Top 7 Sure Article Types One May Benefit From

Those who are in blogging for years know that readers often get tired of one and the same content type. Even if you write brilliant articles, this doesn’t provide all-time success and recognition. Audience loves experiment, first of all experiments in article format. How many post types can you actually enumerate? Product reviews, tips, how-to’s, lists… is that all you know? Then this article is definitely for you! Have a look at proven article types which really work to engage blog audience and diversify content.

1. Best-of and top lists
It doesn’t matter how trivial this type may seem, the truth is that it works flawlessly. Ranked lists always seem to generate links, traffic and debate. One question: why did you click on this article title? Maybe, because of “Top 7″ in the heading? The main reason of such posts popularity is that people are constantly searching for the ‘best’ of everything. They love content ranged from good to best, as well as they love a variety of items to choose from.  All these “Top-10″, “Best-100″ or “A to Z” roundups contribute to better post structuring and let readers compare items within one list. You can make a list of whatever concerning your blog niche: helpful resources, tools, videos, tips, workarounds, or tricky ways to do something.

2. Interviews
Interviews with well-known experts also are a good source of links, comments, and traffic. The nice thing about this method is that the only your work involved is writing questions and approaching experts. The interviews can add definitely add credibility to your resource since people appreciate such arrangements. It’s easier if you start with interviewing bloggers who are interested in link exchange and ego bait. The success rates for getting interviews are pretty high as most bloggers love talking about themselves! Still it’s advisable to ask questions within a particular topic, e.g. if a blogger writes about DVD software, ask him about the current state of DVD burning and his forecast. Nobody canceled a catching title for an interview. If your respondent is not so outspoken, you may easily omit his name in the title, just put [INTERVIEW] at the end.

3. Infographics
I put this type on the third place, but actually it should be on the first and here are the reasons why. First, infographic can deploy complex information in visually attractive datasets and thus make your blog post more eye-catching. Plus, infographic usually receives a wide coverage on the Internet: be sure to get dozens of backlinks and good mention in social media. Now about the minus: it cost money! Of course, you can borrow it from such popular infographic stocks as Visual.ly, DailyInfographic and some others, but this won’t be your infographic and you’ll have to provide credits. No doubt, infographic development requires much time and effort and the outcome is often unpredictable. Still it’s worth trying!

4. Slideshows
Slideshow is a popular article type which has long been used by Mashable and PC World. This format ideally suits to display series of meaningful information or deploy “Top-10″ lists, especially if there are multiple items on the list. Description for the items can be minimal, since here image is more important. You can make a slideshow in PowerPoint or use Freemake Video Converter to convert photos into video. YouTube or Slideshare are good resources to host your presentations with the ability to get embed code for your blog.

5. Showdowns
Readers love battles! They appreciate comparisons made for them, even if they don’t agree with the results. Just start typing in Google “Windows vs…” and you’ll get numerous suggestions and search results showing down Windows and other OS’s . Don’t be afraid the make comparison tables, diagrams, list pros and cons and write your personal opinion at the end. The word “Showdown” isn’t very catching in titles, so it’s better to use “vs.” or “battle” and not to compare more than 3 items, because the post will turn in an ordinary list.

6. Q&A
If your blog is strictly niche-oriented and you receive tons of emails and post comments, assign a post to frequently-asked questions. In such posts you have a chance to speak on multiple topics of little significance. Q&A posts also give a perfect opportunity to build internal linking: just mention previous posts related to the question and make anchor text with targeted keywords. Don’t forget to put questions in bold so that readers could scroll down and start reading with the questions they are most interested in. Be open to your public – publish questions that people ask about your hobbies, interests, jobs you did.

7. How-to’s
How-to queries rule in Google search, so this post type is very beneficial from SEO point of view. You may pick up any topic, from handcraft to PC issues, just make sure the tutorial syncs with your blog content. Divide your how-to into steps and provide images or screenshots for each step. More than one solution to do the task is also helpful, especially if the task isn’t so complicated.

Author’s Bio:  Elena Vakhromova is an editor @ Freemake blog, a free resource dedicated to technology and interesting findings across the web.

39 thoughts on “Top 7 Sure Article Types One May Benefit From

  1. Hi timethief, I have been trying to add a new post to my blog “whatcherylsaid”, but when I go into add an image all I see or get is html and all of the tools like spell check, bold, font, etc. are no longer showing. Can you suggest something for me to try or is there a support team phone number i can call. I have two new post and I cant post them. Thank you, for your time.

    • Hi Cheryl,
      This is a matter for posting to the support forum http://en.forums.wordpress.com. I’m currently trying to spend less time answering questions there on weekends so I can create and publish more posts on my blogs. That being said, but there are other Volunteers who will help you or will see to it that you get Staff help if they can’t provide it.

