“Is blogging still relevant today?”
It’s no surprise people think blogs are no longer relevant due to the growing popularity of different forms of content. According to this marketing report, people prefer video content and podcasts because they’re much easier to digest.
Will this be the year blogging finally dies? That’s why you’re probably here — you’re thinking about starting a blog business, but are afraid to invest in something you’re unsure about. Whether you’re blogging to make money, as a hobby, or to promote your business, you’ve made the right choice to start a blog.
Strategic marketers quickly caught on to the profit-yielding promise blogging held for companies.
Blogging proved to be a powerful way to appear in search engines and in front of an audience that’s already interested in a particular niche. Not only that, it was an effective way to share expert opinions and allow companies to showcase their expertise.
Today, nothing’s changed. Blogs still hold the same purpose. However, are blogs still a thing? Are they still an avenue worth pursuing?
Absolutely – and here are a few reasons why they are, indeed, still a “thing.”
If you own a business, running a blog alongside it will multiply your profit margins because blogs “sit” directly on your website. This means that it’s a permanent fixture people will always see any time they visit your website.
Blogs aren’t like social media, where you have to create exciting daily content for each platform (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, etc.) to entice your community to visit your website.
If you do a decent job of keeping your blog optimized, compelling, and updated, people will access it directly. This increases the chances people will buy something from your site and the amount of time people stay there (an important metric for enticing advertisers).
Well-written blog posts dive deep into specific topics, more than any Facebook or Twitter post ever could. A good blogger is able to flesh out and discuss these topics at the highest level.
For new bloggers, one of the first questions that undoubtedly comes to mind is: “How long should a blog post be?”
Honestly, there’s no “correct” answer to this question because there are many factors that go into determining the ideal length of a blog post, including the topic, its depth, and the post’s format (to name a few).
In 2019, the average blog post was 1236 words long, a number that rose in 2020. The majority of bloggers who write 3000+ word articles report stronger results and tend to find more success in generating traffic.
In fact, most content marketers have been investing more time and effort into producing longer blog posts than ever before.
Businesses of all kinds establish blogs as a way to attract long-term audiences and that’s because bogging is STILL an effective marketing tool.
Once your website is generating traffic through your blog posts, you have an opportunity to convert that traffic into leads. In fact, businesses with blogs experience 126% higher lead growth than non-blogging businesses.
Each blog post is an opportunity to generate new leads, and one of the best ways to generate leads is by adding a lead-generating call-to-action in every blog post.
These calls-to-action often offer access to content someone would be willing to exchange their information for, such as free ebooks, free webinars, or free trials.
If you’re unfamiliar with how traffic-to-lead conversions work, it’s quite simple:
This is how you turn traffic coming to your blog into leads. However, not all traffic is created equal and not every reader on your blog will become a lead.
It’s impossible to convert 100% of traffic into leads, so focus on pumping out high-quality blog posts, including calls-to-action on every blog post, setting a visitor-to-lead conversion rate benchmark to track progress, and striving to improve that benchmark each month.
There were over 600 million active blogs in 2020. This number may seem a little overwhelming, but despite the sheer amount of competition, blogging continues to be a fair playing field.
While Google has been a staple in our society when it comes to seeking information, the search engine isn’t the entity actually producing the information available on it’s platform. Google is simply the medium for getting people the information they’re searching for — and you could be the one providing that knowledge.
Google favors bloggers who are experts in a specific niche and share valuable information on their website. That means any blogger with high-quality posts has the potential to become an expert in Google’s eyes.
If your article is well-written and researched in a way that follows Google’s standards, then Google rewards the blog post by moving it to a higher position in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages).
The first five organic results on the first page of Google’s SERPs accounts for 68% of all clicks. This statistic is why your number one priority should be to reach the top of the SERPs (which can be achieved by writing high-quality content).
“I tried to blog before, but it didn’t work.”
This is one of the most common phrases I hear from people who are new to the industry. After pushing a little bit to learn why, I’ve learned the common reasons why their efforts “didn’t work.”
I share them here with you, the aspiring blogger, so that you know what to avoid as you pursue your own blogging dreams.
