By Guest Blogger: James Niehaus,

With more than 1.8 billion websites and counting, the internet is a crowded, competitive space. Many business owners mistakenly assume a generic cookie-cutter website with little-to-no content website will generate traffic, only to discover this isn't the case. Thankfully, though, there are ways to improve your business's online visibility, including blogging and sharing content.

The Basics of Blogging

Blogging has origins dating back the late 1990s, during which users would create online diaries to share personal stories about their lives. Since then, it's become a powerful marketing platform for business owners. By publishing fresh content that's relevant to their target audience, business owners can improve their brand visibility, create a loyal following and generate sales. However, that's just the tip of the iceberg regarding the benefits of blogging.

Why You Should Blog

So, what benefits does blogging offer for business owners and entrepreneurs? For starters, a blog offers a more personal way for businesses to connect with their audience. Most blogs feature a commenting system where visitors can submit comments on posts. Business owners can then respond to these visitors directly, creating a dialog while enhancing their brand image in the process.

Blogging benefitsBlogs also drive sales for business owners. According to HubSpot's State of Inbound report, businesses that publish at least 15 posts per month generate roughly 1,200 new sales leads every month. Hubspot also states that 92 percent of companies that blog daily have acquired a customer through their blog.

Of course, the reason blogs drive sales is because they promote a higher number of indexed web pages in the search engines. Every time you publish a new post, search engines will index it in their search results. Assuming your blog posts are properly optimized, users will find your posts at the top of the search results; thus, driving tons of organic traffic to your blog.

The Power of DIY Content

The success of your blog relies heavily on the type of content you publish. Do-it-yourself (DIY) content is particularly effective for this marketing channel.

According to Social Marketing Writing, tutorials and DIY projects generate 42 percent more clicks on Pinterest than other types of content. While this study focused specifically on Pinterest, blogs generate similar results. Users love reading how-to posts that explain the exact steps to completing a project.

The Make Magazine Blog is the perfect example of DIY blogging done right. Founded by Dale Dougherty in 2005, Make Magazine is a bimonthly magazine that specializes in DIY content, including electronics, woodworking, metalworking and more. The company's blog offers a plethora of tips and tutorials, all of which are neatly arranged in a tile format.

Another popular DIY blog is Mod Podge Rocks. Launched by entrepreneur Amy Anderson in 2008, this niche-based blog focuses on DIY crafts using Mod Podge. In just four years, Anderson's blog had become so successful that she was able to quit her marketing job and begin blogging full time.

Optimize Your Blog for Search Engine Traffic

If you plan on starting a blog, though, you should optimize it for search traffic. Known as search engine optimization (SEO), it's an important step towards making your blog a success. Failure to optimize your blog will result in low or non-existent search rankings.

To optimize your blog for search engine traffic, give each post a unique title and meta description that accurately describes what it's about. Ideally, you should include the keyword for which you want to rank in the title and meta description.

You can also encourage higher search rankings by sharing your blog content. After publishing a new post, post a link to it on your social media accounts. This can drive some initial traffic to the post, getting it picked up on Google's radar.

All businesses can benefit from blogging. It's a simple and effective way to improve online visibility and attract new customers. However, you should publish the right type of content and optimize your blog for search engine traffic; otherwise, your blog will struggle to gain traction.


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