How do you write a good blog post for an ethical blog? We’re delighted to show you how with this guide by Lisa of Less Stuff. Lisa has been writing for the internet for the last 15 years, so she really knows what she’s doing – and her blog, Less Stuff, provides tips on gentle decluttering in an eco-friendly and ethical way that also saves time and money.
This article will help you stick to ethical principles as well as ethical topics when you write your own blog posts. You will also learn how to structure your posts so search engines love them…
Avoid click-bait titles
“Use this one ingredient to make all your problems vanish”. “You’ll never guess what happened next…”. We have all seen and been tricked by these click-bait blog post titles. They generally lead you to a page full of adverts and never actually deliver what they promise.
The more ethical approach is to be up-front about your title. You can still make your title enticing but don’t be vague or misleading. Think about what you are writing and why it would benefit someone to read it – you may benefit from planning your blog posts in advance.
Once you decide on your title, you should also identify some keywords that sum up your post. These keywords will come in handy later and using them in the content of your post will help you focus. They will also help other people find you and boost your page’s SEO.
An example of an ethical title
Imagine I’m writing about an amazing wax wrap I’ve been gifted to review. I want people to read it so they go to that company and buy from them, I also want them to read other posts on my website so I get the hits and maybe even a few follows. My target audience are interested in saving money, reducing waste and living more sustainably. My title might be something like ‘’Prevent food waste by using wax wraps’. Or “Worried about plastic in the kitchen? Try a wax food wrap’. Both these titles tell people what I’ve written about. The key words are ‘food waste’ and ‘plastic in the kitchen’ and these are what people might be searching for. You can get more strategic about key words in titles by looking at Google Trends which will show you what people are searching for all over the world.
Think visually? Add a picture
It really helps me focus if I’m looking at an image when I’m typing. This is especially true of products. It is much easier to talk about the benefits of something when you can see it.
This logic works for your reader as well and your words will help bring the picture to life. If you haven’t taken the photo yourself there are many free ones out there. You can’t just do a search and add any old one though as they might be copyrighted. Try Pexels or Unsplash for good quality free images or spend money on one from a picture library. Remember that these images can be used by other people so you won’t have exclusivity.
If you are using an image from another site, ask permission and credit people if they give it.
When uploading a photo, consider the size of the image. Anything over 2000px wide will slow down your website. You can change the settings on cameras or phones or use an editor to optimise the image, which is a posh way of saying squish down the amount of memory it uses up.
Another way to change the sizing of a photo is to use a photo editing tool (such as Photos, or Adobe Lightroom) or do it within the blog editor itself.
Make your content clear
Tell people what to expect in your introduction. It isn’t very ethical to keep people hanging on or to make people scroll and scroll and scroll to get to the point. When you are writing think about Who, What, Where, Why and When. You might not need to cover all the ‘W’s’ but it is worth checking through them.
- Who am I writing for?
- What am I writing about?
- Where is the thing I’m writing about?
- Why am I writing about it?
- When? Is this post time and location specific?
Break it down with headings
Splitting your content up into small paragraphs with H2 headings helps in a few ways. To start with, it makes it easier to visually navigate the page. We can quickly find headings, especially if there are pictures to help us remember where we are in a block of writing. Why H2? Because H1 is the actual title of your post so you don’t want to use that again. H2 helps the search engine work out what you are writing about. When you break up posts using headings remember to keep them in number order. For example:
H2 is the paragraph heading
I might write a little bit then want to break that paragraph down more so I’d use the next heading down:
H3 can go below H2
And then I can go into more details.You generally won’t need to use H4 but if you do, keep it below H3. You can go back to H2 when you have a new big topic to write about.
Thank your contributors
I quite often crowd source blog posts because getting opinions and ideas from many different people makes for an interesting read. If I do that I get their permission to credit them. From my Facebook group I credit by first name, if I was crediting another blogger I’d include a link to their site. It doesn’t have to be long, but a quick thank is always nice to give and receive. (Thank you to Besma from Ethical Influencers for letting me guest post.)
Sum it up
It really helps your readers if you sum up what you have been writing about at the end of the post. Many blog readers will skim your content, so a summary will help them to get the gist of your post.
You could also invite them to engage with your content by asking a question, and receiving their answers in the comments.
I hope you have a better idea of how to write an ethical title, use keywords, find good pictures and break down your post so people can read it easily.
Don’t forget your disclosure
It’s important to keep your posts legal – for this post, I have not been paid or compensated in any way to write this post. It also does not contain affiliate links. If you do create sponsored posts, or work with brands in any way, make sure to check out this Sponsored Content Guide.
About Lisa Cole
Lisa lives in Bristol with too many cats. She is an ethical website designer at Naked Website and she writes about easy ways to live a more sustainable life on her blog, Less Stuff. Lisa is also a member of Ethical Influencers!