Having a blog on your site is a great way to keep it updated with regular, unique and interesting content. As well as search engines loving a well maintained and active site, your blog can also be used to increase the range of keywords you are targeting, improve your social media activity and attract those all-important inbound links.
Once you’ve made the decision to install a blog and got it up and running, though, how do you go about reaping all the great SEO benefits from it?
This is a question we at Anicca have heard quite a lot recently, so we’ve decided to put our heads together and come up with this useful guide – providing a quick introduction on how best to manage your blog and how to write great blog posts.
The first thing above all else is to decide what you want to use your blog for. Blogs can typically be used in a number of ways to improve search engine optimisation (SEO) efforts and each affect the way a blog is written and seen, here’s a few examples:
- Many bloggers see the amount of blogs written as a way to keep the search engines revisiting the site – due to its fresh content and relevance
- Some businesses use blogs solely for link building purposes – using it as their online space to post reports, press releases, infographics etc…
- A lot of blogs are also used as optimisation tools – helping the site rank higher for the target keywords
It’s pointless writing if you have nothing to write about. Below is the type of elements you need to think about when writing a blog post:
- The Topic –You need to make whatever you choose to write about related to your business and something that people will find interesting. Finding out how your dog got on at the vets may be interesting, just not suitable for a professional blog. This may involve a bit of keyphrase research into what you want to write about.
- Make sure you’re interested – If you’re not interested about a topic then why would anybody else, particularly potential customers, be interested in it?
- Make it simple – People have little patience for a lot of text, especially if you’re rambling. Make your blog post as succinct as possible and use bullet points and short sentences to make it easy to follow.
Blog post writing tips
Once you have decided on a topic the following elements need to be considered when writing every blog post to maximise the SEO benefits and keep your readers interested:
- The Title – The title of a blog post needs to describe its contents as well as contain your target keywords. This can sometimes be difficult, so if you are struggling try to make the title as close to a search query as possible e.g. “Using canonical tags to improve SEO”.
- Opening paragraph – Like window shopping if you don’t see anything you like you won’t go in. Your first paragraph needs to grab the readers attention and give them a reason to carry on.
- Tone of voice – Think about your market and customer base and what sort of blog they would be interested in. Would a friendly, jovial style be useful, or a more informative, professional tone be better?
- Calls to action – This involves inviting the readers to engage with you in some way – such as commenting or “tweeting” the post. This helps to externally promote your blog, and site as a whole, as well as allowing your readers to join the discussion
- Pictures – No-one likes a big block of text to work through. Liven up your posts with images and even videos
- Spelling and grammar – You want to come across as friendly but need to be professional, you will lose respect if you make mistakes such as these. (Please feel free to point out any spelling mistakes in this post in the comments below!)
This is by no means a definitive list, but if you take these points on board before you begin blogging then not only will you and your readers be interested but you will also start seeing the SEO benefits a blog can bring to your site as a whole.
How do you think a blog can be written effectively, do you agree with these points? Feel free to share your thoughts below.
Posted by James Murphy and Jon Potter