It's no secret that the entire world has massively embraced the online ecosystem for many of their day-to-day needs.
Today, it seems that nobody will take action or make a decision without first doing a Google search, as the search engine is fast approaching 6 billion searches per day (think about it, there are 8 billion of us.)
Now, how does that impact you and your website?
Well, when people type in their searches, a significant number of the results coming back happen to be blog posts. This means that your blog will more than likely end up driving most of the traffic to your site.
But, for you to benefit from this traffic, you need to make sure that your posts are not only useful but also engaging.
In this article, you’ll learn 5 steps plus 11 tips to help you craft blog post articles that people actually want to read.
Prerequisites for Writing a Successful Blog Post
When website visitors read blog posts, they have certain expectations, in the same way, that people expect to see certain things when they read a good book.
But before we begin, we need to discuss two prerequisites you’ll need to fulfill before you start writing. These two elements are crucial whether you're looking for writing jobs or trying to get more traffic to your site.
Knowing Your Niche
First, you need to know your niche, and you need to know it well. So, for example, don’t write about crypto if you only know the subject superficially, you’ve never owned any cryptocurrency, and you’ve never traded it.
Knowing Your Audience
Second, when you write a blog post, you’re actually writing for two distinct audiences, the humans that’ll read it and the machine that’ll decide whether your article ranks in search results or not (e.g., the Google search algorithm.)
Below, we’ll only cover the first audience. The second one is outside the scope of this article. So make sure you become knowledgeable about SEO and keyword research before you begin writing.
For example, don’t choose hard to rank for keywords with high competition from authoritative sites (you’ll never be able to outrank them.)
Also, don’t choose keywords that are too “niche” with negligible monthly search volume. There’s no point in wasting resources writing about something very few people will ever read.
Finally, make sure your blog posts are optimized for search engines. If Google doesn’t understand what your post is about, it will not rank, no matter how well-written it may be.
With this caveat out of the way, let's now move on to discuss the five steps in the correct sequence, as each one builds on the foundations of the one above.
1. Use Alluring Blog Topic Ideas
Now, the art of copywriting, or the ability to come up with compelling marketing copy, is a very complex subject to cover in a single article.
Fortunately, some fantastic AI-powered writing tools on the market such as Jasper, Fraser and Copy.ai have been trained to write like a human copywriter, and I will use one such tool to demonstrate the five key elements of blog writing below.
As an example, I’m going to generate several alluring topic ideas for a fictitious blog about home decor using Jasper.
Here are my inputs for the tool:
Company name: BestHomeDecor (the term of our fictitious blog)
Product description: Online home decor magazine for new home owners
Audience: Home owners
Tone of voice: helpful
Here are simple phrases that capture some of the general interests of our audience, to be used as seeds for the AI engine:
- Best living room furniture
- Soothing wall colors
- Affordable area rugs
Great, let’s give the AI copywriter a spin and see what we get:
Awesome! These six topic ideas are in areas of interest for our audience and are written in an alluring way (notice the big difference between the AI output and my dull-worded examples above.)
Let’s run the AI one more time, just for fun:
Perfect, another perfectly good set of additional topics that could be used to write a great blog post about.
What Makes Good Blog Topics?
Being knowledgeable about your niche is necessary but not sufficient to write a blog post people want to read.
You’ll also need to know who your audience is, and you’ll need to offer them an alluring topic they can sink their teeth into.
In other words, you’ll need to write about topics that solve a problem for your audience, and you’ll need to present them in a way that compels them to click on your article.
Remember, when people do a search, and your blog post comes up in the results, they won’t see your post directly, they’ll just see your title and a small blurb underneath.
So, your topic’s title is the key that opens the door to your blog.
2. Create An Engaging Outline
Now that you’ve chosen an alluring topic idea to write about, the next step is to create an engaging blog post outline around that topic.
This outline needs to cover the bases of your topic well enough so that your reader will feel satisfied after reading your article. In other words, they’ll feel that you solved their problem.
For this example, I’m going to create an outline for one of the topics generated in part one, specifically: “How to style your home like a pro.”
Once again, let’s resort to the help of our friendly AI tool to generate an engaging outline for this topic. My new inputs will be:
Blog post title/topic: How to style your home like a pro
Tone of voice: Helpful
And the outline is…
A perfectly good outline to drive the narrative of our article. Now, if you don’t find this output inspiring enough, you can just use it for ideation and come up with your own, or you can run the tool one more time:
A different yet also engaging outline we can work with. Your job next is to build up the different outline sections with your expert advice, sprinkled with images and videos to create a more immersive reading experience.
