Picture this: your cousin from the other side of the country sends you a link to her blog. First, you read a post about her fears about running her first marathon. Then, you soon find yourself reading post after post about your cousin, and vow to check her blog more often. You close the browser, feeling more connected to your faraway relative than before.
Business blogs, like personal blogs, can provide invaluable connections for your company, engaging your customers in a way that Facebook and Twitter can’t. While social media is good for casual contact, your message can easily get lost among the chatter. Instead, invest your time in in-depth content that draws new customers to your site.Blogging can be a powerful tool for conversions when done correctly. Click To Tweet
Blogging can be a powerful tool for conversions when done correctly
According to a study done by Hubspot, businesses that blog average 55% more website visitors than those that don’t. This means that if you aren’t already blogging regularly, you are missing out on valuable prospects.
Posting on your company’s blog can help you:
- Share your brand story to engage customers
- Highlight your products and services in-depth
- Share client testimonials and case studies
- Rank well on search engines
But just posting occasionally on a standalone blog page won’t likely drive the sales you are seeking. You have to be strategic about blog placement and integration into your product and service pages.
In this article, you will learn four ways to use blogs to boost your conversion rate.
1. Share Your Story
Chances are, the story of how your business started is an interesting one. Maybe you spent your first year working out of your garage and eating ramen to make ends meet. Perhaps your business was handed down from previous generations.
When it comes to writing your story, be sure to address your company’s history, including information on its founder. Include a description of your company’s culture and values. If you sell products, throw in a paragraph on how you source or manufacture your product. Be sure to include images or videos, where appropriate.
Take Snow Peak: The company used its About page to not only share the rich history of the company – a history that sets it apart from other outdoor retailers – but also their mission statement, which captures their company culture and devotion to conservation.
It is human nature to love a good story. Post your own story on your website and create an emotional connection with your customers.
2. Highlight Your Products and Services
Your products and services also have a story. They may have a specific purpose, such as a lighter-than-air backpacking tent. Or maybe a portion of proceeds for a service go to a local nonprofit. Your blog is the perfect platform to expand on your products.
Share Your Product or Service Story
Columbia Sportswear’s post about the Little Black Dress highlights the history and necessity of this iconic fashion staple, while linking to the product page for Columbia’s own version. The post draws the reader in with a good story, all the while seamlessly directing the reader to buy the product.Your blog is the perfect platform to expand on your products. Click To Tweet
The apparel company Raven + Lily has a unique story centered around the manufacture of its materials. Each product page features the story of the product and a link to the blog, where an in-depth profile of the product’s maker resides. Customers can browse through several profiles of makers, which helps to foster an emotional connection to the products.
You have done your research on your customers and know what makes them tick. Build your stories around your customers’ needs, and you will start seeing more conversions.Build your stories around your customers’ needs, and you will start seeing more conversions. Click To Tweet
Address Product or Service Questions
Do your customer service representatives often field multiple calls asking questions about the same product or service? You may have a product or service that requires a more in-depth explanation of its use. Have you discovered that your customer base is repeatedly searching for the same thing on Google (for example, “how to waterproof new boots”)? You’re the expert; why not share your expertise on your blog?
Les Schwab Tire Centers hits the nail on the head with this post on how to make sure your car is primed for a long road trip. You learn what to look for when doing your pre-trip check, and how Les Schwab can help get you on the road. It includes links to local Les Schwab Tire Centers and a coupon for a free safety check.
3. Share Client Testimonials
When you shop online, what factors play into whether you click purchase or look for another brand? In a survey done by Dimensional Research and ZenDesk, 90% of consumers indicated that positive reviews on a product influenced their decision to buy a product. Customer testimonials present a huge opportunity let your customers do your selling for you.Customer testimonials present a huge opportunity let your customers do your selling for you. Click To Tweet
Testimonials can come in the form of reviews, customer quotes, videos, and case studies – or all of the above.
