Within the past couple of years there has been a surge in the amount of blogs surfacing throughout the net. As I go through many of these blogs I see trends of strategies which work well and areas which must be looked into to avoid potential issues. This article will guide you in the right direction for initiating and marketing your blog successfully.
Choosing the right software
Choosing the correct blogging software can mean the success or failure of your blog. Using software such as: word press and blogger gives you the ability to customize the blog to fit your needs. This will allow you the freedom to add and remove functionally you wish and to style it to match your main website.
Hosting your blog on the domain
To maximize the effect of your blog the best case scenario would be to host it on your domain. Two major reasons come to mind for why the blog should be hosted on your domain and nowhere else.
1. Branding experience — By placing the blog within the main domain, you’re adding to the branding experience of your company. When the user sees that they have left the current domain and travels to another URL (even if the look and feel stays the same) they tend to feel as if its not a part of the main site.
2. Inbound Linking — The idea behind the blog is to write compelling content which would potentially be of use to someone. If a viewer of the post you have written decides to link back to your post because he or she felt it was credible enough, that would classify as an inbound link to your page. If the blog was hosted on another domain and not your own, the credit for the inbound link wouldn’t be given to your main domain, but the domain the blog was hosted on.
Use relevant URL’s
The URL of any given page is a crucial aspect to optimize for. Ensure the URL is relevant to the copy which appears on the page. Stay away from using dynamic parameters within the URL such as: ?id=192. Best case scenario would be to keep the URL string short while still showcasing enough information to explain what the page is about.
Be unique, diverse and original
When thinking about / writing topics for your blog, it is important to be original. No one wants to read the same content over again. If you are writing about a topic which has been covered, put a new spin on it by voicing your opinion about the subject.
An important part of increasing the traffic to the blog is your participation within the community. The idea is that the more you participate within the community, the more you will look like an authority on a given subject. Once a majority of individuals view you as an authority in a given area, they will come to your blog first to find content and often link back to your blog when they write on a topic which is related.
Use Selective linking
When writing articles, you may feel it is necessary to link to a source or a point of reference. When doing so, we recommend taking the route of the informed user. This would mean providing a link when it is necessary to aid in the reader’s knowledge base on the subject, not because you felt it should be linked. It is also very important to link to sources from which you acquired your information. Not doing so could be considered copyright infringement and also may result in losing links to the article you have written.
A picture is worth a thousand words
I’m sure we have all heard this expression one time or another. It’s very true. Adding a picture to your posts which is relevant to the topic may entice a higher percentage of viewers to read the article.
Tagging your content
Tagging your posts is an important part to increasing traffic to your blog. Start by using websites such as Technorati and del.icio.us. These websites allow you to submit your articles and then classifies them under a specific tag, which is then searched on by active users of the website. Best case scenario would be to add the ability to submit your articles into the functionality of your blog. Being active within Technorati and del.icio.us will also help get you more traffic from bigger sites such as digg, reddit, and stumbleUpon.
Cover important Topics
In every industry there are topics which are either important at a particular time or are constantly on the front burner. Use these topics to provide your opinions. Most people who are concerned about doing research on a subject and providing concrete information are very good sources to develop links, not to mention additional traffic.
Although there are many other areas to consider when optimizing your blog, the above areas of focus are critical to its success.