Regardless of what digital marketing writing you’re drafting—from product copy to service pages—research is essential to authenticating your work in every piece your produce.

Blogging is without exception. Research is critical to maintaining a successful blog. Your goal? Always give readers clear, concise, and in-depth blog posts boasting with relevant information. Backing up your claims through research helps you do that.

So why is it so important to research a blog post? Three of the biggest reasons are:

  • Statement verification: As mentioned above, you need to back up the claims you’re making in your post, especially if you are referring to something specific. Your facts, timeline, etc., must be correct.
  • Data and statistics to support your claims: Support your content with research material like statistics and quotes from industry experts to include some hard data in your text.
  • SEO and keywords: SEO is an essential element of people finding your blog. Put some time into researching effective keywords so you boost your search engine rankings.

Let’s look at each of these in more depth.

if you don't fact check you will lose credibility with your audience

1. Statement Verification.

Blogging provides one of the best opportunities to share your knowledge and expertise with a wide audience. Your posts can be as specific or as broad as you’d like. Your blog is a tool to position yourself as a thought leader in your industry, so strive for high-quality content.

You can also be as specific or broad as you’d like, allowing you to educate those in various portions of the sales funnel, regardless if you’re selling services or products.

You already know the message you want to deliver. Research proves that your message is factually correct; it’s vital to complete research prior to writing a blog post.

Trends change constantly—even if you think you’re current with your field, something new is always happening. See what others are doing in your field or how they’re handling certain issues, then develop your thoughts on the topic.

Use Google Alerts to notify you about finding the latest articles about topics that you’re interested in (and plan to write about regularly). This helpful tool will send you an email when it finds new results that match your search terms.

Google Scholar is another helpful resource. This tool can index full text or metadata of scholarly literature across a wide range of publishing formats and disciplines so it’s right at your fingertips when you need it (and it can save you a lot of scrolling).

2. Why Include Data and Statistics?

Statistics put issues in context by way of hard data. For instance, let’s say you’re a financial advisor and writing a blog post about paying for college.

Perhaps you want to include some numbers about the percentage of parents who have set up 529 savings accounts for their child or have done some other type of pre-planning, compared to parents who have not started saving for their child’s college education.

If you’re not compiling the data yourself, go to industry trade journals and websites to gather the numbers you need. Look for current studies or other benchmarking tools to identify the most up-to-date information.

seo and keyword research are essential for a successful blog

3. SEO and Keyword Research.

And of course, you must do your due diligence as it relates to SEO and keyword research for maximum search potential. These two elements are as important as providing readers factual content.

Keyword research is a major part of SEO – every blogger should identity what keywords their target audience is searching for as it relates to your niche.

For more, read our blog keyword research post.

Research Process

Yes, research can take a lot of time, but if you have a solid topic and know where to go for resources, the process can go quickly.

And it can actually be fun.

Research also allows you to discover new ideas or expand on topics that can further add value to your readers, making your blog stand out among the noise.

The goal is to have more facts and background material than you will likely need for a single blog post, but don’t throw those notes away!

You can always develop longer thought pieces, like a white paper or advertorial, based on your findings, or just keep churning out well-researched blog posts using the information you found.

You’ll develop your own research process, but here’s a fairly simple one to minimize the risk of overwhelm:

  • Choose your topic as a starting point (it can be broad).
  • Narrow your topic down to a specific angle.
  • Review the resources Google Alerts and Google Scholar have compiled for you.
  • Highlight or take handwritten notes on the key points or statistics you want to include in your post. (Old-fashioned note cards or tablets are great for this, or use a tool like Google Docs to track timelines or create graphs and charts from your findings)
  • Get ready to write!

Creating Content

Did you know there is a formula for writing effective blog posts for both user experience and SEO?

Below are the simple steps to get the most out of your thoroughly researched, well-written blog:

  • Write an attention-grabbing headline.
  • Use short sentences.
  • Include bulleted or numbered lists.
  • Use proper Headline tags for subtopics (all above are H2s).
  • Incorporate relevant graphics.
  • Write good captions for photos and stock images.

For more, read ContentMender founder Ron Lieback’s contribution to Search Engine Journal: SEO Writing: Top 47 Tips to Master the Art.

When you’re satisfied with your post, share it to social media and start connecting with your audience!

Do you do much research before writing blog posts? Why or why not?