5 Tips To Help Write An Engaging Blog

Just as with any other type of writing, the construction of an effective and engaging blog is a skill. It is amazing how often an interesting and informative subject can become lost, simply by a failure to follow some basic rules.

There are a number of reasons why people choose to write blog content on their website. Engaging with potential customers, providing information and SEO purposes are all common reasons for regularly updating blogs and by following the 5 simple tips below, you will ensure that you have the best possible chance of getting your chosen message across.

Tip No. 1 – Don’t Rush In!

It is always important to think about what you would like to write before you actually start. What is the purpose of your blog? What would you like content-is-king-1132257_640your readers to find out? Would you like your blog to lead to readers taking a particular action?

Having a grasp on these questions before you start writing can help you along your way to creating a great article.

Tip No. 2 – Create An Engaging Structure

Few people are looking to solve a mystery when they start reading a blog or article. Choosing a catchy title and ensuring that your blog has an informative introduction offer key ways of ensuring that readers continue past the first few words of the article.

The addition of relevant images and videos can also play an important role in helping enhance the structure of text.

Tip No. 3 – Use Paragraphs & Punctuation

Whilst this may sound like fairly basic English, it is amazing how many people still believe that it is ok to add huge blocks of text which are not brokenWordpress Logo up into relevant paragraphs and instead expect readers to fight their way through it!

Using paragraphs and punctuation can ensure that your content is far easier on the eye and much easier to read.

Tip No. 4 – Use Informative Headings

The addition of informative headings is essential to help structure the entire page. Headings are important for readability, but if you are using your blog for SEO purposes, they are even more important.

Google uses article headings to help understand the main topics of a long post and therefore the addition of headings will help to improve your chances of achieving a ranking on Google’s search engine for your post.

Tip No. 5 – Choosing The Right Length For Your Article

Whilst it is widely acknowledged that Google likes long articles, not all human readers share their enthusiasm!

Rather than aiming for a huge number of words, the golden number for online articles is a minimum of 300 words.

Please Note – Typically, we try to aim for between 300 and 700 words and include any target keywords between 3 and 6 times.

Further Information

If you’d like to speak to us regarding any of our services, including how we can blog for your business, please give us a call on 01883 372488 or contact us via Facebook and we’ll be happy to talk you through your options.

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By | March 1st, 2016|Blogging|Comments Off on 5 Tips To Help Write An Engaging Blog

3 Tips To Boost The Effectiveness of Your Blog

It is important to ensure that you do not underestimate just how powerful a tool your blog can be. However, despite benefits including:

  • Creating brand awareness
  • Demonstrating industry expertise
  • Engaging your potential customer base
  • Generating leads.
  • + many more

It is a fact that many blogs are not correctly optimised for use and are therefore unlikely to fulfil their potential.cms-265128_1920

The good news though is that implementing just a few ideas can make all the difference in regards to usability and below we have highlighted 3 tips to help you along the way.

No. 1 – The Correct Use of Categories

Categories are a key component of any blog. Along with ensuring identifying and accessing archived content becoming much easier, the use of categories for your content also helps to classify and silo your content into topically themed pages.

Please Note – It is important to ensure that you limit the number of categories your blog utilises. It can be all too easy to misuse categories, with a common mistake being the creation of a new category for each post that is added. For any small to medium sized blogs, somewhere from 10 to 15 categories are likely to be all that is needed.

No. 2 – Take Steps To Vary Titles and Tags

The vast majority of bloggers are well versed in the importance of targeting relevant keywords in their efforts to get their blog noticed. Whilst The Top 5 Online Marketing Mythsincluding keywords and keyword variations in your copy is good practice, don’t stop there! Varying the title of the blog post and the title tag element is another crucial step in helping to enhance the effectiveness of your blog.

Failure to do this will not negatively impact SEO but by taking the steps needed to vary your article title and title tag and working in alternative keywords, your content will be able to work even harder for you.

Top Tip – The more keyword variations in your content, the more opportunities your content has to rank in more searches.

There are a number of SEO plugins that allow you to vary post title and title tag, but our personal favourite is the free – WordPress SEO Plugin

No. 3 – Add Sharing Buttons

The additional of social sharing buttons is a proven prompt for people to share content resulting in the improved distribution of your content via social channels. This can also help to expose your content to new audiences.

From an effectiveness perspective, the more people that share your content, the greater the chances of getting mentions and all important back links. Also sharing helps your content get discovered faster; and the quicker it’s found, the sooner it shows up in the index.

Shareaholic is our favourite social sharing plugin for WordPress and can be easily installed.

For some additional tips relating to blogging, please check out the following video from the great team over at MOZ or contact the web design Surrey team at Footprint Web Design.

By | January 4th, 2016|Blogging|Comments Off on 3 Tips To Boost The Effectiveness of Your Blog

Help Getting Your Blog Noticed

So you’re posting regularly, but how do you go about getting your blog noticed?

Writing a blog that doesn’t get high traffic numbers can be stressful and feel like a waste of time. But fear not! Here are a few pointers that will help you up the numbers of people coming across your blog.

Getting Your Blog Noticed

Getting your blog noticed might seem difficult at first…

Before we go any further, however, it’s important to note that, although there are a plethora of slightly unscrupulous things you can do to increase your numbers, the real longevity of your blog will come from quality content and endorsements from real people.

