Saturday, September 1, 2018

The Benefits of Blogging

This is my 100th blog post! I'm not telling you this to show off. (Well, maybe I'm doing that just a little.) Instead, I really want to use this post to discuss some of the benefits of blogging, at least what I have gotten from doing that. I’ve seen firsthand the difference blogging can make in terms of search visibility, generating leads, promoting my business and validating my experience and professionalism.
Increases Website Visits
As you add more content to your website, more pages from your website domain become indexed in search engines. Search engines want to deliver results that are helpful to their users. When you write a series of in-depth, valuable articles around a topic, the search engines take notice. This improves organic search visibility and increases website traffic. Every new page & post you publish improves the opportunities you have to increase the ranking for various keywords on your website. As search engines better understand the relevancy of your website to search terms, you will begin to have more people view your website.

Promote Your Expertise and Brand
Since a blog gives you a platform for sharing important industry-related information and insights, it is one of the best ways to establish yourself or your brand as an expert in your field. As you write more posts and share more of your expertise, your website will become a powerful demonstration of your knowledge in your profession. When somebody visits your website and sees the insights you’ve shared on a subject,  it will be clear that you are an expert in your field.

Become a Better Writer
Good writing means more search-engine traffic, more social shares, and ultimately more customers. Bad writing means being ignored. The more you blog, the more you write. And the more you write, the better writer you become. As for the type of content to write, use your blog to share your views on what others write, comment on industry trends, or simply use your blog posts like a periodic newsletter.

Differentiate Yourself From Your Competition
Blogging on your website is one of the best ways to differentiate yourself from your competition. By providing your own unique thoughts and insights, you grow your search traffic, customer trust and conversions. Blogging may also level the playing field between a small business and the big competitors. It can give you an opportunity to compete with bigger businesses with bigger budgets.

Take Control of Your Online Identity
Whether you’re a person or business, there’s probably lots of information about you online. When somebody searches for you online, you want to make sure that you make a good first impression, and that they get an accurate and complete picture of what you’re all about. Trust is a valuable commodity online. You can’t buy trust. It must be earned by consistently demonstrating your commitment to your website visitors. A blog is a great way to build trust and take control your online identity.

If you were car shopping today, would you consider models from Honda or Toyota? There was a lot of negative press about these 2 brands in the recent past. However, most car shoppers will still consider Honda or Toyota products in their automobile search. The reason why is that through the content these companies posted via their website as well as other channels, they demonstrated that they seriously investigated the issues identified in the press, they were being addressed attentively, and they continue their dedication to delivering a quality product.

Grow Your Professional Network
Blogging is a community-based activity, and networking is one reason people engage in it. Whether you are a solo practitioner, job seeker or blogging to promote your business, blogging can help to build relationships that will facilitate your growth.

My Final Thoughts
As you can see, I am a big advocate for blogging, as well as engaging with your audience online. Blogging requires only a little investment of your time. However, it has the potential for a big ROI from your time investment. The platform you chose (WordPress, Blogger, etc.) is irrelevant. Your content is what is most relevant. From a practical standpoint, blogging just makes good sense.

Click here to contact me regarding this or any other blog topic. Also, I welcome comments, which you can post below...

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Tips When Updating Your Website

As per Google's Quality Rating Guideline, there are four key points of SEO content: Expertise, Authority, Trust and Maintenance. To demonstrate Expertise, publish comprehensive content. To demonstrate Authority, people will share your content through links and mentions. To demonstrate Trust, publish testimonials and examples of your successful projects.

To demonstrate Maintenance, keep your content up to date and relevant. That's what's we'll discuss in this post...
Think Mobile
When redesigning your website, make sure that you use a theme, fonts and layout that’s easy for mobile users to read. A responsive designed theme will automatically adjust to the screen shape and size of different devices. Sans-Serif fonts like Arial or Veranda are easier to read on smaller screens than the traditional Serif fonts like Times New Roman or Cambria. Once you update you website, test your results on multiple devices to make sure your website is conducive for each device format.

Add More Web Pages & Content 
Consider adding new web pages to your website. Add blog posts to give your opinions. provide current news and information on products in your industry. Content is a great way to make your website more authoritative, and more relevant to the search engines. The search engines are always looking for fresh content on websites. So making changes to existing web pages makes it easier for your website to improve its ranking. Even a few changes to make your information more current is helpful.

Add Search Engine Optimization
The goal of search engine optimization (SEO) is to have the search engine spiders (their information search programs) not only find your website and web pages, but also rank the website relevance so that it appears near the top of the search engine results. The process of optimization is not a one-time process, but requires maintenance, tuning, and continuous testing and monitoring. Therefore, it will be a good time to apply some best SEO updates when you plan to update your website.

Do a keyword analysis and add those keywords to your content. Update meta tags, alt tags and page titles, as well as update web page URLs (web page address) and your website's site map. Also, submit all web pages to the search engine directories (specifically Google and Bing). Good SEO is more than just these few points, but these are the initial key points to address.

Redirect Deleted Web Pages
Every web page on a website has its own URL. As you reorganize the available web pages in your website, it is possible that you will choose to eliminate web pages and their associated URLs. It may be that a web page is no longer relevant, thus no longer needed. Or, you may combine the content of one or more web pages into another (or a new) web page. A user may try to access a deleted web page because they have it bookmarked. Or, it comes up in a Google search because it is still in the Google index, which is not yet updated. When a user tries to access a delete web page, they will get a "Error 404 - Page not found" message, which is a very unprofessional reception by your website.

In your website code or development platform, you can redirect the URL of a deleted web page to another web page. If you have no new web page to replace the use of the deleted web page, then redirect the URL to the Home page of your website. That is a much friendlier result than "Error 404 - Page not found".

Click here to contact me regarding this or any other blog topic. Also, I welcome comments, which you can post below...