This post is based on episode 56 of the ProBlogger podcast.
You’ve said everything you wanted to say in your post, and now it’s time to quickly wrap things up so you can hit ‘Publish’.
Sound familiar? If it does, then you’re missing out on an opportunity to do even more for your readers—and yourself.
Here are eight effective ways to wrap up your blog posts and get as much out of those final paragraphs as possible.
1. Sum up your message
Remember the English essays you wrote in high school? Chances are you finished each one them with a summary of what you’d written about.
So why not do the same with your blog posts?
Think about what you’ve written, and the overall message you’re trying to convey. And then drive that message home in your final paragraphs. You may even want to summarise it slight differently so it doesn’t feel like you’re repeating yourself.
Summarising what you’ve talked about is especially important when you’ve written a long post that covers a lot of different points. Chances are your reader has already forgotten some of them, and so a quick summary of those points (perhaps as bullet points) will jog their memory and help them remember each one.
2. Ask a question
Another way to wrap up your post is by asking your reader a question and encouraging them to answer it. You could ask them to post their answer as a comment on your blog, or on one of your social media channels.
Depending on the type of question you ask, you can even influence and shape the discussion people have on your blog. For example, you could ask something like “Tell us a story about a time when you had this experience” or “What’s your experience with this particular area?”
But keep your question simple, and make it easy for people to respond. Polls can be a great option here, as people can answer your question with one click. Another option is to ask for a few words describing how they feel about the topic you covered in your post.
3. Ask the reader to share your post
Chances are your reader will be more than happy to share your post on social media. But unless you ask them to do it, the idea might not even occur to them.
So why not ask at the end of your post?
You could ask them to share it on as specific platform you’re trying to build a presence on, or just on whatever platforms they’re using for social media.
But try to make it as easy for them to do as possible. Set up ways for them to share your post at the click of a button (such as installing a ‘Click to Tweet’ plugin on WordPress).
4. Give your reader more of the same
If your reader is reading the final paragraphs of your post, there’s a good chance they like what you’re talking about. Which makes it the ideal place to point them to other posts you’ve written on the same topic, or perhaps related topics.
Now there are ‘related post’ plugins that can generate a lit of posts automatically. But while they do work, you shouldn’t rely on them. You know your content better than anyone, and so you should check to make sure nothing is being added that shouldn’t be and vice versa.
And don’t be afraid to point them to other sites as well. Sending your readers to another blog might seem counterintuitive, but if it’s good content then your reader will thank you for telling them. And moments like that can create connections that last much longer.
5. Talk about your next post
This is a great way to build anticipation, and even your subscriber numbers. If your reader enjoyed the post they just finished reading, and you hint that you’ll be talking similar content in your next post, they may feel compelled to subscribe so they don’t miss out.
You could say something like, “I’ll be talking more about this topic in my next post. Why not subscribe to my newsletter so you don’t miss out?” You may even want to say, “To find out the moment my next post is available, follow me on Facebook”.
But make sure the post you’re wrapping up has just as much value as your next one, or people won’t bother.
6. Offer something relevant as an opt-in
Another great way to wrap up your post and encourage your readers to subscribe is to offer them an incentive.
A blogger who wrote a how-to article finished it by saying, “If you’d like to get this article as a PDF with some bonus information, click here to download”. They get a new subscriber, and the reader gets the article as a PDF as well as some bonus information.
Could you offer something—some bonus material or perhaps a ‘cheat sheet’—that’s related to your post?
7. Sell something
Okay, this is something you probably wouldn’t do at the end of every blog post. And nor should you. The last thing you want is for people to think you’re only blogging to sell your products or services.
But if you’ve created something that’s closely tied to what you’re writing about, it’s worth considering.
For example, an article on portrait photography over at Digital Photography School is a great place to say something like, “Want to learn more about portrait photography? Then check out this ebook”. Sometimes we even offer a discount code to give the reader even more incentive to buy it.
8. Create a call to action the benefits the reader
My final tip is to think about adding a call to action (CTA) that will help the reader in some way. Something they could do as homework that will help them learn what you’ve just talked about or enhance their life in some way.
And that’s exactly what I’m going to do now. When you’ve finished reading this post, I want you to look at the ending for your last blog post and see if you can improve it in some way.
Over to you
So there you have it: eight ways to wrap up your blog posts more effectively. Do you remember what they were? Here’s a reminder:
- Sum up your message
- Ask a question
- Ask the reader to share your post
- Give your reader more of the same
- Talk about your next post
- Offer something relevant as an opt-in
- Sell something
- Create a call to action the benefits the reader
Now, see if you can use one of them to improve the ending of your last blog post. And let us know what you did and how it went in the comments.
Photo by Adam Winger on Unsplash