Small businesses with blogs generate 126% more leads than those without blogs. This statistic alone shows the effectiveness of blogging as a marketing tool. For many new and established small businesses, blogging is an underused medium that can be very effective in helping build a brand, creating an online identity, and establishing expertise in your industry. Blogging is not only beneficial for your brand, it also directly helps your bottom line. Here are six reasons a blog should be a central part of your marketing strategy.
Rank higher in search results
Websites with blogs have 434% more indexed pages. Frequently updating your website with valuable information means your site and content are more likely to show up in online searches and improve your rank in Google. Search engines value high-quality content that is unique, relevant, and up-to-date.
Google offers guidelines on what constitutes high-quality content. They provide questions to ask yourself about your content, such as “Would you trust the information in this article?” The most important rule of thumb: write for people, not search engines.
Grow your traffic
The longer a blog has existed and the more posts it has, the better it is for traffic. After your first 21-54 published posts, traffic can increase up to 30%. A steady stream of content will keep readers coming back and attract potential new customers. Make your articles shareable by including information that is evergreen—continually relevant—and embedding social media icons.
Engage with your audience
Your blog is a platform where your customer base can express themselves–listen and use this to your advantage. Questions in a comments section can make great follow-up blog posts, especially if you notice several people focusing on a specific topic. The feedback is a direct line to what your customers are thinking. Check out Buffer and Eat24 for examples of businesses that are great at responding to praise, criticism, and questions that they receive.
Foster customer relations
Your customers are your best salespeople. Spotlight your success stories and customers with the most creative uses of your product. Interact with your fans on social networks to deepen relationships and provide useful information. If you don’t have much time, pick two platforms where your target market is present and focus your resources on growing a quality presence there. Custom content encourages relationships—78% of consumers believe that companies providing custom content are interested in building good relationships.
Brand your business
Blogging is arguably the best channel to develop a distinct voice and image that differentiates you from your competitors. Giving a human element to your brand is beneficial as it helps consumers connect with your business on a more personal level. A good way to give a face to your brand is by incorporating Google Authorship as it shows your photo within search results. Make sure your Google+ profile has a great photo as this can have a big impact on your click-through-rate.
Establish your expertise
Use your blog to position yourself as an expert in your industry. Share knowledge and insight that is informative, useful, analytical, and compelling, and your business will gradually be known as a reliable resource. Blogging is the perfect medium to communicate the quality of your product or service as 81% of online consumers trust information and advice from blogs. Most notably, 61% of consumers have made a purchase based on a blog post.
Can you think of other reasons to start a business blog? Let me know!
Latest posts by Ana R. Alvarado (see all)
- The Cost of Building a Website in 2014 - May 12, 2014
- Blogging for Business: 6 Reasons to Start a Business Blog - March 25, 2014