5 Things You Need in Every Blog Post

Regardless of your industry or niche, we’re big fans of using a blog to engage with your audience, establish yourself as an expert in your field, and boost your entire website’s SEO—aka drive more relevant traffic to your business.

All sound good? 😄

If you’re interested in blogging, here are some general tips for blogging with Squarespace. And, here are five things we recommend including in each of your blog posts:

1. Clear & engaging title

This may seem obvious, but a good blog post title is so important for your post’s overall success that it’s really the best place to start when crafting your post.

A strong title not only encourages people to read your post when they come across it (whether on your site, email marketing, or elsewhere), but it also helps to put your content in front of the people who most want to see it—yes, we’re talking SEO (search engine optimization). Well-crafted blog post titles will perform better with search engines than weak titles… and if you have a great post, we want to give people the chance to see it and read it!

We recommend using CoSchedule’s free Headline Analyzer to try out a few different post titles to see which might work best for maximizing your traffic and search results.

2. Post excerpt

To optimize your SEO and improve your posts’ ability to travel around the internet (including on your own website, perhaps in a related or featured posts summary block), you’ll want to fill out the post excerpt metadata section for each blog post you publish.

Focus on clearly and succinctly summarizing your post content, using keywords (including variations of them, if necessary) and enticing viewers to read more. It’s best to use the excerpt as a little teaser, rather than simply re-stating the main takeaways—you do want to leave readers some substance within the article rather than sharing it all in the excerpt.

3. Categories & tags

They may not seem essential if you’re not specifically organizing and displaying the blog content on your site by category, but even if you choose to not display category or tag information on your posts, the information is still useful in several ways:

First, it boosts your post’s SEO by giving search engines an outline of the post’s topic and keywords.

And second, it allows you to do some behind-the-scenes work in connecting your readers with the content they’re looking for. By setting up your categories and tags for each post, you’re able to create blog post archives, related content blocks (see tip #5 below), and improve readers’ ability to search for content across your site.

4. Clean URL

In Squarespace (and other platforms as well), blog post URLs are typically set up to reference the date they’re published + the title. So, this post would look something like:

fivedesign.co/blog/2019/2/21/5-things-you-need-in-every-blog-post

That’s little much, we think!

There are several reasons you may not want to include the publication date in your URL:

  • If your post is intended to be evergreen (always relevant) content, this unnecessarily dates it, eventually making it appear less fresh

  • If you intend to continue updating your post with new information as needed, this date becomes inaccurate

  • It lengthens and clutters the URL, making it less user-friendly

So instead, you can customize how Squarespace formats your blog post source URLs. Access this under Settings > Blogging > Post URL Format.

Here you can see we just use the post title and it’s cleaner and simpler:

fivedesign.co/blog/5-things-you-need-in-every-blog-post

One note about using numbered lists in your blog post URLs: If you ever want to come back to your list and update it (maybe add some more items to the list) and later on your title changes to “47 Things You Need in Every Blog Post,” then the original URL no longer matches. We don’t mind here because we’re not going to update the list to 47 things, so we’re keeping the 5 in the URL. But if you did want to plan for possible future updates, you could simply adjust your source URL to /things-you-need-in-every-blog-post and without including the number it will remain relevant no matter how many things are actually on the list at any given time.

5. Related content

As we’ve mentioned before, it’s a great idea to use new blog posts to link to other relevant content on your site because it helps people find it.

There are a couple ways of doing this: First, you can link to other pages or blog posts directly within your text. For example, now might be a good time to mention why we think blogging is a great strategy to grow your business and brand.

The second way is to create a “Related Posts” reel (usually at the bottom of your post) highlighting other blog posts with relevant content your readers might be interested in. To set this up you’ll just use Squarespace’s summary block feature and sort the displayed images by category or tag. (See, this is one way setting up categories and tags is useful!)

Check out our Related Posts reel below to see how this looks in practice.

Depending on your specific business needs, there are likely other elements we would recommend including in each of your blog posts too (e.g. newsletter sign-up, Pinterest-friendly images), but these are the top five we’d recommend for any industry or niche.

Happy blogging!


But before you go…

Want our free checklist to grow your blog & business with content your audience loves?

Content That Converts: Blog Post Checklist // Five Design Co.

MORE LIKE THIS


Pin it !

 
5 things you need in every blog post + how blogging helps small business owners and entrepreneurs engage your audience, establish yourself as an expert in your field, and boost your website’s SEO!
5 things you need in every blog post + how blogging helps small business owners and entrepreneurs engage your audience, establish yourself as an expert in your field, and boost your website’s SEO!