Want to increase your web traffic by more than 430%?
Research shows that you can do so by taking one simple action: adding a blog to your site!
If you’re a first-time blogger, this step can be a little trickier than it looks. While there’s potential for major success in this realm, it’s also riddled with potholes that are all too easy to fall into.
That’s why we’re here. Today, we’re sharing 10 common blogging mistakes to avoid as you begin this new pursuit.
1. Leading With Personal Interests
It’s happened to all of us. You have a great idea for a super-interesting blog while you’re out on a run. Naturally, you believe that everyone will clamor to read it.
Then, you post it and… crickets.
Remember: A topic might sound wildly interesting to you, but to be effective, it needs to attract your core audience.
When developing your blogging calendar, stick with topics that suit your brand and will help your business meet specific goals. For instance, an FAQ post or in-depth guide can help you establish thought leadership in your niche.
If you can answer questions or help solve a problem for your readers, they’ll be much more likely to bookmark your blog for future reference.
2. Writing Like a Term Paper
Yes, you want to sound authoritative and intelligent in your blog. You don’t, however, want to sound like you’re giving a formal college presentation.
The average reader spends fewer than 40 seconds on your content before deciding to click away. If you bore them at the beginning, you’ll be hard-pressed to convince them to return.
Keep it simple, be engaging, and write like you talk (to an appropriate degree). Approachable writing is interesting writing, and it’s also much more readable.
3. Not Sticking to a Consistent Schedule
Ideally, you want your readers to check your blog on a regular basis. If they do so and you haven’t updated in months, they’ll eventually stop returning.
While you don’t have to post every day, it’s a great idea to create a schedule and stick to it. