The most important part of blogging is solving a problem, and that comes with a prize to pay. That prize is content. Content is King.
If you want to do well in this blogging thing you need to find a way to stand out among other million bloggers that are in the same niche as you. You need to be different, and unique.
Producing great content in your blog is the most important part of blogging, and if you do it the right way you will probably be the only source people run to for answers; however, if you do it the wrong way you will lose your readers and at the same time lose money.
You will end up earning yourself a bad reputation online. You can’t copy and paste peoples blog posts into your blog claiming it’s your own. That’s plagiarism, and could you land you in legal issues.
Therefore in this post, I am going to teach you how to write a great content for your blog and keep your readers salivating for more.
After you read this post, there will be absolutely no reason you can’t blog every single day – and do it quickly.
Well, enough of the long talk. Let’s get going.
Step 1: Understand your audience
Before you start to write, it’s imperative you have a clear understanding of your target audience. You need to figure out the answers to the two questions below:
1. What do they want to know about?
2. What will resonate with them?
Consider what you know about your readers and their interests while you’re coming up with a topic for your blog post.
For instance, if your readers are millennials (millennial is a person who was born in the 1980s and early 1990s) looking to start their own business, you probably don’t need to provide them with information about getting started in social media — most of them already have that down. You might, however, want to give them information about how to adjust their approach to social media from a more casual, personal one to a more business-savvy, networking-focused approach. That kind of tweak is what separates you from blogging about generic stuff to the stuff your audience really wants (and needs) to hear.
Step 2: Start with a topic and working title
Before you even write anything, you need to pick a topic for your blog post. The topic can be general to start with. For example, if you’re a plumber, you might start out thinking you want to write about leaky faucets. Then you might come up with a few different working titles — in other words, iterations or different ways of approaching that topic to help you focus your writing. For example, you might decide to narrow your topic to “Tools for Fixing Leaky Faucets” or “Common Causes of Leaky Faucets.” A working title is specific and will guide your post so you can start writing.
Step 3: Write an intro (and make it captivating)
First, grab the reader’s attention. If you lose the reader in the first few paragraphs — or even sentences — of the introduction, they will stop reading even before they’ve given your post a fair shake. You can do this in a number of ways: tell a story or a joke, be empathetic, or grip the reader with an interesting fact or statistic.
Then describe the purpose of the post and explain how it will address a problem the reader may be having. This will give the reader a reason to keep reading and give them a connection to how it will help them improve their work/lives.
Step 4: Organize your content
Sometimes, blog posts can have an overwhelming amount of information — for the reader and the writer. The trick is to organize the info so readers are not intimidated by the length or amount of content. The organization can take multiple forms — sections, lists, tips, whatever is most appropriate. But it must be organized!
To complete this step, all you really need to do is outline your post. That way, before you start writing, you know which points you want to cover, and the best order in which to do it.
Step 5: Write!
The next step — but not the last — is actually writing the content. Now that you have your outline/template, you’re ready to fill in the blanks. Use your outline as a guide and be sure to expand on all of your points as needed. Write about what you already know, and if necessary, do additional research to gather more information, examples, and data to back up your points, providing proper attribution when incorporating external sources.
If you find you’re having trouble stringing sentences together, you’re not alone. Finding your “flow” can be really challenging for a lot of folks. Luckily, there are a ton of tools you can lean on to help you improve your writing.
Here are a few to get you started:
Power Thesaurus: Stuck on a word? Power Thesaurus is a crowdsourced tool that provides users with a ton of alternative word choices from a community of writers.
ZenPen: If you’re having trouble staying focused, check out this distraction-free writing tool. ZenPen creates a minimalist “writing zone” that’s designed to help you get words down without having to fuss with formatting right away.
Cliché Finder: Feeling like your writing might be coming off a little cheesy? Identify instances where you can be more specific using this handy cliché tool.
Step 6: Edit/proofread your post, and fix your formatting
You’re not quite done yet, but you’re close! The editing process is an important part of blogging — don’t overlook it. Ask a grammar-conscious co-worker to copy, edit, and proofread your post, and consider using a free grammar checker, like the one developed by Grammarly).
