10 Best Blog Writing Tips
In an earlier post, I explained the benefits of blogging, arguing that it is crucial for the success of your small business. However, I must admit something to you, dear reader: I may not have told the whole truth. See, just starting a blog and writing anything at all is not ideal. Again, it is better than nothing at all, but there are certain tips you can follow for the best blog writing, making your blog post even more productive.
After all, over 600 million blogs currently reside on the internet, approximately 35% of all websites. To stand out in that crowded landscape, you need a good blog post, not just one that is merely okay.
Luckily for you, dear reader, we have ten free blogging tips for you to use in your own blogs! In no time, you will be producing the best blog writing in your industry, shooting to the top of SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages).
1. Put in Useful Content That Answers the Readers’ Questions
This is the most important tip for the best blog writing. When referencing webpages/blogs, you will often hear people discussing SEO (Search Engine Optimization). In other words, you hope that your page will show up near the top of the results from search engines (especially Google).
What is the #1 way to make your blog post do well in a search engine’s results?
Answer whatever question the searcher has asked. Of course, that means that part of your strategy needs to be finding blog writing topics that your readers need to know.
Another benefit to writing clear, helpful content is that it builds your brand as an industry expert. Your readers will be sure to continue to return to your essential business website to find more of your beneficial blog posts.
2. Find the Right Length
How long should the ideal blog be?
There is no right or wrong answer to the common question of how long a blog post should be. However, most experts recommend trying to make your entries 1,500 to 2,000 words for the best blog writing. The reasoning behind this recommendation is that this number of words thoroughly addresses a topic without being too cumbersome to read. Also, this word range typically does the best in search engines.
This recommendation does not mean that you should stuff your post with unnecessary words just to hit a magic number. It is just a guideline.
When in doubt, remember that the most important blogging tip is to ensure that you have clear, helpful information. If you are adding in extra words that aren’t helpful and end up muddling your point to the reader, those words are completely unnecessary.
3. Take Your Time
Of course, when writing a blog post that contains so many words, you need to spend an appropriate amount of time. Plus, you need to make sure that your blog post is filled with high-quality content. Therefore, you can’t just slap together a quick post and call it done. As a result, the average amount of time that it takes to do your best blog writing is currently just under 4 hours. In other words, as with all things in life, doing the job well takes time!
4. Create a Good Headline
With some of the basics out of the way, we can now turn to some blogging tips about how to format your post. This first one is crucial. After all, as disheartening as it may seem, no one will spend the time reading all the wonderful words you include in your blog post unless you have a headline that encourages them to do so.
There are many ways to create great headlines, but here are a few headline ideas.
Use a number
Some headlines in the best blog writing are those that include numbers. 36% of readers prefer this kind of title. And it’s so easy to do!
- Top Ten Marketing Tips
- Five Mistakes You’re Making with Your Marketing
- Six Ideas for Awesome Blogs
The “How To” headline
Another popular choice is to create a “how to” title. It’s a simple yet effective headline. How often are you typing in “how to” into Google?
- How to craft the perfect blog
- How to sell your products online
- How to create a content calendar for your business
- How to run a holiday marketing campaign
As you can see, this type of headline is powerful. Luckily, it is also easy to write.
Use a power word
Finally, many experts recommend that you include at least one power word in your headline. These words are ones that the human brain reacts positively to, and they make us more inclined to want to learn more. In other words, power words—as well as the other headline tips listed—make your reader more likely to click and go to your blog post.
Of course, just make sure that your headline is also an indication for the reader of what your blog post is actually about.
Humans are naturally curious, so writing a headline that plays on this is a good practice. However, if you don’t deliver the answer, you will leave your reader disappointed. Even worse, your brand becomes associated with the sleazy practice of clickbait.
5. Use Subheadings and Shorter Paragraphs
Let’s be honest: most modern-day readers are skimmers.
They are reading to try to find pretty specific information. Subheadings are therefore extremely important. The reader can look at the subheadings and decide which section contains the material they need. If they do read your entire post, subheadings also help readers go back to the parts they want to read again or use.
Subheadings also help with another key element of the best blog writing: it breaks up the text.
Long blocks of text are intimidating for most readers, and if they see it, they often move to another search result.
