Setting up a blog should be an intrinsic part of your SEO strategy. It should have a big part in your overall initiative to engage with your target audience. However, the main goal of setting up a blog is to connect with your audience in a human way and help you achieve your larger objectives. Having said this, far too many businesses make the mistake of creating posts that unabashedly self promote. The content on their blogs neither has meat nor does it engage the intended audience, thus reducing any chances of it going viral or viewers sharing it on social networks. Here is how you go about using blogs to further enhance your business.
Set your objectives in clear unambiguous terms
What you want to achieve from this blog will depend on how you answer the following questions. These questions will also serve as your guide to successful blogging.
Is reputation management a big issue with you and your business?
Are you dealing with a whole bunch of negative comments/content that affects your search engine page ranking?
Do you wish to build an exclusive channel with deep links to certain pages on your website?
Do you wish to use meaty content as a tool to target audiences or visitors of your business website?
Do you wish to build a reputation as an unbiased voice in your area of interest?
These are some questions that you need to answer to arrive at your blogging strategy. Once you have answered these questions it is time to decide where to place or position your blog. Your blog could be any one of these: a sub-directory, separate domain, sub-domain, WordPress, or Blogger. Let’s look at these options a bit closely.
This is the most recommended option. Having your blog placed in a sub-directory serves the purpose of adding content to the main domain. Besides, promoting content already present on your website builds credible links. However, this approach does not give you an extra avenue for brand listing on search engine search pages. If reputation management is your main goal then this is not a very good idea. Secondly this approach also does not earn you links from other sub-domains and websites.
There are some people that prefer a non-official blog presence. Such people are ones that aspire to build a reputation of being an unbiased voice in their chosen industry. However, this is hard work and takes a lot of time and effort to create content and ensure a steady stream of visitors. Again, if you don’t have sufficient traffic and traction this is a wasted effort.
This is the best option if you want to engage in some hardcore reputation management. This avenue provides you with additional real estate on search engine result pages. This additional official web presence ranks high whenever people search business. In case your website already enjoys a lot of authority then this blog can piggyback on this and gain trust/traction. However, link value is affected.
This is the easiest way to blog. Many large corporations/businesses have taken this route successfully. You can implement link building tactics or test things without negatively affecting your main website/domain. Your ability to gain links from other authority websites goes up significantly. And this is very easy to set up and manage. However, there are few limitations that you need to account for. One, you cannot have a custom design for your blog. You have to operate with the templates provided by blogger.com or WordPress.com. Second, content promoted on such blogs does not add any value to your parent website. Third, you cannot use plug-ins on your blog.
It is evident that blogging is an essential part of your SEO strategy. If you do not engage with your audience how the hell are you going to connect with them on a regular basis? Or, how are you going to become a leader in your area of specialization? Only when people read your blogs and share it with others will you become an authority in your industry.
Therefore blog for the right reasons and set up your blog after giving it a thorough thought!