As a blogger with growing experience, I have started to look more carefully at my writing, and to blog with intention rather than just pushing words out.
Specifically, we are talking about the ending of the blog post.
If you google “how to end a blog post” you’ll see all kinds of tips for “effective” endings or “powerful” endings. I see lots of advice that is probably good writing advice, like recommending that you “come full circle,” summarize the points in the article, or stun the audience with some inspirational/beautiful words.
But the truth is, how you end your blog post depends on what you want your readers to do now that they have reached the end.
Do you want them to read more articles? Do you want them to click on an ad? Do you want them to click on an Amazon link? Or subscribe to your email newsletter?
Regardless of your goals, you want to avoid the Back button
What most of us bloggers want to avoid is that reader clicking the “back” button, bouncing right back to google, and giving google all the signals that the blog post just wasn’t that great.
Google doesn’t differentiate between articles that are wonderful or awful, if the reader clicks on the Back button without engaging in the site any further.
This is why the end of the post (usually an afterthought) is actually a very important component of your blog post.
First, what is the purpose of your blog?
If your blog doesn’t have a purpose, then it will be hard to craft a blog post ending with intention. It can be something specific, or general. Perhaps you are blogging because you want to impact people, change the world, or help. Or you might want to make money. Regardless, your blog post (and the ending) has likely been posted to achieve one of those goals.
If you want to create a good ending for your blog post, start with the purpose of your blog in mind.
Next, what do you want the reader to do once she has finished the article?
Your goals for your website may change day to day, month to month, year to year. When you have a young blog, you might just really want to boost your numbers in Google Analytics, as traffic seems to breed traffic.
While it may be tempting to shoot for the quick Amazon affiliate commission, it may make more sense for a young site to focus on building readership, to get readers clicking on multiple posts (to increase Time on Page and lower Bounce rate stats).
Ultimately, it just depends on what specifically you want the reader to do next. If you have no idea what you want your reader to do next, that it’ll be incredibly difficult to make a plan for your blog post wrap up.
So, decide with each post. What do I want my reader to do next?
And I’m going to be really honest here….I am mega guilty of doing this. I did the keyword research, I crafted the answer to the question posed, and then I’m ready to move on to the next article.
I’ve got hundreds of articles that I need to go back to and review, and craft the end of the post with intention. And for me, since most of my blogs are monetized with display ads, I want to keep my readers on site for as long as possible, to increase the likelihood of them clicking on an ad or watching a video advertisement that will earn me some money.
Set the stage in the lead up paragraphs
As you get to the end of your blog, knowing now what you want your reader to do, you can set the stage for what you want your reader to do next.
For example, if you are writing a travel blog, you can wrap up the story you are telling and the introduce the next one. By the time you get to the end of the article, you can let the reader know that she can read about this other really wonderful story by following the link.
If you are looking to build an email list, you can start to incorporate the details about why the newsletter is valuable to the reader, as it relates to the topic of the article.
If you are looking to get your reader to click on your Amazon affiliate link, you can summarize the relevant information, and provide reasons for why the reader should click on the Amazon link now (rather than later).
Good Options When You Don’t Have a Plan
Let’s say that you don’t know what you want the reader to do next. In general, these are some really good options:
- Introduce another related article on your site, and provide the link
- Let the reader know about the site’s social media channels and ask that the reader click any of the available buttons to share the article or subscribe/follow
- Ask a question, and request that the reader provide his/her answers in the comments section below
- Provide the reader with information about the author, and where the reader can find out more about him/her
- Embed a Youtube video or some other content that the reader will find interesting enough to stay on the page (and now bounce away)
- Promote your products/services
If you have a goal, you can’t go wrong
Over time, you’ll experiment and see what works for your blog audience and what doesn’t. But I really do think that as long as you have your blog purpose and goal in mind as you wrap things up, you’ll have a really good chance of achieving that result.
And here as I wrap up, I’m going to take my own advice! I’ve been blogging for years (on and off) with varying degrees of success. I recently posted as article talking about my journey to making this blog profitable, as well as a list of many of the mistakes I made as a new blogger.
Are you a new blogger? Talk to me about your experience in the comments section below. I’d love to hear more about your story and your progress.
Emily Anderson is a mother of three children, all under the age of 10. Located in the Pacific Northwest of the US, Emily is a mom and part-time blogger, jumping in front of the computer when the kids are sleeping. She started this blog in April of 2019 and is proud that the blog is now paying for itself. If you want to know about her journey as a blogger, check out out her personal digital journal or her post about failing her way to blogging success.