Should You Have a Blog?

The business blog is a rising trend in the retail world -- and for good reason. Blog posts help drive traffic to your website, keep the content of your website fresh, and allow you to fully express yourself to customers, building long-lasting relationships. But blogging is not for the faint of heart.

For some people, blogging is more of a business blunder than a business booster. While it's not a full-time job, it does require time and concentration, especially if you want to do it right. Before you set up a blog for your business, be sure to ask yourself these questions first:

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Do you have more to say?

Social media and email are great ways to reach your customers, but these platforms require you to keep it short. People are too busy to read long emails on their lunch break or read a 4-paragraph Facebook post in the elevator. Short is sweet.

Blogging is a long-form means of communication, meaning that you have about 250-700 words to share your message rather than 140 characters. And blog posts can be easily linked to from social sites and emails. You have the ability to share a few photos of an event on Facebook and then link to a blog post that gives the back story of the event.

If you feel that your customers aren't able to get the whole story on social and via email, it may be time to start a blog!

Do you want to rank higher in search results?

Blogs = fresh website content. If you're careful to include keywords in your blog posts, they can also equal great placement in search engine results, which make it easier for customers to find you.

If you feel a little bit lost in search engines, a blog could be the attention-grabber you need.

Do you have time for the upkeep?

While everyone needs to experiment in order to find the right posting schedule for their blog, businesses usually fall into a few common categories:  several times a week, weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly posts. Having an irregular posting schedule can mean that customers miss them, and employees may not be motivated to keep up with them.

Sit down with your staff and see who is willing to contribute. Then, plan out a schedule that makes sense for them and you. If it seems possible to achieve with your team and your workload, it's worth a shot to see if blogging can benefit you!

Are you technologically savvy?

Blogging isn't just about writing and clicking "post." It also involves photography, formatting, coding, promoting on social media, and more. If you're not good with technology and not willing to learn, you probably shouldn't commit to a blog. You can pass the duty off to a tech-ish employee or just stick to the marketing tactics you do best!

Blog or no blog, you need to know the best ways to reach your customers and fill them in on what's happening in-store. That may be a post, an email, a flyer, or a Tweet, but the most important detail of your message is whether or not it reaches who it needs to reach.

You can find out even more benefits of blogging for your business with our "Blogging in Retail" training course. Find out more about what Crystal Media can do for you at socialedge.co.