Do blogs help SEO?

by Tim Hill (aka Doodled)

May 20th 2011
Blogging starts easily but doing it effectively can be hard word (Image: Alex Hughes)
Blogging starts easily but doing it effectively can be hard word (Image: Alex Hughes)

"Start blogging and it will help your SEO" are the words I so often see on forums or hear in conversations but many people try it out and never find the promised land of high rankings. So do blogs really help?

In essence blogs can be effective but only when carried out properly.

At Link2light we write and maintain the blogs for individuals and websites. This practice of contracting out blogs is obviously highly confidential as we are basically ghost writers with the blogger taking credit for the articles.

The main reasons that clients contract out their blogs are:

  • don't have time time
  • don't know how to write in an effective way (for both search engines and users)
  • don't know English fluently
  • have no interest in the subject area

It's the last group of people I see most often who get no results from blogging themselves. For them the original idea for a website was to make money, not because they had a particular interest in the subject of the website. In other words, start a website selling kitchen accessories - get it to the top of Google - watch the bank account fill up. Simple enough.

But when it doesn't happen the search is on for why the website is not number one on Google and it is here that our clients often stumble upon the SEO concept and the blogging idea which comes with it.

The trouble is the owner has absolutely no interest in kitchen accessories and so getting beyond a handful of blogs becomes a vast obstacle. Ever wondered why the internet is chock-a-block full of abandoned blogs? That's the reason.

Making SEO effective blogs

A blog is essentially just a series of articles. Search engines like Google hoover them up because they have plenty of text rich content which is easy to understand and index.

The most important points to remember if you are going to attempt blogging are:

  • Be consistent. Make sure the blog reflects the theme of your website and that each blog entry has a specific subject that it can be optimised for
  • Be original. Don't bevome tempted to copy text from around the web and just paste it into your blog. Search engines ignore duplicate content
  • Be search engine friendly - Optimise each blog. This means getting your title and meta tags right for each and every single blog
  • Be regular. Even if this is once a month, make sure that internet users do not suspect your blog is abandoned or it will affect the credibility of your main business
  • Be fluent. Search engines can see poor spelling and grammar in just the same way as a word processor can and will always give preference to the better websites when the content is broadly similar.

Will it be worth it?

Generally the answer is yes, eventually. One of my favourite examples is the UK based firm of solicitors Painsmiths who run a blog.

Now there was a court case, OFT vs Foxtons, that affected large numbers of people in the UK so Painsmiths wrote about it in their blog. Even though they were not involved in the proceedings the blog was their thoughts on the ruling. Now they are in Google's top 10 for the search term "OFT vs Foxtons".

This makes them highly likely to get work associated with the case, work similar to the case and perhaps even work in other cases against the defendant Foxtons.

Blogs can be incredibly powerful tools in the SEO workshop.

Not enough time to write a blog

Remember that blogs can be seen as part of your SEO work and are often contracted out.

If you don't have the time, experience, language skills or interest in the subject area of your website then see our SEO quote page to find out how we can help.