What is a blog and why you should start one
When launching an online presence, it can be tough to decide between a website and a blog. While a regular site is always a great starting point, creating a blog can make it easier to reach your audience and generate exposure on search engines.
For most, however, the difference between the two might not be instantly apparent. So, what is a blog, and what makes it different from typical websites?
We’ll explain it all in this guide. We’ll also cover the benefits of blogging, how to start a blog, tips to make money as a blogger, and what makes a successful blog in the first place.
What is a blog?
A blog is a type of site that publishes frequently-updated information about any topic. The term stands for “weblog” or “web log,” referring to logging content on the world wide web.
Blogs originated in the late 1990s, namely as a platform to share an owner’s interests and experiences.
For instance, pioneer blogger Justin Hall initially used his personal blog to talk about his life and the websites he liked visiting. The person who coined “weblog” as a term, Jorn Barger, started his Robot Wisdom blog to publish essays on his interests – from AI and history to James Joyce.
Blogs have grown exponentially since then. Out of 1.7 billion websites that exist around the world, 600 million of them are blogs.
The subject matter has also varied. While some internet users start a blog for personal reasons, many are using it to:
- Educate readers about a specific topic - Entrepreneurial blog owner Pat Flynn uses his Smart Passive Income website to guide his audience on starting an online business.
- Brand their online presence - Author James Clear began by writing articles on his website, branding himself as the go-to source for habit formation and personal development.
- Market a business - Toggl’s website has a blog section about workplace productivity, a topic related to its software. The purpose is to attract people searching for these subjects in hopes of converting them into customers.
- Build a community - An excellent example of this is Medium publications like Start it up. It encourages bloggers interested in professional development to contribute to the blog and share their knowledge.
Blog vs website: What’s the difference?
The primary difference between a blog and a website lies in its content.
Mainly, the content of a blog consists of blog posts, which are articles presented on web pages. The homepage typically displays these entries in reverse chronological order. The blogger usually publishes new posts or updates existing ones on a regular basis.