Want to write a blog post fast? If it takes you ages to publish a blog post, you’re going to want to follow my step-by-step guide and download my blog post template below.
Writing a blog post hasn’t always been easy for me. I used to stare at the blinking cursor, paralyzed with writer’s block.
It wasn’t that I didn’t know what to write about. I had ideas. I just didn’t know how to start the damn thing or organize my thoughts into something coherent.
It wasn’t until I started using a blog post template that everything changed.
Once I began following this blog post outline, writing a blog post became a fun process rather than something I dreaded.
In this blog post, I’ll take you through all 12 steps of the blog writing process. And keep reading ’til the end because I’ve got a blog post template to help you write the perfect blog post.
By the time we’re done, you’ll be able to write an awesome blog post in under 30 minutes.
How to write a blog post (step-by-step guide)
Step 1. Brainstorm blog post ideas
If you write about something nobody is looking for, you won’t get any traffic.
This is a common mistake I see new bloggers make all the time. Always ask yourself why you are writing this blog post.
The only correct answer is: Because my people are actively searching for solutions to this problem.
But how do you know what your people want? There are a few ways to find out.
I also use Quora to help me get ideas on what to write about. A search for “blog post” yields these popular questions:
- What do I write my first blog post on?
- Where do you get blog post ideas?
- How do I write blog posts faster?
- How can I write high-quality blog posts?
What is your audience having trouble with? You’ll find out in niche Facebook groups.
You can also see what type of content is being shared in these groups.
Want to write about an emerging trend in your niche? You should. Check out Google Trends and look for popular topics in your niche.
While informal writing is best for a blog post, spelling mistakes and other grammar mistakes will never be a good look.
Even though you may find this hard to believe, I use Grammarly to help me fix my many grammatical mistakes. You can just imagine what my content would look like without it. Eek!
Step 2. Choose a keyword phrase to target
Once you’ve found a blog post topic, the next step is to identify a keyword phrase to target for SEO.
To find out if your blog post idea is worth writing about, do some basic keyword research first.
Keyword research will always point you in the right direction. This ensures you only write about topics people actually care about.
While you want to find one keyword phrase, oftentimes, you will rank on Google for multiple phrases. For example, in this blog post, I’m targeting the phrase blog post template. But I also rank for how to write a blog post, as well.
Here are a few tools to help you find the right keywords to target.
You can research the burning problems in your niche by doing a Google search and seeing what words show up on auto-complete.
A shortcut to doing this is using keywordtool.io. This is a free keyword research tool that uses Google autocomplete.
When I type in “blog post” into Google, I got all these suggestions:
- blog post ideas
- blog post template
- blog post format
- blog post outline
- blog post title generator
So that tells me that people really want help on how to write a blog post. The two main things they want are ideas and a template.
This is why I wrote an article recently on how to get endless blog post ideas here. And, of course, it’s why I’m writing an article with a blog post template right now.
You can also do keyword research on Pinterest. When I type in “blog post,” I get these suggestions:
- blog post ideas for beginners
- blog post template
- blog post design
Use a keyword research tool
Okay, I get it, those were all great resources for finding keyword ideas. But how popular are those searches, and just how competitive are those phrases to try and rank for on Google?
For that kind of data, you’ll need a keyword research tool like SEMRush.
If you don’t use a keyword research tool, you won’t know if you’re wasting your time writing about a topic you have no chance to rank for.
With SEMRush, you can see how much traffic (estimated) each targeted keyword gets (on Google) and how difficult it is to rank for each keyword.
In short, it helps you figure out the best keyword to target.
For this blog post, I am targeting the phrase “blog post template” and not going for “blog writing tips.” My research showed me there’s equal popularity for those terms but far less competition for “blog post template.”
If you want more SEO help, check out my beginners guide to SEO article here.
Step 3. Define the goal of your blog post
What is the point of your blog post? You need to know that before you get started. Just “creating awareness” or “to get traffic” isn’t good enough.