So here’s a few tips to get you on your way to getting your blog noticed:

1: Learn from the best
Whose blog do you admire? Where are the success stories in your industry? Research is crucial for quality content, but it’s also useful for seeing what works in the blogosphere.

There are thousands and thousands of professional, successful bloggers out there; who are happy to impart their knowledge. Some even offering free webinars. Find one or two whose style you like and learn everything you can from them. When to they publish? What sort of language do they use? How do they structure their blogs? How do they use headlines and images to grab attention?

Remember – imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but plagiarism will get you nowhere!

2: Get opinions
There are any number of local, national and international blogging groups out there. Getting involved with people whose opinions and styles you respect will mean you have a go-to group for advice. There’ll always be some people who’ll read into your words in a different way than you intended them. By asking people to critique your style and content you’ll ensure your writing appeals to as wide a range of people as possible.

3: Practice makes perfect
It’s important to stay on top of topics and trends in blogging, in order that your own content remains fresh and relevant. You should be reading new content all the time. Set up daily Google alerts to related subjects and writers whose content and style you admire. Our own writing becomes better by reading.

Above all, you should be writing every day. Very few people are born talented writers; like anything, it takes practice to be good at it. Any opportunities you get can be used to practice writing. A 1/2 hour here and there can be used to plan structures, wording, headlines, vocab – all things that will expand your knowledge and build your writing muscles.

4: Consistency is key
Regular posting is important. As mentioned in last week’s blog, posting less frequently that once a week just isn’t going to cut it. A few times a week is great, but, remember, if you’re just posting content for the sake of it you will lose readers.

Inviting guest-blogging opportunities is a great way to get new content and readers and also can be used to improve those all important backlinks.

5: Write in a way your readers will identify with

Blogs work so much better when the language used is more informal. We’re not talking textspeak or poor grammar, but written in a style that is much more conversational. Save the business or corporate language for your website.

Readers aren’t interested in where you position a semi-colon, whether you’ve split an infinitive, or that fact you’ve legitimately managed to shoehorn the word “antidisestablishmentarianism”  into your content. They’re only interested in that which is useful and appeals to them.

6: Be honest
As above, readers don’t respond to churned out sales pitches and rehashed content. They respond to reality and contact.

People want to be treated as if they matter. If your blog is honest, people will interact with it; if they do, respond to them. These readers are your potential clients, if you make them feel like their opinions are important, you’ll invoke loyalty in them.

7: Guest Posting – it really works

Getting yourself guest posting slots on other blogs will really ramp up the traffic to your own. However, it’s important that it is done right. Building strong relationships and networks with other blogs will ensure you have a steady stream of visitors to your blog.

There are a huge number of guides to guest posting out there. As above, pick the one that fits with your style and learn everything you can.

Further Information

Footprint Web Design have been at the forefront of SEO for a long time, and really understand what it takes to keep your website at the top of the search engine rankings.

Our team are experienced content and blog writers, and are committed to conveying the true voice of a business. If you are struggling to make your blog relevant and effective, then call us on 01883 372 488 and see how we can help you get your voice out there.

By | September 1st, 2015|Blogging|Comments Off on Help Getting Your Blog Noticed

Blogging for Businesses

A blog is without doubt, one of the most powerful tools you can have in your on-line marketing arsenal. An effective offers the ability to increase website traffic, engage your customers, promote your brand and hopefully convert site visitors into paying customers.

Hugely search engine friendly (Google absolutely love blogs!), they are now one of the primary factors in a successful SEO campaign.

Choose Your Topics Carefully

Blogging offers a highly effective method of communicating with your customers. When utilised correctly, blogs are a great source of unique content on topical issues. An Blogging For Businessesoften made mistake though is using your blog to write endless posts telling the world how great you company and its services/products are. Generally (and not surprisingly!) people have no interest in reading this type of content. People strive for something specific, something relevant, so taking the time to identify the burning current issues can pay huge dividends.

Enabling Comments

User comments, whether they or good or bad, are an excellent way of opening up lines of communication with your customers. It’s always recommended to incorporate a ‘Blog Policy’, which will allow you to outline the rules regarding comments to ensure that nothing abusive or personal will be tolerated.

This is not to say that everything needs to be positive and as such it is very important that the blogger responds to any negative comments which may be left. Other readers of your blog will read any comments which are left and will always be interested to see what sort of response negative comments receive. By taking the time to address the issue and highlighting how the problem can be resolved, you are likely to create a much better impression that be ignoring it.

When you receive comments, always try to respond. Should a reader put their name on the comment, thank the reader with that name. This builds up your engagement and shows you are interested in customer feedback no matter how good or bad it is. It is small things like this that will draw the reader back to your blog.

There is no holy grail which will transform your blog into a tool that is guaranteed to drive traffic to your website but by making it useful, writing it regularly, and writing about topics that your audience will want to read about, you will be well on your way to taking your website and your business to another level.

Further Information

If you’d like to speak to us regarding any of our services, give us a call on 01883 372488 or contact us via Facebook and we’ll be happy to talk you through your options.

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By | April 29th, 2013|Blogging|0 Comments