Forming an online community like a blog or forum on your website is one of the best ways to ensure that you have fresh content, as well as establishing your site as an authority within the endeavor which it represents. Search engines prefer sites that are frequently updated over sites with stagnant content or that contain less frequently updated content. Starting a community is easy and is generally very inexpensive and in some cases – even free!
One clear benefit to creating a community website or even a community within your website is the fact that communities encourage interaction or engagement and content creation also called user generated content. User generated content from blogs and forums is one of the most effective ways to build your reputation as an authority. This will also lead to the natural forming of link building naturally from within the online community.
A blog is an online journal of sorts. You are reading my blog. A blog can even function as a very basic website as in the case of my blog as of the date of this posting. It does not matter what kind of website you own, having a blog is a good idea. First, blogs generate clear SEO benefits through content creation and user generated content. Second, a blog helps to define you as an expert in your field. As an expert, others will link their websites to your content. This, in turn, passes link authority on to your blog lending your blog additional authority which you can use to pass authority on to your website. A third benefit is the sticky factor. Blogs are “sticky” in that users will want to subscribe to your RSS feed and come back to your website on a regular basis to check for new content.
Blogs are a great tool for promoting special offers and deals to your readers and they let you go into detail about your subject may require a more thorough explanation. If you were about to launch a new product that included a new, revolutionary way of doing something, a blog gives you the forum to contrast the benefits and usefulness of the new product versus the older generation of products previously used to accomplish the task.
In the next article, I’ll discuss forums. Thanks for taking the time to learn your craft. Please comment and REMEMBER: There are no stupid questions!