So how often should you update your small business blog?
Since I've missed my self-imposed goal of one blog post a week I thought this was a suitable subject for this week's post.
I've done a fair amount of reading and research in an attempt to find an argument that will allow me to let myself off the hook and post a bit less frequently. I can't find one!
"If your updates are more than a week apart, it's about as effective as not blogging at all." According to Megan Totka writing for Small Business Trends. Admittedly, this article is now a couple of years old but it still holds true (a great example of evergreen content which I'll write about another time) and there is ever increasing evidence that blogging is good for driving traffic to your small business website.
- It's a good way to add fresh content to your website for search engine optimisation
- It also allows you to demonstrate your knowledge of your sector in a more informal way
- It provides a very easy forum for you to share current news with your customers
- It also improves engagement with your audience who will come expect your regular blog posts
The final point is crucial as the frequency with which you post is as important in gaining credibility and nurturing a relationship with your readers as the actual content itself.
Some will advocate quality over quantity and a great post of a good length, supported by accurate statistics and thorough research posted less frequently, say once a month, is better than just throwing a post on your blog for the sake of getting something up there, which is possibly what I'm doing now!
Others will say that regular posting is better for driving search engines and keeping you in front of your readers.
Whichever option you choose try and be consistent. Once a week, once a month, three times a week ... just keep to the schedule.
So back to the original question ... how often should you update your small business blog?
There is no magic answer. From my own experience, I would say that since I've started posting more frequently, ie once a week I have seen an increase in traffic and also enquiries from my website. Each post also provides me with quite a bit of content for sharing on social media which all helps with the competition to attract visitors.
I also load short posts 3 times a week for one of my clients and they have seen a dramatic increase in traffic. It wasn't a quick fix and it did take 2 to 3 years, but
- the number of visitors to the website is more than 3 times what it was when we started, and
- they have also seen an improvement in search results rankings.
By posting infrequently or erratically you run the risk of your readers forgetting about you. Having a regular time for your new content means that you can gradually slot into your loyal readers sub-conscious and they will start to expect your content.
Set yourself a realistic blogging schedule and stick to it
If you aim to post once a month, try to always have that post ready for a designated day of each month. Once your readers get used to the frequency of your posts you don't want to disappoint.
You need to be consistent. Don't post every week for 6 weeks and then nothing for two months. You really don't want it to look as if you've abandoned your blog and possibly your business.
- Those readers who are not yet customers, could be ambassadors and be enjoying your content and sharing it. All good for your small business website but you could lose out if you suddenly stop posting. Once a reader has dis-engaged with you they may not come back.
- A new visitor to your site could see regular posts for a while and then nothing and draw the same conclusions ... are you still in business.
So how do you manage your own small business blog?
- Decide realistically how often you can publish a new post on your blog. Maybe once a week is just too much of a commitment So, go for once a month, but make it count.
- Plan in advance the subjects that you are going to blog about (I need to take my own advice). Have an ongoing list of suitable topics that you can add to easily. If something topical comes up give that priority.
- When you're in writing mode try to pen several posts at once and then schedule them.
- If you do get behind or have blog brain freeze see if you can make that part of your content or a post in itself. After all blogging is a way to show the personalitly behind your own small business brand.
- Perhaps you've had a heavier than average workload,or
- maybe something happened in your sector that became all-consuming for a couple of weeks.
Write about it, show that you're on top of your business and keeping abreast of all that's current.
I've had a few website administration issues to sort over the last couple of weeks and I have got a bit behind, but that's another blog post.
So however often you have elected to post on your blog make sure you stick to it ... consistency is key and if you would like some help getting started why not give me a call on 01494 537612.