Four actions you can take right now to extend your blog’s reach
Scrolling through water and environmental industry websites, I always check for a company blog. A place where the company showcases its brand and raises awareness of its products and services. Almost every site I visit hosts a blog. Some companies even blog regularly and consistently.
One of the primary benefits of a company blog is how it can help increase traffic to your website. But publishing consistently may not be generating the interest you were hoping for.
So, other than publishing quality content, consistently, how can you optimize your blog to extend your reach?
This series, How to Powerup your Blog: Four actions you can take to extend your blog’s reach, will discuss four actions you can take right now to get more traffic to your blog:
- Action 1: Powerup your blog structure
- Action 2: Powerup your social media
- Action 3: Powerup your headlines
- Action 4: Powerup all channels – SlideShare
This first post explains how to structure your blog with categories and tags so search engines can find your content, driving more traffic to your website.
Action 1: Powerup your blog structure
Without a proper structure, as your blog grows, your readers will get lost in the search for the information they need. Your posts will disappear in the crowd. Search engines won’t be able to find them.
How do you add structure to your blog? You start by using categories and tags. Strategically implemented, categories and tags extend your blog’s reach, get your content found, and improve your SEO.
You use categories to group your content into ‘global’ segments. Categories increase usability and enhance SEO. Search engines will find posts more easily if they aren’t competing with each other.
You can define and describe your categories in WordPress under the Posts menu. Each post should be assigned a single category. The description you use is displayed on the category page so make is compelling. For instance, the WaterCopy categories are based on the services I provide: Content marketing, White papers, Blogging etc.
Once all your blogs are assigned to a single category, you can put category pages on your site. Category pages sort your posts and display them on a separate page for each category. Links to category pages can be on a menu bar on in a sidebar. Remember, search engines love more pages!
As your blog grows you can add sub-categories to add another layer of structure. Evaluate your site structure regularly to keep it in order.
Hashtags are a word, or group of words after the # sign (like #hashtag, #watercopy, #contentmarketing etc.). Most people know of them from their use on Twitter as “tweet chats” – open group discussions around a particular topic. They are also known as metadata tags. You use tags to add further structure to your blog by describing your posts in more detail.
There are several types of tags:
Brand & Campaign tags
A brand hashtag is your company name or tagline. You use your business tag on all of your social media sites.
A campaign hashtag is one you develop for each of your marketing campaigns. If you can get people to use your hashtag, your campaign will get extended reach. Link relevant posts to campaigns with campaign tags.
A trending hashtag identifies a topic that is very popular. By using a trending tag in your blog post, you can potentially get your message out to a very large audience.
Content tags are common hashtags that are related to your post content. You use content tags to further sort your posts, improving SEO. Base content tags on keywords related to the category and the post.
Content tags help get your updates seen by prospects who are searching for, or using, the hashtag words.
There are different ways to structure content tags. You may want to use:
- product hashtags (e.g. #whitepapers, #casestudies)
- service hashtags, (e.g. #contentwritingservices, #proofreading)
- location hashtags (e.g. #onlinefreelancer)
- event hashtags (e.g.#endofyearsale)
As well as adding structure to your blog, you can engage with people using related common hashtags – whether it’s a retweet on Twitter or a Like on LinkedIn.
Structuring you blog with categories and tags will increase traffic to your blog by enhancing SEO.
The next post in the series, How to Increase Traffic to Your Blog: Four actions you can take to extend your reach, action 2 is about effectively dispersing your message through lots of different social media channels.