You’ve nearly finished a freakin’ masterpiece of a blog post and you’re ready for the post-writing high.
All you have left is that pesky conclusion.
…which is the last thing you want to deal with right now.
Your keyboard’s still smoking from vigorous typing and you really just want this thing finished.
Once you write this pesky little section you can go for a walk.
But you’ve spent so much time on the actual content that you’re at a loss for words when it comes to the conclusion (pun intended).
And to make matters worse, this section isn’t something you can throw together willy nilly.
It’s a big deal—your one chance to inspire your reader to take action.
So you gotta do it right.
And that’s exactly what I’m gonna show you how to do based on what I’ve learned from being a content marketer for 5+ years.
The First (Critical) Step to Writing a Blog Post Conclusion
You need a clear goal for your post before writing your conclusion.
Because without an idea of what you want readers to do after reading your post, you aren’t going to have much of a chance of writing a compelling conclusion that inspires your reader to take action.
And inspiring your reader to take a specific action is the main goal with your ending lines.
If you mess this up, you risk your content becoming a billboard.
People pass by, think it’s cool, and don’t think about it again.
That’s why it’s critical to inspire them to take the next logical action right after they engage with your content.
The specific goal or “next step” you compel them to take depends on the bigger picture of your content strategy and the context of the specific blog post you’re writing.
What All Blog Endings Need (No Matter What)
Before we dive into all the different ways you can end a blog post, it’s critical to understand the elements behind conclusions that work.
These 3 things need to be in your ending lines regardless of which “formula” you use (more on those in the next section):
1. Key Takeaways
Give your readers a TL;DR with key insights and takeaways.
This can be a bullet point list or just a few sentences that summarize the biggest points.
Regardless, it’s vital to bring your reader back to a 10,000ft. view of your content before calling them to take action.
If you dump tons of info on your poor little readers and ask them to take action, they’ll at best be more overwhelmed than they should be.
But with the bigger picture in mind, they can see what could happen if they put in the work.
2. A Glance Into the Future
After your summary, start getting your readers thinking about what they can now do with the information they learned in your blog post.
You want to remind them of where they were before you solved their problem and show them what’s possible now that they have a solution.
This is often called future pacing in the copywriting world.
It’s like a before and after picture that ties directly into the content they just read.
An example from a hypothetical dog training post:
With the [BLANK] technique, you’ll never have to worry about your dog pulling on a leash again. They’ll walk leisurely beside you, and you’ll be in charge. You won’t have to deal with your dog lunging after other dogs, diverting and chasing pigeons, or jumping on people.
3. A Single Call to Action
Don’t make the common mistake of asking readers to share, comment, link to, apply, tell a friend about your content, and download a lead magnet with the last line of your post.
The more choices you give them, the less likely they are to take any action.
Carefully select a SINGLE call to action that makes the most sense for both the reader and your business.
Usually, your options are asking them to:
- Download a lead magnet
- Read another post
- Submit a form
How to Conclude a Blog Post: 6 Time-Tested Formulas
1. Ask Them to Download or Submit Something
Most websites use this formula.
They wrap up their blog posts by trying to persuade readers to download a lead magnet, submit a form, or complete a quiz or assessment.
And it’s easy to see why…
Those actions = leads
But, unfortunately, this is usually poorly executed.
Most people have a single lead magnet or quiz and they push everyone from every page to it.
That’s not necessarily bad, but doing so without tying it directly to the content is a big mistake.
Instead, take time to write a conclusion that presents your lead magnet or quiz as the next logical step in the reader’s journey.
Show them the future they can have now that you gave them a solution to their problem (in the content of the post) and how your lead magnet will help them immediately take further action.
This is the key to higher conversion rates.
2. Ask a Compelling Question
This is a great close if your goal is engaging your audience.
The idea is simple:
Finish with a question that leaves your reader wondering.
But just because it’s a simple idea doesn’t mean it’s easy.
There’s an art to asking a compelling question.
…and no, “What do you think?” isn’t compelling.
You want to gear your question towards making your reader reflect (how they could change beliefs), dream (how they could change their future), or contemplate (how they could change their present).
- What would your life look like if you did [BLANK] instead of [BLANK]?
- What do you need to do right now to improve [BLANK]?
- Do you think believing [BLANK] so far has helped or hurt you?
3. The Cliffhanger
This is great for two-parters and/or building anticipation for a future piece of content.
Example: having a 3 part series on personal investing that builds on itself and gets released on Mondays.
The cliffhanger is great in these cases, but not in most others.
I almost never use it.
The only time I do is in emails because the SEO implications of splitting up certain blog posts are usually worse than the advantage of using a cliffhanger.
4. Take a Stance
Another great close for engagement, taking a stance is where you give a hot take or die on a hill.
You unapologetically make a claim.
This can be something really polarizing like a political claim, but more often than not, it’s simply calling out a commonly held best practice in your industry that doesn’t work.
This is powerful but be careful how you use it.
You’ll definitely make some allies and enemies.
5. Get Them to Share
This is a super common close for people who wanna get short-term traffic to their posts.
All you do is ask them to click a button to share the post via social (a plugin like Social Warfare is helpful for that).
Easy enough, right?
I generally prefer asking readers to download or submit something, but I don’t have a problem with this close.
6. Inspire Action
When you don’t have a hyper-relevant form someone could submit or lead magnet someone could download, but still want to inspire them, this is perfect.
Here, you recognize what you’re readers want from reading your content, then give them quick next steps to take based on your experience.
It’s basically giving them a super-short summary of what your lead magnet would tell them to do.
It’s not as helpful as the lead magnet itself, but it’s a simple recommendation that will help the reader even more.
Now that you know how to manage this basic Facebook ads campaign, here’s what I recommend doing:
- Fine-tuning your lead magnet based on customer insights
- Doing in-depth audience research on Facebook so you can figure out where to find new customers
- Creating 3 ad variations
- Turning on a 30 day campaign with a $1,000 budget
This Is The End of My Blog Post on How to End a Blog Post
Which end will I use?
I’m thinking the lead magnet one.
Let’s see how I do…
The conclusion is a critical, often overlooked element of a blog post.
It’s often the deciding factor on whether your reader will actually take action on what they’ve read or if they’ll leave your site and never come back.
If you use the 3 foundations of great blog endings + a closing strategy that fits your post, your content will engage, get promoted, and drive leads like never before.
But even though your conclusion is critical, you still have to get readers to read the other parts of your blog post before they’ll ever see it.
And that process is honestly even more complicated…
So many things can go wrong with your intro and body that can sabotage your conclusion.
To help you, I put together a mega-guide on writing a blog post based on my 5+ years running sites that get 2+ million visitors per year.
You can see my insider secrets and figure out how to write a complete blog post by entering your name and email below: