When it comes to writing blogs “Do as I say, don’t do as I do.”
I’m pretty sure Phil came up with that lyric. I pulled it from the Genesis hit “Jesus He Knows Me”. I’m also pretty sure that he was talking about blog writing.
Before we go on, why not pump up the volume and listen to it while reading this?
OK, your tenuous intro just about held my attention. What’s your point?
I’m thinking about this as recently I’ve been banging the drum about the importance of blogging for SEO and on several occasions I’ve had clients (or potential clients) come back to me to say, “But you don’t keep your blog up to date”.
And they’re right. I don’t.
But, frankly, I’m overwhelmed by work at the moment and I’m not looking to bring in any more. I’m spending every available hour working on my clients’ sites so why would I try and carve out more time in my day?
Why is blogging so important for SEO?
I suppose it comes down to the fact that search engines can’t rank things that don’t exist. And, of course, there are loads of examples of sites that rank without having blogs. Maybe they only have a single page and they’re doing just fine. But take a look at the company/product/service on offer.
I’m pretty sure you’re not looking at a wedding photographer or accountant and much more likely it’s a wealthy VC backed company that can afford to drive a ton of paid traffic to the site and embark on an aggressive campaign of advertorials to generate links and “buzz”.
So I should be doing that buzz stuff too?
Well, yes. But for the average owner-operator business, PR is just too time-consuming. It also has the annoying habit of being finite. I mean, how many different sites can you get to link to you with worthy content? How often?
PR is great and getting links is great. But for the small business with a finite amount of time for DIY SEO, writing blogs is much more beneficial.
And what do I write about?
Whatever you want. It can be LASER focused on a particular facet of your company or it can be a broad ramble. The most important thing is to just get on and do something. Simply adding new content, any content, so long as it isn’t the spammiest spam there ever was, signals to Google that your website is kept up-to-date and is worth re-crawling.
Too many website owners are paralysed by the belief that they have to write something incredibly meaningful with beautiful structure and fully optimised. The reality is always that something is better than nothing and in terms of your finances, it’s better to write the blogs and come to someone like me to help you optimise them than it is to pay me to write them for you. After all, you are already an expert on your business and I’d just be learning about it.
How often should I blog to improve my SEO?
How long is a piece of blog?
The easy answer – that has no meaning because it’s so relative – is as often as possible. As I said above, something is better than nothing. And lots of something is better still. But the reality is that you’re running a business and you’ve got so many different things vying for your attention that writing a blog is unlikely to top your list of priorities.
If you’re a first-time blogger I think the target has to be one blog a week.
If you aim to do more than that you’re likely to fail. Give it a couple of weeks and your appetite for writing will fade.
On the other hand, if you aim for one a month, you’ll likely find that the blogs are too far apart and you don’t get into a rhythm.
Of course, you might be able to write in otherwise wasted parts of your day. On the train. At night when feeding your baby. When the in-laws come to visit.
The beauty of blogging with tools like WordPress is that you could spend a couple of hours writing 3 or 4 blog posts and schedule them to go out over the course of a few weeks. And when your blogging skills marry your automated social media skills you’ll be wondering why it took so long to get to this point.
Are all these sub-headings written as questions?
Good question. Yes, I suppose they all are. And what does that tell you about writing blogs? Answer questions!
If you’re stuck for inspiration go through your emails and look at the frequently asked questions. Group them together by topic or product or in some other logical manner and off you go.
So I thought about blogging and the main areas I think I need to address.
- Why should I blog to improve SEO?
- What should I write about?
- How do I “SEO” my blog posts?
- How often should I write?
These are questions I get asked regularly. So that means these are questions being asked regularly by people on the internet who don’t even know I exist… yet!
Next steps for people struggling with blogging
OK, so maybe you’ve read all this and it makes sense, or at least a bit of it does, but for some reason, you’re not sure it’s really what you need to do. Or maybe time is still a factor and you can’t carve out a bit more time for blogging.
If so, don’t hesitate to get in touch and we can talk about your options for outsourcing or working with me to produce a content plan that will make your blogging life that much easier.
You’ll also notice that I kind of glossed over the “How do I ‘SEO’ my blog posts” question. That’s because I don’t want you to fall into the group of non-bloggers that spend too much time on the minutiae.
If you’re really interested in adding the icing to your cake – call me!