Plenty of research by some very knowledgeable people has already been done on the effects of blogging frequency on SEO results, and we’ll share those key findings with you as long as you promise to take them with a grain of salt.
What’s that grain of salt? Never substitute someone else’s experience for your own. No research in the world is ever going to take the place of personal knowledge, gained by first-hand experimentation and tracked results, of what will work best in your own particular situation.
Ideally your blog is addressing a particular topic, and is written for a specific niche or industry. By doing your own research and compiling your own statistics of what’s working and not working for your blog, you may well find instances where a bad idea according to the research of others is actually working very well for you. Or that what should be a good blogging practice just doesn’t seem to apply in your particular case. These are things that you’ll never know unless you do your own research.
Later in this article we’ll look at some ideas for conducting your own research to help you optimize your blogging efforts for maximum results. For now, let’s see what others have found to be working for their blogs.
The sensible way to start a discussion of how often you should be blogging is to understand how long the average blog post is going to stay fresh and relevant, which means how long it will continue to attract readers and be shared across other blogs and various social channels.
The truth is that a good, well-crafted single blog post can deliver regular quality traffic over a very extended period:
This underscores the need to create and keep creating. A single up-front investment can yield dividends for months and years.
Number one on the agenda for your blog should be your commitment to make regular posts on a consistent basis no matter what it takes. This is critical because many of your regular blog readers will be looking for new posts from you, and when they don’t find them, will assume that your blog is not that important to you and will quickly lose interest. Posting consistency also applies to the specific days of the week when you publish new content. If you start out posting every Monday and Thursday, you need to continue to post every Monday and Thursday. Yes, it really is that important.
The best way to organize and simplify your blog posting is with an editorial calendar. You can start out small, if you wish, by creating a list of blog topics for the next 30 days. Be sure to include seasonal topics if appropriate to your blog. One great source of relevant blog topics is your current customers; take note of the most common questions you are getting about your product or industry and write a post around them.
If you’re concerned about being able to keep to your publishing schedule, find someone in your organization that can. Or look into outsourcing your blog posts to a reliable writer. Once you find someone to handle the actual writing of your blog posts, be sure to briefly review all content before releasing it for publication.
One thing Google has decided to promote in recent years is the idea of value to the user. It analyzes value through a range of factors, but one of the predominant factors is the presence of quality content. If your site has a large number of valuable articles, users will visit it, browse through those articles and stay for value. Compared to a site with very little content, it’s clear which site is more valuable to the average user.
However, you can’t simply dump hundreds of useful pages and hope Google counts it as a library of quality content. Google also looks at the date each piece of content is posted. Older content is often relevant to older situations or connected to older pieces of news. Situations change and news grows stale; older content loses value. Some pieces of content are labeled Evergreen — that is, content that stays valuable through the months and years — but most content does not qualify for this label.
Fittingly, Google encourages websites to provide a constant stream of value. Posting content regularly, tying it in to other recently posted content on other websites and keeping your older content up to date are all important indicators of value.
As Google says, make content for your users, not for the search engines. A user visiting your site and seeing all your information posted in 2008 is going to consider your opinions to be outdated, and they will find a newer resource.
Now that you know a steady stream of high quality content is critical to successful SEO, you need to ask yourself the next logical question. What counts as high quality content? Thankfully, Google has provided a number of questions to ask yourself about your content as a sort of impersonal litmus test. Step outside of your duties as webmaster and look at your content from the point of view of a user.
These questions, along with 14 more, can be found on the official Google Webmaster Central blog. They should help you determine what is considered high quality and what may be flagged as low quality or spam.
The next logical question to ask is how often do you have to post to qualify as regular updates? The answer depends on you and your site.
Do you run a small site that is just starting out? Do you run a larger site, but happen to work solo or as part of a very small team? If you don’t have a lot of resources to throw at the problem, you’ll do well to post once a week, at minimum. Posting more often than that, while potentially beneficial, can strain your resources. It comes back to the quality vs. quantity debate; according to Google, in this case, quality wins. Shoot for once or twice each week.
Do you run a larger site with a large audience and a team of content creators? You’ll have no trouble meeting the requirements of posting once or twice each week. In these cases, you can post every other day, all five days of the week or all seven days of the week. This is where your judgment comes into play. Perform a few months worth of tests; posting on Monday/Wednesday/Friday, posting five days each week and posting on weekends as well. How does your traffic compare? Some variation will come from the content of the posts, of course, but you have to take that into account.
For most sites, posting once a day is a good maximum. Some sites, however, can benefit from a higher flow of content. These are the high-tier sites with huge audiences and large teams of content creators. Posting two, three or more times each day gives each author a chance to shine. Some of these larger sites even split posts among several smaller client sites for added benefit.
So there you have it. Quality content posted on a regular basis is a huge factor in modern SEO. That’s where our content and blog writing service can help. The only thing you need to worry about is making sure your content is as high quality as possible before posting it on your regular schedule.
Many bloggers have found the magic number for blogging frequency to be twice a week. In short, more blogging means more traffic, and no matter what your initial conversion goals are, more traffic means more potential customers.
There are absolutely correlations between blog posting, brand mentions and social media shares:
Once your post is published, take the extra step and promote it across your social media channels. You’ll see higher website traffic as well as improved search engine rankings. Some of the most effective ways to promote your blog posts include:
One of the biggest problems with published research about blogging for SEO is its inability to take the unique characteristics of your target market into account. Your audience may or may not respond in the same way that the averaged results from the research have indicated that they should.
Start with the basic demographics of your target audience. Consider how likely they are to respond to your blog. In some cases, it might make more sense to target some demographic groups through another channel, such as members of Generation Y. Born in the 1980s and 1990s, this group grew up with digital technology, and are much more accessible through Facebook and Twitter.
Track your website traffic. You’re looking for trends that indicate the days of the week and times of day your blogs are getting the most traffic, engagement, and social sharing.
Some great analytic tools, either free or with a free trial period, that can help you analyze your traffic include Google Analytics, AWStats, CrazyEgg, SiteMeter, GoStats, and StatCounter.
Keeping your blog fed with regular, engaging, quality content is what we do. Our blog writing service allows you to successfully outsource your blog, allowing you to work ON your business, not IN your business. Contact us today!