Starting a blog can be a highly effective tool for small business owners, especially one that is well written and informative. Knowing where to start, what to write about, and how to keep readers coming back can be confusing if you have never blogged before, but following these few easy steps can help you get your foot in the door and help you get the feel for the blogging world, which is a big one.
Where to Start?
First, you are going to want to decide on a blogging platform that you will use to write your company’s blog. There are a lot of websites dedicated to blogging, including Blogger, WordPress, and and Tumblr. Depending on your level of internet proficiency and the style of blog you want to create, you are going to want to look at blogs that are hosted on each of the websites that you are considering and decide which one you want to use. Here is a quick rundown of the three previous platforms mentioned and what they offer:
- Blogger: This long-time website is fairly straight-forward and easy to use for even the most inexperienced blogger. With limited customization, you may want to use blogger if you aren’t as concerned about what your blog will look like visually and just want a simple way to write about your small business.
- WordPress: If you are more proficient and confident in code, plugins, and other internet jargon, then WordPress may be the right platform for you. With a greater ability to customize your blog, you can create a completely unique appearance for your blog. WordPress is great for a professional-looking blog, if that is the style you are leaning towards.
- Tumblr: A blog that is heavy on photos and light on text fits in well on Tumblr. There aren’t as many businesses on Tumblr because of the lack of word use, but if your company can benefit from lots of visual content, you may want to consider Tumblr as your blogging platform.
You may need to find a proper host for your blog and you can click here to find step by step instructions for hosting and how to start a blog.
What Should Your Blog Look Like?
When it comes to designing your blog, the possibilities are endless. You can pretty much make your blog look however you would like, but having a simple design that allows for easy reading and navigating is more effective than having too much going on visually. A simple header, preferably with your company’s logo, is enough to grab a reader’s attention without being too obvious. Stick to simple side bars, with links to advertisers or popular posts, that don’t distract from the main point of your blog – the posts. Feel free to get a little creative, but remember to keep it simple.
What to Write About?
Now that your blog is all set up, figuring out what you want to write about is the next step. This really is up to you and what your goals are for blogging, but if you are completely stumped here are a few suggestions to get you started:
- Tell your business’ story. Introduce your company, yourself, and how your business came to be. For a first blog post, this can be a great kickoff point that will inform your readers about where you have been and where you are going.
- Write about exciting new updates to your business. If something cool just happened or you are making a big change, blog about it. Let your readers know what is going on.
- Give ideas that relate to your business. You don’t have to blog about yourself all of the time. If you know of another similar business that is doing something neat, blog about them and give your readers some inspiration to think about.
Blogging doesn’t have to be difficult, but it can definitely give potential customers a glimpse inside the inner workings of your small business and can in turn generate online interest. Try it out and see what happens for you.