can improve your blog traffic exponentially. One of the first things you can do is to make sure that you are including relevant “keywords” within your blog posts and the pages on your blog. When people search for these keywords, you are more likely to be found if you have a specific density of the keyword. You don’t want to include a ridiculous number of each keyword you are trying to rank for. This is called “keyword stuffing” and will actually decrease your search rankings. Try using Google Keyword Planner to find keywords for your blog. Then, include them in posts strategically and use them in image alt attributes. Another step that you can take to improve your blog’s SEO is writing well-crafted meta descriptions. This isn’t incredibly technical, though if you work with a web developer to add elements to your business’s blog, you will probably want to get them to add the meta descriptions to your site.
If your blog uses WordPress and you update the blog yourself, you can use a plugin like Yoast to complete some basic SEO tasks including analysing keyword density and writing meta descriptions.Do some more research about SEO. There’s quite a lot that you can do to improve your website’s search rankings: Link building, building specific keyword-focused pages, creating SEO-friendly URLs, and much more. Some SEO tasks will be surprisingly non-technical and some of them might require that you hire external help. Regardless, if you can create an SEO strategy for your business blog and successfully implement it, you’ll get tremendous results.
4) Focus on improving the quality of your blog content
You’ll need a solid content plan in place to get the most out of your blog. Create a content calendar on a yearly basis to save yourself loads of time down the road. By planning out your content in advance, you’ll be able to have blog posts scheduled ahead of time and you’ll never be scrambling to write posts last minute. Rushing to put out new content can lead to sloppy mistakes like typos, broken links, and accidentally publishing unfinished posts. Additionally, crafting well-written, valuable blog posts takes time and effort.
How to make your blog visually attractive
The imagery you use on your blog is just as important and what you write. Find stock photos that are relevant to what each post is about or use your own photography. If you don’t have a budget for stock imagery and don’t have photography equipment on hand, there are plenty of free stock photo options to get you started. Just be mindful of the fact that most high-quality, free stock photos are used on hundreds of websites. As soon as you are able to purchase or create original imagery for your blog, you should. Ensure that your blog images are optimised and that they are sized correctly for their intended usage. If your business uses social media marketing, you’ll probably want to reuse your blog images for social media. When creating images for your blog, make sure that you have images that are properly optimised for each social media platform that your business uses.
Here are some simple steps for optimising your blog images for search engines:
- Before you upload your image file, ensure the file name contains your keywords and enough information to help search engines understand what your image is about.
- Make sure your image file size is as small as possible. Use an image editing application to reduce the file size without compromising quality. Alternatively, run the image through an image size shrinker such as tinyjpg.com or smash.it.
- Google recommends that an image has useful information in the alt tag as well as other tags such as the title tag. All search engines rely on this information as they can’t ‘see’ images. If you’re using WordPress for your blog, the Media page enables you to enter this descriptive information in a number of fields. This descriptive image information includes:
- Title (max. 60 characters)
- Description (max. 155 characters)
- Alt tag (max. 125 characters)
- Caption (optional)
Improve your blog readers experience by creating valuable content
Be sure that each post you write is providing real value to your audience. By providing valuable blog posts that educate, entertain, or inform, you’re giving potential customers a reason to return to your website again and again. You can establish your business as an expert in your specific industry by publishing posts on your blog that teach your audience how to do something step-by-step. When you create valuable content, your blog’s readers are a lot more likely to sign up for your email list and enter your business’s sales funnel.
5) Post consistently but the quality is more important than quantity
You’ll need to post on a regular basis for your brand to be seen as authoritative and authentic. Posting consistently is one of the many ways to improve blog traffic and conversions. Your domain authority is one of your top SEO ranking factors – the longer your website has been up and running, the more authoritative your site becomes. Even more importantly, you need to actively engage with your audience. Posting consistent, high-quality content will allow your business to establish itself as a legitimate resource within your industry. Are there any specific brands that you admire and view as successful? Check out their blog to see how often they are posting. It’s likely at least once a month, but it may be as often as several times a week. Keep in mind that it’s most important to make sure that the posts you are publishing are top-quality. Do not post mediocre or bad articles for the sake of posting more often. Everything you include on your blog should be something you are proud to put out for your audience to read.
- Ensure your blog reflects your branding at every opportunity
- Improve the reach of your blog by using email marketing
- Make sure your blog posts and your content is SEO optimised
- Focus your efforts on improving the quality of your content
- Create and commit to a regular and consistent publishing schedule
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