5 Big Mistakes That Bloggers Make

blogging mistakesI decided to expand on those common blogging mistakes to help you avoid going down that trail. It’s so easy to do without really noticing and think about all that hard work you’re putting into it. You don’t want that to go to waste. If you haven’t read it yet, this will be helpful too – Are You Making These Common Blogging Mistakes?

Have you recently entered the world of blogging? Maybe you’ve been blogging for a while and things aren’t working out quite as you expected. If so, it will be worth your while to contemplate some off the common mistakes bloggers make.

These are the five most common blogging mistakes we’re going to take a look at:
  1. Diving in (rather than wading in)
  2. Having unrealistic expectations
  3. Losing focus
  4. Plagiarizing
  5. Ignoring your reader

Diving right in

Many bloggers are so anxious to get started that they dive right in rather than wading in slowly. They look at two or three blogs and think – hey, I can do that, it looks easy. Blogging is easy but it takes planning, dedication, and hard work to do well.

Take some time to consider your topic – you want it to be something you are truly interested in, better yet passionate about. You will be writing on this topic for a long time so be sure that it will hold your interest. If it can’t hold your interest, it certainly won’t interest your reader.

Find something that reflects what you know, something that interests you, something you enjoy talking and writing about. You can blog on just about any topic – parenting, cooking, recipes, DIY projects, video games, online and affiliate marketing, exercise, diet, diseases, politics, religion, science – you get the idea.

You need a host for your blog – they’re the company who owns the servers to store your blog content. Some are free which personally I would not recommend. Most charge a small amount per month for this service which you can choose to pay monthly or annually. I use iPage, 1&1, and Host Gator and recommend each equally. Host Gator has had some problems but my sites have been fine.

You also need a name for your blog. You may or may not want to use your real name that pretty much depends on the focus of your blog. Play around with a few ideas, check out the names of similar topic blogs, and don’t grab a domain in a hurry just because it’s available. Think on it and be sure it’s a good fit. And always go for a (dot) com extension, that’s what people are most familiar with.

Unrealistic expectations

If you come to blogging expecting instant results like a large readership and many complimentary comments, you may be disappointed. There are tens of thousands of blogs online vying for the same audience. You need to stand out from the crowd. Patience and tenacity are essential. If you like to write, find that unique niche that fits you, create appealing titles for your posts, and tirelessly promote your blog. Visitors and comments will come and you’ll even develop a following when you target your reader’s interests.

Losing focus

When you started your blog you had a particular reason for doing so. It might have been to express your views on a topic, to earn money as an affiliate, to support a business venture, provide training or coaching, to document your travels, or simply to communicate with a close circle of friends about your daily activities.

Readers will come to your blog for the first time and either be interested in your subject matter or not, they will either like your style or not, and if they like your subject and style they may comment or not. Don’t be disillusioned, many readers visit but seldom leave comments. The point is that you need to give them a reason to come back later, again and again.

If you’re ambitious enough, you can have more than one blog, but be certain that you can stick with it. You can create each one devoted to a particular topic and even write under different identities.

Plagiarizing

There are some great bloggers out there and as you surf through blogs you might find one who said something really well, something that resonated with you and something you want to put in your blog. DON’T just copy and paste someone’s words in your blog without giving them credit, making it look to the world like the words are yours.

If you write it, write it in your own words with your own voice. Add your own thoughts and information and be gracious enough to mention where you got the idea and provide a link. You can use an excerpt from the original article, that’s good for building authority, but always note your source.

Ignoring your reader

Comments, as bloggers we love them when they are well intentioned. Some of the people who read your blog will leave comments. Some readers will agree with you and some readers may even praise your insights, many will even expand on your words with helpful insights of their own. People leave comments on others blogs for the same reason they themselves blog, to exchange ideas and express their points of view.

Always respond to your readers’ comments. The best way to get a reader to stop leaving comments and run the risk of turning away readers is to ignore them.  Thank them for reading and taking the time to comment and respond directly to what they had to say as appropriate. It’s a simple equation – ignoring your reader comments = your readers ignoring your blog.

BTW: Feel free to leave me a comment, I’ll happily reply!

What mistakes would you add to this list to help good intentioned bloggers?

 

To your hard earned success,
Marilyn T

 


Comments

  1. Another common mistake is that people want to make money so they resist the urge to get personal and pour on the sales tactics, which happens to be the worst mistake a new blogger can make.

    You cannot sell anything online without first forming trust and that’s where your blog comes into the picture. Don’t be a salesperson, be a helper… the sales will follow.
    Bonnie Gean recently posted…Day 3 – Video Blogging ChallengeMy Profile

  2. One other blogging mistake is when people do not make there hyperlinks clear enough. The colour is the same as the rest of the article. Then if there is not Call To Action, you will not even realise that a hyperlink to a product or another resource exists.
    Victoria Virgo recently posted…Can You Really Make Money with Amazon?My Profile

    • Great tip Victoria. The Call to Action is so important because you really do need to guide your reader to do whatever it is you’re hoping they do.
      I have another blog with limited color choices and I noticed just as you point out that the scheme I first selected didn’t allow the links to stand out, so I changed it.

  3. I think post titles and lack of subtitle on your blog header. These are two mistakes I see a lot. Post titles can be cute, but need to include a hint of what the post is really about for both user experience and search engines. Also, when visiting a blog I look at the header for a subtitle or tagline to tell me what to expect. One post is not enough to know if I want to come back or not, but one blog post combined with an idea of what the blog is about definitely is enough.
    crystal touchton recently posted…Consistency In Business Challenge Day 10My Profile

  4. This >>>> “reason for doing so”

    When your only reason for starting a blog is (a) it seemed like a good idea (b) everyone else is or (c) someone told me to, then you’re behind the 8-ball before you start. Everything else – posts, advertising, graphics, theme and especially audience derive from having a clear reason and vision.

    Great points, Marilyn.
    Mel Day recently posted…How I Can Improve My Affiliate Marketing ResultsMy Profile

  5. Great tips. I made the mistake of diving right in, thinking that that was the best way to handle blogging. I soon learned it wasn’t and have changed my approach with other blogs I’ve created.
    Alexandria Gunn recently posted…Writing at InfoBarrel: Could You Earn Money Online From This Writing Site?My Profile

  6. These are great tips for starting a blog and even a good reminder for veteran bloggers.
    Salma recently posted…Meet the Neighbours?My Profile

  7. Jenn Alex Brockman says:

    Distraction what? Oh look, a squirrel – or more likely the loads of laundry that need to be done!

  8. Great tips Marilyn, I’ve pinned them on my blogging tips board. They’re all very valid, losing focus resonates with me though. Need to get back on track!
    Jan Kearney recently posted…Increase Your Online Visibility With A Video Blogging ChallengeMy Profile

    • It is so easy to do Jan. My biggest culprit is getting sidetracked when I log onto Facebook to promote posts, can’t seem to ignore other posts. I need to get virtual blinders or something.

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