For starters, don't expect to find "Hey there, newbie bloggers!" within this first paragraph. It might not be the worst line to open with, but it's not appropriate today. Because beginner bloggers are not the only ones in danger of making the Most Common Blogging Mistakes.
On the contrary, you may be close to hitting the 6th or even 12th month of blogging and still allowing these mistakes to sneak in.
Who knows, I might be making some of them without even realizing it as well!
With that being said, let's help ourselves and keep each other in check, shall we?
This post may contain affiliate links, my affiliate disclosure is right here.
Your Journey And The Common Blogging Mistakes You'll Make Along The Way
Hopefully, I won't be shuttering your dream of a bright blogging future when I tell you this:
Above all, your blogging journey will not be smooth sailing. Not even close!
Even more, you'll find yourself making most of the mistakes you've previously read about in posts like this one.
Like it or not, it's inevitable!
And that's OK. Actually, it makes perfect sense:
By all means, there is a huge difference between researching something and actually doing it.
Plus, keep in mind that the only way to become really good at any activity is to spend a lot of time and work practicing it.
On that note, here is the best piece of advice I can give you:
Don't beat yourself up every time you make some of the common blogging mistakes, embrace that!
Because at the end of the day, none of those mistakes are going to define who you'll become as a blogger.
Moreover, eventually, you'll realize that the same mistakes are not failures but a real blogging experience.
Still, it wouldn't hurt if you do your best to avoid them as much as you can, correct?
1) You Write For Yourself, Not For Your Audience
Let's be honest, it's happening to you too:
You click on an article that supposedly will give you the information you're looking for.
However, in the midst of the post, the author seems to forget that she/he is serving an audience. Subsequently, what you're left with is reading about the life story, personal issues, and opinions of that blogger.
If your post doesn't solve your reader's problem, you're doing the blogging thing wrong.
First thing first, adding a touch of your personality is not just good, it's necessary.
It will make you relatable and your readers will recognize that there is a real person behind all the words.
That being said, you should always remember why you're writing each and every piece of your content.
How To Avoid It:
Generally, it's easy to lose yourself when you're blogging on a regular basis.
In addition, sometimes the topic you're writing about is hitting too close to home, so you just can't help yourself.
At the same time, you can't afford to forget the first and most fundamental rule of blogging:
Above all, each piece of your work has to solve a problem for your readers.
They are not visiting your blog to learn more about you, they are here to allow you to help them with whatever they need help with.
So, unless your site is a diary where you share everything that comes to mind, keep the personal talk for your friends and family.
2) Your Writing Style Is Too Monotonous
Now, it may seem like I'm contradicting the previous paragraph.
Am I, though?
If you look harder between the lines, I'm sure that you'll understand what I mean.
But just in case you need me to be more specific:
Yes, I stand firmly behind my belief that you shouldn't get all personal all the time with your readers.
However, it's not a great idea if your writing resembles Wikipedia either.
After all, nobody enjoys reading a piece that is a reminder of what a person needs to do to grab a PhD.
Plus, if a reader becomes addicted to your blog, chances are that's more because of you than because of your content.
How To Avoid It:
Actually, that's easy:
Allow your words to give a glimpse of who you are.
You don't need to share when exactly is your birthday, but it's OK to voice your opinion behind the facts.
Personally, the best piece of advice I was given on the matter is to write as if I'm talking to a friend.
In case you haven't tried that yet, you most definitely should:
It does take the anxiety of being a writer way down!
3) You Post For The Sake Of Posting
Ain't that one of the oldest arguments ever in the blogging world...
I'm talking about what matters more - quantity or quality.
On one hand, everyone will tell you that as a beginner blogger you should post as often as you can. For instance, 3, 4, and even 5 times per week, so you'll be building content fast.
But on another hand, how many articles you produce each week won't matter if those articles are total crap.
No offense, but your readers won't appreciate content that is under-developed, unedited, and doesn't go as deep as it should.
Make no mistake, they'll be able to tell!
Needless to say, it's always better to publish 3 high-quality articles than 5 that obviously need some more work done.
How To Avoid It:
Uploading content before it's ready is one of the most common blogging mistakes and it screams "newbie" from miles away.