If you’re new to the blogging world, you’ve probably considered getting started on a free platform like Blogger, Wix, or SquareSpace. Now, don’t get me wrong – these platforms have evolved over the years and have become much better than what they were 5 years ago.
However, these free platforms often require website owners to pay additional charges to experience the full potential of their websites.
There are a few major disadvantages to starting a blog on a free platform:
The fact of the matter is that free platforms are not suitable for online businesses, especially if your goal is to grow your blog beyond a way to make a little side cash.
Just like any other business, a blog business is going to require start-up capital – and it doesn’t have to be a lot.
Starting a blog the right way means creating a blog with the self-hosted WordPress. Self-hosted means that you have to secure your own hosting and domain name. All of this can be done for just $60 a year.
This is the path most successful bloggers take. Want to join them? Here’s how: 13 Practical Blogging Tips For Beginners
One of the common mistakes beginners make is believing a “high-quality post” is made up of creative storytelling, precise grammar, and information-based content. While these factors are great to keep the audience engaged, trying to rank for Google is a completely different game.
Take Richard and Patrick (completely fictional people for the sake of this example).
Richard has just started blogging in a niche that’s far from perfect, but pretty decent. His content isn’t the best, but it’s at least above average. While Richard doesn’t have a social media presence, he diligently practices keyword research and executes on-page SEO perfectly.
Then there’s Patrick, a fellow new blogger who started in an incredible niche. He’s a proficient writer who produces high-quality content. While he leverages social media to promote his blog, he doesn’t practice keyword research nor plan his content strategically.
So who’s going to find more success: Richard or Patrick?
You may be inclined to say Patrick will definitely find more success. Afterall, he’s an incredible writer! However, like I said before, trying to land on the first page of Google’s search results is an entirely different ball game.
There are specific “rules” you need to follow, and that’s why Richard will find more success trying to rank for Google despite selecting an “okay” niche and writing decent content.
Completely ignoring keyword research equals inefficient SEO. Search engines can’t find your content if it’s not optimized with SEO in mind, resulting in less traffic (and less traffic equals less money).
There is a lot to consider regarding SEO as a beginner blogger, so if you’re interested in exploring this topic further, check out this article to learn more Basic SEO Tips For Beginners.
Just like any other businesses, you must have a strategy or game plan to execute to ensure success. In blogging, you don’t just write about whatever you feel like for the day. Your content needs to be targeted.
That’s why it’s important to select a niche. Not all niches are created equal, though. The perfect niche is the right balance of something that’s not too broad, nor too narrow.
In other words, your niche should be broad enough to continue writing about for months, if not years, and at the same time narrow enough that you can still write about specific, in-depth topics during that time.
Your audience should have pain points you offer solutions to. This is how bloggers earn money.
“But wait – I don’t want MY blog to be all about money! What about my PASSIONS?”
I hate to break it to you, but unless your passion includes a buying audience, it’ll be extremely difficult to monetize a blog built on passion. This article further details how to pick your perfect niche.
When it comes to the articles itself, you’ll need a carefully laid out strategy to guarantee ranking in Google’s SERPs, and keyword research is vital to that plan. Keyword research is the process of selecting topics to write about based on the search volume of words or phrases most related to your niche. Keyword research can be done in 6 simple steps outlined in this article.
Bloggers should continue publishing posts even when a steady stream of traffic is nonexistent. It may seem demoralizing, but that’s what needs to happen.
The fact is, gaining traffic takes time.
If you’re feeling inspired to start cranking out blog posts again, remember to update the blog regularly so that people who check back are rewarded for their efforts. As a beginner, new content should be published 2-3 times a week.
Pay attention to what’s happening in the comments section and make sure you jump into the conversation — it’s a good opportunity to engage one-on-one with your community about the things they care about.
Absolutely, blogging is still relevant! Paired with the right strategies and work ethic, starting a blog might just be the best decision you ever make.
Blogging is, and will continue to be, “a thing.”
Blogging has evolved from its plain-text based former self into something much more creative. It remains one of the best marketing tools out there and is among the most shared content online.
Blogs have been rated as the 5th most trusted source for accurate online information. This means most people consider blogs to be credible sources of information, and we can thank Google for that.
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