It’s so exciting to decide to grow your blog! Seeing those views and subscriber metrics climb is so rewarding. However, growing your blog isn’t possible without following best blog practices. Unfortunately, you can’t publish whenever you feel like it and expect to reach your goals. There are a few non-negotiables you need to make sure you’re doing to drive the results you want to see.
Whether you’re starting a blog for the first time or have blogged in the past and are ready to improve your results, you’ve come to the right place.
This article will dig into essential blog strategies for reaching your blogging goals.
The Best Blog Practices For Successful Blogging
What makes a good blog? To grow a successful blog, you need to understand fundamentals of blogging. That means, following best practices of blogging to achieve desired results.
#1. Build & Follow a Strategy
It’s impossible to reach your goals if you don’t know what they are.
As you’re deciding to grow your blog, determine what’s most important to you.
Do you want to increase your page views?
Ranking on Google Search?
No matter what it is, make a decision and a quantity-based goal.
From there, you need to build a strategy designed to help you reach your blogging goals. We’ll dig into more of the specifics in the next few sections, but your strategy should cover:
- Demographics & psychographics of your target audience
- Your blog niche & content themes
- Publication schedule
- Your unique brand personality & writing style
- Standard promotional schedule & platforms
As you go through the below sections, document your thoughts and plan for your blog. Don’t worry about making it perfect right away. Get something out now, then plan to revisit your strategy in a few days with fresh eyes to refine and adjust.
Once you’ve gotten your blog strategy to a point where you’re happy with it, share it with anyone else on your team. If you have additional writers, people who edit your content, or graphic designers, give them a copy of your blog strategy and chat through how you plan to implement it. Your other writers, for example, will need to write in your chosen style about the selected themes. Similarly, content editors will be able to make sure your brand personality shines through where it’s supposed to.
#2. Get to Know Your Audience
Who do you plan to write for? Understanding your target audience’s demographics and psychographics will allow you to tailor your blog strategy to meet their needs. This includes writing in a style that connects with them, using images they relate to, promoting your content on platforms they use, and writing about topics that interest them.
Build audience profiles to get to know your potential readers better. You may be targeting a few different types of readers, that’s okay! Build a profile for each different “type” of reader. Your profiles should cover:
- Typical age
- Gender ratio
- Level of education
- Social media profiles used
When you’re just getting started, you might not know all of these answers! It’s okay to make a rough guess and adjust as you learn more about your readers. HubSpot has a great Make My Persona tool that you can use to document your audience profiles.
#3. Be Genuine
There’s a lot of content out on the internet. What makes yours so special? No one else is you! Your blog content should be genuine and reflect your actual experiences, thoughts, and personality. Don’t be afraid to get a little personal (within reason). You’ll be able to forge deeper connections with your readers by showcasing who you are.
With that in mind, select a blog niche that aligns with your interests and expertise. Choose something that you feel confident writing about. If you wouldn’t be able to strike up a conversation about the topic at a party, it’s probably not the right fit for you.
Ideally, your blog niche should align with the interests and challenges of your target audience. (If not, consider revisiting your audience profiles!) While it’s important to have a specific niche, it should also be broad enough for you to develop plenty of content on the topic.
If you choose to do affiliate marketing, a strategy where you promote products or tools for a cut of the revenue, make sure you only work with brands that you trust and use yourself. No one wants to read a blog that promotes every product under the sun. Limit your relationships to brands you value and that you feel will benefit your audience.
Note: Save the pin image to pinterest to read later 🙂
#4. Post Consistently
Your readers shouldn’t have to wonder when your next article will go live. Maintain a consistent posting schedule so readers know exactly what to expect from you.
When you’re just getting started, opt for fewer blog posts — twice per month is great. As you’re rolling your posts out, start to work further and further ahead. It’s great to have a backlog of content so you’re always posting new articles. This doesn’t mean you can never write and publish an article spontaneously, but making sure you have a library of blogs ready to go will make your life way easier in the long run.
As you build up more content and you’re able to start writing faster, you can begin publishing more often. The more frequently you publish, the higher your views and search engine rankings will be, as long as you maintain your content quality while scaling quantity. Plan to work up to posting once per week if you’re a solo blogger, or more frequently if you have a team of writers.
If you are struggling with consistency, check out few important tips for bloggers to become consistent.
