If your business has had an online presence for any length of time, you’ve no doubt heard about blogs. But what exactly are they? A blog is essentially just a website with a collection of posts, usually several paragraphs long or more, geared towards a certain topic. It’s generally written in an informal with a personal tone, and displayed in reverse chronological order. Most blogs are even interactive, allowing customers to leave comments on posts. Some blogs are updated daily, some just one or twice a month.
Now that you know what they are, how can blogs benefit you as a business owner? You may think they’re not worth the time and investment, but here are just a few ways that starting and maintaining a blog can build your brand and generate revenue for your business.
Make Sure Your Customers Find You
The majority of people shopping online today start their search by using a search engine. Ranking within those search engines is more important than ever. If you’re writing about a product or service that not many people are writing about, you stand a good chance of getting a high-ranking. And every single time you write a blog, that’s another “door” through which someone can find your business online. The more often your blog is updated, the more often your name will be in font of consumers. A study by Search Engine Journal showed that over 75% of people never scroll past the first page of search results. So showing up early is important! Another study showed that people don’t really pay attention to paid advertisements online, but they do pat attention to search results. Getting your brand to appear in those results can have incredible effects.
Be Personal – Not an “Expert”
Don’t think you “know” enough to write a blog? You don’t necessarily have to be an “expert” at what you’re writing about. Consumers are looking for a real voice – something authentic. They want to know if a product or a service works for the average person. By providing that voice, you make your company seem more personable – not just a faceless entity. And by providing a personal voice, people may begin to see you as an authority on your topic.
Not Just Words
A blog is also an effective way to advertise for little to no cost. Many businesses use their blogs to offer coupons and discounts, or to run contests, both of which can be tied into social media (and even more free advertising). Say for example you’re having a contest, and that a requirement for entry is to “like” your Facebook page and “share” a certain post. This gives you an entirely new level of reach as your business name is shared again and again.
If you’ve considered a blog for your business, but hesitated because you didn’t know enough, didn’t think it would work, or were just scared to try something new, you’re out of excuses with today’s Internet! Setting up a blog is free and easy, and there are numerous providers to choose from, each with their own advantages.
There’s never been a better time to embrace the power of a blog. When else would you turn down free advertising and marketing for your business? With just a little bit of work, you too can be another success story.