Why blogging is essential for attracting organic visitors to your site and how to use expert content for lead generation in the IT sphere.
Earlier, we shared a case study where SEO optimization of the website of an IT company helped increase traffic by 30% in six months. Blog optimization was one of the crucial stages of our work.
Why an IT company website needs a blog
Creating a blog on a commercial site helps to solve several problems at once — both within the framework of your overall marketing strategy and specific goals for project promotion:
- Increasing the number of landing pages to attract organic traffic.
- Enriching the semantic core by information queries.
- Increasing brand loyalty and improving the site’s ranking in search engines through expert content.
- Creating a single source of content for seeding in various channels of brand communication with the audience.
- Expanding the funnel for lead generation at different user journey stages.
Optimizing website structure
What is the website of an IT company? Often the structure consists of a home page, services catalog, and several pages with information about the brand and contacts. There can be several dozen such pages on each language version of the site. And even less in cases with a unique technological product.
If the number of services does not change or the business is based on the promotion of one product, the structure remains static for a long time. It leads to limitations in the number of key phrases for which it is planned to promote the site in search engines. At the same time, commercial keywords are highly competitive in the IT niche. It is difficult for newcomers to break into high positions in the search engine for high-frequency, but competitive phrases.
How can you bypass your competitors and attract more traffic to your site? It is worth optimizing the structure and increasing the number of landing pages. How can you do this with a limited set of tools? Create a blog section on the site or information media on a separate subdomain and fill it with articles with helpful information for your users. To implement it, you can choose:
- a subfolder — if the CMS will allow you to implement all the necessary elements of content optimization, taking into account the current UI/UX and SEO requirements;
- a subdomain — if the site engine has restrictions on technical and visual implementations or other integration limitations, including system security.
Expansion of the semantic core
What kind of content is good for creating new landing pages? A blog will help enrich a limited core of commercial queries with a broader set of keywords in the information niche. These can be high-frequency queries related to the description of specific services, common user questions in a particular niche, and high-frequency topics about trends in the industry. Or low-frequency long-tail queries which clarify subtle details of technological processes, revealing complex nuances of narrow-profile tasks.
Expanding the semantic core of the site
This way, we increase the number of landing pages through article creation and attract more traffic to the site. According to the 2019 BrightEdge study, 53% of all website traffic tracked comes from organic search. In addition, B2B companies earn twice as much revenue from organics as other channels.
Properly organized technical on-page optimization, internal relinking, collecting SN, and writing optimized texts will allow the site to rank in search engines for more queries on the topic. Also, it will attract more potential customers to the site, bypassing competitors who do not use the blog as an additional tool to attract traffic.
As you can see from the example of IT-company sites with organic traffic from different regions — informational articles are in the top 3 pages of the entire site (according to Ahrefs):
Types of pages in the top 3 for sites in the IT niche in different markets
Confirming brand expertise
The weight in ranking content in search engines is getting higher and higher for confirmed expertise. Therefore, when creating a blog, it is necessary to pay attention not only to writing articles on frequency queries but also to demonstrate the expertise of the information.
Involving company employees and outside experts in the niche in writing articles and comments will positively impact the ranking of the content and will increase its popularity. In addition, search crawlers and visitors of the site will get a positive signal. And this, in turn, will help gain user trust and increase customer loyalty.
It’s worth noting that IT blogging is not just about SEO to attract organics. It is an essential link in the chain of associated conversions. One blog article becomes the basis for reposting to other brand communication channels: social networks, messengers, emails, and external platforms. In this case, the cost of generating ideas and creating a unit of content decreases, and the number of channels to attract traffic increases.
Tools for communicating with an audience through a blog
The role of the blog in lead generation for businesses
And the ultimate task that an IT blog has to do is to attract leads. At what stages of the funnel can it be used? Let’s take a closer look at the blog’s role in the user journey from reader to the customer:
- Unconscious need. First, at the expense of informational requests in the niche, you can expand the funnel at the brand awareness stage: give recommendations to specialists of different levels – from basics for beginners to lifehacks and how-tos in narrow spheres. You can make collections of working tools, publish current news and trends, and cover profile events. Create an image of the brand as an expert to arouse the reader’s interest and trust, even if they have not yet realized the need for the service.
- Active search. At this stage, the user consciously seeks ways to solve a specific business problem. It should detail the tools that the company can offer to solve the problem. If the product is complex, detailed instructions and examples will be required. You should confirm the expertise with cases and accurately deliver the idea of the unique selling offer.
- Conversion. After the reader gets the answer to their question in the informative article, it’s important not to let them go looking for solutions in Google, but to organically direct them to the page of the corresponding commercial service.
The blog’s role in the consumer decision journey
Each article should have conversion elements to include the blog in the lead generation chain: a quick contact button for a manager, a newsletter subscription form, linking widgets to service pages, and other push notifications that seamlessly complement the publication’s message.
How to build an effective content strategy for your brand with a blog
It’s crucial to understand that a blog is not a “thing in itself.” It’s one content marketing tool that needs to be integrated into the brand’s overall business strategy. Here’s an algorithm on how to do this intelligently.