Create a blog post with a singular goal in mind. Here are several goals you can have for your content:
Get an email subscriber
Most readers land on your blog post, then leave, never to return. Turning that one-time visitor into an email subscriber should always be one of your articles’ main goals.
Get a social media follower
Trying to grow your Pinterest or Instagram accounts? You’ll want to point out how your social media account is a great place to find additional related content.
Get a social share
Want to get more traffic to your blog post? Encourage your readers to share your post on social media.
Make a sale
This could be a sale for an affiliate product or your own if you have any.
For this blog post, my goal is to get an email subscriber. Let’s see where this blog post fits into the typical reader journey.
- First, the reader does a Google or Pinterest search and visits my link
- Then, they scan the page and get help for their problem
- If there’s a relevant lead magnet they’re interested in, they join my email list
Sometimes, a reader might visit your about me page first, then join your email list from there.
Step 4. Identify the problem and why it matters
Each of your blog posts needs to identify and solve a problem.
Start the introduction by describing what the problem is and why it’s important to solve this problem.
- 1. What’s the problem? College is expensive (data + source).
- 2. Why is it such a serious problem? Students end up in a lot of debt (data + source)
- 3. Drive home the problem. Young people start their adult lives in debt.
- 4. List the consequences. They’ll have trouble saving money for a down payment on a house.
Every problem has a negative effect, right? That’s why it’s a problem. Go into this a bit.
Don’t save the drama for your momma. This is the time to make your topic sound so important. We’re talking practically life and death important here.
If they don’t see the severity of the problem, they won’t keep reading.
To tell Google what keyword(s) your page should appear in the search results on, make it clear what your main keyword phrase is.
Use your keyword phrase in the title, the first paragraph, and the URL.
Step 5. How you suffered
Now it’s time to connect the problem, their problem, to you.
You do this by showing empathy.
Using the same student loan debt example, you can say how this debt personally affected your ability to buy a car, buy a house, and even find a partner.
Add more than just facts. You need to describe how having this problem made you feel.
This is where you should add words like hopeless, lost, depressed, and broken.
The “suffering words” I used were “paralyzed with writer’s block” and “dreaded.”
Give them all the feels, yo!
No matter your niche, you can write in a way that takes the reader through an emotional journey.
They need to connect with you, and they won’t connect with you on a human level if you talk like a robot!
People don’t remember facts and figures; they remember how you made them feel.
I started this post by sharing with you that I struggled to write blog posts when I first started blogging. This is exactly what you need to do – in every single blog post.
Doing this allows you to build a connection, which is key to developing a further relationship with the reader.
Step 6. Your lightbulb moment
You know how they feel because you’re in the same boat. At least you were in the same boat.
Until something magical happened. Something that radically changed your life forever.
It was as if the Red Sea had parted. OMG, it was like a vision you had that must have come from an angel!
This is your lightbulb or AHA! moment.
Describe how your life has changed since this revelation.
It’s not just about specifically what has happened in your life, such as buying a car or a house. It’s more about how this change has made you feel emotionally.
- An immense weight has been lifted off my shoulders
- I have a new lease on life
- I am no longer shackled
- I feel free
- I have hope for the future
- I have more confidence
For this article, I said blog writing became a fun process rather than something I dreaded.
Step 7. Your solution
This is the meat and potatoes of your article. Now it’s time to deliver the goods.
You will want to be thorough and describe your solution to the problem. You need to provide real value here. Otherwise, you are wasting everyone’s time!
In this section, list out the steps needed to solve this problem. You don’t want your entire blog post to be one big section. Break down your post into bite-sized sections, perfect for quick reading.
For this article, I spelled out why this topic matters before going into the 12 steps on how to write a blog post.
This type of content is the easiest to write because you can start with a skeleton outline of all the steps. Plus, they are easy for readers to consume.
Make sure you have the correct writing style down for your blog. For most blogs, this means writing informally.
In school, you are taught to follow certain writing rules. But your blog post is not a research paper, and those rules do not apply.
In fact, you need to throw away everything you’ve ever learned about how to write an article out the window!
When you write a blog post, you need to write it informally, as if you are talking to a person… because that’s exactly what you’re doing.
