Have you seen websites without a blog section? I have. Plenty of them. The problem with business websites is, most businesses have a website just because other people have it. It is something essential on their business card and their email address. But that limits what your website can do for you.
In providing technical SEO focused websites, I found a number of clients with sites that don’t give proper leads. In many cases, their websites don’t even give them a single lead. So why should you keep a website then?
Sometimes, it is wrong expectations. I have clients telling me that as long as people can find their company name on the search engines, their website works.
Or if they run a noodles shop on 11th Street in New York and someone Googles, ’11th Street bagel shop’ and they show up, that’s enough.
Unfortunately not. Rather, you want to show up on the first page of search engine results when someone searches your products and services, no?
Needing A Blog Section: Intro
The Blog Section is a crucial but often misunderstood part of a website. But very often, websites end up without it. Instead you either get a one page site or just a simple brochure site to showcase the company, team/board of directors as well as the products you offer.
Your web designer/developer don’t really explain the need for a blog section and you didn’t ask. But as part of our Website Checklist series, we are here to educate you on what makes a great website.
Did you know that having a blog is crucial? In fact, having a blog with optimised blog posts is tantamount for modern-day companies. But why so? Let us address this below.
Why You Need A Blog Section
There are a couple of reasons why you need a blog section for your site. Let us take a look at the list below and then continue on with the explanation.
- Don’t Be A Thin Site
- Ranking for Desired Keywords
- Develop Authority
- Gain Links
1) Don’t Be A Thin Site
The problem with most websites are that, they add little or no value to people searching. This is very common with Business Websites.
Sure, you might have some company details and perhaps some products. But how much of that is original content and how much of that content is of value to users?’
…”thin” tends to get equated with “quality” – if you’ve got thin content, just increase your quality. It sounds good, on the surface, but ultimately Google’s view of quality is defined by algorithms. They can’t measure the persuasiveness of your copy or the manufacturing standards behind your products.1
While thin content is commonly associated to the quality of the content, having a blog means you can consistently add quality content for the users. This improves the value of your site to Google.
2) Ranking for Desired Keywords
The purpose of a website isn’t just to look nice but to get results with search engines. Meaning, you want visitors to find you on the first page of the search results. However without a blog section, it will be hard to rank for multiple desired keywords.
With Google’s constant tweaking of their algorithm to produce better results for their users, SEO blackhat techniques that worked before will now incur penalties. While it is favourable to keyword stuff and buy domains related to your keyword, Google has changed.
That means to rank for your desired keywords, you need to produce original, valuable content. And for that purpose, you do need a blog section.
In 2011, Google added the freshness signal in their ranking algorithm. You see, with so many websites and so much content out there, fresh content is important for certain topics. Searches for topics like Taylor Swift’s boyfriend or Postpaid Plans will give you results which are both fresh and relevant.
One way to consider the freshness is via Google’s Query Deserves Freshness algorithm.
The QDF solution revolves around determining whether a topic is “hot”. If news sites or blog posts are actively writing about a topic, the model figures that it is one for which users are more likely to want current information. The model also examines Google’s own stream of billions of search queries.– Amit Singhal, Senior VP und Google Fellow2
However, for topics which are evergreen (like How To Date or Ways To Cook an Egg), freshness isn’t so much of a priority. For most businesses though, posting new content would help in some way as most products and services change with time.
An example of products/services which are updated regularly include
- The latest Mercedes-Benz model
- Taxation procedures
- Legal advice and procedures
- Latest Restaurant offerings
- Latest Design trends for name cards
- Latest Melaleuca products as well as updates to existing ones
As you can see, there are many ways businesses could improve content freshness and make their content more relevant to Google and users. Perhaps talk to a content specialist if you need ideas on how to generate fresh and valuable content for your site.
4) Develop Authority
If you are a small business owner, you are usually known within a geographical area. This limits your reach. If you are in Detroit, what are the chances that someone in San Francisco or London will engage your services? Especially if you offer something generic. Like copy writing, legal advice, accounting services or even t-shirts in an online store.
Having a blog section with helpful regular content enables you to build authority. This builds a set of audience that trusts you and have a higher chance of converting compared to say, sending out cold emails or cold calling.
The best thing about having a blog section is, once you have developed the readership, you begin to develop authority in that field. Not only will the readers view you as an authority but with a proper content plan, search engines will as well.
5) Gain Links
Links are one of the best ways for Google to know your website is relevant. However, the trick about links is that we shouldn’t focus on link-building. Rather, links should come naturally as a result of your content.
Having a blog ensures you are able to gain links naturally as you develop your blog’s authority. This solves two of the major ranking signals that Google looks for
- Valuable content
- Links from other websites
This article from the Google Search Console Help Center explains it in further detail.
Links help our crawlers find your site and can give your site greater visibility in our search results. When returning results for a search, Google uses sophisticated text-matching techniques to display pages that are both important and relevant to each search. Google interprets a link from page A to page B as a vote by page A for page B. Votes cast by pages that are themselves “important” weigh more heavily and help to make other pages “important.”
Keep in mind that our algorithms can distinguish natural links from unnatural links. Natural links to your site develop as part of the dynamic nature of the web when other sites find your content valuable and think it would be helpful for their visitors. Unnatural links to your site are placed there specifically to make your site look more popular to search engines. Some of these types of links (such as link schemes and doorway pages) are covered in our Webmaster Guidelines.
Only natural links are useful for the indexing and ranking of your site.3
Why You Need A Blog Section: Conclusion
Having a blog section is a must for any modern websites. Along with it, you need a content plan as well as a way to automate the posting of these content to social media.
Due to the amount of SEO losses from not having a blog section, we recommend that you have a word with your web designer/developer if your site does not have one. Otherwise, feel free to contact us for our web development services.
- Should We Still Worry About Thin Content? | Search Engine Watch, Should We Still Worry About Thin Content?, https://searchenginewatch.com/sew/how-to/2392782/should-we-still-worry-about-thin-content
- What does Query Deserves Freshness (QDF) mean? – SISTRIX, What does Query Deserves Freshness (QDF) mean?, https://www.sistrix.com/ask-sistrix/google-updates-and-algorithm-changes/google-freshness-update/what-does-query-deserves-freshness-qdf-mean/
- Steps to a Google-friendly site, Google Search Console Help, https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/40349?hl=en