Understanding what a blog is and how to set one up “What is a blog?

The word ‘blog’ is shortened from its full title ‘weblog’ and a blog is just that, a ‘web’ ‘log’. A log, journal or collection of articles on any

What is a business blog?
A business blog is an ongoing log about your business. It can comprise articles about your business and products or services, new launches, promotions, your backstory, industry news, case studies, testimonials and more. It can be presented using text and multimedia such as podcasts, vlogs and slideshows. Done well, it will demonstrate your expertise, build customer loyalty, drive traffic to your business and increase your sales and profit.

The power of blogging should not be underestimated, and you really are missing a trick if you aren’t already doing it.

Here are some benefits of business blogging:
* It is a platform to create preeminence and expertise.
* You can capitalise on relationship marketing.
* You can improve SEO by creating a steady flow of keyword rich relevant content.
* You will increase incoming links.
* You can increase your page ranking.
* You can increase overall traffic to your website.

How to start a blog
The first thing you need to decide is whether you’ll host your blog on your business website, or create a ‘stand alone’ blog hosted on its own domain.

There are pros and cons to each solution and to make an informed decision you really need to decide what you want your blog to do.

Here are some things you may hope to achieve:
* Improved SEO (search engine optimization)
* Incoming links
* Improved page rank
* Regular readers (relationship marketing)

Think for a moment: what are the aims for your blog?

Step 1 – Choosing a Domain Name and Host

Your first task, whether you plan to build your own blog or have it built for you is to choose and purchase your domain name. Consider this decision carefully. If you have a business already, then try and get as close to your business name as possible. Avoid hyphens and underscores, and try and keep your domain name to under 35 characters.Try and buy the .com and local versions of the domain. You also need hosting for your blog. You can search in Google for hosting and it should only
cost a few pounds a month

Step 2 – Making Design Decisions

It’s now time to decide on the look of your blog and the layout. Search for ‘wordpress themes’ in Google – there are lots of choices. Make sure your blog looks good, but don’t forget functionality – is it easy to navigate? Is the content nicely presented? Is there space for advertising and/or an email sign up box?

Step 3 – Building Your Blog

Once you’ve made decisions on how you’d like your blog to look, it’s time to get it built. It is best to outsource this as they are often more efficient than us. Check out www.tametechy.co.uk. It should only cost a couple of hundred pounds or so depending on whether you want your site customised or not.”

Erica Douglas is the author of The Complete Mum Blogger eBook and the Mum Blogger e-Course. She runs a range of online courses helping businesses achieve success online and headlined at the recent VA Conference held in the UK. Erica's blog consistently ... (Read More)

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