Should You Integrate Your Business Blog Within Your Company Website?

We talk regularly about the importance of having great quality content on your blog and we hope that most of our clients – and regular readers here – understand at least the basic reasoning behind this.

Before any type of content is produced, however, you obviously need a blog in place to publish the content on.

We always recommend that WordPress is used when creating blogs, for a variety of reasons, most notably that it is such a versatile resource it can be used for almost any organisation with any specific requirements.

But irrelevant of the platform used, there’s one decision that has to always be made, which is whether or not your blog should be integrated with your website.

With various options available on both sides of the fence, the simple fact is we don’t believe there is actually any major consideration that needs to take place – we almost never recommend a business blog is kept separate from a website and there are two primary reasons why.

1.  The SEO benefits are too good to pass up on

For any effective SEO strategy, there are two key components – high quality content and backlinks.  If you can utilise these in the most effective way possible, you’ll be able to drive organic traffic to your website due to the high ranking for your target keywords.

Whilst having a blog that stands alone from your website would mean you could still create the backlinks within the content, you miss out on what Google is now considering an integral part of the SEO process – delivering quality content to your audience on a regular basis.

You can of course do this on a separate blog and link back to your company website, but how does Google know that the two are linked if they’re on completely separate domain names?  Google is becoming increasingly intelligent, but it has to be remembered that it is not human.  It can’t view images as we can and it can’t tell whether two websites with different URLs are from the same company.  It can of course distinguish similar phrases on websites, which some might think is enough, but having your brand name on your website and on your separate blog is no different to Google than if you had the word ‘steak’ on your website and blog.

2.  It builds trust amongst your target audience

There are various standalone blog options available.  WordPress, for example, have an option whereby you can have a blog that uses their software (albeit a ‘lite’ version) and which they’ll host for you – but you’ll have a URL that looks something like http://yourcompanyname.wordpress.com.

Although some of your customers will be able to make the link between the blog and your company, creating a blog like this can leave a bit of an unsavoury taste in your audience’s mouth.

For example, a business blog should be professional looking.  It should be attractive and engaging.  Your customers may be spending a substantial amount of time reading the content you publish on your blog and interacting with you via it, so it needs to be suitable for their needs.  This generally means an investment of both time and money needs to be made to ensure it’s as beneficial as it can be.

When you’re using a free blogging service, such as that mentioned above, you have limited technical functionality and limited design options.  It’s completely free, which is obviously great, but what image does this portray to your target audience?

You aren’t that interested in engaging with them?  You don’t think the interaction is worth the development and integration of a proper company blog?  You believe it might not be suited to your audience’s needs, so you’ll only give it a half-hearted attempt?

It’s easy to think this is only a small aspect that is somewhat irrelevant, but a blog can be extremely beneficial when building trust and continually improving brand awareness – but that’s only if you take the time to invest in it to start with.  It’s not a quick or easy option as many first believe.  The results can be fantastic and extremely beneficial for your organisation, but you aren’t going to achieve them with only minimal investment, whether that’s time or money.

However, when it comes to choosing between integrating a blog within your company website and keeping it separate, it has to be understood that more often than not, the latter option really should only be considered as a last resort.

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