Are you still on the fence about starting a blog for your small business? Maybe you're convinced you don’t have the time or you're unsure whether it's worth the effort. But the longer you wait, the more opportunity passes by. Sure, a blog requires some additional work and planning, but it's an asset that your business shouldn't forgo. Why? Well, businesses with a blog get noticed. On average, companies with a blog generate 67% more leads per month than those without one, and they also boast 55% more visitors. But what do those numbers actually mean for your bottom line? Quite simply, the more people you attract, the more people you can sell to. As a part of the buyers' journey, a business blog is a top-of-the-funnel lead generation magnet that will help increase your visibility, reach, and sales. Without one, you may be leaving money on the table. Do You Really Need a Blog for Your Business? A business blog is an easy way to share relevant information with your target audience. Its primary purpose is to increase customer awareness of your brand with the intent to boost revenue. Because blogs allow you to connect with your audience, they can provide opportunities and advantages that might otherwise not be available. But let's be honest—no one strategy has the power to make or break a business. A blog isn't an easy answer that will solve all your problems and send your sales skyrocketing. However, when used in conjunction with other content and marketing strategies, it could be the missing piece to your puzzle. Think of a blog as another tool in your marketing plan that will help drive traffic to your site, increase engagement, and—when done right—lead to increased sales. 5 Benefits of a Business Blog Over the last decade, business blogs have experienced a surge in popularity, with small and large companies alike recognizing their importance as a marketing avenue. Today, blogs rank third among top-rated marketing strategies, surpassed only by videos and ebooks. And among 76% of marketers, blogs are still recognized as the most effective search engine optimization (SEO) strategy. There's a reason all your favorite websites have a blog—because blogging works. But to see why a blog is effective and how it can contribute to increased sales, let's look at some of the biggest advantages. 1. Increase Awareness of Your Brand We all know that people are more inclined to purchase from businesses they know, like, and trust, and one way for your audience to get to know you is through your blog. Tell your story, share your brand values, and show readers what makes your company unique. 2. Establish Yourself as an Authority in Your Field Gain the trust of your audience by using your blog to share your knowledge and offer valuable advice to assist with their problems. Once people begin to see you as an expert in your industry, they’ll continue to visit your site and make purchases from you. 3. Connect With Customers At this point in your business, you should have a good handle on your target customer persona—who they are, what they need, and what their pain points are. Use those details to create the relevant and relatable information they need most. Encourage customer feedback to see how well your blogs are received and where you can improve. As you continue to produce regular content that appeals to them, they'll keep coming back for more. 4. Improve Your SEO and Website Ranking Studies show that companies with blogs have a whopping 434% more indexed pages (meaning, website pages that can be found by search engines and shown in results) than those that don't. It’s proof that blogging is a surefire way to get noticed by search engines. It won't happen overnight, but the more high-quality, SEO-friendly content you produce, the more your page and website ranking will improve. 5. Strengthen Social Media Content You’ve probably heard that maintaining an active presence on social media is important. If you often get stuck on what to post, a blog helps to generate content for your social media platforms. You can promote new blogs on your channels or focus your social media posts and discussions around topics in your blog. Can a Business Blog Generate Revenue? Maintaining a blog requires time and resources, so the return on investment (ROI) on your blog should reflect your efforts. To make that possible, your blog should always be valuable and relevant to your customers. The more expert, authoritative, and trustworthy your content, the more beneficial it will be to your audience—and the ultimate reward for high-quality content is revenue. Echoing these sentiments, findings from a recent survey showed that 56% of respondents purchased a product after reading a blog, proving that your business blog can actually drive revenue and sales. That doesn’t happen by creating a blog and letting it sit there. It can take weeks—or even months—for search engines to find, index, and rank your content, so do a bit of the groundwork yourself to drive traffic to your site. Here are a few techniques you can use to ensure you get the most from your blogs: \tFollow best practices to optimize blog content for SEO. \tPromote blog posts on all your social media channels. \tSend out a newsletter to your subscribers to announce a new blog post. \tCrosspost (if possible) on a complementary or influencer site in your industry where you’ve established relationships. \tInclude images or multimedia in your blogs to enhance the audience experience. \tInclude a strategic yet unobtrusive call to action (CTA) that leads potential customers to a product or service page. \tEntice prospects with a gated, free resource such as a digital download. A free offer like an ebook, template, or guide can build trust in your brand and products, allowing customers to purchase from you with confidence in the future. Keep in mind that blogging is a long-term strategy and not a quick win. Some experts state that it can take anywhere from 6–12 months to see ROI from content marketing, so be patient and willing to commit to the process. How Do You Evaluate Your Blogging ROI? Figuring out just how effective your business blog is at generating revenue can be challenging, as it can serve as an indirect source of sales. For example, a customer could have initially discovered your small business through a blog post—but they didn’t purchase until later, after an email campaign. Your blog brought them into your funnel, but the sale gets attributed to your email marketing. One of the best ways to figure out how your blog is doing is to keep an eye on your metrics for traffic and engagement. Google Analytics, Ahrefs, BuzzSumo, and HubSpot are examples of tools that can help. While you can use many metrics to evaluate performance, here are a few to keep your eye on to start: \tTraffic to your site \tHow many people viewed your post \tHow long people stayed on your post \tHow many people shared your post \tComments on blog posts \tSubscriptions to your blog and email \tReturn rate \tPages per visit These metrics will help you gain an understanding of where your blog fits in your larger marketing strategy, as well as which content resonates best with your customers. Blogging Takes Time But Leads to Revenue A business blog requires some additional time and effort, but there’s plenty to be gained from it—so it’s time to get off the fence and make blogging a priority for your small business. If you’re worried about going it alone, there are people out there who can help you. Consider outsourcing your blog to an agency or a freelance writer who understands your voice and objectives. Regardless of which route you go, remember that a blog is a great way to stay in front of your existing customers while increasing your potential to find new ones—and to boost your revenue as a result.