Preparing to start a project
Before creating a blog, you should clearly understand why you are doing it, what are your expectations, how you will measure success, are there resources within the team or do you need external editors and technical specialists, are you ready to “play the long game” or does the project need quick decisions now?
According to our observations, it takes 1-3 months to launch a blog of varying levels of complexity. The first results for analyzing and adjusting the initial content strategy can be expected in another three months. A significant increase in traffic and an assessment of real efficiency can be achieved closer to the end of the first year of work with the project.
Stages of blog creation and development for 1 year
When you decide to launch a blog, move on to preparing the site for posting content. At this stage, the collective work of teams from several areas is essential:
When creating an information section on the site or a blog on a separate subdomain, you should consider the editorial team’s wishes regarding the technical capabilities of the admin panel for placing and editing text because they must be ready to change the various text elements promptly.
The design of the blog pages should comply with the company’s brand book and current trends in the visual display of content on web pages. Furthermore, the technical implementation should consider the current requirements of search engines, a list of which is given to the developers by the SEO specialist.
A platform for placing texts prepared in this way will ensure the effectiveness of the blog in all aspects:
- Better ranking in search.
- Attracting organic traffic.
- Behavioral factors on the page.
- Easy repackaging of content for distribution to different channels of communication with the audience.
- Data collection for analyzing the KPI of the project.
As you can see by the example of sites of IT companies with the same percentage of traffic from the same region, the effectiveness of articles in attracting organic traffic does not depend directly on the number of articles. Instead, optimization and content promotion strategy matters. So, a site with several articles x10 attracts only x6 organic traffic to the blog (according to Ahrefs):
Organic traffic to IT blog articles
You can create the content simultaneously with technical implementations to place a large volume of pre-prepared articles as soon as the site is ready. Or, you can start creating and publishing content after the development phase is complete. The choice depends on the capabilities of the team working on the project.
The tasks of the editorial team in working with content include:
- Competitor analysis.
- Selection of relevant topics based on trends, frequency, and competitiveness of queries.
- Writing a content plan.
- Collection of semantic core for each topic.
- Writing a detailed ToR for copywriters (article structure, keys, LSI phrases, metadata, linking, visual and conversion elements, references).
- Checking, editing, and posting articles on the blog.
- Recommendations for further content seeding.
Stages of content strategy implementation
It is essential that the content creation team, including the editor and writers, have a good understanding of the topic of your product. Quality articles in an IT blog should not resemble students’ essays. Experienced experts from the internal team should validate the information; you can also get comments from external experts.
Compiling the semantic core and composing the ToR for the copywriter is essential. The editor should professionally supervise the author, formulating the task correctly. It is not just collecting information on the topic with keys but creating a helpful narrative for the reader with a call to action. It should lead the reader to believe that the company will solve their business problem in the best possible way with the right technological tools and that the staff is qualified to do so.
Once the content is posted on the site, you need to distribute it competently to your target audience in other channels to attract additional traffic beyond organic. It is vital to consider the peculiarities of information presented in each channel for clever repackaging. Do not just drop a link to the article in the messenger, but add an interesting summary. For social networks, create a suitable visual design and a brief text. For email newsletters, collect a selection of helpful thematic articles.
Since the start of publications, it is necessary to monitor the work results regularly and adjust the strategy. It is required to understand traffic dynamics from different channels and the effectiveness of the content of various types. Analyze the bounce rate, the readability of articles, the depth of conversions, and the time on the site. It is crucial to track the conversion rate of articles, user interaction with the subscription form, and linking blocks with commercial pages.
A detailed data analysis will help examine users’ interests and adjust the content plan. Find out which articles work better for the target audience in different channels. Determine the appropriate format, volume, and frequency of publications. Understand which structural and visual elements on the page need optimization.
Launching an IT blog: what’s the result
Yes, working with an IT blog is not just adding an “Articles” section to the site and filling it with keywords. This approach is unlikely to justify expectations and investments in content creation. Unoptimized, unauthored articles with sloppy layouts won’t add expertise to a brand, either in the eyes of users or in terms of search bots.
It would help if you optimized the influential IT blog technically and visually, and the content should answer questions such as: why us — because we have experience and experts on the team. Here are the cases to prove it. Something you don’t know — we’ll help you find out and figure it out. We are aware of what is happening in the market and Hi-Tech global trends — we are on-trend, and you can trust us. You haven’t decided what’s right for you yet — sign up for our mailing list to get more helpful information. Want to start a partnership — here’s the button to order a service; contact us!
Therefore, if you have decided to use an IT blog as an additional tool for lead generation, we recommend laying a solid technical foundation at the start and focusing on creating valuable expert content and its systematic distribution to your CA.
Such a strategy will lead to the growth of several business indicators at once:
- top positions of the site in search engines for key queries in the niche;
- traffic from different channels;
- the authority of the resource and brand loyalty;
- target audience coverage;
Following our recommendations, you could analyze the project’s current situation and decide if it is reasonable to start a blog for your IT company. You can create a blog on your own, consult our experts, or completely delegate an information resource to an external editorial team. We will be glad to help you develop your business with a well-thought-out content strategy.