If you run a small business, chances are you are wondering if blogging is worth the time and effort. The short answer is a resounding YES! Blogging on a frequent basis is a relatively easy, inexpensive way to enhance your inbound marketing efforts, drive traffic to your site, and attract more perspective customers.
The Case for Small Business Blogs
Here are some of the most important benefits of having a blog for your business:
Boost Search Engine Optimization
Search engines love to provide fresh, valuable content to searchers. What better way to provide frequent content than with blog posts. By blogging consistently, you give Google and other search engines new content to index and you create opportunities to plug in those all-important keywords to increase your visibility on search engine results pages (SERPS).
As an added bonus, you will benefit from backlinks as other websites begin to link to the articles on your website. This adds more fuel to the SEO fire because search engines consider backlinks as an endorsement of the authority of your website.
Develop Relationships with Potential and Existing Customers
Blogging allows you to connect with your site visitors. This can be accomplished by asking your readers questions at the end of your posts to get the conversation going or by simply allowing comments and feedback. By reviewing and responding to readers’ comments, you can create a rapport with your audience, build trust, and gain valuable insight into what your customers are looking for.
Establish Your Business as an Industry Leader
No matter how small your business is, you can build trust and clout within your industry by providing valuable, expert information in your blog posts. Over time, you become a “go to” resource for helpful, informative content, which can ultimately lead to higher customer conversion rates. This is especially important for small businesses looking to gain credibility to compete with larger companies.
Connect People to Your Brand
Blog posting allows you to show a personal side of your business that perspective and current customers won’t see through outbound marketing techniques. Blogging gives others a sense of the corporate standards, vision, and personality of your company.
Provide Value for Your Readers
One of the biggest benefits of business blogging is the ability to provide value to visitors. Posts that help them solve problems or include tips to make something in their life easier or better are far more interesting to potential leads than in-your-face ads. Of course, your products or services will be part of the solutions you provide in your posts, but in a subtle, helpful way. By taking the time and energy to provide beneficial content for free, you are actually building loyalty among potential customers who will become more likely choose your company over your competitors when they are ready to make a purchase. You can even include testimonial-centered posts to nudge those considering a purchase to take that next step. If your blog posts are simply product promotions or service pitches, don’t bother blogging. Readers won’t be interested.
You can leverage your blog to get emails from interested leads by asking them to subscribe to your blog posts. Those emails can then be used for marketing purposes to increase touch points. Not only will they regularly see your blog posts, the door is now open for email marketing opportunities to promote your business, send special promotions, and more. The more often you can connect with a lead, the better the chance of converting them into customers.
Create Opportunities for Sharing
Every time you blog, you create an opportunity for your audience to share your blog with others. Whether they link to your blog post, tweet it, or email it to others, it’s free marketing and it further validates you as a credible business.
From a practical standpoint, blogging just makes sense. With minimal effort and expense, you can build credibility, boost search engine rankings, increase website traffic, and foster relationships with potential and current customers. This is an opportunity no small business should pass up.