One absolute truth of the blogging business is that you have to constantly improve your blog. Fortunately, the Internet can provide you with a wide variety of sources to look through for inspiration. While we’ve been spending a great deal of time talking about how to follow the best practices available, it might be an even better idea to take a moment to take a look at what those practices looks like in action. Below are twenty of the best business blogs available online. While the content of each blog is different, I think you’ll notice a few unifying themes as to how each works. Presented in no particular are order are twenty of the best business blogs available in 2013.
Business Insider usually ranks among the best blogs on the ‘net, and for good reason – it combines stories that readers actually want with information that users need. The site itself is easy to navigate and use, something to which any blogger can inspire.
2. Zero Hedge
Zero Hedge is not exactly the most positive business blog out there, but the information on the site is usually right on the money. The clean and simple layout is a great example of what we’ve talked about over the last few weeks – there’s plenty to catch the eye, but nothing there that can distract users from the actual content.
Digital Inspiration is a great example of a site that has an unrelated URL, but still has a great blog. This site has absolutely wonderful content for those who need help getting a business running online, but it’s hard to find – so the author has made a real push to connect his site with other sites in the industry. Follow his example, and you should be able to do the same.
I’m a big fan of SEO.com’s content, but the best lessons to take from this site have to do with layout. Everything’s very easy to access and every image catches the eye. This site is also a great example of how to integrate a blog with a parent site.
Business2Community is a great resource for businesses and for anyone who spends time trying to boost a site’s search rank. There’s nothing particularly special about this design, and that’s why it works – you don’t always have to be unique to be one of the best business blogs on the Internet.
TechCrunch is regularly cited as the best business site on the web. Not only does it have a great amount of useful content, but it’s incredibly well-suited to take advantage of today’s browsing market. The site is well-branded and users can share anything with a single click.
Calculated Risk is a great example of a longer-form blog. It eschews shorter article titles for full articles available on the main page – a superb way to catch a reader and keep him or her on the page.
8. Money Q&A
Money Q&A is a great site that provides useful information while still helping its owners to promote their own products. This is a great example of a site that uses content not just as an end, but as a means for further business promotion.
Social Media Examiner is a great site for anyone who is looking to navigate the rough terrain of social media. The site itself is one of the best business sites because of how it successfully occupies an important niche on the Internet – everyone seems to be looking to social marketing, and this is one site that has the basics covered.
I spend a lot of time on Search Engine Land. It’s got a great deal of information on SEO and other Internet news, and it delivers it in a voice that even a novice can understand. Take note of the prominence of social media sharing buttons – it’s a great example of a trend that you need to follow.
Search Engine Journal is another great Internet news site. If you need help figuring out how to work with content or are confused about SEO in general, it’s a great place to start. The design is a little busy, but it helps to promote various aspects of the site’s business.
LinkedIn is one of the most important social media sites in the world, and its blog has great tips for how to maximize your use of the site. Like every other site on this list, this great business blog also has a layout that you can learn from.
13. Quick Sprout
There’s nothing really complex about Quicksprout’s layout, and that what makes it one of the best business blogs to follow. You can get all of the information that you need quickly and easily – and that’s the way to keep readers coming back.
14. The Next Web
The Next Web is an awesome tech and business site with a lot of great lessons for new and experienced people in the business world. The layout is a wonderful lesson in how to catch the eye of readers by using appropriately sized images and fonts.
Copyblogger is a fantastic site for those looking to learn how to write better web copy. It’s among the best business blogs in terms of layout, as well – it’s quite simple and easy to use, and everything you need is available from a single page. It’s hard to beat that.
16. Blogger Buzz
I’m always an advocate of looking to successful companies for guidance, and Google’s Blogger Buzz website is a great example of doing just that. There’s nothing particularly fancy or overwhelming on this blog, but every piece of content serves a purpose.
17. Seth’s Blog
A great example of a “guru” style of blog, Seth’s Blog is brief, witty and sometimes even a bit off-putting – but it always works. Take a look at how Seth structures his content and you’ll see just how personal and esoteric you can get while still staying on point.
18. Chris Brogan
If you’re going to take anything from Brogan’s blog, it should be how effectively he markets his products. His content and marketing is weaved together into a blog that’s enjoyable for users to read, but still serves a purpose for his business.
Quora is a spectacular site with a ton of content, all presented in a unique question-and-answer format. While I’m not a huge fan of some of the design choices – having to log in to view the site, in particular – the design itself is clean, easy to read and presented authoritatively.
If I was ranking these, I’d certainly put Liz Strauss’ blog closer to the top. It’s not only user friendly, but it has incredible content. It’s that perfect mix of having the information that readers actually need mixed with providing images and content that keep users coming back. If you’re a personal blogger, you really can’t do better than imitating this blog.
These are just some of the best business blogs out there. If you can follow their examples, you can learn quite a bit about blogging. The best way to learn is always to follow in the footsteps of those who have already been successful – after all, you don’t need to blaze a trail if someone else has already done so before you.
If you know of any other great business sites to add to the list or have a story about how these sites have helped out, let us know!