  2. Pingback: Top 7 Sure Article Types One May Benefit From | Litteris | Scoop.it

  3. Hi TT. Just popped by to say thank you for this weekend. I shall have fun looking around here and will probably learn a lot. Take care. Ralph xx

        • I surrendered to you last night TT. Firefox is now my default browser!! I have a new personae and millions of addons. Is there a way of just having icons for “Most Visited” bookmarks as I have so many URLs bookmarked? I would really like a static bookmark bar similar to IE9 favorites. I think I will keep IE9 as a back up in case Firefox throws a wobbly. Have you any tips for Firefox that I can look at? Hugs. Ralph x

        • Firefox Add on – View Marks. Brilliant for organizing bookmarks. Bookmark Menu sites initially show thumbs of world. Open View Marks/click on a world/visit site/pick a page/return to BM, world changed to thumb of page visited.
          Restore down browser window. If Firefox is pinned to desktop taskbar. Right click/open new window/open View Marks. Shuffle/drag drop/create new folders (ie Sites I Follow) between both Firefox browsers. I have left my blogs and dashboards (bookmarked) not in folders for ease of access. Now, when I bookmark a site it is easy to put into a folder using View Marks.

      • Firefox. Once your bookmarked sites are organized. Right click on a blank area at the top of Firefox bars/customize/drag “display your bookmarks” to bookmarks toolbar. Click on “display your bookmarks” a sidebar opens for easy access to any site bookmarked.

  4. Hi TT, hope you’re feeling better. I’m just popping by for a moment while I have a wee break from updating my art site!
    Great (guest) post – thanks to you and to Elena.

    Myself, I use some of these things but prefer to incorporate them into my posts rather than feature them as single entities. I’ve worked lists into a few and have how to’s here and there. What I don’t do are the showdowns – or, haven’t yet. Also I think that sort of thing (unless treated humorously) tends to encourage negative emotions from people and in my blog I am trying to avoid that sort of thing.

    Q and A’s can be good. I personally find the ones where readers ask me questions, too tiring – I did that in my past blog and it worked extremely well but not in this blog. In this one, I’m the one asking the questions! ;)

    • Hi Val,
      Thanks for the visit and your comments too. We appear to have the same take on showdowns. I quietly endure enough flack from overly emotional folks who post to the support forum to be inclined towards publishing Showdown post. I’m an opinionated person, who does not care to share and invest my time into debating anything with anyone.

  5. I hear you when it comes to top Top tips posts. :) When it comes to infographics your point is well taken. Trying to communicate too much information in too small a space doesn’t lead to information retention. I’m interested in playing around with making my own very simple infographics but haven’t had the time to do that yet. When it comes to interviews I’m not really keen on them but I’m open to the idea. I’m not sure how questions and answers would work on this blog. I spend hours everyday answering support forum questions as it is. There are some useful articles on Freemake that I think my readers may benefit from reading.

    • Hi there,
      It’s always good to hear from you. I’m doing better but I’m not back up to speed yet. Thanks so much for dropping in and best wishes to you always.

  6. Hi :)
    I was wondering if you could email me with some advice about how I can unregister a domain name on WordPress.
    I deleted that blog and now I would like to re-set it up properly using my custom domain name…but WordPress doesn’t allow it.
    Sorry to hound you on your personal blog but I really need the help.
    I have been waiting for 2 days for some support.
    Thanks in advanced!!

    Kindest Regards,
    Martha

    Temp site: princessmartha.blogspot.com

    • I’m sorry but I can’t help you with this. Normally one does not “unregister” a domain name. They simply point the name serves to wherever their blog content has been moved to. If you’ve registered your domain through WordPress.com and now want it to point to a blog or website hosted elsewhere then you can do this by updating the nameservers as described here > http://en.support.wordpress.com/domains/domain-management/#update-nameservers I’m afraid you will have to wait for Staff to help you on the support forum.

  7. Thank you timethief and Elena. I’m new to blogging and while there is so much available information out there, there are very few resources that speak right to the point. So thank you:) it is very helpful.

  8. Great points! I especially agree with the usefulness of Top Ten lists. Along that line, I think readers also like numeric reviews. Even if it’s not a list, they like to know if something is good or not on some sort of scale. (My site uses a 1 to 5 star scale.)

    Here are some of my experiences with regards to a couple of the points:

    I’ve done some interviews on my site. I don’t do them often, though, because they tend to be the lowest-visited parts of the site. I’ve tried to figure out why, as I happen to think several of the interviewees are quite interesting individuals (one was doing a comic version of James Joyce’s Ulysses, for example). I’m guessing it has to do with expectations, and the tone shift from my voice to the voice of someone else tends to be a little jarring. Either that or I need to refine my conversational style.

    I’m not too big a fan of slideshows either, personally, though I can see how those can lead to several hits. In my experience, though, these are usually fluff pieces, since you need to keep each point short to move the reader to the next page as soon as possible. Make ‘em too informative and the reader is probably going to give up clicking on the next link. But if they’re going to be short, why not just put all the stuff on one page? Because putting each point from a top ten lest on a separate page increases pageviews tenfold.

