Do blogs really help your site rank better?

SenseiSteve

HD Moderator
Staff member
I recently read somewhere that blogs can make a 7 percent difference in search engine rankings. Does that sound about right? What is the right interval to post articles? And how long should they be? I've seen people say 300, 800 and even 2000 words. Is the real value in a blog the connection you make with your prospects and clients, or is it the SEO value?
 

Artashes

Administrator
Staff member
Is the real value in a blog the connection you make with your prospects and clients, or is it the SEO value?

Steve, that is such an incredibly important question, and a valuable observation.

When discussing marketing in general, I have always recommended web hosting companies to start a blog, but the one that would serve the interest of the majority of their clients. For example, if 80% of your clients are small/medium size businesses, then I'd run a blog that would cover issues and provide advice that might make their work more productive and/or efficient. The blog would be a lot less about hosting, and a lot more about business.

It may not position your blog to be serving your SEO efforts directly, but it will definitely aim to attract new clients, and as such serve some SEO purpose.

The way I think about it ⏤ small/medium size businesses that pay you to maintain their server could care less about hosting tutorials on how to setup email forwarders or install SSL (that's what they pay you for), but may care to learn about teamwork apps like Slack, options to utilize live chats (and why they need it), new types of CRM or how to increase email workflow efficiency between employees. Things that would actually make their own business grow.

Perhaps a bit off-topic, but I wanted to share my thoughts.
 

bigredseo

HD Community Advisor
Staff member
I think Artashes nailed it on the head. The blog is a supporting role, not the primary role of most websites. Many treat it as the star of the show, when really the website itself (individual pages) should be the star.

In SEO, we refer to it as "cornerstone content". The pages that are your primary focus get that designation.

You then have blogs, usually in the form of "evergreen content" - essentially content that doesn't go out of date quickly.

Next, you have normal blogs or newsletters, and knowledgebase type articles.

As far as length, Google's recommended minimum is 200 words per article. Heck, I've nearly got 200 words just in this post! Our own recommendation is 450 words or more. Doing the minimum gets you minimum results.

Do you need a 2000 word article, or even a 10,000? Only if it fits your demographic!

We have articles on our site that are mainly in the 500-700 word range, but we definitely have some that are over 1,000 and some over 3,000. Again, the type of user that we're targeting is very different. If we're discussing the advantages of the Google Tag Manager, then sure, 400 words is not a problem. If we're providing steps to integrate it, configure, and enhance, then we could easily exceed 1,000 or 2,000 characters. But we're targeting two very different types of users.

There's a definite SEO value to blogs and content, but they need to be used to support your product or website. If I create a blog about how to change the headlights of a 2000 Dodge Durango (which is a pain the butt!!!), that's not going to be a whole lot of a value if I put it on a web design type website. If I create an article about the Top 5 most exploited plugins in WordPress, that's a whole lot more useful to our existing user base (mainly WordPress users), but probably not the information we would want to share if we're trying to convince people to use the software. Showcasing the top 3 security plugins to keep your website up to date so you avoid plugin compromise - well then, we've got a whole different type of client we're talking to.
 

reddyash

New member
I really will say that blogs will help your site to rank better. When you are blogging its not just your are promoting a product for sales but also improving your brand as to showing the knowledge you have on the product.

Having one particular blog may or may not help but guest blogging in the same niche as your product will definitely help.

When you write a blog it should be informative, 1 or 2 backlinks to your website, an image and minimum of 600 words.
 

bigredseo

HD Community Advisor
Staff member
Having one particular blog may or may not help but guest blogging in the same niche as your product will definitely help.

Guest Blogging is a great way of getting some additional exposure to a different reader base. It's not as powerful as it used to be with regards to link generation, but it does still have it's place. And @reddyash, you're 100% right when it comes to being in the same niche. This ensures you're talking to the same audience.
 

Acehost

New member
Blog have become huge. Its another step in getting your name out. Google sees it and helps ranking the site.
 

izumi777

Member
Google love websites with frequent information update. I would say that blog helps in ranking. And it is also a good knowledge base for your customers and other visitors.
 

Wehostfast

New member
Blogs are another great way to get your business out there and it makes it seem more legit to other people that they can trust the business.
 

Divya165

Account Disabled
Blogging is beneficial to SEO because it aids in a variety of significant ranking variables. It can make a big difference in how well your overall website performs in the search engines if you have a blog that is updated on a regular basis with high-quality blog posts on subjects that are important to your audience.
 

S4 Hosting

Active member
I'm not any kind of SEO expert, but from my human reader point of view, blog posts are great to find on a site IF they are relevant, well written, and have a voice (not just copy-pasted and regurgitated from somewhere else).

If they can't satisfy those three criteria, or if they read as if they were written purely for an SEO purpose, with more keywords than human readable content, then I don't know if they help SE rankings or not, but they will stop me from staying long once I get to the site, even if it is the first SE result.

What is the right interval to post articles?

When you have something useful to say, and it is written with purpose and not just to make up the numbers.

And how long should they be? I've seen people say 300, 800 and even 2000 words.

Long enough to say what you want to say, in your voice, and without trying to fit into some prescribed word count.
 

HostStage

New member
To add some comment to this thread, a blog is actually adding another huge SEO benefit which is actually already implied in some of the answers.

Basically, blogging on a given topic would actually support the semantic content of your sales page.
Nowadays Google works more on a topical relevancy than flat Ngrams (group of words). To increase a topic relevancy Google expects certain content. The more you post on a topic the more relevant you are on a given topic.

Also, to conclude since you are talking about blogging in a business, a blog would help to cover search intents that can't be covered in a sales page.

If you sell beans, on a sale page you will not be able to talk about how climate changes affect the growth of your beans while topically relevant. A blog is a way for you to do that.
 
Blogs can help your site rank higher; the advantages of blogging include the ability to control your online persona and create trust, the ability to learn new things, develop your writing abilities, and the ability to interact with new people.
 

bigredseo

HD Community Advisor
Staff member
Just to update this post a little, there was an interesting discussion via the Google Webmaster Hangouts in which it was questioned to Google if there is a difference between a Page and a Blog.

Google's answer was that it doesn't matter what you call it, it's content. In your schema markup you'll likely put "article" and that is the default for both scenarios.

The Blog has become an easy way for website owners to update things on their website. Adding articles, adding news, updating events, etc. They could all be done as Pages, or individual HTML files, Google really doesn't have a preference.

So get writing!
 
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