Business Blogging is a Good Idea, Stats Be Damned

Filed in Blogging, Statistics by Matt McGee on December 30, 2008 8 Comments

Small business owners might see a chart like this and decide that starting a blog is overrated:

blog stats chart

That’s from an eMarketer article today that actually spins the data positively: 47% of the online population reads blogs. The flip side is that big bottom line — the 53% that don’t, according to this survey.

The problem with this data is that many blogs don’t look like blogs anymore. Search Engine Land just redesigned, and looks more like a magazine/newspaper-style site now. Ditto for Small Business Trends and countless other sites. It’s my opinion that many Internet users don’t know when they’re reading a blog and when they’re not, and if I’m right, this survey data becomes useless.

The fact is that blogs can be very effective marketing tools when done right. (And those links all show you how.) What’s more, if you run a small business targeting very local customers, local blogging should be on your radar in 2009 … because you’ll never convince me that 53% of the online population hasn’t read a blog in the past 12 months.

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  1. Weekly Blogging Roundup | Matt McGee | January 3, 2009
  1. Matt Siltala says:

    I agree Matt,

    I wonder how many people have read a blog post not knowing it was one, so I don’t trust those stats 100%.

    Look at it this way too – if the numbers really are that low, then we have some great opportunity here to attract new visitors.

    Blogging is good for business, and I will continue to blog so long as it continues to bring in new clients and helps me make more sales!

  2. Frank Reed says:

    53% just represents growth potential.

    There are a surprising number of people out there who are just getting used to the mere basics of the internet and they tend to be older (no official stats on age etc, just an observation). Depending on your business, they may not be your target market anyway so it doesn’t matter if they read blogs of not.

    More and more I see that education for the SMB is needed at a much more basic level and until they have that knowledge we may see these kinds of numbers for a while.

  3. Dave Pavlu says:

    Nice post Matt,

    I totally agree with you.

    In fact I would go so far as to say that most if not all localized small businesses(offline conversion types) would be better off with a blog site instead of the traditional 5 page static site that hasn’t been updated for years.

    The SEO value alone makes this a great idea. But when you add the ease of content management that blogging software brings with it is an absolute no brainer.

    You can bet that every SMB client I work with hears about the value of a Business Blog/Site

  4. Jerry Kovach says:

    The jury is still out for us with blogging. However, a few friends have suggested it takes a while. One thing for sure, SEO takes a well rounded approach. Blogging is just part of the puzzle, it takes time and patience. Something most business owners don’t have, at least time that is.

  5. Matt McGee says:

    There’s no doubt it can be a struggle, Jerry. Blogging may not be the right thing for every small biz — gotta focus on the tactics and strategies that work best. But nothing wrong with some trial and error to reach that point.

  6. William Lowe says:

    I agree, Matt. Blogging may not be right for every business but exposure is exposure, and that does tend to be beneficial for most businesses. At this point, blogging has become so cheap and effective that it’s a tactic that shouldn’t be ignored. Good post..

  7. Raina Raflo says:

    I have a blog for my Atlanta-based maid and house cleaning service, and let me tell you – it is hard work. However, it pays off in several ways. In addition to the SEO, it helps me show customers my expertise.

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