The Hands-Down Best Way To Get Found Online And Build Loyal Customers (here’s why)
“Search engines love blogs, and frequent blog posts are an amazingly effective way to optimize your Web site’s search engine rankings”
- Robert W. Bly 'America’s top copywriter'
Update: How did you feel when Facebook crashed recently? That nasty sense that maybe all your hard work just went poof! -need your own checking at The Bank Of The Internet (backed by the full faith and credit of the World Wide Web).
A bit of housekeeping: Because if we are going to work together, I want our relationship to be rewarding and harmonious.
So let’s make sure we’ve got our expectations in order, because you deserve to know if a business blog is an investment worth making.
What blogging is not:
- A silver bullet that will fix bad business practices. Word just travels too fast online to outrun poor service.
- but if you already make happy customers. This will make plenty more.
- A quick traffic tactic. Google will reward your content posting efforts but it has to trust you first.
- solution: Time, patience, and content that makes the Internet a better place creates a “downhill snowball” of traffic.
- A “one and done” sort of thing. Think of business blogging (and content marketing) like investing in a blue chip with an ace up its sleeve.
- huh? Blogging is all about the long game. However, any one of those posts can go viral. Can be shared by someone with a massive audience. Can put your local business on the map.
Each month, approximately 409 million people view more than 20 billion pages (77% of internet users)
Blogs are a main research option when it comes to shopping for products or services.
- 61% of online users in the US have bought something after reading a blog
- 81% of U.S. online consumers trust information and advice from blogs
- 90% of consumers find custom content useful
Also, quality blogs build trust and loyalty with consumers.
- 78% believe that companies behind content are interested in building good relationships
- 70% of people would rather learn about a company through articles rather than advertisements
Look at those numbers! Forget advertising, people don’t trust it anyway! Get a blog.
Want better customer relationships? Get a blog!
Now, remember when I said that adding a blog to your website isn’t a one and done sort of thing? Here’s a stat: Of the customers who bought after going on a company’s blog, half of them go through 3-5 articles before making a purchase.
Now for the million-dollar question: Is it worth it?
Yes and here’s why. Companies with active blogs see an average of 126% higher lead growth over non-blogging businesses.
And that’s just being average.
While adding a blog to your existing website can increase traffic by as much as 434%.Quality content can increase blog traffic by 2,000%.
How on earth is this so? A few reasons.
People share impactful things. This is where content marketing comes in. A blog article gets sent to influencers, they share it. It gets repurposed to social media, they share it. Ditto for those on your email list.
On the search engine side of things, the people at Google make the rules for organic traffic. They believe in content quality, therefore, good articles get more traffic. Additionally, more content on your website means ranking for more keywords relevant to your business. This means more organic traffic and leads.
OK, but what Is quality content?
Plain and simple, these are pieces of content worth your time. They have a purpose, mainly to inform and educate. It helps a whole lot if they are entertaining and look nice as well.
However, entertainment IS NOT the end-all goal. These aren't pictures of cats (old internet joke, haha) of your personal opinion on something outside your realm of business. We want your customers to like you, yes, but that won’t translate to sales and return customers without trust and respect.
The secret here is relevance. Topics and keywords, reflecting customer wants and needs, written in their language.
For example: If you are a dentist, I am going to find you online one of two ways.
#1: I google something like dentist in my area. You pop right up in my search results because your website is optimized and Google views you as an authority (lots of informative posts, relevant keywords, and intelligent content marketing).
#2: I have a dentistry question and I ask the internet.
Maybe I’m wondering are fillings really that toxic?
Or should I tell my dentist what medications I’m taking?
Maybe my child is ready for her first exam and I want it to be a great experience so I google what makes a great child dentist?
I *probably* won’t be googling which dentist likes cats most?
The key point here is that guesswork on customer needs won’t do. Researching will. It’s the surest and most efficient way to make sure your content is relevant. About them, not you. Because we read content for ourselves and the people that matter to us.
Also, blog posts with high emotional value have a 1000x greater chance of being shared.
Variety is important. Think how you “do the internet.” Some articles here, some videos there, maybe an infographic, lots of social media.
Longer (though I see this changing soon). According to Bluehost “If you want your blog posts to appear in every Google search to boost organic traffic from your target audience, a word count of between 1,450 and 2,000 words is a good jumping-off point.”
I also hear a lot of people complain how they are not interested in reading 3-pages of culinary history and the life experiences of the writer. They just need to know if their chocolate chip cookies take one or two eggs.
Google is getting this too. User intent (reason for searching) absolutely seems like the new name of the game. And because we all know our internet attention spans are shrinking (they have to. There’s too much info out there, our heads will explode if we don’t), to me it seems like a no-brainer. Either way though, that’s the point of variety.
Blogs work if you work them.