If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a million times:
“Your practice should have a blog.”
“Why aren’t you on the blogging bandwagon?”
“Blogging helps your SEO.”
But you’re not a writer.
You don’t know enough about good content or what your audience would enjoy.
In your mind, pushing a tank up Ben Nevis would be preferable to coming up with ideas and regularly publishing content on your blog.
The blank Word document. The blinking cursor. The existential dread.
We get it.
But it doesn’t have to be that way.
Coming Up With Ideas
Admittedly, coming up with fresh ideas can be tough.
However, there are plenty of avenues to explore when it comes to creating content.
For instance, it pays to keep an ideas file on your laptop or PC. Every time you have a brainwave that would make an interesting post, make a note of it.
You can also do some research into your space and explore what’s working for others. See something you like? Aim to emulate it – but better. And don’t copy.
There’s also a lot to be said for forcing yourself to come up with a blog idea every day. After a time, you’ll notice that it becomes more natural.
Coming up with great ideas, creating a bank of content, and engaging with your readers takes time – but the trust and engagement you earn is priceless.
And there’s also another valuable reason.
Hop Into Bed with Google
You’ve likely been told that the more pages you create on your website, the more chances you have to rank well in the search engines.
It also means all that great content you’ve created for your blog can be pushed on your social media channels or delivered to your email marketing lists.
Whilst actually having a blog on your website won’t instantly solve all of your problems, what it will do eventually is:
– Increase your traffic
– Expand your audience
– Improve engagement
– Position your practice as an authority
It’s also another cue to Google and Bing that your website is active, and it would be in the search engines’ best interests to check back for new content frequently.
The SEO Advantages of Optimising a Blog Post
Be aware, though, that ideation, writing and publishing blogs isn’t enough.
To really give your post every opportunity to succeed, making sure it’s search engine friendly is crucial.
Here’s where you need to focus your efforts …
This means targeting a relevant keyword that your practice would like to rank for and optimising the meta data (the title and short description users see in the search results) to ensure it’s displayed properly on Google and Bing.
One of the easiest ways to do this is by using the Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress, which gives you a Snippet Editor to make the whole process a breeze
Even if your site isn’t built on WordPress, these tips still apply.
Pro Tip: Be sure to include your main keyword first followed by your brand name or website name – but it’s vital to stay within 40–65 characters here.
The <h1> tag is vital when it comes to telling search engines what your page is about. Typically, it’s advisable to have your keyword housed within the <h1>, but make sure there’s only ONE <h1> tag for every page.
Pro Tip: Double check your site to uncover duplicate tags, as your logo or even your phone number can mistakenly be wrapped in an <h1> tag.
Alt Tags for Photos
Make sure your alt tags accurately describe the photo. For example, a blog post about an eye exam may have an optician examining a patient. In this case, the ideal alt tag would be “Optician and Patient During Eye Exam”
Pro Tip: Yoast SEO’s Visual Editor is less fiddly than the Text version, so try to use this if you’re a beginner.
Finally, once you’ve made your way through all of the above, go back to your post and determine whether the call-to-action (what you’d like the reader to do next) is compelling and clear.
Pro Tip: It pays to play around with your calls to action, as some will work better than others, depending on what your objectives are. Put simply, test, test, and test again.
But the most important takeaway?
Don’t blog if you’re not committed. Driving traffic to your site and improving engagement takes time … and a lot of work.
Luckily, Scenicus has a team of dedicated content developers who are itching to help your business with its blog – simply give us a call on 01908 904 904 to get started.