How to Start and Write a Blog?

Blogs have been a popular vehicle for marketers since their evolution as personal web pages in 1994 and their initial labeling as weblogs in 1997. The word's creation is attributed to Jorn Barger of the early blog Robot Wisdom, according to

Many companies maintain a blog on their site. Blogs are a helpful channel for marketing departments because they use simplified publishing systems and the approval process is usually much faster and more flexible than for site pages. That flexibility content producers to capture breaking trends. In addition, a blog is a way to keep the publishing cadence high for SEO purposes.

How do you select a CMS for your blog?

Choose a publishing system or content management system (CMS) in collaboration with your Engineering team. This CMS will need to be fully integrated into your site. You will need to work with designers and UX colleagues to define the basic template you will use when you publish. Make sure to test the page load speed of the CMS in a staging instance before you fully commit to a CMS.

How long should a blog post be?

The correct answer is that they should be the right length for your users' needs, but we can simplify by saying 800 to 2000 words per post is about right.

How many internal links should a blog have?

There is no hard and fast rule for internal links out from a page, but again the links should support the user experience and intended site experience. 4 links per 1000 words of body copy is typical.

How do you find topics to write about for the blog?

There are a number of sources:

  1. SEO keyword discovery. You should try to write about topics people are interested in and looking for. BrightEdge customers do this usually monthly in the Data Cube.
  2. Product roadmap. The product release cycle will often indicate topics to develop and cover.
  3. Company strategy. The corporate communicationsw strategy usually has themes that they want covered throughout the year.
  4. Competitor sites. It may make sense for you to monitor and get ideas from what your competitors are publishing.

Should you use rich media in your blog?

Yes, definitely. Add images to your post to increase the appeal for the reader. Original images and graphics are more beneficial. Add video if you have or can create a relevant video. Videos increase visitor engagement and tend to improve conversion. 

How do you track the blog?

Most CMSes have rudimentary tracking which you can augment by adding plugins or modules. It will be best to use the same analytics resource as the main site, which for many sites is Google Analytics. The key metrics you will want to track are: Visitors, New Visitors, Time on Site, Pages Per Visit, and bounce rate. 

Should you allow people to comment on your blog?

Allowing people to participate in your blog posts is a good way to generate engagement, but it also requires constant monitoring to make sure nothing inappropriate is being published. Only use this tactic if you or someone on your team will be able to dedicate time to monitoring and replying as appropriate.

Should you update blog posts or rewrite them?

This depends on how much has changed since you first published on that topic and whether has earned SEO position. If it has earned SEO position, then it makes sense to update and enhance the original post to defend and extend the SEO equity it has earned. Updating old blogs appeals to the search engine in two ways: 1) Google respects older content that has been around, 2) Google likes fresh content and can read the last updated date from the server.

How much traffic can you expect from the blog?

"Great oaks from little acorns grow." You will be starting small and building through your direct relationships, social, and opt-in email lists, but your largest source of will be SEO and gaining good visibility in the search engines. Blog posts have the potential to draw thousands or even millions of visitors to your site.