3. Write An Inviting Introduction
Now, it’s time for the third element of successful blog post writing: the introduction.
Once people find your post in their search results and click your link, the first thing they’ll read is your introduction.
Here you’ll have a few seconds to capture and hold their attention. If your intro is uninspiring or off-topic about your title, then readers will hit the backspace key.
Your job, then, is to write an inviting introduction that hooks them to stay on the page without disclosing the answer to their problem.
Once again, for illustration purposes, let’s resort to our trusty AI to generate a blog post introduction.
My inputs this time are:
Content description/brief (this provides the AI with a bit of direction): Write an article with several tips on how to style your home like a pro
Tone of voice: Helpful
Keywords (to provide the AI with some additional direction): style a home
Let’s look at the results:
A nice attempt that hooks the reader through their expected DIY angle without revealing any of the details.
4. Provide Step-By-Step Instructions
The fourth element of successful blog post writing is premised on the fact that the vast majority of searches on search engines are from people looking for information to solve a problem.
And the best way to provide a workable solution is to provide a list of actionable steps they can easily follow.
So, it’s important that you break down your blog writing into clear steps that are easy to digest and laid out in a logical sequence. Your aim is to make it super easy for your readers to get many benefits from your writing.
The more actionable advice you provide your audience, the more they’ll love your blog and keep coming back for more!
Once again, for the sake of illustration, we will go back to our trusty AI tool to generate content quickly.
So, let’s create step-by-step instructions for the outline entry on decluttering from step 2.
Here are my inputs:
What is your paragraph about? How to de-clutter your space in 5 clear steps
Keywords to include: de-cluttering
Tone of voice: Helpful
And the AI-generated steps are:
As you can see, creating step-by-step instructions is much more useful and engaging than writing paragraph after paragraph about decluttering without an easy-to-follow structure in place.
5. Conclude Your Post With a Clear Call to Action
The fifth and final key element of successful blog post writing is your conclusion. Now, unlike the conclusion for an essay or a book chapter, your goal is not just to bring your narrative to an end but to do so while providing your readers with a clear call to action.
Your blog likely exists to support your business, be it through the sale of your own products or services or the sale of other people’s products or services (e.g., an affiliate site.)
Therefore, you always want to gently guide your readers towards a call to action, where you can suggest a possible solution that can lead to a purchase.
So, in addition to summarizing the main takeaways from your article, make sure that you always conclude with a relevant call to action as a natural extension of your article.
Let’s use AI one final time to illustrate how this could work.
Here are my inputs (I’ve copied the second outline from step 2 above):
What are the main points of your blog post?
- Start by de-cluttering your space – get rid of any unnecessary items that are taking up space
- Choose a color scheme and stick to it throughout the house
- Use furniture and accessories to add personality to each room
- Don't be afraid to experiment with different styles – find what works best for you and your family
- Add plants or flowers to brighten up each room
- Keep your home clean and organized at all times
Call to action: Are you looking for affordable home decor services?
Tone of voice: Persuasive
Let’s give the AI one final spin:
Perfect, a good summary of the salient points rounded up with a clear call to action.
Tips for Creating Engaging and Interesting Content
To close this article, here are some general tips to complement the above information to use as a reference:
- Utilize lists and headings to organize your content
- Add images and videos to break up your text
- Use keywords that will help people find your post on search engines
- Write in a conversational tone
- When necessary, use statistics and examples to back up your points
- Keep your paragraphs short and concise. This is important to fit the small screen size of mobile devices
- Write in an active voice as much as possible
- Try using humor to engage your readers (only if it comes naturally to you!)
- Write about personal experiences or stories
- Utilize images, infographics, and screenshots to enhance your content
- Highlight key points with bold or italicized text (again, this breaks up the text and makes it more readable)
- Don’t skip on setting KPIs to measure your SEO performance
Blogging is a great way to share your thoughts and knowledge with the world, but it can also be a great traffic generator for your website.
In addition, your blog posts can turn into a powerful marketing funnel for your business when you use the right call to action.
But before you can reap these benefits, you need to write blog posts that people will actually want to read.
By following the steps and tips in this post, you’ll be able to write articles that are interesting and engaging. This will help you build trust with your audience and create a loyal (and profitable!) following.