If you don't want to leave a similar impression, simply don't hit the "Publish" button too fast.
Ultimately, take your time and make sure that the work you're putting out there is the best you can do at the moment.
4) You're Not Treating Your Blog Like A Business
To be completely honest, the main reason why this website exists is that I was looking for a way to make money from home.
There, I said it. I mean, I don't see a reason why I should be a hypocrite about it, do you?
Besides, don't you just hate when people are trying to convince you that money is not their first thought when deciding to start a blog?
Anyhow, you can spin the story any way you like, but the bottom line will still be the same:
Above all, the majority of people build their sites so in time they would be able to ditch their current 9-5 for good.
Nothing wrong about that, is there?
Then let's assume that you're one of those people as well. Meaning, you dream about the day when words like an alarm clock and rush hour won't ring any bell to you.
So far, so good - I'm all about living the laptop lifestyle too!
But here is the deal - dreams come true, not free.
Therefore, you need to make sure that you're ready to give the blogging thing everything you got - time, efforts, sleepless nights, missed social gatherings, etc.
Because starting a money-making blog is not about fun and games, but about building a whole business from scratch.
How To Avoid That:
Again, the answer here is kind of simple:
In short, if you want to see your blog going somewhere money-wise, you have to treat like a business, not a hobby.
As a result, you'll have to write when you don't feel like writing. And you'll have to work when you don't feel like working...
You're getting the idea, but if you're not, just replace "alarm clock" with "discipline", that will do the trick!
5) Your Blog Doesn't Have A Clear Niche
Undoubtedly, that's one of the most common blogging mistakes I see over and over again.
Well, in a way I get why so many newbie bloggers fall into this trap.
When you don't have any experience, it's easy to chase every "shiny object" that comes your way.
Meaning, you're tempted to write about different topics just because you'll be able to monetize the content big time.
Even if those topics have nothing in common.
Commit to a niche, stop trying to be everything to everyone.
Basically, I've talked about the niche issue many times on this site.
Not to sound like a broken record, but here is me talking about it once again:
While there are blogs who are doing wonderful without being niche-focused, they are an exception, not the rule.
Therefore, the best you can do is to have a website which content is serving a specific niche.
How To Avoid That:
Easy, don't talk about affiliate marketing and pregnancy at the same site!
If you like both of those topics, fine! Just build two different sites - one on the first and the other on the latter.
After all, a niche is a small segment of a market to target.
And you won't convert readers into buyers if you push affiliate marketing tips to the audience who is interested in pregnancy for example.
6) You're Ignoring Your Email List
Not very original of me, right?
Generally, I'm telling you what every other blogger will tell you as well:
Not working to build an email list from day 1 is business suicide.
Well, if all of us keep repeating the same tune over and over again, there must be a reason, correct?
By all means, your email list is and always will be your most powerful asset.
Firstly, it's your way to connect directly to your audience. And that's the one connection as a blogger you don't want to mess up.
Secondly, email marketing is proven to be your best bet to convert subscribers into paying customers.
Long story short, you need to start building an email list pretty much from the day your blog comes to life online.
How To Avoid It:
Above all, I understand if you don't see a point to work on your email list in your early blogging days.
I mean, you're at the very beginning, right? Subsequently, what could you possibly offer to your readers in exchange for their email address?
Even though there is a logic in this way of thinking, you have to abandon it and place an opt-in anyway.
For instance, you can start collecting emails by simply prompting your audience to subscribe to your newsletter.
It's not ideal, I know, but it will get your email marketing out of the park.
Now, if you need help to decide what you should use for your opt-ins:
Personally, the only tool I trust and recommend is Thrive Leads - it has an awfully rich selection of all kind of opt-in forms that you'll be able to place anywhere you see fit on your site.
7) Your Site Is Overcrowded With Ads
To be fair, I get why you may be tempted to display ads all over your blog from the beginning.
Let's face it, you've worked really hard to build that blog and now is up and running.
So, is there something wrong to try and monetize it sooner rather than later?
Actually, there is if "less is more" doesn't really speak to you.
First and foremost, stuffing your site with ads and banners at a time when you barely have any content is the biggest mark of an amateur.
Especially, if those banners are random and don't have a lot to do with the nature of your business.
