You’ve started a blog for your business with the hope of attracting new leads to your website. Perfect!
This is a common question among small business owners who either are writing a blog for their business independently or having a staff person write it. We all know that new, good, content is one of the best ways to attract new leads online, but not everyone realizes that after a blog post is written, you still have work to do to make the most of it.
That’s why we’re sharing 7 important steps to take after writing a blog post to maximize it’s SEO potential and thereby giving it the best chance to generate leads for your business.
For those who are looking for a specific tip or wanting the highlights, here’s the overview for what we’ll cover:
- Read through and check for errors and improvements
- Create a strategic title
- Pick an easy to link to URL slug
- Link to internal pages
- Link to external websites
- Distribute the new blog post to maximize reach
- Get started on the next piece of content
1. Read through and check for errors and improvements
This is perhaps the most obvious step you should take after writing an article, but typos, errors, and other missteps are more common than you’d think. This is true for both blog posts and standard website content.
While most SEO experts believe Google doesn’t directly penalize for grammatical errors and typos, we do believe that typos and errors in your blog content can adversely impact your SEO. There are 2 reasons we believe it’s important to read through your newly written content, and look for typos and areas to improve.
Namely, the 2 reasons are backlink building and user experience.
We do know that Google considers user experience (UX) when crawling your website and ranking it for search engine results. We also believe that people are less likely to link back to a website that commonly has typos and other grammatical errors.
We are all striving to create quality content that our customers will benefit from and potentially share, so take the extra 15 minutes to read through your content and ensure it’s high quality and typo free.
2. Create a strategic title for your blog post
You may have started your blog post by picking a title that gives a good overview of your content, but do you ever revisit that title after you’ve finished the article?
More often than we care to admit, we think we know what our blog content will include, but then find ourselves realizing that the initial scope was either too specific, vague, or unhelpful. If you’re seeking to use content marketing to attract new leads to your business, then you should be writing helpful content.
Sometimes, you dig into the topic you want to write on and realize it’s not relevant to your audience, or perhaps some other topic would be more helpful.
At the end of the day, the goal is to have a strategic title that accurately represents your content and will attract a reader. You may end up with content that would be better represented by a new title.
3. Pick an easy to link to URL “slug”
The URL slug is the part of the URL that comes after the forward slash. For example, in seadev.us/blog, /blog is the slug.
For your blog post, or any page of content for that matter, you’ll want to pick a URL slug that has strategic keywords and describes the content on that page succinctly. URLs that are well written will give you the best link-ability since people are more willing to share a link to a page that has a short and descriptive URL.
To look at an example, for this article we chose the to use the slug /steps-to-improve-blog-SEO because it is short, shareable, and easy to understand.
4. Link to other relevant pages on your website
Internal links are links that direct the reader to another page on your website. The most common use for this is when the new content you are writing relates to pre-existing content on another page.
This could be a blog post, pricing page, or contact form. Again, the aim here is to provide the best user experience possible.
Here’s a quick example of how we use internal linking as a way to be helpful to our readers. If someone is reading a blog post that is explaining how important SEO is for their website, but are not yet familiar with what the differences between on-page and off-page SEO are, then we will share a link to an article that explains it in a separate blog post.
This helps people to navigate your website with less effort, but it also improves your website’s SEO for another reason.
Navigational hierarchy is impacted by internal linking.
Google has “spiders” that crawl your website to make sense of your content and index it for search results and linking to other internal pages helps ensure that your content stands the best chance for getting indexed.
5. Link to external websites that are helpful to your audience
As with all things in your marketing, you should be considering your customer first. Sometimes that will lead you to pointing a website visitor to an external website (i.e. one that is not yours). Perhaps even a potential competitor’s website!
We have heard some say that they don’t want to link to an external website because they are afraid that the user may never come back to their website, but sometimes another website has better content on a specific topic than your current website. In these situations, we are happy to link to a more authoritative source so that if the user wants to learn more they can do so easily.
In sales, there is a well known saying, “Always Be Closing”, but we prefer the approach of “Always Be Helpful” and external links can better serve your audience in some situations.
How does that help SEO?
Google appreciates the help in crawling the web! In addition to helping structure the ever growing internet, readers will appreciate the high value content you point them to, and naturally trust you more in the process.
6. Distribute the new blog post to maximize reach
Now that you’ve written your blog, you’ll need to distribute it!
There are 3 main ways to distribute content online; owned, earned, and paid.
Owned is the most straightforward since it includes sharing your new blog on social media channels, with your email list, and any other platform that you “own”. This is unpaid, and usually requires a large volume of engaged followers on your various platforms to be effective.
Paid is the second most common, and usually happens through pay per click advertising. This can take place through Google Ads, Facebook ads, or other paid digital channels, but you will be paying for each click, so be sure that the content is very good and that your ad targeting is highly focused to maximize ROI.
Earned distribution is usually the most challenging, since it requires a 3rd party to share your content. This is also very common, but requires more leg work on your part.
For those unaware, both product and service based businesses frequently leverage 3rd party review sources to “earn” distribution of new content. This happens through guest blog posts, social media stories and posts, as well as vlogs on Youtube.
7. Get started on the next piece of content
Hopefully you already have made a plan for what’s next. Now that you’ve finished your blog, shared it with others, and taken a break, get back to work!
Consistency is king with content marketing, so while one blog post may end being a top performer, you can’t just write one or two posts and hope to succeed. It will take showing up for your audience week after week, answering their questions thoroughly and honestly to build up a predictable flow of inbound leads for your business.
Not sure how to proceed?
Still not sure how to bring in new leads using your business website? Send us a message by clicking this link and our team will give you a call.