Blog content was once limited to relatively narrow audiences and interest niches. However, that hasn’t been the case in more than a decade–almost two. That said, if your business isn’t blogging about industry-relevant subjects, you’re already flirting with obsolescence.
Your blog is as essential to your business now as having an entry in the phone book was in the days before the internet. A company’s blog is not only how you reach your audience, but how you build your entire digital business presence. With more than half a billion blogs out there though, and millions of new posts daily, standing out in the crowd can be a challenge.
When creating a blog strategy, it’s important to make sure you have a full understanding of the blogging best practices that can help your content gain popularity and reach your target audience.
Business Blog Tips
These tips will help regardless of your chosen content management system (CMS) – from the widely popular WordPress, to Shopify, SquareSpace or other blog platforms. Below are some things you can do to help boost the chances of your business blog seeing successful organic traffic.
Use High-Resolution Images
The first tip for having a high-quality and high-ranking blog is to make sure there are plenty of eye-catching, high-res images. Not only does this attract potential readers to your blog, but it can also help reinforce the overall blog message in different content.
Images will help your blog page to begin ranking on Google, while simultaneously acting as another piece of searchable content from your site that Google can index. As a bonus, readers love having text and content broken up by interesting and appealing graphics.
Pro-Tip: Use compression software such as CompressJpeg to condense large files so your website will still load quickly.
Longer blog posts undoubtedly help you rank better in search engine queries. However, long, drawn-out posts aren’t always what the reader is after. With the new Google search criteria in place, much more emphasis is going to be placed on what value the content brings to the reader.
Because of this, having a quick-summary box at the top of your article lets you answer the basic query of your post for readers that find value in brevity. It also gives your content a better chance of being the featured snippet.
Compatibility & Accessibility
There are so many design choices when creating your blog site that it’s easy to mess up something simple, like picking a bad font. It’s important to remember that not everyone is going to be reading your site on the newest phone, with perfect eyesight, or even with any eyesight.
Make sure your content is not only compatible with as many devices as possible, but be sure you integrate accessibility features like image descriptions.
Get Optimized for Mobile
Being optimized for mobile browsers and high-speed interaction helps blogs rank better in search. Make sure that your website loads quickly as well, so your visitors don’t give up and leave. This impacts your bounce rate which is another factor that can impact your search engine ranking.
Share your blog links across your social pages/profiles. The basic success of your blog depends on the number of readers that show up and read. Therefore, boosting the signal for your blog content via social media can be an incredibly powerful method.
Share Related Articles
Since blog readers are coming to a site to learn more about something, the most successful and popular websites are working to help those readers advance in their journey. One way to go about this is to put internal links in the text of the blog copy itself. Another is to put a list of related articles for suggested reading at the end of the post.
Blogging For Businesses Best Practices
Maintaining a business blog can be complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are some of the blogging for business best practices you should include in your content strategy:
Work With A Content Manager or Editor
A content manager could yield incredible results. They will be responsible not only for your entire content calendar being kept updated and published on time, but for a long list of other tasks as well.
Some of the other tasks that your content manager will be responsible for could include:
- Constantly thinking about and planning future content that correlates with brand activities and embodies the spirit and values of the brand
- Speaking with internal subject matter experts about products or services, and integrating that into engaging content
- Working with the sales team to leverage content for faster lead conversion
- Monitoring the website and blog pages for search performance, while performing maintenance to help improve rankings
- Updating existing content to stay relevant and effective
- Working across departments to ensure seamless communication regarding marketing and content production
- Making sure that everyone in the company is meeting their performance and deadline goals concerning content
Put The Concerns and Questions Of Your Audience First
Another thing that too many companies mistakenly do is put their interests ahead of their customers or audiences. Writing self-serving content that doesn’t interest or provide value to your readers can be a huge turnoff and result in less traffic.
The people coming to your page are trying to solve a problem or deal with a pain point, which is why you need to cater your content to fit their needs. If you aren’t providing the value they are looking for, even if they are long-time customers, they’ll start getting that value elsewhere. This leads to diminished loyalty.