  9. Hi tt,

    I do hope things do pick up for you next week.

    I hope too, that next time I get the urge to make a roast vegetable chilli, someone stops me. Huge amount of prep to do. Still, I’ve got a casserole full (stainless steel casseroles are lighter than pans, and have two handles – always useful – I’ve changed over to them). so I’ll have some next week and freeze the rest. Lazy day tomorrow though.

    I try to average one post a day, which means on good days, providing I have the material (Twitter’s a good source as long as you protect the guilty, as in my next post!), I’ll write 2 or 3, sometimes more. I also find that maybe 25% of posts don’t work out so, if they’re not time sensitive, I’ll keep them and revisit them later. The pain post is one such – it’s been kicking around for a while in various forms until I decided to make it about what I know best – me.

    Take care.

    By the way – where is your personal blog?

    • Hi Ron,
      I aim to publish twice weekly on both blogs but it’s my personal blog that ranks last. I work in our business, do contracted work and then I blog. My personal blog is http://thistimethisspace.com
      P.S. I hope my back gets better too. At present it’s very painful and so is my left shoulder.

  10. I haven’t tried much of the suggested content techniques yet. I did do a little poll on subject areas that readers liked best. That was a long time ago.

    And I can’t figure out what type of showdown article that makes comparisons except specific cycling products/techniques which is great for cyclists but not so good for non-cyclists which I know my blog does attract that reading segment also.

    I haven’t done any interviews yet. But have showcased individuals whom I’ve seen in person and possess talent in their area. I’m not convinced that a Q & A works for my blog since I don’t want to convey that I’m an expert in a certain area when I darn well know there are others more well qualified. Or maybe I’m downplaying something here….

    There is food for thought from this blog post. For now, I’ll hang loose, scribble blog posts that hopefully people want to climb on board for a blog journey, jump off and rejoin again.

  11. Elena
    I want to thank you for approaching me with this guest post. It contains 7 good ideas for content creation that I’m happy to have you share with my readers.

    I have shied away from two kinds of posts you included above. They are: 2. Interviews and 5. Showdowns. When I did post a Blogger versus WordPress article I got lots of traffic and comments, but I’m not combative by nature and I’m not interested in reading “showdown” type posts. I suppose it’s time to get out of my own head and think about what kind of “showdowns” my readers might cotton too. When it comes to interviews I may consider interviewing some of my top readers and commenters in the future. Your post got me thinking along those lines.

    Thanks so much for your valuable contribution to my blog. I appreciate it.

  12. Morning tt,

    When I first started writing my current blog, the advice, then, was to have a consistent theme running through it, which I felt was nonsense, and restrictive since then, as now, I tended to write about whatever piqued my interest.

    In the last 10 days, readers have had posts on an alleged escaped lion, chocolate, using a powerchair indoors, erotic literature, cooking, democracy (and the lack thereof), politics, disability issues, writing, and living with chronic, intransigent pain. All of which have been well received but, naturally enough, some more so than others.

    I suppose, if there is a theme running through the blog, it’s disability and how to live with it. Not a constant theme, but one that is frequently revisited, and these days, with a government intent on destroying the chronically sick and disabled community (quite literally), that’s inextricably entwined with politics.

    And on that note, I must leave you, since the cooking post comes to fruition today, as I actually feel well enough to cook.

    • Hi Ron,
      I hear you. When I first began to blog the advice was to stick to a single theme in a blog. In this blog I do that. It’s strictly focused on blogging. However, in my personal blog I have developed posts on several themes. In fact, we share one of the same themes running through our personal blogs ie.coping with chronic illness and pain. I tend to focus on how I cope and those coping mechanisms and strategies ie. skillful means are applicable to everyone, not just disabled people. I also tend to publish only when I’m in the mood to do so in that blog. In this blog I tend to publish more frequently as I often have blogging posts on the backburner. Right now I’m grateful that there are guest bloggers among my regular readers who are approaching me with good guest post articles like the one above.

      I’m glad to hear you are well enough to complete your cooking post today. I’m not feeling that well yet so I’m taking it easy this weekend and hoping I will feel better next week.

      • Ron, timethief–

        I feel so vindicated. I also wrote about whatever when I began blogging and some time back (midway I guess) I got someone saying “it doesn’t seem like you’ve found your voice” which of course, was in the mindset of ‘a blog has to have a theme’. Bah. My wife and I work on blogs that grew out of a theme, but myself, again, my personal blog seems to remain as eclectic and eccentric as ever– like me.

        That said, though, this blog was recommended to me by a friend and I figured I’d read and glean whatever helpful structure I could. I have used some of Elena’s tips myself in the past although I avoided “showdowns” and slideshows– well, my editor helped me with one for a music review article I did (and it fit circumstances there) but otherwise I tend to avoid those, too.

Comments are closed.