How To Write A Successful Blog PostThe 6 Main Components
Having a blog on your website that is consistently updated is one of the best ways for your business to maximize its ROI. You may already have a blog or be in the process of starting one. Here is an overview of the 6 main components of a successful blog post.
Successful Blog Post Key Take Aways
- Pick a Topic That Solves a Problem
- Choose the Best Title for Your Post
- Format Your Blog Post for Readability
- Optimize Your Post for SEO
- Promote an Offer to Increase Lead Generation
- Add Social Sharing Buttons to Your Post
1. Pick a Topic that Solves a Problem
In our article how blogging can help your business grow, we gave an example how content that solves a visitors problem and answers their question helps to drive traffic to your website. A successful blog post should be educational so that it solves a problem and/or answers a question your customers may have.
A good place to start when choosing a topic is with one of your products or services. Take that produce or service and answer one specific question or pain point your customers may have related to that product or service.
For example, if you sell dental services, you’ll want to choose one of your services such as Dental Hygiene. Next, you’ll want to do keyword research in focusing on Dental Hygiene. What keywords are people searching for related to Dental Hygiene? Write posts that use those keywords and answer those questions to start ranking higher in search engines.
Next, pick one specific topic to write about. You don’t want to try to solve everyone’s problems with one post. In most cases, if a post is too broad it will be extremely long and most people won’t read all of it. By focusing on one specific topic, it will provide more qualified traffic to that post which will increase the relevance and quality of the post to search engines.
2. Choosing the Best Title for Your Successful Blog Post
A successful blog post has starts with a phenomenal title. Make sure your title is clear and concise. Think about it, your title is the first thing your visitor is going to read so you want to make sure it sets the right expectations to the visitor. They’ll should know immediately what they’re going to get from the blog post by reading the title.
Blog formats with example titles:
- The How-To Post: How to Brush Your Teeth the Right Way
- The What Post: What is the Proper Way To Brush Your Teeth
- The Why Post: Why Brushing Your Teeth can Prevent Cavities
- The List Post: 7 Reasons Why You Need To Brush Your Teeth
- The Curated Post: The Top 10 Toothbrushes for Brushing Your Teeth
Your successful blog post should have a title is the right length. Google will only displays 60 characters in a search results title. You’ll want to make sure that your title is between 50-60 characters long. Make sure that it is long enough to grab your users attention but not too long that it gets cut off when Google displays your search result.
Cut-off titles may potentially affect your click-through rating negatively which could prevent your blog post from being successful. Remember, your objective is to drive traffic to your website and keep them there as long as possible. If your title is cut-off, someone may click on your article just to find out it does not answer their question and immediately return to the search results.
When your title is the appropriate length, the visitor will know before ever visiting your website what they’re going to get when they arrive decreasing the chance that they’ll leave immediately.
3. Format Your Successful Blog Post for Readability
Whitespace is Your Friend
The first step in optimizing your successful blog post is to make your paragraphs short and easy to read. Whitespace is your friend when it comes to blogging. With long paragraphs, your content will look dense and the visitor will not be able to easily read the content.
Organizing the Content
Next, organize your content by putting it into sections. By using section headers in your blog post, your visitors will be able to easily skim through the content and find the exact information they want.
Hubspot conducted a survey that shows 43% of blog readers skim through a post. By breaking your content into sections with section headers, you increase the opportunity for your reader to find exactly what they’re looking for to keep them on your website longer.
Also, using numbered lists and bullet points is another way to break your content up into easily digestible pieces so your reader will know exactly what to expect. Remember, your visitors are looking for instant clarification so you need to make your post as easy to read as possible.
Using bold, italicized, and underlined text for important information allows the reader to focus on the clear take aways from the post. Some bloggers even go as far as compiling a list of the clear take aways and listing them as the first section of the post. While this is not necessary, it is beneficial to clearly identify the target points of your post through textual formatting.
Use Images to Breakup the Content
Lastly, a successful blog post uses images to break up the content. Do you remember reading text books in school? The hardest books to read were filled with lines of text. The same applies to blogging.
Using images gives the readers eyes a break from the text and maintains interest in the post. Place an image at the beginning of the post to entice the reader to read the article.
The image doesn’t have to be specific to the post but should relevant that you’re discussing.
4. Optimizing Your Post for Search Engines
When search engines crawl your blog post, they’re looking for html code indicators to determine what the content is about, the quality, and how relevant it is. In order to have a successful blog post, you need to optimize your blog post for search engines. You’ll want to include your keyword(s) in the following areas:
- Page Title
- Your page title should have your keyword phrase in it and should be between 50-60 characters long.
- Page URL
- The URL to the blog post should use your keyword phrase.
- Post Title
- In most cases, you’ll want your post title to be the same as your page title. If your post title is longer than the 60 characters discussed above, make sure the page title is shortened. However, it is rare to have a different blog post and page title.
- Image alt-text
- Every image should have an alt-text tag with it. The alt-text should include the keyword phrase.
- First 100 Words
- The first paragraph or first 100 words of a successful blog post should include the keyword phrase.
- In the section headers, also called subheadings, you will want to use the keyword phrase or variations of the keyword phrase. Sub-headers are primarily h2 tags.
- Internal & External Links
- The post should incorporate relevant internal and external links. Internal linking allows you to drive traffic to other parts of your website. This improves your click-through rating.
Google recommends linking to external resources as it shows that your post is high quality and that you’ve done your research. Also, using external links may prove beneficial in the future when building back links to your content as many bloggers will be more open to accepting guest posts by those who have promoted their content in the past.
Be sure to only include one or two links per paragraph at most. You don’t want to overdue it.
5. Capturing Leads With Your Blog Post
The overall objective of your blog should be to generate leads. As with any inbound marketing campaign, lead generation and conversion are at the heart of the strategy.
You should place your content offers, called call-to-action or CTA’s for short, strategically in your successful blog post. Placing them at the beginning of the blog post may seem to pushy to soon whereas placing it at the end may prevent you from capturing several leads who don’t finish the blog post (remember the attention span of a reader).
The goal is to make the CTA stand out enough to capture the readers attention and encourage them to enter their information but not pressure the reader. No one likes a hard sales pitch so be sure to “soft sell” by placing your CTA’s seamlessly within your content.
The most effective CTA’s are placed within the body of content or on the side of the content near the beginning of the post. Using a hyperlink text CTA can help as well. Testing CTA placement should be an on-going part of your inbound strategy.
It is recommended to use multiple CTA’s per page. Incorporating a content offer at the end of the post as well as in the side panel have proven to be very effective. Another placement that works well is at the top-middle of the post. These content offers should be relevant to the post itself.
6. Provide Social Sharing Buttons to Your Blog Post
Now that you have created high quality content that solves a readers problem, you’ll want to offer easy access for visitors to share your post.
If your content is valuable to your reader, they’re likely to share it on one or more of their social media networks. Seamless integration of social sharing is valuable to you because it offers the ability to get your content in front of more potential customers as well as increasing the quality and relevance factors for Googles ranking algorithm. This helps to make an extremely successful blog post.
At the end of the day, blogging is extremely beneficial and a must have for all local businesses. It offers a medium for your business to answer questions your potential customers may have. In return, this will increase your web traffic and generate more leads for your business, leads that you can convert into sales through inbound marketing strategies.
Blogging is a marathon, not a sprint. It most effective when done consistently and continuously. By maintaining your blog and writing consistently, you’ll build up a large source of content for your customers to refer to making your business a powerhouse in your industry. Most businesses that have been blogging for years will tell you that their blog is hands down one of their most valuable asset. The goal should not only be a successful blog post, but a successful blog.