What is a blog?

Blogs have been around since 1994, and they were initially used as an online diary to share stories about daily life.

Today, blogging has become a platform where businesses can share their views and educate their readers on topics specific to their industry. Blogs make businesses more personable and can connect brands to existing and potential clients. If you are successful, a blog can also boost your website traffic and generate quality sales leads.

Is it worth starting a blog in 2020?

I have made an exciting and rewarding career as a "blogger" (although I prefer the term copywriter), and since I am writing a blog about blogging, the quick answer is YES! It is worth starting a blog in Australia in 2020 and beyond.

However.

If you are not willing to invest the time and resources into creating high-quality content regularly, then I would strongly advise against starting a blog.

Consistency is key.

You don't need to be the next Ernest Hemingway to write captivating content. Many professional bloggers offer ghostwriting and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) services. By outsourcing your content creation, it allows you to remain focused on what you do best.

How much does it cost to start a blog?

Paid blogging platforms are a quick and straightforward solution that enables you to start posting straight away. Paid sites offer a selection of professional pre-built templates, although there is the option of building everything from the ground up if you prefer to create a unique platform.

Popular platforms:

• WordPress.com
• Wix.com
• Squarespace.com
• Weebly.com

If you are interested in outsourcing your content creation to a professional, the price can vary drastically, depending on the experience and credentials of the writer. I've seen writers charge 30 cents per word, all the way up to $3,500 + for long-form content.

As I always say; buy it nice or buy it twice. If you decide to go for the cheapest option, it will show. Having poor content on your website can be detrimental to your brand, and you are probably better off having no content displayed. However, I am not recommending you pay thousands of dollars per week to generate content.

Most businesses should settle somewhere in the middle.

Many bloggers offer professional content at reasonable prices, and some even include value add services such as SEO and graphic design.

If a writer is cheap, it doesn't necessarily mean they are terrible. Make sure you review a writer's portfolio before you sign on the dotted line. Creativity is a personal preference, and the content needs to resonate with you as a reader and compliment the voice of your brand.

Here are our content marketing services

Can you start a blog for free?

Yes. Several popular free blogging platforms provide templates and designs to get you generating content in no time. Keep in mind many of these blogging platforms are "freemium", which means that you can upgrade to paid plans to unlock more features. Some of these features include a custom domain name and to remove the platforms branding watermark from your blog.

Here are our free blogging site recommendations:

• WordPress.com
• Odoo.com
• Blogger.com
• Tumblr.com
• Strikingly.com

How do I start a blog that makes money?

Businesses that blog experience twice the exposure and traffic of companies that don't.

Creating captivating content is essential, but there are many other factors you need to consider before you put pen to paper. A background in online and social media marketing, blog directories, affiliate programs, and SEO is crucial if you want your blog to be successful.

I'll repeat it. Consistency is key.

Create a content schedule. Decide how often you want to post and stick to it. Once a week seems to be a good fit for most businesses.

Treat your readers as if they are subscribed to a news journal. Your goal is to educate your audience and to share interesting facts relevant to your readers, not bombard them with BUY IT NOW!

Graphic design and copyright considerations

Blog articles that incorporate graphics receive 94% more views compared to those with no images.

There are some fantastic free Stock Image websites. Here are two free libraries we recommend:

Pixabay
Pexels

VectorStock is our favourite paid site for stock vector images. They offer a great selection of graphics at a reasonable price. There is also no lock-in contract, and you can purchase pay as you go credits with no expiry.

Websites like Shutterstock charge a lot more and offer time-limited subscription offers. I found out the hard way when I didn't use my ten images within 30 days and quickly realised that my credits didn't roll over to the next month.

Always ensure that the images you are using have a Creative Commons license. If you are making money from your blog, don't use copyrighted images as legal ramifications are detrimental to any brand.

SEO

So, you've uploaded an encyclopedias worth of content and eye-catching images to compliment. Why hasn't my site traffic increase?

Creating content is only half the battle.

This is where SEO comes in to save the day. SEO optimises your blog so potential customers can easily find your business on the search engine results page.

If you weren't popular in high school, now is your chance to sit at the 'cool' kids table. SEO increases your popularity rank. The more clicks and shares your blog posts receive, the higher your content will rank.

Keyword research plays a pivotal role in the success of your content. You need to be posting about keywords and phrases that have a high search volume and create material that outperforms your competition.

Networking

It is important to build relationships with other businesses that fit into your niche. Backlinking is a great way to qualify your articles, and it also encourages businesses to return the favour and link to your content on their website.

Here's a great example: I'm backlinking to a backlinking article about backlinking.

Blogging is an excellent way for businesses to educate their existing clients and attract potential leads. It's also a lot of fun, and you get to express your creativity and share your ideas with the world.

If you enjoyed this blog and are interested in learning more about content creation and SEO, feel free to contact me and book in a free marketing strategy consultation. I'd love to learn more about your business, and if a content marketing strategy is the right fit for you.

Kendall King

With over 10+ years experiance Kendall is Velocity Hosts marketing and sales stratagist.

Degrees in Writing and a Masters of Research Kendall brings a vital edge to the (vh) team in 2020. With fresh ideas across a broad spectrum of businesses personas. Kendall has your business covered.