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There are so many moving parts when you start blogging. Content planning, keyword research, blog post structure, backlinking, tags… All connected, but have a specific way to do or set up to help you reach your target audience. And while you should definitely check up on the best practices for all of them, we’re gonna focus on categories for now – specifically, the best blog categories for service providers.
Unlike traditional bloggers, lifestyle bloggers, or even the blogs of big businesses, as service providers, you won’t be producing the same amount – or same type – of content. While visibility is one of our goals, our main goal is to connect with our ideal clients when they’re ready to book or join the community.
Our goals are reflected in our content and therefore our categories. So, rather than having 10 or even 20 different categories, there are really only three blog categories for service providers that I recommend when starting a blog:
Blog post categories or blog categories are how you can organize your website and allow your readers to navigate your content to find the information they want. A category is a high-level topic that includes multiple blog posts. Many bloggers like to think of their categories as a table of contents for their blog.
A blog post category should directly relate to the content you are publishing on your site. For example, if you’re publishing content that relates to marketing, your categories should likely revolve around marketing.
Every blog post should have at least one category assigned to it. If you don’t assign a category yourself, your blog post will default to ‘uncategorized.’ Still, you should never have more than two main categories (there are some exceptions for sub-categories) attached to a single blog post.
Technically, there is no ‘ideal amount’ of blog post categories to have on your blog. Your categories should be determined by the blog posts you’re publishing and your niche. It’s also likely that your categories will expand over time, so while you may start with only three categories, you may have 10 in a year, or 150 in five years – or not.
It also depends on the type of business you run. For example, a photographer may have three main categories and then different categories for the cities they shoot in while a business coach may only have a few, maybe three or five even after a few years of blogging.
As you’re just starting your blog and publishing your first blog posts, keeping it simple is key. This is why you typically only need three main blog categories as a service provider.
Luckily, setting up blog post categories is pretty simple in most blog and website hosts. There are tons of resources online, but if you’re looking for help setting up your categories on showit, here’s a simple how-to you can use.
From years spent helping service providers plan and create content for their blogs, I’ve noticed a few common trends. There’s a specific type of content you should create for your blog first, and since Google loves content clusters, it’s best if your first batch of content relates to this topic. I love to refer to this topic as your main ‘non-negotiable.’
And remember, your blog categories should be short and sweet. Keep it to one to two words, three max! But, I won’t give it away in the intro, instead, let’s take a deep dive into the blog categories every service provider should have:
This is the #1 non-negotiable I mentioned before, your offer. This is the first category you should create and the first content cluster you should write. And I want to get a little more specific, I mean what your offer refers to or results in. Here are some examples:
If you’re an Instagram Strategist, your first category might look like…
Do some keyword research to find what would have the best chances of ranking, just keep in mind you don’t want to participate in keyword cannibalization and hurt your actual services page.
This is the category that is directly connected to who you’re writing for – aka who you’re ideal client is. Are they moms? Families? Coaches? This category is to include the personable blog posts you should write that connect with your audience on a level deeper than ‘education.’ Here are some examples:
If you’re a Photographer who focuses on maternity photography and their ideal client is an expecting mom, their second category might look like…
They would then write blog posts such as “How to Boost Your Confidence During Pregnancy” or “XX Maternity Dresses for Summer.” Both tie into photography but connect a little more with their audience. That’s the goal of your second blog post category.
If you’re giving general advice, what does it relate to? Entreprenurship? Finance? Marketing? That’s the goal of blog category three. It’s your catch-all for advice, tips, and everything in between that doesn’t fit into the other two and you don’t necessarily have enough to write to create a category for itself – or it doesn’t make sense to.
It should boil down to what is your overall topic. For example, a premier accounting and bookkeeping firm would be “Finance.” A social media manager would be “Marketing.” A good default blog post category for B2B service providers is “Business” and B2C would be “Lifestyle.”
Remember that you can branch off of your categories in the future, but for now, having this as one of your primary categories can make it so much easier to navigate as a reader.
Blog categories add a hierarchy to your pages and essentially give Google a straightforward answer to what your blog post – and blog – are about. This allows Google to put your blog post where it needs to be in search to give the most value to its users.
Additionally, every blog category has its own ‘landing page’ that can be optimized and ranked on Google. Ranking pages on your website help your other pages get indexed and ranked.
Blog categories are just one of the many ways you can boost your SEO and improve your website’s performance and visibility as a service provider.
Once you’ve got your content and on-page SEO down, I highly recommend working on your off-page SEO. You can do so by working on building high-quality backlinks – you can get the complete guide here.
Hope you found this helpful (and you’re able to keep moving forward with your blog)! If you have any questions or comments, add them in the section below:
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