A blog post is just a conversation between you and the reader.
Step 8. Format your blog post
To make my content easy to read, I separate my content with headings, paragraphs, lists, and images.
Here is the structure of a typical blog post:
H1 – Your blog post title gets the most important h1 tag.
Featured image – Add a featured image to make your post more appealing and build engagement.
H2 – Reserve the H2 tag for your most important sections
H3 – For a how-to post, I use the H3 tag for each step.
H4 – If a step needs to be separated further, I use the H4 tag.
P – Make your paragraphs really short to make them easy to read. One-sentence paragraphs are perfectly okay because the goal is to keep the reader on your page and scrolling.
LI – Use lists where appropriate to make your content as easy to skim as possible.
You can find more help on how to design your blog posts here (steps 10-19).
Step 9. Add images
Text is boring. Add pictures throughout your content to break up large blocks of text.
If you’re doing a how-to article, show screenshots or pictures of the process.
You can see my list of the best places to find free stock images here.
The two images every blog post should have are a featured image and an image for sharing on Pinterest.
Social media sites will use your featured image when people share your content on their network.
Step 10. Add internal and external links
Your article isn’t ready until you make it a valuable resource. This means you should add both internal and external links.
There are a few reasons you should be linking to other websites.
- To cite a source, especially if you mention any kind of data.
- Linking out to other bloggers in your niche goes a long way to building a relationship with them.
- When you link to authority sites, in the eyes of Google, some of their authority may rub off on you.
And here’s why you should add internal links.
- It’s just a good user experience to mention other related resources you have.
- It helps Google find new pages when they crawl your site.
- A good internal link structure helps Google understand which pages are more important.
- You encourage readers to visit multiple pages, resulting in more opportunities to make money.
Step 11. Your call to action
I see so many articles that end and just… end. The next logical step for anybody reading that article would be to close the page.
I’ve written thousands of blog posts in the last 15 years. Something I’ve learned is that human beings follow orders from authority figures.
This is true in real life but also in blogs. And if you write an awesome blog post, you are the authority figure.
At that moment, the reader is so into your content they will do practically whatever you tell them to do!
And yet, time and time again, I see articles that end without giving me the next step.
Human beings are not that complicated. People want to be given direction. They want to be told what to do.
End every blog post with a call to action.
You’ve written great content; now it’s time to make sure the reader doesn’t leave! If they leave, odds are they will never visit your blog again for the rest of their life.
Your call to action will depend on what you want your reader to do.
Here are some examples of call to actions:
- Leave a comment. (helps to build a community)
- Join my email list. (build a closer relationship)
- Share this post on Facebook (increases your reach)
One more thing. Make sure to pick only one thing for your reader to do. I’ve learned that if you give the reader too many options, they will do nothing!
- Tell them nothing, they will do nothing.
- Tell them to do 3 things, they will do none.
- Tell them to do 1 thing, and they will do it!
Step 12. Write an awesome headline
The last step in the blog post writing process is to write the headline.
Nobody will ever read your blog post if your headline isn’t great. This is your first impression, and you literally have about 2 seconds to catch their attention.
Typically a user will be scrolling on their phone, and it’s your job to make them stop scrolling and click on your link.
Here is the anatomy of a great click-inducing headline:
Number + Adjective + Keyword + Promise
For example: – 5 Awesome Ab Exercises To Get You Ripped In Two Weeks- 17 Genius Dog Training Tips To Turn Your Dog Into A Saint!
Let me break down the headline formula here.
- Start with an odd number
Start your headline off with a number. Listicles get clicksicles.
- Choose an emotional adjective
For example, mind-blowing, awesome, genius.
Use your 2-3 word keyword phrase in the middle of the headline.
- Make a promise
Make a BOLD promise… then deliver! It is not clickbait if your content delivers on your promise.
To test your headlines, you can use this headline analyzer tool.
Free blog post template (Download the PDF)
So, did you enjoy this article? If you did, share it on Facebook, post it on Twitter, join my email list, and… just kidding!
Just save this on Pinterest, y’all!
Until next time,