- Content Is King
- Business websites with blogs convert 400% better than those without
- More web pages means more ways that visitors can find you
…..You’ve probably heard any number of statements encouraging you to produce more content, but could your content actually be harming your business?
For years the rule of SEO (search engine optimisation) has been that you should do keyword research and for every search term that has sufficient volume you should produce a web page for it. So, for many business owners they recognised their limitation of time and outsourced this task….
The end result – a tonne of websites filled with mediocre content written for search engines.
Times have changed and now with Google pushing ahead focusing on quality content and the user experience it is time for businesses to refocus and ensure they produce quality content. This may mean less blog articles but by stepping back and focusing on quality you will not only be keeping Google happy, you will also be keeping your audience happy.
To keep on producing valuable content for your readers here are 8 rules to establish you blog authority:
Blogging Rule #1: Keep it simple
In most situations, your readers are not the expert that you are. Keep your language simple, remove the jargon and illustrate complicated concepts with examples. Remember, don’t let the words get in the way of the message.
Make your posts as easy to read as possible. Write as if you’re writing for a 12-year old.
This does not mean you need to dumb down your ideas, all you are doing is simplifying the message to help your readers process your post.
Blogging Rule #2: “What’s in it for me?”
Let’s get this straight…if it’s not your mother, no one cares about you or your business.
You need to identify your audience and how your posts will satisfy their needs. Build a buyer persona and write your article for them. Forget writing generic articles for the masses and your post will instantly become more personal, more conversational, and more engaging.
Blogging Rule #3: Create a content calendar for quality
If you want people to subscribe for updates, crappy content is sure to kill that idea. Only write when you have something to say.
The best thing for you to do will be to research your audience and what they are looking for. You can use keyword tools, browse forums or ask existing and past clients for ideas about what people are looking for.
Once you have a list of ideas schedule a timetable for when these ideas will be turned into articles and published on your blog. This way you wont be scratching your head for ideas the evening before you were meant to publish a post and you may even provide a teaser for upcoming posts to encourage people to subscribe and come back.
Blogging Rule #4: Write for people first
You may start with a list of articles to write that you have formulated based on keyword research but the thing to remember is that Google does not buy from you – people do.
The best approach to writing, while still being mindful of SEO is to write the post as if you have never heard of SEO. Once you have completed the article then go back and optimise it to be more search engine friendly…but do not go overboard and kill the user experience.
Blogging Rule #5: Engagement is more important than word count
People are time poor and will scan for the information they need so don’t let some nonsense idea of the ideal article length get in the way of the message. If you can get the message across succinctly in 400 words then what purpose does dragging it out to 600 words do?
Blogging Rule #6: Edit your posts before publishing
Unless you are writing every day (and not even then), you stand no chance of producing the perfect piece of writing in one go. If you have a content calendar, include the time to allow a few days to edit before publishing or even have someone else do it.
When editing a post, consider:
- Does the post flow? Does each paragraph naturally follow the paragraph before it?
- Could any points or sections be removed without impacting the message?
- Polish each sentence. Cut overly long sentences in two and replace difficult words with simple ones.
- Correct any grammar or spelling mistakes
With editing you will find your message becomes clearer, and your readers will be grateful.
Blogging Rule #7: Show your personality
With so many other pages on the internet covering the same topics, what makes you stand out?
If you don’t inject your personality, your content becomes interchangeable with that of any other writer. Your personality, your experiences, and your voice make your posts unique and allow your readers to engage with you because of who you are.
Inject your personality by:
- Presenting a topic from a different angle
- Sharing stories or experiences to help illustrate your message
- Inject a little bit of humour
- Developing your own style
Blogging Rule #8: Have a take-away message or call-to-action
Don’t be afraid to commit to a position on a subject. Your readers are looking to you to share your ideas and knowledge in your field of expertise. They are looking for someone that they can identify as an authority and will follow for the information you share.
If you have shared valuable information then include a call-to-action. Chances are if they have read the whole article then they are looking for the next step, so give it to them.
With so much information readily available, people wont waste their time on crappy, poorly written articles. Choose your topics, become recognised for your authority around your niche and you will build an audience that trusts you to produce valuable content that gives them the information they need.
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