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The Anatomy of a Successful Blog Post

Monday 13 April 2015

7 minute read

By Sarah Burns

Responsive website design and mobile devices have changed the way we view web pages and read articles and blog posts, but some things just don't change...

Like the perfect recipe for your Mum's roast dinner, there will always be X, Y, Z and the same recipe is applicable to blogs.

Yes, they all look different in some way and some bloggers adopt certain ingredients over others but there are some "must do's", including:

6 Must-Dos for the Anatomy of a Successful Blog Post

1. A headline that fits in with a keyword strategy

Use your headline to captivate those yet to land on the blog post and use it as your first opportunity to adopt a strong searchability strategy. Headlines should be no longer than 10 words - usually - and should always have the most important keywords - who are you looking for?

2. Subheadings for easy reading and searchability

Break up that lengthy text with key points - that's why lists work so well. Use H1 and H2 tags for another approach to SEO, but don't make SEO the priority.

If you aren't writing a list and you look like you've got a subheading for every paragraph you've probably gone overboard. 

3. Links for authority and deeper reading

If you've quoted somebody, mentioned another blog, article or otherwise, link to them! It proves that you're an authoritative source of information and trustworthy if you give credit where credit is due.

It's also ideal to create internal links, so you encourage readers further down the sales/information funnel by reading more blog posts or downloading your resources. 

4. Comments and social shares - be engaging!

Why not provide a space directly under your article for people to share their opinion, anecdotes and facts? If you're going to produce content and people read it they're going to have thoughts on it one way or another so why not provide space for them to share those thoughts? 

Although comment boards are less popular than in times gone by - unless you're a content creation machine like BuzzFeed (which also uses Facebook log-ins) then social shares might be the way to go. Encourage people to share your post with their friends and share it on your own social media pages for comments on YOUR business Facebook page. If it's good feedback it's worth sharing! 

5. Language - speak to  your audience

We could say "write informally", but if you're a barrister or an accountant your blog is going to be a little more formal than ours and that of a transport or cleaning company, for example. Focus on:

  • Who is your audience?
  • What do they usually read and respond well to?
  • In face-to-face communications, how would you converse with them?

6. A relevant and correctly cited image

A lot of people used to say "always have an image in your blog", so it was taken to mean:

  • My blog is about rabbits.
  • Let's get an image of a "rabbit" on Google Images and use that.

No, no, no. All wrong. For MANY reasons.

Today we advise you use your own photography and if the post doesn't suit the image don't use it. Never use professional photography without paying for it. Getty Images, Shutterstock and the alike all come with costs if you don't pay for the photograph and the correct usage license. 

There are many free websites, and although their photography is typically slightly lower in quality, there can be some fantastic finds - check out our round-up of the best free-to-use photography websites.

How Thrive Does It...

It's important to consider mobile and responsive users today which is why all of our blog posts resize, without losing information or elements, depending on a user's screen size.

Decide which matters more to you and compare your company blog to that of your competitors, what could you learn from them? It's never about copying, but understanding how your industry works and what your audience might appreciate from you.


The Anatomy of an Excellent Blog Post

Find more posts like this via our Blogging topic.

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