If you’re reading this article, you know the value of writing a good blog. Whether you’re in search of greater online visibility, higher customer satisfaction, or both, a well-written blog can take you there. The problem is, blogs are a dime a dozen now, and if you’re in a competitive industry, it’s extremely difficult to stand out.

You were probably hoping for a few hacks that could make your blog a rousing success overnight. Unfortunately, there’s no such thing. The most successful blogs, whether business blogs or blogs as a business, have only achieved victory through hard work.

It all starts with writing a high-quality blog. If you have what it takes to achieve blogging success, apply these essentials for better blogging.

  1. Write What Your Customers Need

If you know your target audience, you know their greatest desires, biggest problems, and major frustrations. You also know that they read your blog content in response to those emotions. If your content is catered to answer that, you’ll have a greater following.

Consider this blog from a property management company in Houston. Their customers are primarily landlords and real estate clients, and each piece of content answers a problem or concern their clients are most likely to have.

Where do they get inspiration for these topics? They listen to their customers. They tune into social channels and respond to client concerns. As you do the same, your blog content will take a more useful shape.

  1. Improve Grammar and Syntax

While the occasional typo won’t send readers to a competitor’s site, frequent and repeated errors with grammar, sentence structure, and syntax will. A blog that hasn’t been proofread lowers the credibility of your blog.

If you don’t have a background in grammar and proofreading, use online tools to improve your blog posts. Tools like Grammarly or WhiteSmoke will point out grammar errors and make suggestions for improvement.

  1. Be Consistent

It’s pretty easy to lose the traffic you’ve worked long and hard to build. All you have to do is stop blogging. When you don’t maintain the consistency that bloggers have come to expect, retaining readers is a huge challenge.

Set a monthly content schedule dictating the days you’ll pump out content. Blogs do best when you can issue at least one post per week, but two or three is better. Consumers like familiarity, and sticking with the same posting schedule each week appeases their need for structure.

  1. Write Compelling Headlines

Headlines might be the most important component of your blog. If you can’t write a catchy headline that makes consumers want to keep reading, your content could be ignored completely. Most consumers take less than a second to decide if they’ll click on your article, so make your headlines something they can’t refuse.

That being said, a great headline is only the beginning. If you don’t have high quality content that matches the promises of your catchy headline, you’ll quickly lose readers and credibility. The meat of your blog post is always most important, but a great headline will get it in front of more readers.

  1. Make Content Easy to Scan

The format is another important component. Online readers are lazy. They don’t want to decipher huge blocks of content to understand your meaning. In fact, most don’t read blog posts in their entirety; they scan them.

To make content easy to scan, use bolded headings, bulleted or numbered lists, short paragraphs, and strong topic sentences at the beginning of each paragraph. If it takes 10 minutes to read the post in its entirety, readers should be able to scan the content in two.

  1. Let Your Blog Grow with an Email List

Better writing is vital to a successful blog, but it’s virtually worthless if you don’t have the tools to help it grow. Most long-term bloggers tell you building an email list as soon as possible is the best thing for your blog.

Even if you’re not selling anything, an email list helps you promote new content to your audience without worrying about things like SEO, social signals, or other communication roadblocks. Write for your email list, and always work on building it.

  1. Prioritize an Amazing Call to Action

One of the best ways to build your email list is through calls to action. Many bloggers write content for years without getting return visits. They have useful content, but because they have no way to collect the contact information of those who visit their sites, the growth is stunted.

People might like your blog, but they usually won’t go out of their way to subscribe. Put call-to-action buttons on each page, and let repeat readers come to you.