One of the questions I’m often asked is:
And my answer is normally “once a week” – which is often enough to capture all the benefits of blogging yet still manageable within anyone’s busy working week. Other bloggers will have different opinions – some think once a month is OK so long as you do it consistently; others recommend several posts a week, which I feel is going to prove impossible to all but the most dedicated bloggers!
Yep, once a week is enough for most businesses – but what benefits are there to be had from blogging every week?
5 reasons why you need to update your blog regularly
1. Keep your readers coming back
Think of your blog like your favourite magazine. You buy one issue and enjoy reading it, so you keep an eye out for the next issue, and soon you know when to expect it and you go looking for it. If that magazine disappears from the shelves, or only comes out sporadically, you’ll soon get fed up and look for a more reliable source of information. When you start a blog you will hopefully get people coming to read it. And with any luck they’ll like what they read enough to come back again and again. But if you only write now and then they’re soon going to give up visiting your blog and go to one of your competitor’s websites instead – one who is putting the time into blogging.
2. Improve your search engine ranking
The search engines love fresh content – in fact, it’s one of the biggest factors Google looks at when deciding where to rank your website. When you update regularly – once a week, for example – your fresh content triggers a visit from the search engine spiders, who will index your site, realise it’s been updated and move you a little higher up in the rankings. There are other ways regular blogging benefits your SEO (search engine optimisation) too. Every blog post you publish adds a page to your website, making it a bigger and more authoritative entity. And you can also target your blog posts to specific keywords that people will be searching for.
3. Fresh content to share on social media
By spreading the word about your blog on social media networks you increase the traffic coming to your site – which, in the long run, gives you more potential customers. But if you only blog now and then you won’t have anything new to tweet about. Blogging regularly gives you a steady stream of material to tell people about, and you can reuse it too in your email newsletters too, increasing the number of people you reach out to.
4. Demonstrate your expertise
Blogging gives you a great opportunity to demonstrate and share your knowledge, and by blogging regularly on a small number of related topics you become known as the expert in your field. People are more likely to buy your services when you’ve already shown them you know what you’re talking about!
Once you’ve built up a large archive of blog material there are several ways you can use it to create an income. For example, you could combine several blog posts on one topic into an ebook. Liz Broomfield, a fellow proofreader who kept a blog about her transition from part time freelancing to running a full time business, is currently putting those posts together in a book to help other people thinking of going the self employment route. Another blogger-turned-author is Cassandra Parkin, who got such a good response to her blog post poking fun at the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy that she ended up publishing her own books which have sold very well. If you’re a prolific blogger you could also create a separate premium membership area on your site, where people pay to get exclusive content. And once you’ve built up a good audience you can make money through reviewing products and collecting affiliate fees.
However, no matter how good the reasoning for regular blogging some people will never feel comfortable doing it, perhaps because they don’t enjoy writing or they simply don’t have the time. In those instances you could always call on the services of someone like me to write your blog posts for you. You can find out more about my blogging for business service here.