Blogs are the virtual equivalent of a diary. In days gone by, we penned our innermost thoughts in a notebook before locking it and hiding it under the mattress to ensure our sister didn’t accidentally chance upon it. Nowadays it is customary to vent about even the most banal of things in an online blog in the hope that someone, somewhere will read it and our existence is validated. But writing a blog for promotional purposes is rather different to writing a blog as a personal diary, so is all that effort a good use of your valuable time when all you really want to do is sell online?
How do I link a blog to my online store?
A blog can be embedded into your online store as an extra page, or it can be an entirely separate entity with a different domain name, hosted on a server elsewhere. If the blog is part of your existing website or online store, it is already linked via whatever internal links you have in place, so your customers will easily be able to navigate between the blog and the rest of the site. If the blog is hosted elsewhere, you will need to include a link somewhere on the blog home page so that interested readers can move from the blog to your online store, hopefully to spend some cash.
What are the benefits of a blog linked to my online store?
There are many benefits to regularly updating a blog. A well-written blog will attract readers: in the beginning, readers will probably be few and far between, but as time goes on and the number of interesting and informative posts increases, your readership will grow and in turn so will the number of people making the jump from blog to online store.
You can also use your blog to make important or interesting announcements to your customers: inform them of new products or special promotions, or just thank them for their custom if you have had a great year!
What kind of posts do I need to write?
This is a tricky one, but in general, as long as the posts are interesting and informative, they don’t necessarily need to be related to your online store. Most readers of blogs don’t want to hear about your products in glorious detail—they can visit your website for a product description—so use the blog to write about general industry related news or interesting events. You can even use a blog to make personal announcements if you like: anything that helps connect you with your customers is an excellent promotional tool.
Will people even read the blog?
Write it and they will come. As long as you write interesting material, readers will keep coming back. Treat your blog as a kind of newsletter and use it to make announcements when relevant. It is also a good idea to include an RSS feed so that your readers can be notified when you add a new post.