There are plenty of blogging statistics out there, many of them ported into jazzy infographics. However, many of the findings are not directly relevant to small businesses trying to decide whether to invest in writing a blog for their organisations.
That’s why we’ve trawled the web – and we do mean the entire Internet! – looking for verified blogging statistics that really make a clear case for small businesses to integrate blogs into their websites.
For ease of use, we’ve grouped our 34 small business blogging statistics into useful categories. We’ve also added our own summary at the bottom of each section.
Blogging and SEO
1. Content creation is ranked as the single most effective SEO technique by 53% of businesses (Marketing Sherpa 2013)
2. 59% of SEO professionals rate blogging as one of their top inbound marketing activities, and have subsequently created a blog or increased their blogging efforts. (Moz 2012 SEO Industry Survey)
3. Adding between 21 and 51 blog posts to your site boosts traffic by up to 30% …
4. … And when you’ve added at least 52 blog posts, your traffic increases by 77%! (TrafficGenerationCafe)
5. Companies that blog receive 97% more inbound links
6. … and 434% more indexed pages than businesses which do not blog (HubSpot)
Summary: Those in the know about SEO certainly rate blogging as a key part of positioning a website as high as possible in the Google search results. Volume is important: a repository of at least 52 blog posts (that’s one a week for a year!) doesn’t just result in an incremental increase in traffic: it leads to a big spike.
All the stats in this section are taken from HubSpot’s 2013 Marketing Benchmarks survey of more than 7,000 businesses:
7. Small businesses with 1-10 employees receive the biggest benefit of blogging more frequently: they can double their sales leads by increasing their number of blog posts from 3-5 to 6-8 per month
8. Businesses that blog more than 15 times a month generate 5 times more web traffic than those that don’t blog at all
9. Similarly, businesses that blog more than 20 times a month generate 5 times more traffic than those who blog fewer than 4 times/month
10. 82% of marketers who blog daily have converted readers into customers, as opposed to 57% of marketers who blog monthly
Summary: Blogging frequently, or even semi-frequently, is great news for small businesses. They can outperform their non-blogging competitors with up to 5 times more traffic and twice as many sales leads!
Length of blog posts
11. Blog posts with more than 1,800 words receive the most links from other websites (Moz)
12. The ideal blog piece takes 7 minutes to read – that’s between 1,000 and 1,600 words long, depending on use of imagery (Buffer)
13. If a blog post is greater than 1,500 words, on average it receives 68.1% more tweets and 22.6% more Facebook likes (Quick Sprout)
14. There is no difference in the amount of search traffic generated by longer or shorter posts. (Tomasz Tunguz)
Summary: Length isn’t everything – but it helps, especially if you want your content referenced by others around the web. Remember that Google will ignore anything under 200 words. Longer articles succeed not necessarily because of the number of words they contain, but the amount of insight, data and research they contain. Put simply, if you want links and retweets from other people, your content needs to be helpful – and a longer article gives you the space to go into detail.
Lead generation from blogging
15. Small businesses that blog get 126% more lead growth than small businesses that do not blog (ThinkCreative)
16. The average cost to generate a lead through inbound marketing techniques such as blogging is about half the average for traditional outbound marketing, such as cold calling. (Hightable)
17. Inbound marketing leads have a 14.6% close rate, while outbound marketing leads have a 1.7% close rate (Hubspot)
18. 79% of companies who have a blog reported a positive ROI for inbound marketing in 2013, compared with just 20% of businesses without a blog (Hubspot)
Summary: Blogging can generate good quality leads for small businesses at a much cheaper cost than traditional outbound marketing. The ‘pull’ rather than ‘push’ approach of inbound vs outbound marketing appears to pay dividends in terms of lead cost and conversion rate.
19. B2B marketers who blog generate 67% more leads than their non-blogging competitors (InsideView)
20. 33% of people who work for B2B companies actively use blogs (InsideView)
21. 76% of B2B marketers are using blogging to attract new customers. (Content Marketing Institute and Marketing Profs)
22. The most successful B2B marketers rate blogging as the most effective content marketing tactic, with 59% stating that blogging helped them achieve their business goals. (Content Marketing Institute and Marketing Profs)
23. 87% of B2B marketers use social media to distribute content. (Content Marketing Institute and Marketing Profs)
24. 64% of B2B content marketers say that their biggest challenge is producing enough content (Content Marketing Institute and Marketing Profs)
Summary: Blogging is an integral part of a B2B marketing strategy but the challenge lies in producing enough content. B2B companies who already use blogging report success in generating leads and meeting their business goals.
25. 20% of users’ total Internet time is spent on content-led websites (The CMA)
26. 61% of consumers say they are more likely to buy from a company that delivers custom content they can trust (Custom Content Council)
27. 78% of consumers believe that businesses providing custom content are interested in building good relationships. (TMG Custom Media)
28. 90% of consumers find custom content useful (TMG Custom Media)
29. 58% of consumers trust editorial content (Nielsen)
30. 68% of consumers spend time reading content from a brand they are interested in. (The CMA)
Summary: Consumers enjoy reading blogs from businesses when the blog is a trustworthy source of useful information. They are comfortable progressing the relationship to the point of a purchase, and appreciate the effort made by blogging businesses to provide non-promotional, interesting content for them to read.
Miscellaneous blogging statistics
31. Among those who use e-mail marketing, businesses that blog get twice as much traffic from their email campaigns than those who do not blog (HubSpot)
32. 62% of companies outsource their blogging and content marketing (Mashable)
33. Small businesses with fewer than 10 employees allocate 42% of their marketing budget to content (Content Marketing Institute & Marketing Profs)
34. Blog posts with images receive 94% more views than plain text posts (Jeff Bullas)
Summary: Blogging works best when combined with imagery, and can boost email marketing campaigns. Small businesses spend a large portion of their marketing budgets on blogging and content marketing, and the majority of businesses of all sizes outsource content production rather than manage it in-house.