Recently, Everest brought on a customer who needed a new website. Their old website had great content but was outdated, not mobile responsive, and needed a makeover. Although their old website was going away one thing that was very useful was their current google analytics account. I was able to take a deep dive into the account and see what was important to save, content wise, from their old website. One thing that was certain, all 39 pages on their old website were not being viewed. This made perfect sense to me. Viewers have very limited time anymore so there is a greater chance of seeing Cole Hamels throw a perfect game then a viewer reading all 39 pages. One thing that we wanted to focus on was streamlining the information for the viewer. Our goal was to take a 39 page website, put it on a very strict diet, with hopes of it coming out as an 11 page website. We wanted viewers to get hooked on the new website through strong images which make viewers read the content. If you try going the other way with more content and less images…it’s like fishing for shark with an earth worm…you better pack lunch and dinner.
After two productive meetings with our customer the diet worked! We were able to convince our customer that the new website only needed 11 pages and that strong images would set the tone for the new website. The only thing left to discuss was their blog page. I’ll be honest, I never really got the point of blogging. I always thought it was unnecessary and quite frankly a waste of time. I often wondered how these bloggers have time during the day to sit around and write opinions on topics that most people don’t care about. In today’s world if you are looking for advice or an answer that’s easy…GOOGLE IT! Personally, I don’t find reading a three page blog on one subject that entertaining. Of course, being the salesman that I am, when the topic of blogging came up I immediately asked our customer what they thought. I wanted to get their opinion first before I interjected mine and got myself into a hole I couldn’t climb out of. Our customer was all for the blog page. They saw value in having opinionated blogs on the website which would lead interested customers to read more about their products. However, at the same time, they wanted to know if they were wasting time writing blogs and wondered if customers really read them. I was able to view the Google analytics report and find out. They had six total blogs on their website and of the six, four were read quite a bit. Customers were finding their way to those blogs one way or another. They were either entering the website on a blog page when searching different things on Google or finding their way to a blog from the home screen. This really stuck out to me. Of the 39 total pages roughly 14 pages were being viewed. Of the top 14 pages, four of the pages were blogs. This proved two things to me. One, blogs actually do work and more importantly blogging was helping their search engine optimization. Customers were searching topics on Google and their blogs were coming up forcing viewers to visit their website to access the blog. Again, being the salesman that I am, I waited to hear what our customer’s take was on blogs. When they mentioned the thought of trying to see if viewers were actually reading their blogs I was able to go to their Google analytics report and prove that they actually were. I was happy I took the time to print that 56 page document out! What we decided on was to go back and do some more research on what blogs do for a website and then after that exercise, make a decision on whether or not we would include the blog page or not.
While conducting my research, I came across compelling facts that supported a blog. According to sproutcontent.com there are 19 reasons for having a blog. Don’t worry I am not going to bore you and list all 19, instead, I am going to share with you the top three.
Now, my mind was made up. Keeping my big mouth shut was well worth it. When the word blog came up, I was a second away from telling our customer what a bad idea that was. Instead, I decided to take Sales 101 advice, “shut-up and LISTEN!” Doing that provided me the opportunity to do my research and come back with convincing facts to back my decision.
The follow up meeting with our customer came and my vote was to keep the blog page. Our customer voted to do the same and after viewing the facts that I provided, they were excited that the time spent blogging was not a waste. Instead, they got a second wind and were suddenly all about blogging. They set a goal of blogging once a month to keep their customers informed and to inject the website with fresh exciting ideas for their viewers to read.
During the meeting prior to the decision of blogging our customer asked if we blogged. I told them that we do and I actually write the blogs myself. They took a look at our blogs during the time between the two meetings and never in a million years did I expect to hear what I was about to hear. When our customer decided to go with blogging they asked if I was interested in writing six blogs for them on topics they would provide. All of a sudden I went from a blog “hater” to selling a website with blogging services attached!
The fact of the matter is, blogging does help. Will every single viewer read every single blog, of course not. However, will your blog help your SEO, pump viewers into your website, and lead to a sale or two, YES! That alone makes the time well worth it.