Getting a website up and running takes time and effort. Once you're done, it can feel like an uphill battle to keep creating fresh content regularly.
But keeping your blog up to date has tons of benefits. It's a way to show off your industry expertise, engage your target audience, and turn website visitors into loyal customers.
Most importantly, however, it's an opportunity to increase the visibility of your website. The easier it is to find your company online, the more traffic and customers you can generate through your website.
Most people find new businesses using Google Search. That's why writing your blog posts with Search Engine Optimization (SEO) in mind is crucial.
With SEO-optimized blogs, your website can reach the top of Google's search results when people actively search for your products and services.
Writing for SEO can get complicated, so it's a good idea to start with the basics. Read on for some beginner tips for writing blog posts for SEO.
Step #1: Know Yourself & Your Audience:
The first and most important step when planning your blog post is ensuring your article's theme aligns with your brand.
Ask yourself what type of content your existing customers would expect to find on your website. The themes around which you build your blog should be relevant to your business and your customer base.
The next step is to identify themes that relate to solving your customer's problems, answering their questions, or sparking their interest.
For example, let's say you run a house cleaning service. The majority of your blogs should revolve around household cleaning and maintenance, such as tips for cleaning different rooms or appliances, the best products to use, etc.
Follow these five simple steps to identify the overall themes you should be talking about on your blog:
Read your brand guidelines for guidance on your target audience
Scan through your old blog posts to see existing content themes
Check out the last five blogs your competitors posted
Identify what problems your brand solves for its customers
Google the themes you've identified and scan the top five results
At the end of this process, you should have a good idea of the following:
What your management and target market expect of your brand,
What competitors are doing to attract visitors to their site and;
What questions your target market has, and how are they being answered online.
From an SEO perspective, the key thing to remember is to find themes that both interest and help your target market rather than something you think might rank well on Google.
This will ensure that your end product provides substantial value compared to other pages in the Google search results or your competitors' sites.
Step #2: Identify Topics To Write About:
When it comes to selecting blog ideas, make sure you write only about topics on which you or your brand are a recognized authority. You should be able to provide a complete or comprehensive description of the topic to provide value to readers (and to search engines).
This step can be tough, especially if you've already written a lot on your blog and you find yourself running out of ideas.
But there are some tips and tricks for making topic identification as simple as possible.
From an SEO standpoint, the aim is to find questions rather than a topic.
This is because Google aims to answer questions for its users. So, building blogs that answer specific questions entered by users into the Google search bar is a surefire way to earn SEO traffic.
Try this three-step process to find the questions you should be answering:
First, Google your product or service and take a look at the "people also ask" section of the search results.
This should give you a firm understanding of the questions your target market has about your product or service.
Next, open the top five pieces of content from the search results and examine the information these results provide. Pay attention to how the post is structured and how deeply the topic is covered under each heading and paragraph.
By now, you should have some topic ideas and a flavor of what to include in your own blog post, including how thoroughly you need to dive into the topic to make your post a compelling read.
Step #3: Write Your Blog Post:
Before you dive straight into writing, take a moment to provide your blog with a structure.
This means deciding on a blog title and the subheadings you'll use to break information up into a logical sequence.
Building a structure before you start writing helps keep the blog focused and makes it easier for your website visitors to consume.
Next, think about the appropriate tone for your blog and your website as a whole.
The tone of your writing should be consistent and aligned with what readers will expect based not only on the products and services you offer but also on the brand's voice and tone.
For example, it would be a little jarring to land on a funeral home website only to find an excitable humorous tone to the latest blog post (e.g. "how to put the fun in funeral").
Now that you know how you're going to write, the next question to consider is: how much should you write?
The answer depends on the topic you're covering.
Consider whether the topic is shallow in nature or requires a more in-depth analysis from an expert on the subject.
Your readers should feel that they have gotten all the information they need from your article - no more and no less.
To get the right amount of depth, you should bullet point under each subheading before you start writing. Include the information you plan to cover and the research and analysis that describes both sides of the story.
Next, use your bullet points to start writing each section as comprehensively as possible.
Take every opportunity to provide examples that illustrate your point and include insightful analysis where possible.