Blogs are one of the easiest ways to publish information online – they’re fast, can be updated frequently, and are easy for others to track. The word blog is a contraction of the term weblog – it is an online commentary, a description of events, or in some cases, a diary. It’s a way to let people know what’s happening in your business world. Most blogs contain text, photos, and sometimes even video. Here are five ways a blog can help your small business:
* Boost your search engine ranking. Search engine “spiders”, like the one Google uses to “crawl” web pages in search of information, are looking for content on sites that gets updated frequently. The very nature of a blog makes it an ideal tool to catch Google’s attention and get them returning to check your page out again and again.
* Expand your customer base. People who read your blog will use the links you include in your blog to visit your site and can thereby take advantage of the services or products you provide. If people find your blog interesting, they’ll read it continually and when they develop a need for your service, they’ll remember you…but only if you provide good content.
* Keep people informed. Your clients want to know what’s new with you and your blog is the place to let them know. It’s a great way to give people a heads up on new policies, introduce them to new employees, and let them know about both significant and routine changes within your company. And if you constantly keep them updated, Google sees this and it increases your search ranking and your site traffic.
* Announce special promotions and new product developments. People who subscribe to your blog are interested in what you have to say. They want to know when you’re running special deals or offering new products and services. A blog is a great place to make them aware of these things and even to hold contests or special events.
* Establish your credibility. Once people learn that you have something interesting and valuable to say, they’ll return to your site to get the latest information from or about you. By establishing yourself as a trusted voice – a voice which provides content that is relevant to your audience – you’ll engage their attention and draw traffic and leads through your blog and ultimately through your website.
In a successful blog you’ll have the opportunity to motivate people to buy from you, communicate to them what makes your business stand out from others like yours, demonstrate how your product or service works, and educate your customers and even employees on new technologies or practices in your industry.
However, you do want to be careful that you don’t seem interested only in promoting yourself. People will lose attention fast if you toot your own horn too often. So what’s the solution? Learn how to give readers what they want.