Blogging to Improve a Website: 3 Examples
A lot of times we throw websites and blogs into two separate categories. While blogs do have several characteristics, as well as different functionality, that distinguish them from standard websites, the two can be used together to create an even stronger and more effective web presence.
There are a number of websites that use blogs as a supplement to the primary content of the site. In fact, this website is an example. The primary purpose of the site is to offer design services and the blog helps to accomplish the overall objectives by driving more traffic to the site and increasing the exposure of the design services.
If you currently run a website that does not include a blog, you could be missing out on a number of key benefits. Here are 5 reasons to add a blog to your site:
1. Repeat Traffic – Blogs allow your interested visitors to subscribe by RSS or by email. If you are selling products or services through your site, most visitors will not buy on their first visit. In this case, the more repeat traffic you get, the more likely you are to make sales. Additionally, these repeat visitors will frequently become very loyal visitors and supporters of your business.
2. Inbound Links – Starting a blog is one of the best things you can do to gain new inbound links. Effective blog content creation will make your site a much more likely target of links from other websites and blogs.
3. Search Engine Traffic/Rankings – One of the great benefits of blogs is the keyword-rich pages that are created each time you publish a new post. If you post consistently to your blog you will quickly see a drastic increase in the total number of pages on your site. The more pages on your site, the more opportunities you’ll have for search engine traffic. With each blog post you can target different keywords and phrases that will expand the type of searches that will draw traffic.
4. Credibility/Authority – A blog is a natural way for you to show your expertise to your visitors. Top bloggers are seen as experts and authorities in their respective fields. If you want others to recognize you as one of the leaders in your industry, start a blog and show them why you are an authority. Gaining this status can help you land more business and allow you to charge higher rates.
5. Interaction with Visitors – Blogs allow readers to interact by participating in the comments. Active readers are more likely to come back.
3 Websites that Use Blogs as a Supplement:
COLOURlovers is a large community site for designers and color lovers of all kinds. Their about page says:
COLOURlovers™ is a resource that monitors and influences color trends. COLOURlovers gives the people who use color – whether for ad campaigns, product design, or even in architectural specification – a place to check out a world of color, compare color palettes, submit news and comments, and read color related articles and interviews.
The blog at COLOURlovers is just one of the many resources available for visitors. There are currently over 40,000 users of the site and over 220,000 user-submitted color palettes. Articles on the blog frequently draw significant traffic, thanks in part to social media. I’m sure many visitors who find the site through the blog wind up looking through some of the other sections of the site and will return anytime they are looking for color inspiration.
One of the leading search engine optimization firms, SEOmoz’s blog is regularly updated and provides some of the industry’s best information. The blog at SEOmoz.org of course has helped to build the profile of the business and has a large, loyal following.
The primary focus of SEOmoz’s website is premium content that users can access through paid subscriptions. Premium members benefit from exclusive articles, ebooks and tools that are not available to the general public. There’s no doubt that the traffic and reputation that are a result of the blog help to increase the amount of premium memberships that are sold through the website. Anyone selling similar products and services would benefit from a similar strategy.
David Airey is a graphic designer based in Scotland. DavidAirey.co.uk naturally includes his design portfolio and all of the necessary information that you would expect to find about his services. However, the bulk of the site is a blog in which David writes about various topics related to graphic design and logo design.
I know from being a reader of David’s blog that he views the blog as a way to reach new clients. His approach is quite similar to that ours. A portfolio site and blog like David’s is relatively easy to set up with WordPress using the page feature to create all of the portfolio, about, and contact pages, and obviously using blog posts to create content for the blog. In my opinion this is a much more effective strategy than simply setting up a small portfolio website with very little content.
These are just 3 examples of how a blog can work in conjunction with a website. All three examples have different approaches and different reasons for using a blog. If you currently don’t use a blog on your site, take a look at the examples and see if there is anything that you can implement for yourself.
Published December 5th, 2007 by Steven Snell