It seems like every business has a blog these days. So if everyone else is doing it, it must be a good idea, right? Well, maybe. But before you launch headfirst into the world of business blogging, it's important to think about what the return on your investment will be. Here are a few tips to get you started.
How Much Does It Cost To Run A Blog?
Sure, lots of blogs are free to set up, and if you use a free site like WordPress or Google Blogger, they don't cost anything to maintain either. What they do take is time. If you want your blog to be successful, you're going to need to spend more than a couple of hours per month on it. The first step in calculating the cost of your blog is to figure out how much staff time it will take up and what that will cost you in salary expenses. Add to that benefits and overheads, and you'll have a good estimate of your monthly blogging expenses.
Consider Every Potential Cost
After you calculate your staff time, there may still be added costs to think about for your blog. Maybe you want to upgrade to a self-hosted service for a custom blog design. Maybe you need a graphic designer to come up with a great new logo for your blog. All of these things will mean that a bigger investment is required to keep your blog going. Also consider what it will cost if you want to do things like shoot high quality videos to post on your blog, or if you run into trouble with your blogging software and need to pay for technical support.
How Do Blogs Make Money Anyways?
Now that you've figured out what your investment should look like, you need to figure out what the return on that investment will be. So how do blogs make money anyways? Well, there are several ways. If you're running ads or using your blog for affiliate marketing, you will generate a certain amount of monthly revenue. And even if you don't use these methods on your blog, your blog should still be generating revenue for your business by building a new customer base. This is harder to measure, but there are methods that you can use to make your guesses more accurate. First, by allowing people to follow your blog, you can keep track of any web users who are interested in your business. But just because someone follows your blog, that doesn't automatically make that person a customer. You can use online surveys to see how many of your followers actually bought your products or used your services in the past month. Also, you can use Google Analytics to track how many people visit your blog on a regular basis to see how many people are truly engaged followers. If you don't already know the average monthly value of new customers, you will have to calculate that, and then apply that to the average number of new customers per month that your blog brings in.
How to Calculate Your Blog's ROI
Once you know how much your blog costs you each month, as well as how much monthly revenue it brings in, you can calculate your ROI. The standard formula is revenue minus investment, divided by investment (expressed as a percentage). If these numbers look good to you, then blog away! If not, then maybe you should reconsider the way your business runs your blog and find ways to make it more profitable.
Once you have a better understanding of your blog's ROI, you should have an easier time deciding how many resources to put into it each month. Plus, knowing that your business blog is a good investment will keep you motivated to keep your blog going in the long run.