Writing great blogs is tough, but practice makes perfect. This page will outline how to properly write an effective blog that is appealing to readers and promoted by search engines.
Blogging for buyers is one of the most effective methods of lead generation. It’s free and timeless. The problem is that so few professionals do it correctly. It takes planning, strategy, and knowledge.
Writing Great Blogs
Writing great blogs will require consistent effort and a steady commitment. It takes repetition to form proper habits, but put in the work now and reap the rewards for years to come. The more you blog the less time it will take to create an SEO-friendly article.
Most professionals think blogging is posting any text to their website. A haphazard write-up will be ignored by the search engines. Providing a link to an external article and including a few comments is lazy. The most egregious offense is to copy and paste text from another source and post it. Google recognizes plagiarism and downgrades the offenders in their rankings.
Content may be king but it started as a prince when it was created. Make sure you’re producing quality content that is fit to be crowned by the search engines.
- Blogging for buyers: you’re moving to Boise
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- Still need to write more
- Only one more to go
Format for Writing Great Blogs
Blogs have a formula that should be followed. Pay attention to websites you visit and see if they possess a similar structure to what’s being proposed.
A blog entry needs a minimum of 300 words. Typically this won’t be an issue. We found that it takes about an hour of writing for every 300 words (when done correctly).
Pick a keyword phrase
A good keyword phrase is critical for SEO. We’re going to avoid getting into the weeds of keywords because it’s a monster-big topic. Here’s the idea: pick a keyword phrase that you think a buyer (or seller) will search in Google. It’s best if you get hyper-local. The big boys (like Zillow, Realtor.com, etc.) are going to kill us for the common searches. We need to be specific and local.
Example: one million people may be searching “homes for sale in DFW” whereas only 4,000 people are searching “homes for sale in deerfield plano tx”. Go for the 4,000 people and rank on page 1 of Google. Plus, you’re instantly an expert on the Deerfield neighborhood.
Be sure to include the keyword phrase like “writing a great blog” throughout the article. Always include it in the opening paragraph.
If possible, work in a second phrase like “blogging for buyers” while sounding natural. Avoid forcing keywords and sounding stupid for the sake of SEO. Use the keyword phrase throughout the article the best you can.
When writing a great blog the structure will look like this:
- Open with two introductory paragraphs that explain the article’s purpose and benefit to the reader. Each paragraph should be limited to two or three sentences.
- Insert a video or image. Make sure the image is high resolution. Look for 600 x 300 or bigger. 300 pixels is about the maximum desired height; otherwise there’s too much scrolling.
- Then use an H1 header that contains the keyword phrase. Here we used the “writing great blogs” for our keyword phrase. This is the article’s title and in the URL.
- Provide an intro paragraph or two. Describe the blog’s content and why it’s valuable to the reader.
- Now include a “Related Articles Section”. Here you would provide four or five links to articles that may be relevant to the topic. Ideally these would be blog articles you’ve written.
- Insert another image. This makes for a nice transition and signifies that the detailed content is forthcoming.
At this point start using H2 headings. In our opinion, H2 headings should be shorter titles with capital letters for the major words. In contrast, H3 headings can provide more detail and have lower case letters.
After a few headings you’ll want to insert a picture or two to help create transitions. Remember, work in keyword phrase as much as possible. Doing this and sounding natural is the challenge.
<< insert image… and don’t forget a Featured Image too>>
The guidelines below are what make blogging so time intensive. Writing effectively is tough, especially when you’re a “numbers” person. Remember the old saying: practice makes (closer to) perfect.
Use short sentences
Be direct and use short sentences. Run-on sentences get confusing and lead to poor grammar. Short sentences eliminate superfluous words and convey a point.
Here’s a challenge: evaluate a sentence you’ve written. Now rewrite that sentence with fewer words. Now do it one more time and remove more words. Is the message still delivered? Short sentences result in writing great blogs.
Readers love bullet points and list. Similarly, search engines like list too. Use them because:
- First, list are easy to do,
- Second, readers love them,
- Finally, search engines love them.
Write in active voice
Use an active writing voice. Passive voice sentences often start with “if” or “because”. Think of it this way: the subject needs to go first in an active sentence. Then comes the verb and then the rest of the sentence.
Here’s an example of a passive sentence: “a great blog was written by Bob.” Conversely, an active sentence is “Bob wrote a great blog.”
Use transition words
Transition words help a reader follow the thought process. For that reason, reference these examples and use them often in your writing.
It’s not about you
Be careful using “I” or “me” excessively. If you’re doing a review of restaurant then your opinion matters and “I, me, and my” are acceptable. Otherwise keep it more factual and less opinionated.
For example, instead of “I love Lake Highlands because of all the unique homes and mature trees” you may want to use “Lake Highlands is full of old homes with mature trees.”
Let the reader decide how they feel about older homes. Some folks love 100 year-old homes; others, not so much. You may alienate someone if they disagree with your opinion. They may even form assumptions about you as a person. Crazy but true. ‘
Use positive wording. Avoid can’t, don’t, and shouldn’t. For example: “Don’t use negative words” has the same message of “Use positive wording.” The latter sound better and is more effective.
Use one space between sentences
Lastly, use one space in between sentences. This will be challenging at first. Ultimately it creates a better experience and is visually appealing. We’ll admit we don’t think this has anything to do with SEO but it’s what major websites do so we adopted the method.
Be sure to link to other videos and blogs you’ve done that are relevant. Give the reader a chance to learn more (and establish yourself as the expert). Link to other pages too that are helpful. Here’s a great article from Yoast.com on how to write a clear blog structure.
Finally, make sure to include all your contact information. Allow the reader to contact you with ease. Have links to your website and social media sites.
The Mortgage Mark Team is here to help. Let’s promote each other and dominate the digital world by writing great blogs.
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