There’s a lot of pressure on small businesses to compete and there’s no shortage of advice out there on which tactics can actually help you grow your business.
Many say that you need to add a blog to your website but few are explaining why. Statistics vary, but what all studies agree on is that the majority of adults in the U.S. do a substantial amount of research online before deciding what to buy and where to buy it. And that includes deciding who to hire for various services.
Here are the 6 most important ways your blog drives business:
- Perform Well in Search Results
The more relevant information you include on your website about the goods and services you provide, and where, the better. The search engines favor sites with lots of fresh, original content that is closely related to what your company does. The more the search engines love you, the better you rank and the more traffic your site gets. The more traffic you get, the more opportunity you have to turn that traffic into business: lead generation.
- Establish Your Authority
Blogging gives you a platform to show off your expertise. Even if people just skim through your blog, you make a big impression if you’ve got a nice collection of informative, helpful (non-advertisey) posts on there. Your posts need to be current so it’s clear that you didn’t just write some stuff in 2010 and you’ve forgotten about it since. That will also leave a big impression. The wrong one.
- Build Trust with Consumers
For those researchers who actually find an answer on your website, you’ve begun to establish trust. Now you have credibility. They’re more likely to contact you for help.
- Provide Substance to Your Social Presence
The online world is finding businesses through search and the social web. Your blog is the perfect “hook” to promote your business without looking like you’re promoting your business. When you add the ability for readers to share your blog posts on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and more, you’re engaging others to do your marketing for you. And in an age where recommendations from friends mean so much online, your blog can get you those links and recommendations that turn into visits which turn into leads.
- Add Quality to Your Paid Advertising Campaigns
If you’re advertising online, you know that the search engines “grade” your website for quality. One of the biggest quality factors is the content on your site. The more relevant content you have, and the fresher it is, the higher your quality score. The higher your quality score, the cheaper your cost-per-click and the more prominent your ad will be. Win-win.
- Help with Reputation Management
People are going to talk about your business online and you can’t control the conversation. There are ways to join the conversation and ways to inject positive information about your business online to help counteract anything negative that may be out there. If you’ve got a substantive blog, not only will it help your website rank well for your business, but it can also help counter a negative impression that a researcher may find about you. And any time you can improve your reputation online, you may save or attract a new customer relationship.