Blogging offers businesses opportunities to communicate with customers, potential customers, and employers through short articles and the blog comments section.
Used properly, a blog can increase your website traffic while fostering a sense of community with your target audience.
Consider, for a moment, a motorcycle lawyer. Motorcycle-related law is a highly-specialized legal area capable of providing plenty of content for a website. Updating a website, however, takes time that this lawyer simply doesn’t have. She has plenty of information for possible clients, but little time.
The solution is a blog that links to her website. Unlike a website, which may require a webmaster to update, a new blog entry is as easy as writing a few paragraphs, spell-checking the content, and hitting the submit button on one of the many free blog-writing sites.
The content doesn’t need to be perfect –no-one’s expecting the blogger to be Hemingway—but should be easy to read and contain interesting information.
Add a few links back to her site, and the lawyer has a new way to generate web traffic.
A business blog helps you gauge the needs and attitudes of your clients, if you allow people to comment on the blog entries. As people add comments, respond with a few of your own. Ideally, a core group of commenters develops that keep the conversation going, adding more information and resources to your blog.
Enabling comments can have a downside: one disgruntled customer or Internet troll can plaster accusations, insults, and bad reviews all over the comments’ section. If members of the comments’ community defend you, that’s not such a bad issue. In a worst case scenario, you may need to delete comments.
You can further extend your blog’s reach by writing guest blogs for other websites. For instance, our motorcycle lawyer might write a guest blog for an accident attorney’s site, with links back to her own site, and the accident attorney might return the favor.
The result is an increase in your blog’s search engine ranking.
Blogs and Small Businesses
Blogs are a cost-effective way to increase web traffic for small businesses, but do have some limitations. If you’re using a blog as a substitute for a website you’ll find your e-commerce options limited. You still need a website if you want an online store.
On the other hand, if your primary goals are brand building and providing possible clients with information, a blog is one of your most effective tools.
Updating the blog once or twice a week will encourage return visitors without eating up much of your time. Feed your blog a few pages of content a month and you’ll be rewarded with increased traffic. With this strategy, now based on our example, the motorcycle lawyer and their possible clients can benefit, without actually selling a service.
About the Author
Post by guest blogger Mary, a writer who enjoys blogging about business and motorcycle lawyers.