Inbound Marketing Blogfor Manufacturers and Healthcare Companies
Website Vs. Blog for Business Marketing: Which Do You Need?
In today’s competitive world of e-commerce, it’s vital that you understand what tools to use that best suit your business. And if you’re just starting to construct your digital marketing “house,” you may ask yourself, “Do I need a blog or website for my business?”
By the end of this article, you’ll understand the difference between a blog and a website and how they’re used for a business marketing strategy. You’ll also have all the information you need to decide which one is best for you and your business.
The matchup is set: Website vs. blog for business. Let's dive in and find out which one you need.
Website vs. Blog for Business
You may be confused when comparing blogs to websites; mainly because the two are often associated together.
Although you’re not wrong about the association between blogs and websites, there are some key differences that make each one unique in its own way. Three of the main differences between blogs and websites is in their:
A business blog is always part of a larger website, but not all business websites have a blog (even though they should). Make sense? Here’s the raison d’être (fancy talk for “why they exist") for both being their own, separate entities:
The kind of information that’s on websites is sometimes much different than the kind you’ll find in a blog. This applies both to the information itself and the way it’s written.
Typically, blogs are updated frequently with posts about industry trends, how-to guides, or frequent customer questions. They help the reader gain a better understanding of one particular subject without the sales pitch -- while giving you a chance to prove yourself as a leading authority in the industry.
As such, you should write blog posts with education and the buyer’s pain points in mind. Don’t try to make a sale in a single blog post -- it’s not gonna happen.
Website pages focus more on providing visitors with reasons to trust their brand. It’s common to find user testimonials, company information, and other resource links that contribute to the business’s credibility.
While most of your website pages exist to help you make a sale, that doesn’t mean you should get overly aggressive. The copywriting should focus on the customer’s needs and problems. What it should not do is read like a self-pat on the back or a boring autobiography.
Blog pages and websites are formatted very differently. Each one’s format lends itself to the page’s purpose -- whether that’s signing up for a newsletter, requesting a quote, or something else.
A blog page will almost always display its content in reverse chronological order (meaning the newer posts are at the top of the page). This is done so that your audience can find new information without having to scroll through countless pages of content.
However, a tag or search feature should be in place to make a specific topic easier to find.
Blog posts are longer by nature -- from 300 words to 2,000 or more. When your goal is to educate and not to sell, the reader will afford you more time to make your point.
A website design should be thought of as a foundation. As a result, website pages typically have several connected pages that allows visitors to easily find what they’re looking for:
- Industries Served
- Capabilities and Services
- About Us
Because you’re making a sales pitch on most of these pages, copywriting should be shorter -- but still long enough to rank in Google. Note that a good business website provides the most relevant information near the top of the homepage.
Using the entire top half of your homepage to give a painfully detailed account of your company’s history is not going to attract leads. Quickly pointing to your unique selling points and helpful resources is the better way to go.
How often you work on each marks a huge difference between blogs and websites.
Blogs must be updated regularly as an indicator that you’re always providing readers with new and relevant information. If a potential customer stumbles upon a blog page with its most recent article dating back several months, they likely won’t bother continuing.
(Related Blog Post: How Often Should You Blog for Business?)
As we mentioned before, the main page of a business website should serve as a foundation for the other connected pages. The main website doesn’t need to be updated as often unless you shift your business strategy to a new target industry, offer a new product, or some other new initiative.
There are many benefits of blogging for your business, and you may have grappled with the question before: “Do I need a blog on my website?”
The answer is yes.
Keeping a regularly updated and relevant blog is one of the most important keys to a successful marketing strategy, especially for manufacturing and B2B companies. Not only does a blog allow you to inform and help guide your visitors along their buyer’s journey, but it helps you build your brand as well.
A good business blog supports business growth with measurable long-term goals. It works to gradually drive traffic to your website with the ultimate goal of converting your readers into loyal and satisfied customers.
It’s important that all blog topics you write about are specific and relevant to the industry you serve. (Sorry, but nobody cares about your Christmas party from 2016, even though it was totally crazy when Helen showed up with mismatched socks.)
When writing a blog post for your business, try and put yourself in your readers’ shoes. Think about any questions they may have and make it your goal to provide them with the answers they seek.
It can’t be stressed enough how important a successful blog is for many growing businesses.
If you own a business and don’t have a website built for it yet, then you’re most likely missing out on hundreds of potential views that come in the form of a web search. Unless you’re a tiny flower shop in a town of 500 people, your Facebook page ain’t cutting it.
Businesses that resist building an online presence face a major disadvantage when it comes to marketing and building credibility. In fact, 86% of people rely on an online search for a business that is local to them.
People are busy, and therefore don’t always have time to shop at brick-and-mortar stores or inquire in-person at your factory. Nor do they want to be pestered by a salesperson before they’re ready. Buyers also have the ability to search for specific information in a matter of seconds via cellphone. This allows them to be informed before deciding where to make a purchase.
Hosting a website for your business is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to market your brand. It allows consumers to find you, rather than the other way around, and provides you with a space to introduce you and your business.
Business websites serve as a home base and typically provide a plethora of useful information such as company location, hours of operation, contact information, and more! And that’s only the beginning.
A website is also a good place to earn customer trust and allow them to explore your company, what you do, and why you do it. The pages should be easy to navigate and should provide your reader with a pleasant and organized experience.
Website Vs. Blogging for Business: The Lowdown
All in all, blogs and websites are very different and provide different benefits for businesses. Although a blog typically stands alone as its own entity, it’s often just one section of the entire website, easily found in the main navigation atop the company website.
However, regardless of your company’s size, mission, location, or industry; there is still the issue of knowing whether your business would be best suited with a website or a blog page.
So, Which Do You Need?
“Do I need a blog or website for my business?” If you’re serious about reaching your audience and increasing your traffic-to-conversion ratio, then the answer should be obvious.
You need both, silly!
Your blog should serve as a relevant and helpful resource that links from your main business website page. Together, the two should go hand-in-hand and serve as a powerful tool that helps drive traffic to your website.
If the two are used well together, then you’ll find yourself naturally generating new leads and increasing traffic to your website.
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How to Audit your Online Marketing
If you are executing digital marketing, congratulations! You are most likely already one step ahead of your competition, and making strides to meaningfully connect with prospects online. But, how do you know if you’re seeing continual success year over year, and improving your metrics?
Without the tools in place to analyze and benchmark your efforts, it is impossible to scale your online marketing and ensure continuous success.