How Does Blogging Help My Small Business?
by Jonathan LeRoux
October 1st, 2016
Blogging, the practice of creating useful, informative content for your customers and publishing it on your website, is a cornerstone of inbound marketing — but why? What makes publishing content so helpful and how does it directly tie in with your business goals and help you achieve them? Let’s explore how creating and publishing useful content can reap incredible rewards for your business.
Blogging Builds Trust Between You and Your Customers
When potential customers come to your website, they’re looking for the same things we all are when we comparison shop for goods and services. At the end of the day, your customers are going to choose whomever is the most professional, most knowledgeable, and whomever has great reviews from past customers, and has an agreeable range of prices.
Publishing quality content to your site (content that truly helps solve problems and answer questions that your audience has) helps showcase your professionalism and your breadth and depth of knowledge within your industry. People are far more likely — 61% more likely — to buy from a business that they feel they can trust and that displays its expertise.
For instance, say you’re shopping for lawn care services. During your comparison shopping, say you’ve narrowed it down to two potential lawn care businesses: Lee’s Lovely Lawns and Bill’s Beautiful Backyards.
These two companies are exactly the same in every day, except for the fact that Lee’s Lovely Lawns regularly puts incredible guides and articles on their website that detail how you can improve your lawn and garden throughout the year, control weeds, and has a series of case studies that show their work on other lawns and the tips you can learn from those projects. Bill, on the other hand, doesn’t really provide anything like that.
Which of these two companies would you feel has demonstrable knowledge as to how to best care for lawns? Which of these two companies do you feel would care more about doing well on your lawn? If you’re like most people, Lee’s Lovely Lawns will win out every time, because they’re effectively communicating that they are knowledgeable and can be trusted.
By blogging, you begin to lay the foundations for long-lasting customer relationships by facilitating a strong sense of trust, and the importance of trust cannot be overstated, as over 70% of customers stop purchases due to a lack of trust.
Taking the time to create and publish content that solves your potential customers’ problems shows them that you care, and that you’re the one that they should be doing business with every time.
Blogging Moves Your Business Up in Search Engine Ranking
When publish content to your website, Google and other search engines send their web crawlers out to gobble up the blog’s new content. These web crawlers gobble up everything on the page — the words, images, topics, embedded links — and analyzes every bit of it to understand what your content is talking about, how it relates to your business and industry, and how well it might answer the questions that searchers type into their favorite search engine.
As you begin to consistently publish content to your website through your blog, search engines take note of this. Here’s an example (albeit simplified) of what search engine web crawlers “think” as they visit your site’s new content.
“Hmm. Looks like this website talks a lot about lawn care — lawn care tips, lawn care tools, and lawn care services. I bet they’re a lawn service company, and it looks like they’re in Tulsa, OK, too. Got it.”
“Oh, wow. They’re keeping this up -- they publish great stuff every week. This new article on “How to Care for Your Lawn in Winter” is really in-depth, and I see that this answers a lot of the questions I see folks typing into our search engine. If these guys keep up this quality and frequency of publishing, I want to point more people to their website for help. They really seem knowledgeable about this “lawn care” thing.”
“Silly humans and their love for grass. All the more easily shall we conquer them AND DROWN THEM IN THEIR OVERWATERED LAWNS!”
Okay, maybe web crawlers aren’t figuring out how to most efficiently annihilate the human race, but you can see how they want to analyze your content to see if it’s a great resource to point people to. Simply put, the higher you are, the better — as over 50% of people don’t go past the first page of Google when searching for answers.
By consistently publishing content that solves problems, answers questions, and gives unique, valuable insight in your industry, you’re sending strong signals to search engines that you provide the best answers and are the resource for folks who ask questions about your product or service.
Blogging Establishes Your Business’s Authority in Your Industry
Through blogging, you’re not only building consumer trust and increasing search engine rankings — you’re also demonstrating your authority within your industry. While you not only appear more authoritative and credible to potential customers, this also creates opportunities for potential networking beneficial business-to-business relationships.
As you begin ranking higher for search engine queries related to topics within your industry, other businesses and thought leaders within the industry will begin to take notice. This can create opportunities for mutual partnerships, guest blogging, and countless other ways to begin forging valuable relationships with other businesses in your market, particularly within your local area.
How Your Small Business Benefits from Blogging: Recap
Let’s bring what we’ve covered together into a quick breakdown of how your small business benefits from blogging:
You get more traffic to your site. People trust what Google and other search engines place in their top results. By ranking higher for specific topics related to your products and services, you naturally begin drawing in more traffic to your website.
You get more opportunities for sales and leads. By drawing in more traffic, you naturally have more opportunities to appeal to visitors and make sales or acquire leads.
You build trust with your potential customers and existing customers. When you create and publish content that answers the questions and solves the problems of your audience, you’re already demonstrating to them how you can be of service. By doing this consistently, and always delivering useful content, you quickly build trust with your audience.
You create more opportunities for business-to-business connections. Creating useful content demonstrates your expertise within your industry, and can create beneficial business-to-business relationships and networking opportunities.
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