Blogging For Your Small Business: What To Know Before You Start

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If you’re a traditional small business owner, chances are you’ve heard of blogs that can help increase online traffic to your website and social media platforms.

In the highly digital era, where consumers are actively engaging with their favorite brands and companies online, there are several good reasons why a blog could benefit your small business.

It’s true, blogs can help increase your website’s popularity, even with more than six million blogs posted each day, blogging is a key driver of marketing success for both small and large businesses alike.

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What’s more, it’s been found that blogs drive 55% more website visitors, and can get up to 97% more inbound links. That’s a lot of traffic for a small business, and whether you’re running a small salon or even a bakery, blogs can help link your customers with your online webshop or even your social media.

Though there are a lot of positives that highlight the good side of publishing blogs, there are some key elements that make up a good blog post, even if you don’t consider yourself a wordsmith of note.

Getting started is perhaps the most difficult part, because what do you write about, better yet, what do your clients want to read about your business or the industry you’re operating in? There’s a lot to consider before jumping right into publishing your blogs, so let’s take a look at some of the things you should know beforehand.

Why Do You Want To Start A Blog?

While keeping customers informed, and growing your email list are key components of starting a blog, it’s good to consider why you want to start a blog in the first place.

Do you want to share information about a new product or service you’re offering, or perhaps you’re looking to change up your marketing tactics a bit, and blogs seem to deliver a positive return on investment? The possibilities are endless, and before you start writing, it’s good to take some time to think about the reasoning behind your blog.

While having a blog can drive web traffic, it becomes almost pointless to put in all the time and effort if your blog doesn't directly contribute to the bigger picture.

Write For Your Customers

Not all customers enjoy the same thing, even if they support the same brand or shop at the same store, and the same can be said about the information they consume online.

Having a business blog could potentially be about educating people about a new type of product range you are going to offer in the near future. But how do you convey this to your customers? Do you include highly sophisticated academic jargon, or maybe keep it easy and simple by using everyday language to persuade them into pre-ordering this new product?

Writing for your customers, or intended target audience is key to getting people engaged and turning them into paying customers.

Build Your Blog For Multiple Formats

Operating a blog means you will need to think about where you will be publishing all your work. If you already have a website, you can potentially add another tab to your menu where you can display all your blog posts. Even if you do this, how will those who have never heard of your business before even know you have a blog?

It’s important to write for multiple platforms and formats when you publish your blog. For social media, you might need to think of a striking caption that can accompany the post when promoting your new blog post. On other platforms, you might need to include several pieces of media that could help rank your post higher and receive more interaction.

From the hashtags to the time you post, and even to the target audience you intend to reach out to, think of the platform you’re most likely to use to promote your blog and plan a strategy accordingly.

Posting Frequently Is Important

It’s no use in having a blog for your small business if you don’t post regularly. Right from the start, it’s important to plan several blog post ideas and line them up for the weeks or months ahead.

Posting on your blog should be frequent and you should make time to think of some interesting topics you want to cover or talk about. Additionally, you need to consider how long it will take you to complete a blog post.

Maybe you want to interview someone, or include some interesting research but need approval before publishing. These are all important considerations to keep in mind when planning your blogging strategy.

Create Authority And Authenticity

There are millions of blog posts each day, and chances are that whatever you want to write about, or have written before has already been published, multiple times over.

As a small business owner, it can be hard to come up with interesting topics or write about something from a completely different angle.

Make sure that you plan your content, not only for the sake of saving time, but also to ensure you get to research the topic well enough. Through this, you get to establish yourself as an authoritative figure within your industry, but also among your customers.

Make Blogging A Marketing Effort

While you may feel nervous or even anxious to start writing and having people read it, think of how you can incorporate your blogs along with other marketing efforts.

In the beginning, it will take some time for your blog to grow an audience, especially if you’re a new small business, and this could mean you need to partner your blog posts with other marketing efforts.

If you’re offering a customer discount, include a link to your blog when sending out newsletters or campaign emails containing discount codes. Maybe share the blog on social media, and start a thread where customers could win a giveaway if they share the post with their followers.

Make an effort of including blogs with your overarching marketing strategy to help drive traffic and readers.

The Bottom Line

Blogs are truly a traditional, yet practical way to help increase awareness and online traffic for your small business, not only in terms of your online presence but for your brand as well.

Starting a blog may sound like a good idea at first, but the content you write and publish should be captivating enough to help drive customer engagement. Making an effort to publish a blog only to get zero reads can be a pointless exercise so it’s important to plan a good marketing strategy around your blog.

All-in-all, there is something special about blogs, and it helps to increase brand awareness, regardless of what type of business you may have, the products you sell, or the services you offer. Just be sure to create quality content that your customers will be interested in, and think of ways to include it with other marketing efforts.

If you think you have a good idea, pen it down, and get writing, you’ll be surprised to see how many people end up reading your ideas, even if you think it might be mundane or uninteresting.