This issue is exacerbated by the fact that many of your readers will be looking at your blog post on their phones, and mobile websites further elongate paragraphs. Therefore, shorter paragraphs (or those that contain bullet points) are more likely to be read.
6. Use Some Images and/or Videos (Maybe Even Some Audio)
Ironically, the best blog writing, in many ways, isn’t about your words at all. In today’s multimedia-rich world, most consumers expect to look at something other than a page of words. There are many ways to make your text more visually appealing. One way is to add in graphic design elements such as bold words or pull quotes.
However, the main way to add some pizzazz when writing a blog is to add some good images or videos. After all, the human brain processes images and videos faster than written language, so it is often even more effective. The statistics about adding in images/video bear this out.
- Posts that contain images get 94% more views than those that don’t.
- Video content is 50 times more likely to get organic search traffic than text.
- 43% of consumers are looking for video content.
It is no wonder that the best blog posts contain some version of these media.
Adding in audio to a blog post is a relatively new practice. However, with the rise of podcasts, many more writers are doing just that. The early grades are promising: 45% of writers who have added audio to their blog posts report better results.
7. Add in at Least One Internal Link (and an External One, Too!)
First, let’s define these two terms that are very important for your best blog writing.
What is an internal link? An internal link is where you put a hyperlink to a page that is already part of your domain. In other words, if your domain is www.acompany.com, anything you link to that starts with www.acompany.com/ is an internal link. These could be links to the best blog posts you have written, to your homepage, to your list of products, or to any other pages on your website.
External links, as you can imagine, are the opposite. That is where you link to someone else’s site.
I will admit that including links is not always as important as it is made out to be.
Part of the reason is because the algorithms of search engines are ever-evolving. As a reaction to some people performing shady actions such as stuffing their blog posts with only internal links and no content, search engines have lessened the importance of these links in SEO. Instead, links to your content from other domains is considered the best.
With all of that said, putting in links is still good practice.
Even if your own internal links are not quite as valuable to SEO as they used to be, they still help. And you can prioritize: if you want a certain page to rank highly, you can provide more links to it. External links can also help SEO because they show that your blog post contains high-quality, authoritative content. As I mentioned in Tip #1, useful content is the most important consideration for writing a good blog post!
Just make sure that the links you put in (both external and internal) are natural and actually make sense within your writing.
8. Make Sure Your Blog Stays Relevant
Most of the time, the best blog writing involves creating content that readers will be searching for in years to come. This is called evergreen content. For example, a blog post about how to get rid of carpenter ants in your home would likely not have an expiration. Neither would a post about the very beginnings of photography.
Another technique to ensure that your content stays relevant is to update it after a while. For example, say that you write a blog post about what consumers should consider when buying a new cell phone. That content stays relevant for quite a while, but after a few years, you would want to update it as new features are introduced.
While evergreen content is generally the best blog writing, that is not to say that you should never write anything else. Sometimes, it is important to write a blog post that is timely, such as when you are running a promotion or when you are responding to a current event or a current fad.
9. Create a Good Meta Description
The meta description is the little snippet that goes underneath the link when your page comes up on a search result page. For example, the meta description for our home page is highlighted in red:
If left to its own devices, Google or other search engines will just put a random snippet in this space (usually the first sentence or two of your post). However, if you write your own, you get to describe your post better and to really entice the searcher to click on your page instead of other results.
10. Use Keywords…But Use Them Well
For many years, the crucial element to the best blog writing was to stuff a post with as many keywords as possible. That is no longer the case. Writing a good blog post today consists of ensuring that your content clearly answers a searcher’s questions. However, keywords can help you rank higher in SERPs, at least when users search for your keyword term. So, if you can find good keywords to focus in on, it makes sense to add them, as long as they fit in naturally within your content already.
Google Keyword Planner is a great tool to help you find a few keywords or key phrases to sprinkle into your blog post. If you are not sure how to use it, here is a good primer video.
I fully recognize that these tips may be intimidating for some people. Some people don’t feel super confident in their writing abilities. For others, the idea of taking time from their busy schedules to do a great job may feel overwhelming. However, digital marketing agencies — such as May Dream Design — are here to take it off your hands.