Other things to consider in mind:
Make sure you choose a visually appealing and relevant image for your post. As social networks treat content with images more prominently, visuals are now more responsible than ever for the success of your blog content in social media. In fact, it’s been shown that content with relevant images receives 94% more views than content without relevant images.
No one likes an ugly blog post. And it’s not just pictures that make a post visually appealing — it’s the formatting and organization of the post, too.
In a properly formatted and visually appealing blog post, you’ll notice that header and sub-headers are used to break up large blocks of text — and those headers are styled consistently. Here’s an example of what that looks like:
Also, screenshots should always have a similar, defined border (see screenshot above for example) so they don’t appear as if they’re floating in space. And that style should stay consistent from post to post.
Maintaining this consistency makes your content (and your brand) look more professional, and makes it easier on the eyes.
Tags are specific, public-facing keywords that describe a post. They also allow readers to browse for more content in the same category on your blog. Refrain from adding a laundry list of tags to each post. Instead, put some thought into a tagging strategy. Think of tags as “topics” or “categories,” and choose 10-20 tags that represent all the main topics you want to cover on your blog. Then stick to those.
Step 7: Insert a call-to-action (CTA) at the end
At the end of every blog post, you should have a CTA that indicates what you want the reader to do next — subscribe to your blog, download an eBook, register for a webinar or event, read a related article, etc. Typically, you think about the CTA being beneficial for the marketer. Your visitors read your blog post, then click on the CTA, and eventually, you generate a lead. But the CTA is also a valuable resource for the person reading your content — use your CTAs to offer more content similar to the subject of the post they just finished reading.
Step 8: Optimize for on-page SEO
After you finish writing, go back and optimize your post for search. Don’t obsess over how many keywords to include. If there are opportunities to incorporate keywords you’re targeting, and it won’t impact reader experience, do it. If you can make your URL shorter and more keyword-friendly, go for it. But don’t cram keywords or shoot for some arbitrary keyword density — Google’s smarter than that!
Here’s a little reminder of what you can and should look for:
Page Title and Headers
Most blogging software uses your post title as your page title, which is the most important on-page SEO element at your disposal. But if you’ve followed our formula so far, you should already have a working title that will naturally include keywords/phrases your target audience is interested in. Don’t over-complicate your title by trying to fit keywords where they don’t naturally belong. That said if there are clear opportunities to add keywords you’re targeting to your post title and headers, feel free to take them. Also, try to keep your headlines short — ideally, under 65 characters — so they don’t get truncated in search engine results.
Meta descriptions are the descriptions below the post’s page title on Google’s search results pages. They provide searchers with a short summary of the post before clicking on it. They are ideally between 150-160 characters and start with a verb, such as “Learn,” “Read,” or “Discover.” While meta descriptions no longer factor into Google’s keyword ranking algorithm, they do give searchers a snapshot of what they will get by reading the post and can help improve your click-through rate from search.
Anchor text is the word or words that link to another page — either on your website or on another website. Carefully select which keywords you want to link to other pages on your site because search engines take that into consideration when ranking your page for certain keywords.
It’s also important to consider which pages you link to. Consider linking to pages that you want to rank well for that keyword. You could end up getting it to rank on Google’s first page of results instead of its second page, and that ain’t small potatoes.
With mobile devices now accounting for nearly 2 out of every 3 minutes spent online, having a website that is responsive or designed for mobile has become more and more critical. In addition to making sure your website’s visitors (including your blog’s visitors) have the best experience possible, optimizing for mobile will score your website some SEO points.
Back in 2015, Google made a change to its algorithm that now penalizes sites that aren’t mobile optimized. May 2016, Google rolled out their second version of the mobile-friendly algorithm update — creating a sense of urgency for the folks that have yet to update their websites.
Step 9: Pick a catchy title
Last but not least, it’s time to spruce up that working title of yours. Start with your working title. As you start to edit your title, keep in mind that it’s important to keep the title accurate and clear. Then, work on making your title sexy — whether it’s through strong language, alliteration, or another literary tactic. If you can, optimize for SEO by sneaking some keywords in there (only if it’s natural, though!). Finally, see if you can shorten it at all. No one likes a long, overwhelming title — and remember, Google prefers 65 characters or fewer before it truncates it on its search engine results pages.
So, What Next?