Running a small business blog makes a lot of sense, marketing-wise. It’s great for SEO (search engine optimization), because search engines love websites with a steady stream of fresh, quality content. It’s great for engagement because visitors enjoy looking forward to new articles, resources and information on a regular basis.
So How Often Should You Update Your Blog?
You’ll find all sorts of advice out there on this topic. Some experts advocate quality over quantity, and say you can post to your blog once a week, or even once a month, as long as it’s consistently high-quality material – long, well-written posts with authoritative links and statistics and research.
Others adhere to the idea that it’s imperative to update your blog every day, even if you just throw up a dashed-off post that consists of a link and a few sentences of commentary. Frequent posting, they say, drives search engines more impressively than quality.
So, who’s right?
What’s the magic number for updating your blog that will give you the right balance between quality and quantity, keeping both search engines and visitors happy and returning to you again and again?
The unfortunate truth is there’s no magic number. But there are some updating frequencies that are better than others, and there is a right number of posts per week for you and your particular small business.
Here’s What You Shouldn’t Do
Don’t Post Less Frequently Than Once Per Week
Even if you have the most amazing quality blog posts ever written, if you’re not updating at least once a week, you’re losing momentum. Search engines crawl your website less often. Visitors and potential customers forget that your blog exists.
If your updates are more than a week apart, it’s about as effective as not blogging at all.
Don’t Set a Schedule That You Can’t Adhere To
While it’s true that daily content can give your small business blog a great boost, it’s equally true that a sudden drop in publishing frequency can damage your efforts.
Burnout can be a serious problem for bloggers. If you’re trying to write fresh content every single day, you’re probably on a fast track to running out of steam.
Unless you have someone whose only job is to write daily blog posts, or you’re planning to supplement original content with guest posts, reprints and material, you don’t have to write fresh. A daily post schedule probably isn’t the best choice for your small business blog. After all, you’ve got a business to run.
Here’s What You Should Do
Realize Blogging Done Right is Good for Business
When you have a regularly updated and engaging blog, you’re positioned for more website traffic and increased lead generation. According to recent data from marketing company Hubspot:
- Companies that blog 3 to 5 times a month, or around once a week, have more than twice the traffic of companies that don’t.
- Company blogs with 15 or more posts per month see more than five times the traffic of non-blogging companies.
- Small businesses have the most significant results and the greatest traffic gains when they update blogs more often.
- Increasing your publishing frequency from 3-5 times per month, to 6-8 times per month, can nearly double your inbound sales leads.
Set a Realistic Schedule and Stick to It
Consistency is the most important aspect of small business blogging. Once you have a regular schedule, your visitors will know to expect new material at those intervals. They’ll come back to look for your latest post. Search engines also give higher preference to regularly updated websites over those that update sporadically or infrequently.
For most small businesses, updating your blog one to three times per week is a realistic and effective schedule. Make your blog updates a priority, continue to provide quality posts and resources, and you’ll see returns in the form of more traffic and increased sales through your small business website.
Blog Photo via Shutterstock
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I’ve been having an inner-battle over blog post frequency.
On one hand, I know the if I post everyday, my traffic and page views will go up.
On the other hand, I’ll get a bit more stressed-I’ll pressure myself, and I may not be satisfied with the product-especially since I have other writing commitments every month.
I’m only one dude.
2014 will be interesting with regards to this topic.
The Franchise King®
Great points, Joel. The key is finding that fine line between consistently posting and frantically posting. 😉 Best of luck to you in 2014!
Fundacion Efrain is always seeking out new tips on increasing awareness of our activities, particularly directing attention to our clients’ new Kindle ebooks.
So keep up the good work helping sole proprietors and small businesses like ours!
Thanks, Trish! I appreciate you reading and posting.
I am a small business owner and have been pining over this topic for a couple months. As Joel in the above post so eloquently put it, “I’m only one dude” and happen to wear multiple hats for my company. If the statistics hold true in the article I need to be in the 6-8 posts per month category. However, is the a proper ratio to original posts to re-posts or guest posters? What is the best practice for this? Thanks for the great article.
Great question, Joel. My knee-jerk answer is that — as long as the quality is high — a guest post is better than no post. I found this helpful article on guest posting best practices. Hope this helps!
Excellent advice Megan, thank you for sharing! It’s no surprise the huge difference bewteen companies that blog 3-4 times per month and those who post 15 or more. But you’re spot-on in that the key is consistency! If I may add, small business owners need to look at content (blog) as a long-term investment, not as quick means to get leads or sales. Know it takes time and follow Megans advice–be consistant!
Thanks so much, Dana! I’m glad you found it helpful. I completely agree that content is a long-term investment — slow and steady wins the race. 😉
I have a few blogs that I update at least once per week. They are maintained enough for me to take sponsored posts now and then from the internet.
That’s great, Diana! Thanks for reading.
That’s actually a tricky question and one needs to separate regular blogs (where the main business is the blog itself) and blogs whose main business is something else. Since businesses have multiple channels opening out to customers, prospects and fans, I think the frequency primarily depends on which channel is most useful (out of Twitter, Facebook, blog etc…)
But you are right about regular blogs, more the frequency the better. And it’s important to stick to a predefined frequency – not just for humans, even search bots seem to schedule their visit based on a particular frequency.
Great points, Ajith! You obviously have strong knowledge in this area. Thanks for sharing!
There is some debate going on about this topic. Some people say that you should post every day but the schedule may just be too rigid and too hard to keep up for some. A good number is 1-3 posts a week. This will keep your readers excited without getting left behind. But that will depend on the niche. Some niches need as much as 5 posts a day.
There are no “shoulds” in a way. Write on a regular basis, not too often, nor to seldom! 😉 I have been struggling with the blogging schedule over the years, but I have found a laid-back solution to it! 🙂 I have a tips on daily blog schedule if someone is interested to learn…
Thank you so much for this article and for making it simple to understand. I will improve on my post to once a week for a start.
You make some interesting points here. I’ve been trying to balance adding content with exposure and this was a good reminder. I found Ben Hunt’s book Content! very interesting in terms of his idea of funneling traffic to your site through your content, so I have been focusing on that as well as SEO.
Any thoughts on how to get guest posting gigs? As someone who is just getting started, I am not necessarily an authority so it’s not like anyone wants my guest post!
This is a great post! I’ve just started my online income adventure and didn’t realize the search engines automatically crawled your updated content.
I’ll definitely be returning to your blog for future reference when needed.
Thanks for the helpful advice!
Thanks Megan 🙂 Nothing worse than seeing a business blog that looks ‘abandoned’ 😉
How much do you think that having no blog at all effects google ranks?
I have been writing about SEO but could not be definitive about what stands out as the best practice, not even from my writing experience and tests. I continued research on this topic until I found this post which suits me. I now have to schedule to produce quality and still be consistent. This article best answered for me, the question of update frequency. Many thanks.
That’s really good research you have done. Thanks for the great information.
What an outstanding helpful article for all digital marketers and blogger everyone should read this informative article