Posts filed under ‘Blogging Applications’
Small businesses are short on marketing budgets, so lets talk about free. One of my favorite things! Free blogs have limitations -especially when it comes to including advertising and linking to items you sell* – but if you are a small business that wants to use a blog to establish your expertise and generate more traffic to your website, then free is the way to go.
Cindy Meehan-Patton of Shelter Ecology just launched her blog to establish her expertise as a healthy interiors specialist. She writes articles and then links back to her website where she sells inexpensive E-articles that provide more depth.
WordPress.com, Blogger.com and Blog.com are all free blog services. We recommended WordPress.com to Cindy because of its high popularity ranking with users, good article ranking in search engines, spam filters, and because we could train and support her efforts. One thing WordPress.com doesn’t have are photo galleries. She doesn’t need it, but a friend who is posting missionary relief work photos from Haiti was looking for a blog solution that did. Doing your homework is critical.
Usability is also important. In this instance Cindy wanted hands on support. And we provide that for WordPress.com. But if you are a do-it-yourselfer we recommend signing up for each service you are interested in (hey, it’s free!) and testing so you can gain a true picture of which you like to work with, and which provides the best roundup of features to meet YOUR needs.
1) Research other blogs to get a feel for what you like and dislike.
If you run a keyword search on Google you can filter results to just see blogs.
2) Create your list of desired features and prioritize them as must haves, would like to haves and nice, but not important.
3) Research blogs to see what best matches your feature requirements. Here are some resources to help get you started:
You have to start somewhere and while we can’t learn it for you, here are a few tips, that we felt aren’t very obvious to the new blogger, to help you on your journey. If we can save your business some time, or keep you from making beginner mistakes, then this post has done its job!
ShareThis: This is a handy little (free) service that provides a button you post on your website page (or blog) that allows others to share your information across a wide variety of networks such as Twitter, Facebook, by Email, and social bookmarking sites.