Next, if this is your first week as a blogger, your traffic is probably very low. Then, what's the point of having all those ads if there is no one to see them?
How To Avoid It:
Well, just hold on for a while, would you?
Once your site has enough content and your readers are piling up, you can go for the ads if that's how you choose to monetize.
Until then, a better strategy would be to use the affiliate marketing business model.
Because it works and it will make you money no matter how small your audience currently is!
8) You Don't Work To Drive Traffic
Quite frankly, "If you build it, they'll come" may work just fine in many areas of life.
Unfortunately, blogging is not one of them.
Let's imagine that you've just published your very first post ever. You go to bed, dreaming of what numbers will wait for you in Google Analytics when you wake up.
Don't kill the messenger, but you shouldn't be surprised if the number you see in the morning is a big fat 0.
"If you build it, they will come" doesn't work where blog traffic is being concerned.
And that's just normal!
By all means, people won't just find your blog by themselves unless you help them.
Meaning, you if want to see any sort of traffic in your first week as a blogger, you'll have to drive it yourself.
How To Avoid It:
Above all, don't just stare at the screen and wait, your readers won't come out of anywhere.
On the contrary, the hard task of showing them how awesome your content is falling on your shoulders.
So, as soon as your post is live, put your efforts into promoting that post and driving traffic to it.
9) You Don't Bother To Learn SEO
It's so frustrating, isn't it?
I'm talking about those glamorous first weeks since you've launched your blog.
You wake up every morning and start wondering - what to do now?
Try to advance the name of your site on Social Media? Or maybe you need some fresh ideas about the content you'll be working on next?
How about spending time on Pinterest?
Generally, there is always so much to do when you're trying to get your business off the ground.
Meanwhile, you don't really pay attention to SEO when writing your articles.
As a result, Google is not interested to show you any kind of love at all.
Needless to say, that's definitely one of the most common blogging mistakes every newbie makes.
But if you want to see waves of organic traffic to your site, you can't afford that mistake!
How To Avoid It:
First and foremost, spend some time and learn how to do keyword research the right way.
Also, if you want to reach decent rankings on Google, you'll have to master SEO.
For example, you'll need to learn all about on-page and off-page SEO, the perfect URL length, meta description, etc.
If you ask me, I would suggest that you jump on Backlinko and read everything Brian Dean has to say.
10) You Spend 5 Minutes Editing Your Content
So, the inspiration hits you late at night.
Subsequently, you write and write, pumping thoughts and ideas as fast as you can type.
Well, it's awesome when the writing block doesn't seem to apply to you!
Even more, as you type, you can't help but admire how far you've come as a content creator and how good the words sound.
Next, you go through your draft maybe a bit faster than you normally would.
But hey, it all looks great so the only thing left is to hit the publish button, right?
Because what feels like a masterpiece at night most likely will be a total mess after a good night's sleep.
How To Avoid It:
Come on, just take your time, people!
Yeah, I know that time is a luxury you can't really afford when the thing you need the most is new content.
Then again, your readers will be far from impressed if you barely put any effort into editing your work.
You don't enjoy reading articles that display poor grammar skills, blocks of text, and the same sentence repeating all over again, do you?
So, why would you make your audience go through a similar experience?
11) You Don't Share Any Final Thoughts
In my opinion, publishing a post without any closing argument will always leave your work unfinished.
Just think about it for a second:
Uploading an article without last thoughts is like having a really great date without a goodnight kiss.
To all of the ladies reading - you get what I'm saying, right?
Basically, adding some sort of a closing paragraph is essential to make your work complete.
Above all, that's a big part of what writing with intent means.
Let me elaborate further on that:
Before you leave your readers, what would you like them to do with the information you've just given them?
Ask you questions about it, leave comments, share their own opinion?
Personally, I believe you should include all of that in your closing.
After all, that's what a call to action is!
How To Avoid It:
Write down your final thoughts, online pals.
Simple as that!
See, I'm not making one of the most common blogging mistakes myself, lol!
That being said, I'll follow my own advice by asking you:
Is there anything you would like to say on the topic?
And what other blogging mistakes you would like to discuss?
Please, let me know in the comments section below.