Why do we need to write blogs?
The first question is – why do we need to write a blog? Why should we spend our valuable time writing about ‘stuff’ for others to read? And what’s more, once we’ve put the time and effort into writing a brilliant blog, it also needs to meet SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) requirements to even be seen. How do we write a brilliant blog with good SEO?
Here is a quick infographic of 6 reasons why we should write blogs for people to read:
How do I write a blog that people actually want to read?
Now that we know the WHY, the next step is HOW. How do you write a brilliant blog? Could we make our blog writings compelling, inspiring or even go viral?
There are many ways to drive traffic to a website, but creating content that your audience likes, builds trusts in and connects with is one of the best. You can convert your audience into customers by writing a blog – if they weren’t buying from you already. However, only 1-2% of your website-viewing audience will actually purchase from you – so what does this say about how many people you have to connect with?! Your blog needs to connect with your audience and meet your business purpose. It can then help drive sales and inform your audience – it doesn’t need to be a full essay!
However, it’s not always that easy. People don’t read one great bit of content, love you and buy from you immediately. You need to keep producing brilliant blogs so that they are consistently fed information about your business and brand, which will build trust.
A brilliant blog is not that easy to write. It’s easy to churn out basic information, but to get your blog noticed by your customers and potential buyers, you need to be a little more unique. Try and hone down on a niche within your business, answer a common question that your audience have, or put across your brand values and USP (Unique Selling Point).
We’ve put together a list of questions which might help you start. Planning is vital!
When planning your blog, think about:
- The purpose of your blog. Is it personal, is it to talk about your brand values, do you want to drive traffic to your website? This dictates the topic, the links you put in and your blog’s style. It also helps you to plan the tone and voice of your blog, and how formal or informal it is going to be.
- Tone / voice. Here at Pedddle, we generally work with small businesses. With this in mind, we suggest keeping your blog quite informal and chatty. A chatty tone is more inviting, welcoming, and feels far less ‘corporate’. People want to get to know you as well as your business! So let them in a little and show the ‘face’ and personality behind the brand.
- The structure of your blog. Are you going to ‘write how you would speak’, give a bullet point list, or split it into a certain number of paragraphs? Think about your word count. A minimum of 500 words is better for SEO, so how can you achieve this? Bullet points can separate the blog into topics and help you to achieve this word count more easily, or you may find it easier to write in a ‘stream of consciousness’ style and write longer chunks of information (ideal if you’re writing a personal blog from your point of view). However, short sentences and short paragraphs enable everyone to access your work as it makes it easy to read. Think about your audience and how they might skim through an article, and what they’d click on.
- Use a selection of heading types and paragraph text. This is again something for SEO purposes, as having a variety of sub-headings, font sizes and a varied structure will help your blog rank higher in search engine results.
- Include a CTA (Call To Action). This means asking your audience to do something – to act on what they see. Whether it’s ‘click this button’, ‘click here to find out more’, you want to ask your audience to do something that will help your business. It can be as much as ‘buy this print/candle etc’, or as simple as ‘read other blogs’ so that they click on other things on your website and it helps guide website traffic. Include a button (if your website allows), or highlight the words and put in the CTA link in. For example, we might add ‘Fancy joining Pedddle? Link to our joining page to find out more about becoming a member‘.
- Keyword density. The key words in your blog title are important for SEO. You need to use these key words frequently throughout your blog, in the text you have written. It can be hard to do this without sounding robotic, but this helps when Google Bots are having a read of your blog. BUT don’t over do it, or it can be detrimental for SEO.
Being specific helps. For example, using the word ‘blog’ as your keyword is vague and will cause lots of competition in search engine results, but if you use an entire phrase, such as ‘how to write a brilliant blog’ and segue that phrase into your blog often, this will help with SEO.
- Links. For good SEO, you will need to include links both within your own website and outside of it.
– Link to your website or shop, your website’s homepage, About page or however many other places you can direct people to within your own website. This helps SEO. Also, if you want it to create more sales you must link to your products and show people where they can buy – make it easy for them to purchase from you with direct links.
– Link to other useful websites or reference points if you can. Linking to an item in your Etsy store is perfect, but we also suggest using links to other ‘High Authority’ websites. For example, link to websites within your industry (such as Mollie Makes, a great crafting website) or informative websites such as The Independent (maybe link to an article that relates to your business or products in some way, such as ones that talk about crafting or small businesses). This will also help your SEO.
- Showing your face / About Me section / personality! Writing who your blog is by, giving snippets of your personal life, linking to your website’s About Me section or even popping on a photograph of yourself can all help build trust in your brand, and give your audience a connection with you. Don’t leave it up to Social Media to give this kind of insight, make sure it’s in your website too! Offer your audience and customers various touch points where they can connect to both you and your brand – this builds trust and helps them feel confidence buying from you.
We’ve saved the biggest until last! The topic of your blog leaves huge room for creativity and building that vital connection with your audience in different ways. Think about:
- Products – you could talk about how you made a product, how sustainable it is, how it can be used or styled in the home, how unique or unusual it is and so on.
- Places you have been. Give an insight into a recent holiday, a much loved destination, a great British daytrip or somewhere you love that may be of interest. Pop a cheeky image or two of you and your product/s in that destination, with a link to that product of yours. If you make on the go you could talk about that, for example if you head to a certain spot to embroider or paint your products, you could use that as an insight into your brand and include links to those products. This also gives you change to link to other websites, Trip Advisor and so on.
- Sustainability. This doesn’t just apply to how sustainable your products are, but how else your business is sustainable. Is your packaging sustainable? Do you re-use or reduce waste where possible?
- Tips & Guides. Care tips, ways to use your products, ‘how to’ guides… useful blogs are BIG news. People look up ‘how to do’, ‘how to care for’ and ‘how to use’ things often, so this is a great way to drive traffic to your blog page. It also gives you lots of opportunity to include lovely product links!