The tenth instalment of our tips for growing your gardening business focuses on the value of having a blog on your website.
As the owner of Jackson Garden Services, a Plymouth-based gardening and landscaping company, I have successfully grown my gardening business and gained a strong client base in the process using a combination of direct and indirect marketing (both online and offline). Since I started the company in 2018, we’ve gone from being a small, fledgling business to a successful and popular company with a small team and strong client base due to a combined approach of working hard, being great at what we do and having a successful and useful approach to marketing the business.
Social media channels such as blogs (you may not think it, but blogs are quite widely considered to be the first modern form of social media!) can often be overlooked as a form of advertising. Still, in my experience, it offers a great way to get your gardening services in front of the right people.
What is a blog?
Blog is short for ‘Web Log’ – a regularly updated website or web page, usually run by an individual or small group, written in a conversational style. A blog is an interactive platform for a blogger to get their message through to a reader and is written for the purpose of showing expertise in a particular subject. By introducing a blog, you are essentially adding pages to your website – don’t forget, blogs create content!
How can a blog enhance my website?
Introducing a blog to your website can be a great way to generate fresh content and boost your Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). This is a fantastic way to drive traffic through to your website – the more you blog, the more content the search engines have to crawl and index! By sharing ideas and interests, blogs help search engines improve the quality of their search results. You can manage your online identity and build trust which, in turn, will enable you to connect with more people – bringing more clients to your existing business.
Best practices for creating a blog
Focused – make sure that your blog is focused on a single topic so that you rank well in that area, and you know your topic thoroughly
Structure – when writing a longer blog, make sure that it is well structured. To make it easy to read, divide it into sections
Quality – make sure that your blog is high quality and engaging. Posting poor high-quality will drive readers away
Content – a longer blog will create more new words. Search engines can then index these words, letting them know exactly what the page is about. While longer blog posts tend to perform the best, that’s not to say that every single blog post you publish must be more than 2,000 words. If you feel you’ve covered your topic well enough in 300, 800, or 1,000 words, then that’s perfectly fine too
The use of imagery and videos – it is important to include relevant imagery and illustrations in your blog post. By doing this you create a better browser experience, and your users will spend longer reading through your article. This will make your post more memorable, whilst achieving an emotional connection. If you were thinking about using a video, a good way to gauge if the topic you are blogging about warrants a video is by searching the topic on YouTube. Look at the results of the search and if there is not a high demand for that topic, it probably means that a video asset is not necessary.
- Use keywords
- Use click-worthy titles – for example, “How to Create a Blog in 5 Minutes” (keeping the title short but identifying the right long keywords)
- Pick a niche topic and stick to it
- Write content for your audience – for example, when advertising gardening products, this could be directed at homeowners or businesses
- Add blog tags
- Link to pages on your website and on other websites
- Post frequently
Promoting Your Blog Content
Once you have your blog live on your website, you can drive traffic to the website using social media. To promote your blog content, make your content easy to access when your audience is active. Make sure that you engage with your audience at regular intervals – studies show that the more often that you update your blog, the more traffic it will receive. Higher priority is given to websites with fresh content, so if you want to get more attention from the search engines, update your blog at least once a week.
I do hope you are finding these ‘Grow Your Gardening Business’ articles of interest. I will be covering more topics over the next few editions, hopefully providing you with the basic tools to start you off growing your business too!
In the meantime, you can connect with me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn; I’m always happy to chat!