Keep readers engaged with company blogs by providing the answers, guidance, or recommendations they’re looking for. This is what builds loyalty and emotional bond strength with your audience.
Keep Promotion to a Minimum
It may seem counterintuitive, but your blog posts should remain as minimally self-promotional as possible. Your audience doesn’t want to be sold to. They know how to find the products and services they want when they’re ready to commit.
Not only that, but your audience is smarter than they’ve ever been before. They will be able to smell your conversion desperation before they even get halfway to your call to action. What they want is information that will be useful to them in helping them make their own decision. Your blog should be where they go to find the information they want, which eventually will lead them to your product or service as the best solution.
Optimize for SEO
There is not a whole lot of point in blogging for businesses if the blogs aren’t going to be easily found by those looking for the information they should contain. This is why optimizing your blog for search engines to easily find it is vital. The easiest way to do this is generally to identify a keyword that you want to be on the first page of Google for, and then write better content for it than the already-ranking sites.
Hubspot has a great guide on how to do keyword research for SEO, but the most important thing you need to know is what people are searching for online already that you have a solution for. Then, use those keywords and feature them prominently in things like your blog post title, header, and subheader.
Additionally, be sure the primary keyword is in image tags and alt tags. According to Moz, this drastically increases the risk of being found by someone searching for the target keyword, and helps with accessibility as well.
Keep A Consistent Content Schedule
One thing that your audience is going to want when they discover the value your blog brings them, is regular and consistent updates. This is especially true for loyal readers that depend on your blog for niche industry news or important product review information.
Additionally, when you’re blogging for businesses, Google will more easily crawl and index pages that are on websites that receive frequent updates. This means that your publishing frequency could play a role in determining where you rank on Google for any given keyword.
Include a Call to Action in Each Post
When the reader makes it to the end of a post, make sure you give them an appropriate next step to take. This should take the form of a call to action in the final paragraph. Depending on the nature of your business or organization, this might be contacting you, entering a sales funnel, or any one of many other options.
The simplest way to do this is just by providing a clear direction or way in which to act. This can be a link to click, a phone number, a contact form, or even another blog post to read. No matter how you want to format it, make sure you don’t just end the article and leave the reader hanging on and wanting more.
Optimize for the Skimmer
Readers don’t like big walls of text. Furthermore, Google places a significant value on content that has HTML formatting. This includes bolding, italics, titles, “H” heading (H2, H3, H4, etc.), numbered lists, bullet lists, pictures, and embedded video. The easier it is to skim your content, the more likely it is that readers will stick around and scroll to the end. As a result, search engines like Google will place a higher value on that content.
Blogging for Business FAQs
What is the most important rule for business blogging?
Provide the audience with valuable content.
What makes a good business blog?
A good business blog should have a clear purpose that is tailored to its target audience. It should also provide engaging content that supports the organizational goals, such as growth or revenue generation.
What are the best practices for blogging?
Best practices for blogging include comprehensive SEO, providing high-quality content, having a cohesive and comprehensive content strategy, and promoting the blog with various social channels.
Is blogging good for business?
Blogging is incredibly good for business, with actively-blogging organizations boosting their lead-generation abilities by 126%.
Are business blogs effective?
Research has shown that SEO blogging can close 10x the leads of outbound linking, for a close rate of more than 14%.
Set Your Business Up for Success With a Strategic Blog
When created with a robust SEO strategy and curated content, blogging is a very valuable and effective marketing tool for any business. By following these blogging best practices, you can take your brand’s blog to the next level, and reach a targeted, highly engaged audience with great conversion potential.
In today’s on-demand, tech-first economy, it’s more important than ever to engage with your customers. No matter what type of B2B product or service your brand offers, blogging is an excellent way to build trust, educate your audience, and create a community centered on your brand’s interests.
Ready to get started with a business blog, or take your existing business blog to the next level of success? Markacy can help.