But don’t let your testimonials page get buried on your site. Give visitors constant reminders of why your service or product is worth a deeper look. Link to any relevant testimonials from product detail pages and service pages.Engage your satisfied customers in selling your product. Click To Tweet
Pepper testimonial snippets on other pages of your website. Engage your satisfied customers in selling your product. If you have a great one that raves about your product or service, place a snippet on your home page with a link to your blog, like Desk.com did:
Integrate Videos to Boost Conversions
Videos can speak a thousand words. Take it a step further and integrate high-quality videos into your blog posts. Videos have been shown to dramatically increase conversion rates for ecommerce customers. One study showed a conversion increase of 86% when a video was placed on a landing page.
When including videos on your blog or product pages, focus on quality over quantity. Have real customers describe the benefits of your product, or show them actually using the product. Be sure to keep the focus on the product itself.
Take a look at this video from the Stories page at Codacademy. It showcases a very relatable customer, while showing off the product. You can also access in-depth profiles of other customers on the same page:
Your customers are invaluable assets when it comes to marketing your products and services. Leverage their testimonials to increase your conversions.
4. Write About Hot Topics in Your Field
Prospects are out there, just looking for answers that your business can provide. Use your blog to address trending topics among your customer base and increase traffic and conversions.Use your blog to address trending topics among your customer base. Click To Tweet
What Are Your Customers Looking For?
Most Google searches come in the form of questions. What are your customers searching for? What keywords are they using to find information that your company can provide?
When crafting a blog post, be sure to do your research before you sit down to write. There are lots of keyword research tools out there that you can use to focus the content of your blog.
Say, for example, that your company sells camping equipment. You do some research on Google and discover that “how to find nearby campgrounds” appears at the top of the list of most commonly searched terms. In fact, there are a dozen articles on the topic. Read each article, and craft a blog post on the topic, even if it’s been written about before, which brings us to our next topic.
Do What Others Are Doing
You may already have post ideas swirling around in your head, but fear that others have written about them already. Don’t fret; this is a good thing.
Perform a search and read the top posts on the topic – and then improve on them. Chances are, they missed a key point that you can include in your post.
Write Often, Write Long
Even when time and resources are tight, don’t skimp on content. Research shows that the top-performing posts are more than 2,000 words long.Research shows that the top-performing posts are more than 2,000 words long. Click To Tweet
Content that is longer also gets shared on social media more often, attracting more clicks to your site and more conversions.
This doesn’t mean you should pad your posts with fluff to reach that golden number; quality also matters. Start by researching the content that was missing from the posts you read in the previous step. If you do your research well, you should have enough content to hit the 2,000 mark in no time. Be sure to include statistics and corresponding graphics where you can, and cite your sources.
Post new articles as often as you can, even if you can’t hit that 2,000-word mark. Research shows that posting more often leads to more traffic to your site. In a study, B2B companies that blogged at least 11 times per month had almost 3 times more traffic than those that blogged only one time a month or not at all. And when it comes to leads, B2B companies who blogged a total of 400 times or more had 3 times as many leads as those that blogged 0-200 times.
Grab Your Readers
So you’ve compiled your data, written your lengthy post, and checked it for errors. What now? It’s time to write your blog title, or headline. Research done by Copyblogger revealed that 80% of visitors will read your headline, but only 20% will finish reading the article. The headline is key to drawing users to your site.
Follow these tips when writing headlines:
- Remember that keyword research you did? Include those exact keywords in your title.
- Make your headline unique (hint: test its uniqueness by putting quotes around it searching for it in Google).
- Include facts and figures, which can generate more engagement and sharing.
- Run your headline through an analyzer, like Blog Post Headline Analyzer.
Blog to Move Your Business to the Next Level
A little effort on your part can turn out big gains when it comes to conversions.
Blogging should become a key part of your optimization strategy. Follow the tips above, and you will soon be on the road to more conversions and increased sales.