If you want your online business to thrive, you need to stay in touch with the times. Whether you’ve been blogging for years or just got started yesterday, it isn’t easy to know the best practices for SEO and online marketing right off the bat. They also constantly change, meaning that something that was popular years ago might not work so well now.
Terrible ’90s internet graphics aside, another example of this is the idea of writing about anything you like on your personal website. People might create blogs to write about a variety of interests or promote anything they wanted, but there generally wasn’t much thought given to having separate sites or sections for different posts.
Before WordPress and other content management systems made this easy, it was hard to change your sit structure if you realized you were confusing your readers. Now, however, you have no excuses! Here are five simple ways you can avoid confusing your blog readers.
1. Summarize and “lead them in”
Rather than having all your content visible on one page, make sure it only displays summaries of each post with links for readers to click through and see the rest of it. This helps them skim past what they find boring, and when they get interested in something you have to say, it draws them further into your site.
2. Use categories properly
You really can’t go wrong with categories! They allow you to group together related topics so your readers can easily see what general themes you cover, and look for more tips on things they’re interested in while avoiding topics they don’t want to read about. Using categories means your reader won’t be confused by seeing posts about different topics next to each other.
3. Specialize to appeal to your audience
Figure out who your target audience is, and what they’re likely to want to see. If you’re writing about internet marketing, don’t suddenly publish posts on cooking or gadgets. Instead, make sure your blog is designed to attract readers who are interested in internet marketing, and then “funnel” them into the categories they’re interested in – PPC ads, website design, etc.
4. Remember to diversify sometimes
At the same time, don’t let your blog grow stale by writing about the exact same thing all the time. An internet marketer may still want to read about topics like hiring freelancers, taxes, or hardware to make life easier. Just make sure everything is organized into categories (for example, income strategies, product reviews, marketing advice, and so on).
5. Keep it specific
When you’re trying to attract people who want to buy your book on pet care, don’t let your post ramble through stories of pets you’ve once owned unless it’s relevant to the point. Each post should contain valuable information with a point, not a long paragraph with no white space and seemingly no point. Periodically re-evaluate your writing to make sure it still makes sense and you aren’t confusing your reader through content rather than structure; incidentally, this also benefits you SEO-wise.
By following these practices when you structure your blogging topics, you can make sure your audience is on board and hanging onto every word you have to say. This allows you to better serve their needs, and gives you a better chance of succeeding with your online business!
Guest post contributed by Charles Dearing, for Hostgator Review – a review site and webmaster tool that enables you to discover which web hosting company any site is hosted with.