While your website’s design is the first impression for new visitors, the content is what keeps them there. This may be your only opportunity to sell your business or product to that potential customer, which is why you need clear, rich, and engaging content.
One way to improve the content on your site is by adding a blog. Your blog is an opportunity to be a resource center for your audience where they can find answers to their questions and improve their knowledge about a specific topic. If you’re not sure what information should be included on your blog vs. a standalone page on your site, start here.
Many factors go into writing a good blog post, including what topic to write about, search engine optimization, imagery, etc. Read on to learn about the most critical elements that every blog post should include.
1. Choose a Topic Relevant to Your Audience
It’s up to you what you decide to blog about, but we recommend choosing topics relevant and helpful to your target audience. When choosing a blog post topic, you might consider the following things:
- Is this a question that your audience asks frequently? Frequently asked questions often make great blog post topics.
- Is this a topic or keyword search for by many different people? We recommend using semrush.com to evaluate whether or not your idea would be a good topic.
- If you’re still unsure what to write about, check out this topic generator.
2. Length vs. Compelling Content
We often get asked, “how long should a blog post be?” Although there is no magic number that will automatically get you to the first page of Google, there are some guidelines to consider when thinking about length:
- All blog posts should be at a minimum of 500 words, but we recommend 750+.
- The content on the page should match the title of the post. If Google can’t identify your post, you won’t rank well for the particular topic you’re writing about.
- The content should be interesting! After all, the goal is to use content to convert your customers. If they like one blog post, they should be reading more. Add call-to-actions throughout your post, prompting them to other posts you’ve written.
- The most important thing to consider when writing your post and wondering when to stop typing is whether the post is helpful and beneficial to the reader. Don’t worry too much about length, instead, worry about how useful and informative your content is.
3. Optimizing a Blog Post for SEO
When writing your blog post, the rule of thumb is to write for the reader first and optimize for the search engine last. User experience is always the most important piece because the content is made for a human! However, you have a lot of opportunities to optimize for SEO with your blog posts. Once your blog post is drafted, be sure to update these things:
- Title: Your title is typically the first thing a potential visitor will see when performing a search. Keep reading for tips on optimizing your title.
- Meta Description: The meta description is a snippet of up to about 155 characters (this length is frequently changing), summarizing the page’s content.
- Alt-Text: Alternative text or alt text is used within HTML code to describe the appearance and function of an image on a page.
- Slug: A slug is the part of a URL which identifies a particular page on a website in an easy to read form.
- Content: Make sure your keyword is appearing multiple times throughout the content. You don’t want to overdo it (that’s called keyword stuffing), but it should be apparent to Google what your topic is about.
4. An Engaging Title
Once your blog post is final, choose a title that sums up the entirety of the content. You may have a working title used throughout the blog post drafting process, but before you finalize your post, you will need to optimize your title. A title should be engaging and urges your audience to click to read more. Keep it short and sweet with your primary keywords and no more than 70 characters. Here are some examples of transforming a working title into a final title:
- Blog post features
- Cooking grilled cheese
- Tools for marketing
- 5 Features All Blog Posts Should Have
- How to Make A Grilled Cheese Sandwich
- 11 Marketing Tools You Should Be Using
Imagery is an essential part of any blog post and should include at least one image per 150 words of content. Pictures are a great way to show readers exactly what you’re trying to convey. Incorporating screenshots and high-quality photos will enhance the user experience and drive your point home. If you’re not sure where to get started when it comes to images, we recommend a free stock photo library like Unsplash. When using stock photography in your blog posts, you want to make sure that you’re using legal images and stock photography banks are an excellent way to do that.
6. Add a Call-to-Action
You’ve created compelling content. Now what? You must provide the reader with the next step, a call to action. The goal is to entice visitors to dig deeper into your website and move them further along in your sales funnel. CTA’s should be visually compelling and standout amongst the rest of the content.
Check out these best practices on implementing a CTA on your website.
If you want to include blogging as part of your digital marketing strategy but don’t want to do it yourself, we’ve got you covered. We offer full service when it comes to your content needs. Get in touch today for a free consultation with Kevin Brown Design.