#5. Consider SEO
SEO stands for search engine optimization, and it’s a high priority for digital creators today. The goal of SEO is to develop content that aligns with search engine best practices so your links show up on search engine results pages. For example, if you write about dog grooming, you want your website or articles to show up on the top page of Google for search terms like “dog care”, “grooming dogs at home”, and “best products for dog grooming”.
SEO is so valuable because it represents an immense opportunity to drive organic traffic to your website. Readers who are interested in your content, but haven’t heard of you will be able to find your website and blogs by searching for their questions.
In order for your content to show up on search results pages, you need to follow a few best blog practices:
- Include keywords in your content — these are terms that your target audience is likely to search for
- Develop alt text for your images — this is just a few words describing the content of your image
- Add links to internal and external pages — your articles should link to other pages on your site along with industry sources
There are many factors to consider with SEO. These are just a few of the easiest strategies to implement. If you want to learn more about SEO, Neil Patel’s blog is a great resource.
#6. Incorporate Fantastic Visuals
You may be surprised to learn that creating an incredible blog isn’t all about your writing! In fact, visual elements play an important role in your blog’s success.
Consider the user experience of coming across a text-only article on a website. It can be incredibly overwhelming to stumble upon a huge wall of text. Meanwhile, an article that’s broken up with thoughtful, engaging imagery is not only more enticing but will keep your reader on your page longer.
You don’t have to be a professional graphic designer or photographer to develop great visuals. Unsplash and Pexels are great free resources for downloading high-quality images. If you want to design graphics or charts, Canva is another great free tool that’s incredibly easy to use.
It’s a good rule of thumb to include one image for every 200-300 words of copy. Don’t only add generic stock photography, try to find images that relate to what you’re talking about in your article. Even better, embed a video explaining the content or going into great detail on one section.
#7. Promote Your Content After Publishing
You’ve written an incredible article with fantastic images, included keywords your audience is likely to search for, and aligned everything with your blog’s brand.
Great work! But your job isn’t done. Now, you need to promote your content to drive readers to your blog. This is definitely one of the most underrated blog practices most bloggers avoid.
While optimizing for SEO will hopefully bring a few readers in via search, promoting via social media is a strong strategy for reaching new viewers. Consider the audience profiles you developed. Which platforms did you determine your audience was most active on? Those are the platforms you should use for promoting your content.
Best practices will vary by platform, but some overarching strategies to keep in mind include:
- Don’t be overly promotional — make sure each post you make provides value
- Include hashtags in your posts
- Use great images along with enticing copy
- Promote your content multiple times
Using a social media scheduling tool can make content promotion easy. Instead of going to each platform to make a new post every day, sit down with your scheduler after posting a blog and develop a year’s worth of posts promoting it. That way, you can develop all of your content while you’re still in the mindset of your blog. This will save you a ton of time and help you drive great results.
Missinglettr is a great tool for promoting your content because it automatically detects new blogs and begins building promotional campaigns for them. The tool generates hashtags, images, and post copy, you just have to review it and hit approve.
#8. Review & Analyze Your Results
No matter how much time you invest in developing your strategy and building your content, you won’t know how anything will perform until it’s actually out in the world. After you begin publishing content on your website and social media, set aside time to regularly review and analyze your results to determine what’s working and what isn’t.
It’s going to take some time to see results, so don’t be discouraged if your numbers are rather low for the first 6-9 months — this is to be expected!
You can look for trends in your content that performs the best. Does your audience respond best to a specific topic or writing style? Perhaps when you share content to a specific platform you see a spike in traffic. Look for those actionable insights you can take and implement to boost your performance.
Best Blogging Practices To Grow a Successful Blog
Now that you have read the best blog practices, what’s your plan?
First and foremost, identify your target audience for your blog, then define your blog niche and content themes. From there, you can begin developing content. Aim to start slow, but ramp up your publishing frequency as you’re able. As your content goes live and you promote it via social, be sure to review your results and look for opportunities to improve your efforts.
Now you have all the information you need to start a successful blog or amplify the results of your existing blog. As I said in the beginning, your blog strategy is merely a starting point. As you begin your efforts, you can adjust your plan accordingly.
More about Guest Author;
Cass Polzin, content writer at Missinglettr, has been blogging for nearly a decade, turning her hobby into a career. After supporting dozens of startups and B2B SaaS companies with inbound marketing and copywriting, she decided to take the jump into entrepreneurship and co-founded Zealous.