We love blogging for business. Having a blog lets you show off your expertise, find out what problems your customers have (and offer solutions), and help your main business page rank better on the search engines. But that doesn’t mean everyone should rush out and start blogging. Some people just aren’t cut out for it.
1. You’re going to write five posts today and then not update your site again for 18 months. An abandoned blog is worse than no blog at all when it comes to credibility and authority within your niche. That said, we all have spurts of productivity along with periods of, well, laziness. Harness the productive times and bank your ideas for later. I use Evernote, but you could also use Google Docs, or the Editorial Calendar plugin within WordPress to draft and save your posts for later.
2. You’re going to turn over your site design to your nephew/son/friend who “knows about the ‘net.” SEO might be all about the content, but a shoddy-looking page with bad graphics will drive away any traffic Google sends you – no matter how pretty the words are. If you don’t want to have a professional customize your WordPress site for you, then at least pick a clean, light-colored theme from the thousands available. There is absolutely no excuse for an ugly blog.
3. You’re going to post stream of consciousness articles with no point, no call to action, and no keywords. Blogging without an objective is like going on a trip without a destination in mine. You won’t have a clue where you’re going, and you won’t know when you get there – if you manage to arrive at all. Instead, start with keyword research and a blogging goal, and plan your content accordingly. Yes, that takes a bit of time, but in the end the results will speak for themselves.
4. You’re too cheap to spend $10 to register your own domain. Blogspot and WordPress.com might be a great way to swap stories with your family, but a URL of mybusiness.blogspot.com is not at all business like. The same can be said for @aol and @hotmail email addresses, by the way. If you want to be in business, then you need to make a good impression.
When it comes to getting noticed on the Internet, a business blog is a great first step, but not one to be taken lightly. Put some thought into your goals for your blog, spend time doing keyword research so you can better understand what your customers are looking for, and develop an editorial calendar you can stick to for at least the next three months. Anything less than that and you won’t know if your blog strategy is working or not.