Blogging beginner’s guide: 10 elements of a successful blog post
Have you ever felt that despite giving your full efforts to blogging, you are unable to get satisfied results. Satisfied results could be anything like lack of traffic, Lack of likes on your facebook page, lack of conversion, lack of back links to your main website, etc.
When I started out, I made the same mistakes too. But I learnt few lessons on my blogging journey. And the most important one is, there are certain critical elements that make up a blog post successful. If you avoid these elements, no matter how useful your content is, you won’t get the desired results. If you incorporate the elements, even if your content is moderate, your blog post will be successful.
So what are these key elements? Let’s have a look at them one by one.
1. Catchy Headlines
The first thing that any reader notices a blog post is through a headline. If your headline is not catchy enough, your readers won’t click on it to read it further.
Because they are in an era where there is abundant information. Their email boxes are full of emails from various people, their facebook and twitter feeds are full of blog posts and images from various sources. You need to stand out from the crowd. No matter how useful information you provide, you are wasting your efforts if you don’t have a proper headline because it is not going to get clicked if your headlines suck.
So what type of headings do well?
Just have a look at these headline titles and you will understand
- Top 10 Java programs for freshers – This is a list post
- The ultimate guide to Java Threading – This is a tutorial post
- What everybody ought to know about Eclipse plugins – This headline evokes curiosity
Be innovative without diluting the original message when coming up with the headlines.
Did you see the start of this blog post? I have provided a gentle introduction. The idea of an introduction is to ease your readers into reading further into the blog post. That provides a medium to build initial rapport with the readers.
3. Proper headings & sub headings
Once inside the blog post body, provide headings and sub headings. Research suggests that readers first skim through a blog post to find out what it is all about and then only make up their mind to read further. So if there is no proper headings, you will not read the post fully. Now try skimming this blog post by reading only the headings and sub headings. Did you get my point?
4. Small paragraphs
It always makes sense to write smaller paragraphs as it is more readable. Long paragraphs can become difficult on the eyes and disturbs the readers’ reading pattern. So in effect, you will lose that readers
5. Bullet points
Another way of converting long paragraphs into shorter ones is to convert them into bullet points.
Advantages of bullet points are:
- They are more shorter and easier to read
- Readers get the point easily
- Visually looks good than a long paragraph
Got the point?
6. Decent resolution image(s)
You need at least one image for your blog post that actually conveys about the blog post. And it should be of decent resolution. Not too low that your readers will think that you didn’t take enough time to properly do an image search. Not too high, that your webpage takes forever to load.
Whenever it makes sense, add an image and make it more visual. But don’t put an image for the sake of putting more and more pictures. It should connect well with what you write or explain.
7. Call to Action (CTA)
This one is important. Especially if you are blogging for a business or a startup. Now that I have told you it is important, let me tell you what it is.
It is something that you ask your readers to do after they finish reading the blog post.
It can be either of
- Asking them to like and share the post on social media
- Asking them to join the email subscriber list
- Asking them to visit their startup website / business website
- Asking them to purchase something
So it really depends on what your objectives are.
8. Usage of Tags & Categories
Wouldn’t you love it some user searched for a keyword and google displays your page in the search results? I would love it if it happens to my blog. And I am sure you would love it too. The only way you can say that your content is related to that keyword is through the use of tags and categories. So use a relevant tag. Categories are one level above tags. They can be classified as a group of tags.
9. Featured Image
This image is one which is actually used for preview when you put your blog post link in the social media, for eg. Facebook timeline. If you don’t provide a featured image, facebook will automatically display one of the images from your blog post.
Although not absolutely mandatory, It is always better to leave a conclusion section where the readers will find it helpful just to recap what they did while reading the blog post.
So there we are with 10 elements of a successful blog post. Try following them and you will start to see better results for your blog. All the best.
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