Common Blogging Mistakes
Are you sure you’re not making some common blogging mistakes? Let’s go straight to the point:
You’re either a beginner blogger or you’ve been blogging for a while now.
You might think you’ve got the basics down.
You’ve already learned how to use WordPress, and you’ve experimented enough with different blog themes and found one you like.
You’ve published several blog posts, and every time you post a new one, you think, it will finally drive traffic and boost engagement.
But it looks like something is going wrong. Somewhere in the back of your mind, you think – even though you dot all the i’s and cross all the t’s – something just isn’t clicking.
You’ve been blogging for a while now with little to no success.
No one is visiting your blog. No one is interested in what you write.
You may not know it, but you may be driving readers away from your blog.
I can assure you that starting a blog is really exciting. But with so many WordPress themes to choose from, widgets to use, and plugins to enable, you run the risk of falling into the blogging trap of using too many “bells and whistles” and forgetting about the most important stuff:
Here are some common blogging mistakes you should avoid as a novice or even a seasoned blogger.
- Common Blogging Mistakes
- Blogging Mistake #1: Writing for yourself
- Blogging Mistake #2: You have a niche-less blog
- Blogging Mistake #3: Your blog isn’t user-friendly
- Blogging Mistake #4: Poor formatting
- Conclusion: Common Blogging Mistakes
Blogging Mistake #1: Writing for yourself
I bet your life is awesome, right? The places you’ve visited, the people you’ve met, and the food you’ve tasted – these are, for sure, great stories for your blog.
This is your blog and it’s all about you, right?
In fact, not really.
The most profitable blogs are the ones that get traffic, shares, and comments. Such blogs engage their audience, and the way bloggers do this is by bringing their personalities to the table while focusing on connecting with their readers.
So, if most of your sentences start with:
Guess what I did?
I know how to…
I tried these methods…
Let me show you the way I do it…
You’re missing one component – your audience!
People visit blogs to get valuable tips that will help them solve problems in their lives.
Not surprisingly, one of the most popular types of blog posts is the “how-to” post. These types of blog posts are educational and designed to help readers solve problems.
Besides writing tutorial-based posts, what else can you do to go beyond journal entries and connect with your readers?
- Ask questions to engage with your readers. This helps to achieve a conversational tone in your writing and treats your audience as being a part of your blog post.
- Put yourself in the reader’s shoes. Tell your readers about the problems they’re having and empathize with their struggles.
- Try using more “you” language.
- Include a call-to-action (CTA) at the bottom of every blog post. CTAs are directives or questions you give your audience. For example, subscribe to my newsletter or do you have a suggestion for my next article?
So, next time you feel like writing a post about your trip to Disneyland with your family, spin it around and write an article about some simple tips you use to stay sane while traveling to Disneyland with your family.
You can tell about your experiences at Disneyland while sharing some useful tips to help other moms have a stress-free vacation.
Blogging Mistake #2: You have a niche-less blog
What’s your blog about?
Do you write about whatever comes to mind? Or maybe you stick to a common theme?
If you write about “business software” one day and “fashion” the next then don’t wonder why no one is commenting. It’s probably because they don’t know what exactly your blog is about.
A specific niche, or passion, can help drive traffic to your blog and grow your audience.
It helps you:
- Stay focused – Having a core topic allows you to focus on creating content around your chosen niche.
- Reach a well-targeted audience – When readers know your blog is about a specific topic, they’ll keep coming over and over again. As your niche narrows, you’ll have a better chance of attracting a specific audience. For example, if your niche is “business travel”, your posts are more likely to attract business people who are traveling than just people who are traveling.
- Developing your expertise in your niche – Developing a blog topic in your niche and sharing your experience with this topic can help you build relevant expertise and authority.
- Make money – When you have a loyal following, they’ll be more likely to trust you and listen to your advice. This opens the door to your blog monetization, from selling eCourses and eBooks to writing sponsored blog posts.
If you’re not sure what to write about, ask yourself:
What do I know well, what am I passionate about, or what would I like to know more about?
