This year alone there are hundreds of new bells and whistles available for advertising and marketing strategy. There is no “one size fits all” when it comes to providing information on platform choice and costs involved. Promoting the site to search engines is another part of the process. This post article will concentrate on what platform the client should consider. Should they spend the money for a professional website or choose a free blog platform?  The word “free” attracts all of us and when it is feasible it is a great choice.
Blogs and websites serve different purposes. A free blog should be reserved for those having no budget at all. This platform can be used in the beginning to learn good blogging techniques or for those looking to showcase a hobby or special expertise. Professional companies should always consider hiring a design team to develop a professional website which includes a blog platform. The two work well together and bring the best results. Pricing for smaller websites normally start around $1,200 and can increase based upon functionality required and project scope.

Starting a free online blog to showcase your talent:

Some calls we receive are from individuals looking to start their first website. A few of them have no business, but are instead, artists, authors or just people wanting to blog online about their unique, publication, hobby, a special talent, etc. A simple blog platform may be just the ticket for this type of individual.  Starting an online blog is free and the tutorial will guide you.  The main difference between a blog and a website is how data is being presented – the overall format.
Caution:  A blog alone is not designed to advertise or sell goods and services. If you are setting up a blog platform to use hard sales tactics, you will be disappointed with the results. It takes time to develop and promote your digital marketing plan. It also takes time for someone to get to know you. A blog is designed to be a communication tool, not a sales platform.  If your goal is to sell online, and want to attract search engine bots, a professional site with a blog is the best choice for you.

Why add a blog to the professional website?

  • To supply visitors with useful and interesting content based upon specific internet search terms
  • Blogging increases your online footprint and drives new buyers to your site
  • Improves your ROI (Return On Investment and in turn increases company revenue
  • Enables the visitor to interact with the blogger / ask questions and get answers quickly
  • Provides information you cannot get from your website content / keeps the site information current
  • Enables the viewer to receive updates regularly / keeps them informed on industry specials and news
  • Provides link backs to social media information which is trending
  • Continues to promote unending discussion and feedback in real-time

Ask the designer to add a blog platform seamlessly within your website. A website and blog function very well together and you will receive the results you are expecting by having both.  This success however is not a quick fix to sell your products.  It takes time to build business presence online.  You will need to be patient and remember that the website should generate a total of twenty (20) percent of your company revenue.  The other eighty (80) percent is gained through word of mouth advertising and other marketing techniques.

What is the purpose of a professional website with a blog?

  • If you are in business a professional website is required, it is not an option today
  • Companies who have no website are not included in web searches and fall behind the competition
  • A website with a blog provides content and information about your products and/or services
  • A professional website and blog is your calling card to announce your business is relevant
  • With a website and blog combined, you will improve SEO rank, continually attracting search engines
  • An e-commerce website with a blog is perfect for selling items online

Conclusion:

There are no get rich quick schemes to corner the market, or to capture online traffic.  The company brand must be built slowly over time and the top tool for success today is a well-designed website.  This coupled with consistent blogging will improve site rank over time. You still get what you pay for.  If you have no budget at all it is perfectly ok to start out with a free blog to learn how to communicate online.  However, a professionally designed website and blog will bring the best bang for your buck.
Contact us to discuss options.  We do have packages that work with most budgets and are always happy to discuss options with those that call us. Hurry back for more news and views from Inside Design Orlando
Jean Holland-Rose, Chief Creative Officer & SEO Professional