Does business blogging provide any short-term benefits to increasing valuable traffic to your website? The marketing team at Avelient thinks so!
Blogging has been around since the late 90s but has only recently been leveraged by businesses and organizations to connect with their prospects, develop strong reputations online, and position themselves as authorities in their respective industries. However, even though blogs have been proven effective for marketing, many business owners with limited resources need more to convince them that they need to start blogging beyond “good feelings.”
After all, building a strong following with a business blog takes a considerable amount of time and dedication. Are there any short-term benefits of business blogging?
Thanks to years of experience blogging for our own clients and monitoring the results with tools like Google Analytics, we're happy to report that business blogging, when done right, does provide short-term benefits.
The truth is blogging not only builds your business up in the eyes of prospects; it also makes your website more attractive to the search engines. By adding new content to your website on a regular basis, you're increasing your chances of prospects finding you through organic search. Here's why---
Your Website has an expiration date.
On November 3, 2011, Google announced a new update to their search algorithms that would affect about 35% of searches.
They used this analogy to explain the update on their official blog: “Search results, like warm cookies right out of the oven or cool refreshing fruit on a hot summer’s day, are best when they’re fresh.” In other words, a Website’s “freshness” will now (officially) factor into how Google displays search results.
Basically, newer content will tend to rank better than older content. But it’s not that simple. There are a number of additional factors that will influence a Webpage’s freshness score.
According to SEO and Web Specialist Cyrus Shepard, the date of inception is not the sole freshness-ranking factor. Based on his analysis of Google’s freshness patent, some of the other ranking factors will include:
- The frequency of new page creation—this factor reinforces the theory that a dynamic Website will consistently rank better than a static Website.
- An increase in the rate of new link growth—compelling, relevant content should attract more inbound links than outdated content.
- Outstanding user behavior metrics—the more time users interact with your content, the “fresher” it is in Google’s eyes.
What it comes down to is this: Google's ultimate goal is to lead searchers to relevant information based on their search queries. Connecting searchers with businesses is not Google's main priority when it comes to organic search; it's connecting searchers with useful information.
That’s why content marketing is such an effective online marketing strategy. You provide free, authoritative information first, build a relationship with the prospect through interaction, and then make the sale. The prospect approaches you first, not the other way around.
All in all, in Google's eyes, a static Website provides less value to searchers than a dynamic Website. By consistently publishing well-researched articles on your blog, you're showing Google that your website is not that shriveled carrot in the back of the fridge; your's is the carrot pulled straight from the garden.
More content = more opportunities.
Still not convinced you should start a business blog right now? Okay, let's get a little more technical (emphasis on little).
One of the longstanding strategies for search engine optimization has to do with something called long tail keywords.
Long tail keywords are basically keyword phrases made up of three or more words that are meant to target specific search queries. These keywords are highly specific and, therefore, draw less traffic. What makes them valuable is that the traffic that they do draw tends to be of higher value because of the specificity of the query.
Unfortunately, unless you’re an experienced keyword researcher, identifying long tail keywords that prospects are actually using is a challenge. And even if you’re able to identify some valuable long tail keywords, working them into your existing content without sounding spammy is even harder.
We would argue that blogging provides a solution to this dilemma, especially if you don’t have the knowhow to conduct your own keyword research.
Let’s say you own an insurance agency, and you’re trying to sell more travel insurance in your area. To promote the product, you would most likely have a page on your Website that specifically talks about travel insurance and why the prospect should never travel internationally without it. The problem is one page of content is very limiting. You can’t go after multiple long tail keyword combinations on a single page of content without sounding spammy and sending prospects out the door.
That’s where blogging comes in to play. By writing several blog posts around the topic of travel insurance, long tail keywords emerge naturally in your writing. The simple act of saying things differently can increase the amount of potential search queries that could bring traffic to your website.
A success story.
Of course, if you do know how to identify long tail keyword combinations and integrate them into your posts naturally, you should. You'll notice an improvement in search traffic much sooner.
We have a client that provides IT support services to clients in Central Jersey and Manhattan whose search engine traffic has nearly doubled in the last three months. We achieved this goal by providing three unique, customer-centric blog posts per month for their Website and handling their search engine marketing efforts. Now they're getting traffic for a much broader range of industry-specific search queries, and they're keeping their Website fresh.
The takeaway here is this: by adding content to your Website on a regular basis, your prospects will have more opportunities to find you in search. Unless you really know what you're doing, though, don't get too hung up on long tail keywords. You're not trying to "cheat" the search engines, you're trying to target words that naturally fit when describing your business.
Get found with business blogging---today and tomorrow.
More and more, Google is decreasing the relevancy of keyword optimization and focusing more on the quality and freshness of content to rank Websites in search. Don’t get us wrong---keyword optimization still matters. But the relevancy of exact long tail keyword matches will probably decrease overtime.
So by focusing on the quality and relevancy of your blog posts, and letting keyword phrases emerge naturally in your writing, you’ll stay one step ahead of the game, while still reaping the short-term benefits of business blogging. Bonus!
Ready to start increasing traffic to your Website with business blogging? We'd be happy to help. Contact us today.