Do you ever struggle to write content for your website? Want to write your next blog post, but it just feels like too much work and you don’t know where to start? Don’t worry, writing blog posts and articles is really easy once you break it down and follow some simple steps. So, follow me as I take you by the hand and walk you through 10 easy steps that will take you from a blank page to a finished article.
1. Decide on the Topic
Obviously, before you write anything you will need to know what you are going to write about. Of course, you need to pick something that is relevant to your website. Try to choose a topic that you are interested in and which other people are also likely to find interesting. Think in terms of informing other people or helping them in some way.
This actual blog post you are reading is a good example. I like writing, and I think I’m pretty good at it; but I know lots of people struggle with writing. So by writing about how to write, I get to practice writing while helping other people to write.
2. Write the Title
There are two routes you can go down with this. You can either find a good keyword phrase using a keyword tool or you can write a title that will capture people’s attention and make them want to click it. I’ve gone for the second approach, because I want to write for people rather than search engines.
3. Do Some Research (if necessary)
You will make things a lot easier for yourself if you choose a topic which you already know lots about. However, I realise this isn’t always possible. If you need to get up to speed with the topic, set aside some time to learn about it. Read Wikipedia, watch YouTube videos, read other people’s articles on the topic. Before too long, you will have enough information to write your article.
You may need to do some of your research after you have done step 4.
4. Split the Topic into Subtopics
Any task is much easier to accomplish if you split it down into smaller chunks. Writing a long article may seem like a daunting task, but if you write lots of little chunks of text this seems much easier, right? Then you just need to join them all together and you have your article. Splitting articles up in this way is also easier for the person reading it, because nobody really likes reading a huge block of unbroken text.
So think of the main ways your topic can be broken down into subtopics, and give a subtitle for each of those. You may then need to still do some research on these subtopics, but because you will only be writing a small chunk on each of them you only need to learn a small amount.
5. Write Conversationally
I always say that the best way to write is the same way you would write an email to a friend, but with good spelling, grammar and punctiation. No txt spk or skipping the use of capital letters, commas and full stops.
So, imagine that a friend has asked you to explain the subtopic to them, and then imagine you are writing an email back to them explaining it. It’s so easy, anyone with the ability to string sentences together can do it.
The reason why it’s great to write conversationally, in plain English, is because:
- The person who will read your article will be an average person.
- You will come across as friendly.
- Your aim is not to win a literary award or impress a college professor, just to help and inform average people.
6. Write the Introduction
It’s best to leave this until you have written all your subtopics. With your subtopics all in place, you know exactly what your article is about. Then all you need to do is introduce the topic and summarize what it’s about. Again, as with the subtopics, just write conversationally. Imagine that what you have just written is an article you’ve found, and now you’re just firing off a quick email to a friend about it.
7. Find Images
When using images on your website, you have to be careful that you don’t use copyrighted ones. There are various websites out there that offer pictures that are free to use without needing to even mention where you got them or who made them. My favourite is Pixabay.
8. Add Links
Once you have the first draft of your article written and the images in place, it’s time to add links – external and internal. If you have any existing content which your new article relates to, link to it from within the text of your new article. For external links, such as affiliate links, you may want to use a plugin like Pretty Link to make your links look nicer.
9. Add Tags
You shouldn’t go overboard with tags, so just choose a few and keep them relevant. For this post, I did a quick search on a keyword tool and found the phrase “how to write blog posts”. In addition to that, I have just chosen a few broader terms that are relevant: writing, blogging, tutorial, website help.
10. Take a Break…then Proof Read, Edit and Publish
Once you have your first draft written up and everything in place, I highly recommend you take a short break. If possible, go outside, get some fresh air, rest your brain and eyes for a few minutes, then come back a little bit refreshed.
I recommend you read your article out loud. This forces you to read every word rather than skim through. You may be surprised how many little mistakes you pick up, or how many little changes you find to make.
Once you are happy with your article, it’s time to click that Publish button. Now you have a new blog post or article, created in 10 easy steps. That wasn’t so hard was it?
I followed these exact steps to write this article, and it’s over a thousand words long. It felt like I just wrote an extremely long email to someone advising them on how to write blog posts.