Image: We have been nominated for the UK Blog Awards!
Last year, we at Creditplus were delighted to be nominated for the UK Blog Awards 2014. So imagine how pleased we were when the results were announced last April where we were “Highly Commended”. The nominations for the UK Blog Awards 2015 are now open and once again we have been nominated. So what have we learned from last time and how can we go one step further?
The role of the blog has increased in the last few years, with search engines such as Google prioritising high quality content over just spamming keywords over and over again. Making your website a resource for your readers is becoming increasingly important, and the blog is one of the best way to make this happen.
Since starting the blog at the beginning of 2013, we’ve adapted and improved our strategy constantly to adapt to our reader’s needs. Dividing our posts between several categories, including car technology and motorsport, has allowed us to create curated streams of content. Our team of writers cover a wide range of topics, adding to our ability to provide informed and engaging news posts and articles.
One thing we have increased is the variety of different content we share on our blog. We have started sharing more photos, using our connections in the motor industry to find some high quality images, and created infographics to take advantage of their popularity. We aim to have a balance of longer articles, short news snippets, and our very own finance news and car reviews. We have also added to our team of writers, further expanding our areas of expertise and knowledge.
If you want to win the top prize at a competition, it is often a good idea to see who won last time. Having a look at the other big winners, it is easy to see why some blogs do so well.
Image: The Life On Cars Blog by David Simister
In our Automotive category, the “Life On Cars” blog by David Simister won the top prize. Two things immediately stand out. One, David is an authority on his chosen subject (classic cars), and two, the blogpost is written in a personal and friendly style that gives the reader an insight into David’s character. The posts are long and detailed, covering a variety of topics within David’s area of expertise. The website isn’t that flashy, its the high quality content that appeals.
The other winner in the Automotive category was the Motortrade Insight blog (now Motoring Insight). The first thing that strikes you is the sheer amount of information on the blog, under a variety of different categories. This blog really utilises the content they have, making this a good example of a news providing blog.
Also, we couldn’t move on without a quick shout out to the other Highly Commended automotive blog, the Stoneacre Motor Group blog by Sam Bisby. A fantastic site with a clean design, and a nice category selector on the side of the page.
Image: The Real Argentina Blog, edited by Kyle Smith
Outside of our category, the winner in the Food and Drink section is the The Real Argentina blog. Not only does this website have a wealth of fantastic images, vitally important for a blog like this, it also has clearly defined categories, allowing the reader to focus on the items they have interest in. This blog also has a tag cloud, allowing the reader to further refine their search criteria. This blog is pretty beautiful and excellently displays its subject matter.
The first thing you notice when you look at the winner of the “Fashion and Retail” category, the Bambella Blog by Alexandra MacEachern, are the striking images with each post. Straight away you see stylised, high quality images that immediately grab your attention. This combined with the uncluttered web design focuses the reader on the content, exactly what they want. The blogposts themselves are personal, written in a first person format that really gives a feeling for the writer. To top it off, each post is signed with a “Love Alex”. This blog ticks all the right boxes – personal approach, high quality images, and writer authority. No wonder it won.
It is clear looking through the winners that there are key components repeated again and again. Here are the three things that you must have in your blog if you want it to stand out.
One – Be an authority. You MUST either display your credentials or put effort into your writing to come across knowledgeable about your subject, whatever that may be.
TWO – Use high quality images. Not only do these catch the eye, they also add a layer of professionalism to your posts. If the images wouldn’t be shown on a big name website (such as the guardian), should they be shown on yours?
THREE – Express your personality. Readers do not want cold, plainly written copy. They want an idea of the person behind the post. Whether its relating it to a personal experience, or writing in a less formal manner, it works!
The UK Blog Award results will be announced in early 2015. Public nominations will be open soon, so if you do like what you read, please consider nominating us. Hopefully we at the Creditplus blog can push ourselves further this year, maybe even win it! Whatever the result, we will always be looking to improve our blog, not just for the awards but to make it a better reading experience for our readers.
More from the Creditplus blog:
We posted a blog celebrating our “Highly Commended” award at the last awards ceremony. Click here to see just how we reacted!
We took a look at the Five Best-Selling cars of the year. Click here to read our rundown.
Tom is our in house graphic designer and he created this fantastic infographic for the Belgian Grand Prix. Have a look and find out all you need to know about the famous race.