Resist The Urge to Sell

by Vered DeLeeuw

Of course you want to sell – we all do. Google wants to sell too, but when it comes to its powerful search engine, it favors educational, high-quality content over promotional content.

So when it comes to your marketing efforts, make sure that a big part of them is educational, content-rich and high quality. While your website can focus on presenting your products or services, it’s important to add a blog that focuses on establishing yourself as a leader in your industry. Don’t use your blog to sell! It’s fine to include links in your blog posts to your website, but keep the blog as pure as possible.

For example, if you sell homemade soap, your blog posts should include information on soap making; maybe a few recipes for readers to try at home; tips on cleanliness and hygiene; addressing issues such as allergies to fragrance; around the holidays, it’s fine to write a blog post with gift ideas and include a couple of links to your gift baskets. But you get the general idea – your blog should never sell. Your blog should include a wealth of information that adds value to the Web and to your readers.

As you work to fill the blog with content, you may sometimes feel that you’re drifting away from your own products too much – what’s the use of all this general knowledge? But overtime, it works. Here’s another example – I have a client that sells student loans. Their website sells the loans, but the blog I write and manage for them never sells. It is filled with tons of tips, info and thoughts on college – including topics that have nothing to do with financing college, such as dating in college, picking the best college major and learning to cook for yourself.

Are we wasting our time writing about topics that have nothing to do with financing college, let alone with student loans? On the contrary. Patiently built over 3 years, the blog is now so rich in great content that it’s responsible for 50% of the website’s overall traffic. Sure, not all of this traffic translates into sales – but part of it does, and I expect that to keep growing as we continue to invest in being interesting, educational, and non-spammy.

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