This might be hard for you because you might be thinking why would anyone want to read another (fill-in-the-blank) blog?
The point is, once you’ve chosen your blog niche, narrow it down to appeal to a specific audience. This ensures you’re providing the best information to those who need it most.
Blogging Mistake #3: Your blog isn’t user-friendly
A surefire way to drive readers away from your blog is poor navigation.
All information on your blog should be easily accessible and viewable on different devices.
Not sure what components on your blog need some tweaking? Here is a list of common mistakes new bloggers make:
Difficult blog navigation screams confusion to readers, making them want to leave your resource immediately.
To reduce bounce rate and improve user experience, you should have an eye-catching, descriptive, and clean navigation panel. This makes it easier for your readers to find their way on your blog.
Take a look at my navigation menu. It is pretty straightforward, very obvious, and serves to direct readers to the most important pages of the blog:
If there’s anything else you want to include in your blog menu, make use of the footer. Here you can link to slightly less important pages.
Goofy and faint fonts
Blogs are primarily text-based and meant for reading. A perfect blog should look and feel like a good book. So it’s better to avoid using hard-to-read fonts since this can turn into a bad user experience.
But isn’t it fun to use sophisticated and fancy fonts? With so many options, why not use a font that reflects your personality, brand, or the overall tone of your blog?
Well, such fonts may seem cool in print, but it’s not a smart idea to use them on blogs as they’re difficult to read.
So, what’s the best font for a blog? According to Social Triggers, perfect fonts are:
- Easy to read, understand and digest
- Plain serif or sans serif typefaces
- 14px to 16px or larger
For a comfortable reading, it’s also good if your main paragraphs have a content width of between 480-800 pixels.
Did you notice that most popular blogs have white backgrounds with black or gray text?
This is because dark text on a white background is much easier to read than white text on a dark background.
But that doesn’t mean you can’t add a little personality to your blog’s color scheme. Colors look great in your menu bar, header, footer, and logo – not everywhere on your blog.
Blogging Mistake #4: Poor formatting
If you don’t pay attention to the proper formatting of your blog posts, you run the risk of people taking just one look and leaving – even if you have catchy headlines that grab their attention.
Check out these formatting tips to make sure you don’t miss anything:
Read carefully and edit your blog posts before publishing
No one likes to read texts riddled with grammatical errors or misspellings.
Having someone else proofread your post is your best bet. But if you don’t have anyone to help you, here’re my favorite free editing tools:
- Grammarly – Install their Chrome extension to get your content reviewed before publishing it.
- PaperRater – Just paste your text into PaperRater to fix spelling and grammar errors. This tool also detects plagiarism.
Spruce up your content
There are some cool tricks you can use to entice your readers to keep reading your blog and make them more likely to share it.
Don’t forget to:
- Use transition words like so, therefore, overall, again, and, besides, or, etc.
- Use bucket brigades. According to Brian Dean from Backlinko, these are short sentences that end in a colon, like below:
- Use subheadings. This helps your audience understand what you’re talking about and breaks down your post into easy-to-read pieces. Besides, subheadings are perfect places to include your keywords.
Customize your website’s permalinks
It’s highly recommended to have a well-crafted permalink structure. Your URLs should be both user-friendly and search-engine-friendly.
An ideal permalink is:
- Easy to read
- Simple to type and memorize
- Stuffed with proper keywords
- Looking excellent on Google’s SERP
If your blog is on WordPress, your default permalinks will probably look like this:
I do recommend using the “post name” permalink structure. It’s the most suitable for both search engine bots and your visitors.
Conclusion: Common Blogging Mistakes
With the above tips, you’re on your way from a novice to a professional. No matter how long you’ve been blogging, at some point, you can make common blogging mistakes.
Therefore, it’s better to play it safe once again!
When you write for your readers, secure a niche, and have a user-friendly resource that’s properly formatted, there’s no reason you won’t soon be the owner of a blog with numerous social shares, traffic, and engagement you deserve.
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