The biggest problem with mediocre business blogs is that their creators don’t realize they’re putting out mediocre content. Bad blogs are often intentionally bad — keyword-stuffed nonsense intended only to spoof the search engines and get some ad revenues. Excellent blogs intentionally write for both human and computers, optimizing search engine performance and audience engagement. To up your blog game, insert a few of these components found in all great blogs.

To illustrate our points, rather than feature our own blog, we thought we would highlight a recent blog post by Heidi Cohen from one of our favorite sites: Social Media Examiner.

1.Short, Effective Titles

Tight titles are tantalizing, giving just enough information to make potential readers want more. They’re also easy to share or re-tweet, since the entire title will show up in those mediums. Better titles mean more views. Period.

While the title featured in the image above is by no means short, it is effective and concisely sums up the content in the blog post.

2. Problem-Solution Structure

Pose a problem early in the post, and spend the rest of the entry offering solutions. For simple situations, you can opt for multiple problems, each with a solution or two. Complex solutions might warrant links to more detailed resources. In any case, the problem is your hook for landing readers. Set it, and land them with the rest of your post.

3. Tight Copy

Internet readers don’t want luxurious prose. They want the facts, they want them now, and they don’t want to spend a lot of time getting them. The tighter, more direct you make your blog copy the better people will like your blog. This probably means writing several drafts of your post, paring each one down until you’ve distilled it to its purest form. That’s okay. A successful blog is worth the effort.

4. Scan-Friendly Layout

Nobody will ever read your blog, if by “read” you mean “visually go left to right, line by line, taking in each word.” Internet readers scan blocks of text for the relevant information and move on. Breaking up your post into subheads, lists, images, links and bold or italic text works for this reading experience.

5. Natural Keywords

Search engines scan your blog for specific words that help it rank your page in its results. Bad bloggers “stuff” their copy with these words until the copy is lousy with them. The result is hard to read, and rarely revisited. Instead, include the keywords most suited for your market as naturally as possible in the text of your blog. Quality trumps keywords in this department, but it’s not hard to insert a handful where they “feel right” in your prose.

6. Calls to Action

All good marketing text includes some kind of call to action. In your blog, this can be an overt offer to buy — or it can be as subtle as a link to another page on your site. Links to other parts of your web page help elevate your search ranks, while calls to subscribe or make a minor purchase simply help the bottom line.

Bonus tip: Interactive Apps!

We can’t help but also suggest incorporating an interactive app as a form of CTA. If you are telling users about a sweepstakes app, embed the form right there in the post. If you want to spark discussion, include a trivia quiz with interesting stats or a poll with a follow-up question.

Do you have techniques you use when you write your blog post? Mention them in the comments below, we’d love to hear from you!