Top blog content tips

There are now more than 66 million 'weblogs' or online diaries published on the internet, with an additional 175,000 estimated to be created every day. For small businesses, these 'blogs' are a largely untapped resource that can provide your company with a competitive edge. and Fasthosts’ director of product marketing Stephen Holford have produced this guide to business blogging content:

Why start a blog?

Integrated with your website, a blog has the potential to catapult it up the search engine rankings, and can be the difference between potential customers accessing your site or a competitor’s.

Blogs can help position an organisation as a leader within its particular field and directly drive traffic to the site. One of the greatest challenges for SMEs is standing out from the crowd – blogs are a great way of achieving this. If you are sufficiently amusing, outspoken, or share information that has a value to readers, you’ll raise the profile of your site, drive traffic to it and even become a quoted source.

Blogs can also foster a community and generate a dialogue with your customers, involving them in the development of products and services. They are designed to enable an open, honest, two-way conversation between the blogger and his or her readers. Unlike the enterprise CEO, not having your content and ‘voice’ sanitised by the corporate watchdogs generally means your content can be more candid.

The opportunity for the business owner to openly communicate their personality in their blog provides a great platform for old-style customer service to be achieved online.

Business bloggers can also encourage their readers to register their details for more information, allowing them to capture customer data more easily. In fact, the dialogue and trust that a blog promotes could enable you to capture customer data that you might not have obtained otherwise. This information can then be used to improve your marketing efforts by increasing your audience for mailshots and newsletters.

Top tips for content:

1. Consider blogging solutions – Some web hosting companies offer shared hosting packages that enable you to run your website more efficiently and, in addition, offer free blogging facilities to complement customers’ online sites. This enables you to design your blog to complement your website, extending your brand, while providing an easy-to-use website for your blog posts.
2. Identify the site’s goals – Before you start designing your blog, consider the following questions carefully: What are you trying to do? How will you achieve it? Who is your audience? Think also about having a broad enough subject to allow yourself to post regularly.
3. Tone should be informative and interesting – Both existing and floating customers will return to keep updated if your blog is well written. Think about the tone of your writing carefully: should it be conversational, news-led or humorous?
4. Choose your domain name carefully – Consider names that reflect the topic of your blog and bear in mind your intended audience. Try and think of something memorable, but if the name’s already taken consider adding hyphens to break the name up. Alternatively, if your blog is going to be an integral part of your company website, consider using the same domain name (e.g.
5. Keep your posts short – The typical web reader has a short attention span when it comes to reading content online. Keep content length down to a level that is quickly readable. Making relevant but succinct points is the key – don’t be afraid to expand if necessary, but keep the content interesting.
6. Time specific and evergreen posts – Some posts are out of date within a day or two of writing them and as a result won’t be looked at much. Other posts are more ‘evergreen’ in nature and will be as useful to your readers in a year’s time as they are today. It’s worth pondering this topic and deciding what type of posts you’re going to concentrate on.
7. Keep your blog updated regularly – The reason they’re so popular is because they’re immediate, and readers expect them to be updated regularly. Maintaining regular updates is a good means of creating dialogue with both existing and potential customers.

See also: The pros and cons of business blogging – Blogs make up part of a new era of Internet growth and if done well can be essential to any marketing or PR strategy.

Adam Wayland

Adam Wayland

Adam was Editor of from 2006 to 2008 and prior to that was staff writer on sister publication BusinessXL Magazine.

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