Blogging for SEO: Strong Evidence Suggests Daily Posts
No one ever said it was easy to blog every day. But as we know, nothing good in life comes easy. And so everyday, we at Bruce Clay, Inc. strive to say something meaningful on the blog. The benefits of blogging for your brand and for SEO have been extolled before. But less examined are the risks of not blogging. What are you missing out on by not blogging regularly? It’s not a test we’re likely to undertake here, so luckily, social media blogger Justin Kownacki did the deed for us. But look out. The results aren’t pretty.
For the last three months, Justin has blogged weekly instead of daily. His goal was to improve the quality of the blog by devoting more time to each high impact post rather than spreading his efforts across multiple posts. It’s a theory I’ve been tempted with before. But now the evidence is clear. Nobody wins — not the author, not the brand, and least of all your SEO efforts — when you cut back on the blogging.
Justin’s experiment showed that decreasing post frequency resulted in fewer visitors and a lower Alexa ranking. At the same time, the quality of posts didn’t increase as he had hoped. And when it comes to SEO today, I think fewer posts put you at a disadvantage in an index that values freshness.
Trends of Visitors and Traffic
The most significant effect of fewer posts was a downward spiral of visitors. Justin went from 7,500 page views in April to almost half, at 3,583 page views in June. A blog is a major SEO tool because it can introduce visitors to a site from search, and from there, it can funnel that user deeper into the site, engaging them with relevant content and sparking a relationship with the brand and community. Decreasing blog post frequency diminishes ranking opportunities, lessens the potential for relevant content, and loses out on chances to introduce readers to the brand.
Benefits of Fresh Content
If you aren’t adding to your blog on a frequent and regular basis, you won’t reap the benefits of fresh content. People seek out fresh and new content everyday to fill their desire for entertainment and information. Google considers some queries to be relevant for recently published results, a concept it calls “query deserves freshness.” Real-time results and SERP filters for time also show that search engines are paying attention to content freshness. Don’t miss out on the SEO opportunity for ranking visibility with newly published content.
Brand Impact from Dropped Rankings
Justin saw his Alexa ranking plummet in the three months since he stopped blogging daily. While the importance of Alexa rankings themselves is up for debate, there are notable industry ranking lists that factor Alexa into their formulas. For instance, AdAge’s Power 150 list of marketing blogs uses Alexa as part of its equation. The brand impact of placement on well regarded lists may diminish as your score drops. And list placement also represents an opportunity for a link from a relevant and reputable source. Numbers are just numbers, but recognition, visibility and credibility are important for your brand and for SEO.
Correlation Between Quality and Frequency
Contrary to the supposition he made at the beginning of his experiment, combining the time he would have used to write five posts to write one post didn’t result in a better post. That is, if you consider better to be equal traffic and social media circulation. The popularity of posts and the rate of social media sharing is an important factor for Internet marketing and SEO due to the links and visibility posts can generate. It basically comes down to a choice between regularly circulated and linked to posts or posts that no one reads because they’ve forgotten about your blog in the week since you last posted. Tough choice.