Besides having content that is thematic throughout your website, the other factor that search engines seek for higher results is the relevance of that copy. The direct route towards fresh content? Creating an online community through a blog is by far one of the most effective ways to build unique content and drive eyeballs to your business.
Besides keeping your content fresh and relevant, a blog also helps build reader trust and provides education on your products/services. All of this helps further establish your authority not only on the subject, but also in a search engine’s algorithmic eye.
Three other avenues exist to build your online community with user-generated content – forums, product reviews, and blog comments.
Regardless of how the content is built – either from your blog, forums, product reviews or blog comments – all will help you build links and rank well on search engines.
Following are some ways to build successful communities on your site.
Create a Blog with WordPress
By far the most popular software service for websites with strong, SEO-friendly blogs is WordPress. The blogging software is easy to use and build, and there are 1000s of themes available to create a truly unique experience.
At one point, blogs were just a platform for opinions and entertainment. But nowadays, entire businesses are built upon WordPress through educating, entertainment, and providing useful info that helps drive sales.
A properly optimized blog helps increase traffic and improve customer relations, which in turn markets your products/services.
Write Search Engine Optimized Post
To effectively reach your target audience, you want your blogs posts rank well in search. The route towards this is optimizing the WordPress posts. Like anything that needs a huge web presence, always start with an intense keyword analysis using tools like Google Keyword Planner or SEMrush.
Then, make sure you write a title (title tag) that uses your main keyword and is around 55 characters, or 512 pixels. Use keywords, but create an enticing headline that will drive clicks.
Make sure to also use a few headline tags (H2, H3, H4, etc.) to breakup longer content, and use some type of creative, whether that’s an image, video or infographic. When inserting images/infographics, make sure all our optimized with alt text. Also add some internal/external linking. (KJ: link to content creation page).
Tips for a Successful Blog
Besides writing engaging and relevant content, there are a few tactics that can help your blog become successful.
- Use Experienced Writers with Industry Knowledge: The blog should be written by a person in your business who has a deep understanding of your products and services. Not necessarily an executive member due to lack of bandwidth, but someone completely knowledgeable of the ins and outs of the business.
- Interview Experts: Who are the top names in your industry? Find the answers, and try to interview them, offering their perspective on your blog.
- Use an Administrator: Your blog needs to have its own administrator to not only moderate comments, but also interact with the top commenters.
- Hold Giveaways and Contests: Periodic contests and giveaways are a great way to keep people coming back to your blog. If you sell products, as your readers to guess what the top-selling product will be for a certain period of time. You can then pick a winner at random and award them with either that top-selling gift or some other prize.
- Offer a RSS Feed: Have a Really Simple Syndication feed. This will keep your blog in view every day, and also allow readers to quickly scan your blog feed.
- Break or Piggyback News: Think of traditional news sources; the ones to break the news were always the most relevant and respected. Same goes for your blog. Something occurring in your industry that you got insight into, and nobody else knows? If your able to exploit the story, do it – and quickly before someone else does this first. Also, you can piggyback stories with a new twist to offer your readers something better.
- Participate on Social Media: Besides the obvious of having your business exposed on social media, you need to actively participate. This is another task perfect for your administrator; you want someone educated and who knows your industry inside out. Someone commenting on your Facebook posts? Respond – and quickly. Tweeting your blog? Retweet it!