Managing a blog for your brand is an awesome way to generate traffic and leads. But very few teams know exactly what to focus on in their blog to get the impressive results they're really looking for.
You can use these high-impact, low-effort tips to improve conversion performance on almost any blog.
Tip #1: Add Pictures + Videos
Humans are visual creatures, and to get more eyes on and leads from your blog, you need to give people what they want. So make sure that every blog post you author includes some form of media. Blogs that include an image see an average of 94% more views than those without, and blogs that include a video get 157% more organic traffic. Those are tough numbers to ignore!
When it comes to images, use one image for every 350 words as a best practice. Use images of human beings if you can, especially of people's faces. This creates an emotional connection between your reader and your content.
Videos don't need to be complicated or complex - a short and sweet one-minute long video will do the trick. Use your video to expand on your written content, provide context, or give an example or case study that supports your blog post.
Tip #2: Place CTAs Strategically
When it comes to lifting a blog's conversion rate, CTAs are usually where I recommend focusing. Make sure every single blog post includes at least one CTA, and make sure that your offers line up with posts in terms of target persona and stage of the funnel.
There are four primary positions I like to recommend for placing your CTAs effectively:
- Place your CTA near the top of your blog post, like in this blog you're reading, within about the first 100-200 words of copy.
- Add contextual lead-in copy and place your CTA at the end of your post as well.
- Place a CTA on your blog listing page, as part of your template. This is typically a subscribe CTA, but for extra oomph, you can make it dynamic, or smart, meaning that the CTA will actually change depending on who's viewing it. For example, if someone has already subscribed to your blog, you can show them a CTA to download a whitepaper or register for a webinar.
- A slide-in or pop-in CTA can add extra lift as well. These usually see a conversion rate increase of at least 1-5%.
Tip #3: Optimize the Past
Creating new blog content is really important; however, equally or perhaps even more important is taking the time to return to your past posts for optimization.
The graphic below represents research and analysis from HubSpot, which analyzed about 6,500 of its blogs. They found that old posts generated 76% of blog traffic, with only 24% of traffic coming from new posts. When it came to lead generation, the results were even more staggering. A whopping 92% of leads came from old posts, and only 8% of leads came from new posts.
So, how do you go about optimizing past blog posts?
Focus on Top Performers
This really boils down to an exercise in prioritization, like many things in the field of conversion rate optimization (CRO). I always recommend starting with your top-performing blog posts. And while "top performers" may have a different definition for every company, I like to start with top-trafficked posts, especially from organic search.
Start with your top performers, and then look to add value. You can add value to your past blog posts in many ways - by adding an update, a new perspective, or even an image or video. However you do it, just make sure you are genuinely adding value to your post, and results will follow.
Pair with High-Converting Assets
Wherever you can, and wherever it makes sense, you're going to want to pair your top-trafficked blogs with content assets that convert highly. When you do this, assuming that the subject matter, target persona, and stage of the funnel align, getting more conversions becomes a simple math problem:
More Eyes on Your Content + Highest Conversion Rates = More Leads
Finally, make sure you add CTAs to your past posts according to the best practices we already outlined - at the top, in the first 100-200 words of copy; at the bottom, with strong contextual lead-in copy; and with a slide-in or pop-in CTA module.
Tip #4: Add-On Apps + Integrations
Think of supplementary apps and technology integrations as additional performance boosters for your blog. There are several categories of technology to consider to give you some extra lift, and you have so many platform options to choose from. I've listed some of our favorites.
Bots + Live Chat
Bots and live chat are all the rage right now, and they're a great way to give your conversion rate a boost. These platforms provide an easy, seamless conversion opportunity right on your blog post. Among the many options, we like to use Drift or HubSpot.
Whether your chat panel is manned by a live salesperson or an AI-based bot, make sure your conversational marketing script is contextualized to your blog post(s) and you have a seamless bot-to-human handoff.
In behavioral science, the theory of social proof states that when humans are presented with a situation in which they are unsure of how to act, they look to other people for behavioral cues. You can apply this psychological principle to marketing by including social sharing icons in your blog that allow readers to see how others have engaged with your post.
Adding a video to your blog is a HUGE way to get better performance. Don't overcomplicate it. Simple videos will generate the results you want. We like Zoom, Vidyard, and Wistia for ours.
The heat-mapping software of today is so cool, and it's a great and cost-effective way to improve blog performance. Heat-mapping software helps you visualize user engagement so that you can make informed decisions, like where to place a CTA, and it also provides you with visitor recordings so you can check out exactly how people are engaging with your site. Some of our favorites are Lucky Orange, Hotjar, and Crazy Egg.
All of the above tips to improve blog performance are high-impact, low-effort initiatives that you can roll out starting today.
Download Use Your Blog to Increase Traffic + Leads 5X in 9 Months or Less for an easy-to-use free checklist designed to help you get better results fast.