Learn what Blogs are and How to Use Them
If you browse internet a lot, then you have probably stumbled upon a blog. Blogs or web logs are, simply stated, websites that allow authors to post their thoughts or news on the web about one or another subject. However, unlike a regular website, blog usually represents a personal opinion of the author about some kind of topic. What’s good about blog is that readers can submit their comments about the author’s post (if author allows that).
So if you have a web log you can connect to your target audience. You can find like minded people and make you blog even stickier than a website.
Another thing that differentiates a blog from a regular website is that blogs have archives, which allow you to look at the most recent post or jump to the very first post made few years ago. Some blogs are archived by day, some by week or month. Author chooses the archiving frequency depending on how much time he’s got to write content.
Why Blogs Have Become So Popular?
It seems that blogs have come to the daylight just a few years ago. But in reality, it’s nothing new. Webmasters were using blogs for many years. The buzz started recently, because a few internet marketers discovered that it’s a great way to make money with blogs and started telling and selling another “how to blog” product to the rest of the world.
Now, blogs have really started dominating the web. As some researches say, the popularity of blogs is going to increase in the next few years and even more people will start making blogs.
There are actually few reasons why blogs are so popular now. First of all, they are search engine friendly. As long as posts are made very often and regularly, search engines spider them and index them very often. Second of all, it’s very easy to set up a blog. Lots of folks who don’t have a website want to get one. But they face a major problem. They don’t know HTML and how to create a website. Blogs eliminate this problem entirely.
You can set up a blog and start publishing information literally within minutes. And you don’t need to know how to create websites or any programming language.
Blogs for Search Engine Optimization
You have probably heard people saying many times that blogs are fantastic for SEO purposes and you should start a blog immediately if you want to get rankings in search engines. Are they right? Well, yes and no.
As mentioned earlier, search engine bots revisit blogs quite often, almost everyday if the content is updated very frequently. It also doesn’t take much to build a content, which search engines like. All you need to do is make a post about a topic in your industry once in a while. And if you have a loyal community, then readers will post comments about your post so you build content quickly. It means that not only you have to build content yourself, but your community helps you do that too.
However, what concern SEO, blogs are nothing magical. You already know why search engines like blogs and rank them higher. If you update your website frequently, add original content, you’ll get lots of readers and search engines will love your site just like any blog or oven more. So for SEO purposes, you really don’t have to create a blog. But if you don’t have time or money to spend on site development, then a blog is a perfect alternative.
Monetizing on Blogs
Many internet marketers say that you should start a blog, because it’s a perfect way to make money. If you think that just by having a blog, you’ll be able to boost your income by 1000%, then you’re wrong. A blog won’t give you any new ways to make money, other than by having a website. All marketing options are the same as for website marketing. Ok, so let’s look at a couple of ways to make money with blogs:
- Offer Affiliate Ads – Just like with a website, you can start offering visitors various links or banners to your affiliate products or services. If you have a community that trusts you, you can really make some nice money.
- Contextual Advertising – The simplest way to monetize your blog is by having Adsense or any other similar program’s ads on your blog. You make money when people click on these ads.
- Sell Advertising Space – You can sell banners or text links on your blog. If your blog gets a lot of traffic, or you have a high pagerank, then this method might work great for you.
As you see, having a blog will not bring you any magical ways to make money. However, there’s one method that can bring you traffic that you can’t get by having a website. And that is blog directories.
There are hundreds of blog directories (more being added every week). So if you have a blog, you can actually submit it to blog directories and see some increase in traffic quickly. That’s a nice thing about having a blog. If you submit your blog to at least 20 or 30 directories, then you can start getting traffic within days from a submission.
Blogs are very useful. They allow users to start publishing information online in a very convenient way. It’s easy to set up a blog. Search engines love them. The content builds pretty fast if you’re passionate about the subject. You also get additional sources of traffic. What can be bad about it? Well, nothing.
Blogs will not disappear from the surface, at least not within 2 or 5 years. Google already has a blog search engine. More search engines and directories are being built everyday. So starting a blog now can be a smart decision.
If you have a website building software and you know how to build websites, then for the sake of SEO you probably shouldn’t create a blog. However, otherwise a blog is a great and easy to use tool to get content and traffic.