Okay, be honest – if you run a small business and have a website, when was the last time you updated it or added any new content?
If you haven’t updated your website in the last 3 months then you’re not alone, but that certainly doesn’t mean that you’re in a good place. There are numerous good reasons why adding new content to your website is good for your business and the simplest way to add fresh content is through a blog.
What’s a Blog?
Blogs (short for web log) originally became popular amongst web users as a sort of online diary or soap box where people could share their views. Over the years though, blogs have developed into powerful communication and marketing tools that can be integrated into a website, allowing a non-technical user to add pages of new content to their website.
Whilst blogging is a hugely popular medium in the mainstream, it’s sorely under-used by small businesses that still see blogging as a bit of a fad.
When we mention blogging to prospective new Clients, they immediately become defensive, being under the illusion that it’s difficult, time consuming and ultimately won’t help their business. So let’s look at a few of the most compelling reasons why your small business should be regularly blogging.
Reason 1 – Traffic Generation
First and foremost you need to understand that Google (and other search engines) don’t display a list of websites when somebody does a search, they display a list of pages from websites.
Your website is nothing more than a collection of pages so it stands to reason that if your website only has eight pages of content, that’s just eight opportunities for your web pages to be found in a search engines when somebody is looking for a product or service you’re offering.
To use an analogy, imaging you are going fishing and when you get to the lake, you put one rod in the water. You may be able to catch one or two fish all day. Now imagine you go to the same lake and place twenty fishing rods in the water; you’ve now got the ability to catch twenty times more fish.
Every time you add a new blog post, you’re basically adding a new page of content to your website so if you only add one new blog post a week, in twelve months’ time your website will have over fifty more pages of content that can be found by your prospective customers.
Put simply, the more pages of good content that your website has, the greater the opportunity there is for your pages to be found when your prospective customers are searching online.
Reason 2 – Gaining Trust & Authority
As a consumer, if you want to buy a product or service then it stands to reason that you want to buy from a company that knows what they’re doing. Let’s be frank, you’d feel a lot more comfortable having a filling from a Dentist with twenty years’ experience than you would having that same filling conducted by a Dentists fresh from Dentistry School wouldn’t you?
Blogging gives you the opportunity to really showcase your knowledge of your industry, thus giving prospective customers more confidence in your products or services.
And the beauty of blogging is that isn’t simply restricted to adding pages or words, you can add video and images too. So rather than just having a single static page on your website called ‘We Sell Widgets’, you could add a host of blog posts containing reviews of your ‘widgets’ – surely that would encourage more people to buy ‘widgets’ from you rather than your competitors?
Blogging about your expertise, product knowledge and experience will provide your customers with pages of useful, informative content that will only help to enhance the chances of them buying from you.
Reason 3 – Repeat, Repeat
We have a very simple system here at Avara – whenever a Client asks us a question that needs a fairly detailed answer, we’ll email them a reply and then turn that reply into a blog post and publish it on our website (like this blog post you’re reading now). The chances are that if one customer wants to know the answer to a question, many others will too.
Let’s look at an example – a regularly asked question might be, ‘How much do you charge?’ In many instances, especially in service-related industries, this isn’t always a straight answer to this question. So you could create a blog post that sets out your pricing policy in detail, so prospective customers can truly understand how you set your prices.
So rather than spend hours repeating the same answer over and over again, you can simply email your customer a link to your blog post. Or if you’d rather make it more personal, you can copy and paste your ‘canned’ answer from your blog and simply email it to your customer.
If you are currently answering just five questions a week by email that are basically the same, and it takes you ten minutes to answer each question, that equates to:
- 50 minutes a week
- 3.6 hours a month
- 43.3 hours a year
Basically you can save an entire week of work every year by using this blogging method to deal with repeat questions from your customers.
So Why Isn’t Your Business Blogging?
If your small business isn’t blogging then you are missing a huge opportunity to improve the turnover, image and efficiency of your business.
If you don’t know how to get started, give us a call on 01252 416 222 or email us via the form on the right of this page and we’ll happily give you some free advice on how to get started with blogging.