Fact: Anyone can write a blog post and share it on the internet. After all, if you read my how to start a blog article, you’ll know how easy and inexpensive it is to create your own website. Writing articles for it is even easier. The tricky part is creating content that people actually want to read. After all, the goal is to get your blog post noticed so you can make money and build you audience. Having a post on the 100th page of Google that nobody sees won’t do you any good. So, how do you write a blog post that people actually want to read? Let’s dig in.
Your Blog Post Should Answer a Question
Think about this: what do you use the internet for?
Mostly because you are looking for an answer to something, right? Whether it be a specific question or just inspiration, we use the internet to learn things and get ideas.
So, that should be the purpose of your article; to answer a specific question. As fun as it may be to write about a funny experience you had or your own musings- that’s not what everyone wants to read. If you have an established audience, then maybe those topics will do well. But they will also likely only do well for a short period of time rather than long-term.
Your Blog Post Topic Should Be Evergreen
As much as your blog post should answer a question, it’s also in your best interest to make sure the content is evergreen as well. This means you want the content to be something that is always ‘fresh’ and sustainable.
The topic can be seasonal and it can be specific, but ideally, it is something that people will want the answer to this year and again next year. Or this week and again next week. So, think topics like: Best Things to Do in Toronto in the Summer instead of Best things to do in Toronto this Coming Weekend.
A good blog post requires a lot of effort and you want to make sure that it works for you long term. Ideally, once you write the post you should just have to check it over a couple of times a year to make sure things are still relevant and update little things (such as prices etc.) as needed.
That being said, if there is something current and news-y, then you can definitely create content to ride that wave. Just know that these type of articles typically have a very short life span and can be difficult to repurpose.
Get Creative With Your Title
When figuring out how to write a blog post, don’t forget the title. The title is the first thing readers will see. A good title will grab their attention and make them click. A boring title will cause them to scroll past.
So, what makes a good title?
Obviously, you want the title to reflect the content. Again, people are looking for answers so get that in there. Steer clear of click-bait type titles though. Those had their heyday and people are over them by this point.
A few proven techniques to help set your blog post title apart include:
- Adding numbers ie: 15 things…
- Make it engaging- use words that will get people’s attention & play on their emotions Ie: 15 Unbelievable Things…
- Keep it short and specific
- ‘How To..’ always works well
- Include your keyword
Another idea is to look at similar blog posts and compare those titles. These days, there are no completely original ideas out there so you can bet someone has already written about the topic. Think about how can you make your title different? How can you make yours stand out?
PS: CoSchedule has a great headline analyzer tool to help you get started. Find it here.
Make Your Post Visually Appealing
Think about the articles and blog posts you read online. What do you like better? Big blocks of endless text? Or articles that get broken up with subheadings, bullet points, and photos?
Hint: the answer is the second option.
Not only does breaking up your post make it more visually appealing and easier to read, but it also is better for SEO.
Plus, an added bonus, if you choose to add advertisements down the road, breaking up your post into sections and adding photos also creates more space to insert ads as well. Views on those ads= more money for you!
Optimize for SEO
SEO is Search Engine Optimization and it is essential for any blog. If you want to rank on Google or even Pinterest (which should also be treated like a search engine) then you need to optimize for SEO.
Knowing SEO is a highly valuable skill for any type of online writing so you will need to invest some time and probably money into the tools needed to learn the best SEO strategies.
You can learn a lot from Google but I HIGHLY recommend the ebooks from Make Traffic Happen. The women who run this website have put together incredible resources making it easy to optimize not just your blog posts, but also your websites for SEO which means you can rank higher on Google faster.
Add Calls to Action
See what I did there above by telling you to check out Make Traffic Happen course and books? That’s called a call to action. I told you about it, then I encouraged you to click through and take a look by literally telling you to.
Chances are if you are serious about wanting to learn how to write good blog posts and aren’t yet familiar with SEO you clicked that link (if you didn’t, you really should. Those resources are incredible). That’s the goal for bloggers. You want your readers to click through the links you include because, for the most part, these links are either:
- affiliate links that will make you money or
- a link to another relevant post on your blog that you want people’s eyes on.
Get Personal in Your Writing
My biggest tip for how to write a blog post is to get personal. In my experience, one of the best ways to make your post stand out and resonate with your audience is to add your own thoughts, experiences, and insights.
Nobody wants to read a guide to Paris from someone who hasn’t been. After all, everyone knows to visit the Eiffel Tower and The Louvre. What people really want is to know about the little bakery with the best croissants, great viewpoints to get perfect Instagram shots, affordable hotels in safe and central locations, and to know if the cost for a ticket to the Moulin Rouge is actually worth it (I vote YES!). It’s your job to provide these insights on top of the basics.
By adding your ‘voice’ and making blog posts more personal, you are more likely to gain trust and build your audience. This is ideal for several reasons including, but not limited to, turning those readers into buyers and convincing those readers to come back to you.
PS: If you are looking to learn how to best monetize your blog posts with affiliate links, I’ve written an e-book sharing all my techniques and strategies with easy to follow steps on how you can do the same. That ebook is available for purchase here.
Include a Pinterest Image
Last, but not least, create a pinnable image for Pinterest to add to your blog. That way, if your reader is doing some research but not ready to book or buy, they can easily save your post for later and hopefully come back.
Additionally, Pinterest, as mentioned above, is essentially a search engine. The more people pin your article the more traffic you are likely to get to your blog post.
I suggest using canva to create your own pins. It’s simple, easy, and free.
Final Tips on How to Write a Blog Post
Follow the tips above and you’ve got yourself a formula for a strong post. But, before I leave you to your writing there are a couple more things I will touch on to help you out.
In terms of blog post length, there’s no real ‘right’ answer to how many words it should be. Ideally, you’ll answer the question and provide enough information that the reader can successfully click off your website without having to do another search. That might just take 500 words, but it also may take 5,000. Keep in mind though, 5,000 words is pretty long and you will lose most people partway through. Personally, I aim for minimum 1,200 and maximum 2,500 words per post. Of course, I do have a couple that are over/under but that’s my typical range.
Also, please edit your articles before you post them. There’s no quicker way to lose authority as a writer than to have poor grammar and spelling. You don’t need to hire an editor to proofread, but do run it through a spell-check. I usually write my articles in a word document, then run them through the free Grammarly program.
Last but not least, remember quality over quantity. Yes, consistency is important, especially when you start. But, that doesn’t mean you need to publish a blog post every single day. The goal is to give people the answers they are looking for so they leave your site without having to look elsewhere. Not only does this make Google happy (and push you higher in the ranks) but it also means the reader will likely come back to you again in the future since they know you have good, reliable content.
Happy blog writing!