Business blogging is an important growth strategy today, as studies show that original content plays a prominent role in most customers’ early purchasing journeys. Meanwhile, B2B tech buyers claim that they consume an average of three to five pieces of content before contacting a supplier.
As the bar for content marketing continues to rise each year, we’ve rounded up several statistics that you should care about if you’re building an owned media portal. These benchmarks will be most relevant to practitioners who aim to pull in paying customers via strong search engine results.
Business blogging tips and benchmarks
What are the benefits of business blogging?
It should come as no surprise that a strong blog is one of the best inbound marketing tools for increasing your brand’s overall online traffic. According to a HubSpot study, brands with a blog tend to have 55% more visitors than those without one.
Apart from traffic, a well-maintained blog can also benefit the business in other ways, such as creating brand awareness, building credibility, educating audiences, and generating leads. For many companies, the end goal of operating an owned media portal is to make money, and this is done by converting readers into leads via call-to-action buttons.
Blogging is a long term growth strategy for businesses. Marketers usually only start seeing SEO results within three to four months of publishing a piece of content. The biggest traffic source today for owned media is still search engines. As such, it’s imperative that businesses intentionally craft content that will rank high on Google’s search results.
How often should your firm blog?
To build organic traffic, HubSpot recommends that brands publish at least four new pieces of content (original or updated content) per week. Businesses that do so are said to generate 3.5 times more traffic than those that publish any less. An Orbit Media study found that content professionals saw great results when they produce at least one article per week.
HubSpot notes that a brand’s total number of blog posts also strongly correlates with lead generation. After analyzing its 13,500 customers, HubSpot saw that B2B companies that put out more than 400 posts in total pulled in six times as many leads as those with less than 100.
That said, in the end, quantity is just one of Google’s 200 ranking factors. Backlinko made a strong case that quality always wins over quantity, as the site has managed to garner over 1 million monthly pageviews, from only around 150+ in-depth articles.
What is the recommended article word count?
If you’re looking to win the search engine results page battle, then the answer is at least 1,500 words. There are several studies to back this claim up.
- HubSpot’s top 50 most read articles in 2019 have an average word count of 2,330.
- Based on a 2019 survey, successful bloggers (those who were making more than US$50,000 a year) said that their most popular posts had an average of 2,424 words.
- Orbit Media’s 2020 survey also found that strong performance came from articles containing at least 1,500 words.
- Backlinko found that articles appearing on Google’s first page results have an average of 1,447 words.
Keep in mind that word count isn’t the only factor either when it comes to SEO success. Content Marketing Institute (CMI) notes that stories crafted to satisfy a user’s search intent are more important.
What are the best content types for SEO?
Answer: it depends on the user’s search intent. Backlinko says there are four types of user intents: informational, navigational, commercial, and transactional.
An in-depth how-to guide (informational) won’t be able to rank well if the user’s search intent is to find products (commercial). A short checklist may also rank better for users who are seeking a quick reference.
One easy way to find out the correct type of content — and the right way to address a user’s intent — is by doing an incognito browse for the target keyword. Check out the top ten articles and observe the way each one answers the search query. Additionally, doing keyword research in terms of volume and difficulty is also recommended. Writers who do this regularly tend to record better content performance.
In general, listicles and how-to guides tend to do well. Orbit Media notes that news roundups and interview articles also have a strong correlation with business blogging success. The digital marketing agency found that writers who incorporate additional formats like images, statistics, contributor quotes, and videos tend to get stronger content marketing results overall.
Here are the stats that your brand should aim to surpass when it comes to business blogging.
- Publishing frequency: four times per week
- Total articles published: 400 articles
- Word count per article: at least 1,500 words
- Publishing routines: analyze user search intent and conduct keyword research
- Content quality: well-written, supplemented by images, statistics, quotes, and videos
- Others: be patient, as results normally show only after four to six months of publishing
The above figures may look intimidating at the onset, but they can be tackled with a dedicated team of writers. If you want to keep your team small, working with freelance talent can be a good option.
According to a recent report by CMI, nearly half of all B2B marketers in the US work with freelance writers and agencies in the context of content marketing. Two crucial aspects that firms look for in a partner is the ability to create content with adequate topic expertise, but also one who can empathize with the target audience. The real challenge comes in finding the right partner that can work with the firm’s budget.
Marketers who are facing similar issues may want to check out tools like ContentGrow. With this app and service, the manual labor of sourcing freelance writers and journalists is handled for free. This proves worthwhile, as marketers can shift their focus to other more important aspects beyond ground-level execution — such as strategy and analytics.
Save time and money when producing high-quality content. ContentGrow helps brands and publishers work with perfectly matched freelance writers and journalists at preferred rates. Fill out the form below to get your own shortlist of talent or visit the site to get started.