05 Sep Blogging for Beginners: 7 Critical Steps Most New Bloggers Skip
If you are new to the world of blogging, welcome! This short blogging for beginners guide will make sure that you don’t forget seven things that are critical to your success.
Blogging for Beginners: 7 Critical Steps Most New Bloggers Skip
1. Do your keyword research
If someone’s looking for information, what do they do? A Google search. If your blog post has any hope in turning up in a search, you need to use the keywords people are actually using.
So, go to the Google search bar and start typing. See what autofill suggests. Those are your keywords.
Pick one, and use it in your blog post title, first paragraph, and few more times in the body of your blog.
2. Learn how to use Yoast for SEO
If your website is built on WordPress, ask your web developer to install the Yoast for SEO plug-in. Yoast will tell you exactly what you need to do to optimize your blog post for search and readability.
We are HUGE fans of Yoast. Here’s a quick-start guide on how to use it.
3. Stick to five or fewer topic categories
Most new bloggers have no idea what the difference is between categories and tags. I go into detail about them here, but in short:
Categories are like departments in a grocery store: produce, bakery, meat, dairy, etc.
Tags are like the products within those departments: lettuce, apples, peppers, etc.
Stick to five categories or fewer for your blog. Each blog post should only be assigned one category and no more than five tags.
4. Use subheads generously
Subheads are important to use simply because it makes your blog post easier to skim. The easier your blog post is to skim, the easier it is for your reader to find the exact information they’re looking for.
Say you’re writing about 10 tips for house training a puppy. A reader might know four tips but not the other six. Subheads allow the reader to easily spot those six.
5. Include a call-to-action
Give your blog readers the chance to continue to engage with you by adding a call-to-action to the end of your posts. Limit your sales pitches and instead focus on providing value.
Do you have any free resources readers can download? A free trial or samples? Or how about asking them to subscribe to your newsletter or connect on social media?
6. Link to your other articles
Adding links to other blog posts is another great way to continue to engage people and provide even more value. You can see I’ve done this above – I added a link to longer articles on Yoast and blog categories and tags.
This is important to do for two more reasons.
One, you’ll keep people on your site longer, which search engines like to see. It sends the signal that you are a great source of information on the topic.
Two, you further establish your credibility with the reader.
7. Create a distribution strategy
“Write it and they will come” is not a marketing strategy. Writing a blog post is just the first step. You need to get it in front of your audience.
Send out a monthly newsletter with links to your recent blog posts. Share your posts on the social media channels your audience uses.
The key is to be consistent. Once you start content marketing, you need to stick with it. If you don’t, your prospects may forget about you – or wonder why you disappeared.
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