As I talk to small businesses about posting consistently, I often get this question, “How much is too much content?”  Or, they ask me “how little content can I get away with and still be effective?”

Both are fair questions.  If you ask an established blogger or content marketer for advice about building an audience, they will tell you the importance of posting consistency. Producing regular content is a proven way to increase your internet traffic.

Posting consistently is also a pain in the neck for a lot of small businesses (including ours at times).  We have found that we are so busy creating marketing pieces for other companies that our own content marketing efforts can sometimes get tossed aside.  Consistently posting an article once a week or a few times a week can be a challenging task, but it is a task that you and I can’t afford to toss aside.

In this article we are going to talk about the importance of consistently posting and updating your website.

Consistent posting will drive traffic to your site better than nearly anything else

I’ve had a number of companies contact me with services to drive more traffic to my website.  Unless they are interested in developing content, beware of these companies.  Driving traffic by using a shortcut that doesn’t involve developing content, will cost you money and usually it will not result in more sales.  Simply put, it is fake traffic.

I want real traffic on my site!  Consistently developing content will help you to push out real information to real customers.  It is simply the best way to build up an online client base for a small business.

Hubspot did a study a study that has staggering implications for small businesses.  For businesses with 1-10 employees, they found these statistics:

  • Producing 1 post per month has little effect on overall internet traffic
  • Producing 2-5 posts per month typically increased traffic by about 25%
  • Producing 6-10 posts per month typically increased traffic by about 50%
  • Producing 11-16 posts per month typically increased traffic by 150%

Once a company reached about 300 posts, they discovered they those sites received 3.5 times more traffic than the site with 20 posts or less.  The results tend to compound over time.

So, what does this information mean for your small business?  For most small businesses it means that they need to write more content… a lot more.  The payoff?  Your site over time might get 3-4 times more traffic than your competitor.  As you consistently post more content, you are establishing yourself as an expert, and creating a great knowledge base for the community that follows you while spending less on pay-per-click advertising.

Posting consistently increases leads over time

Increased traffic to your site will result in more leads for your business.  Another study done by HubSpot found that businesses that produce more blog posts tend to produce more leads from their websites.  Here is how the study breaks down for small businesses with less than 10 employees:

  • Producing 1 post per month has little effect on overall number of leads generated by the site
  • Producing 2-3 posts per month increased leads by 50%
  • Producing 4-5 posts per month increased leads by 100%
  • Producing 6-10 posts per month increased leads by 125%
  • Producing 11-16 posts per month increased leads by over 300%

Even a few blog posts per month can do a lot for generating sales on your website!  If producing leads on your website is one of your business goals, then posting more often should be a major priority for you!

Find your content sweet spot.

Now comes the question of, “How many is too many?”  The answer to that question really depends on your industry.  If you constantly inundate your readers with new posts, then they are liable to get annoyed and discontinue reading your posts.  However, if you are in the information business (like a news page or a product review service) then publishing several times a day is a requirement.

One small business content marketer was publishing 5 days per week.  He published 4 articles and then on Fridays he posted a cartoon.  He was finding that his subscriber list was shrinking.  So, he lost the cartoon and posted just 4 times per week.  Restricting himself to just 16 posts per month stabilized his list and his unsubscribe level dropped by 80%.

Another industry blogger I know posts every couple of days and then compiles his posts in a newsletter that gets sent out via email about every 3 weeks.  As he watched his statistics and as he interviewed his audience, he found that cadence was about right for him.

One non-profit I know posts about once a week, send out a corresponding email about once a week, cross-promotes their posts on social media, produces a printed newsletter once a month, and produces a podcast about every other week.  That flow is hugely effective for their fund-raising efforts.

Every business is different, but to be honest, I’ve yet to personally run into a small business that is over-posting.  You can always dial it back if your stats go down, but generally speaking, your audience is starving for more good content and will reward you with more website visits and more sales as you produce it.

Read more about how to write great posts here.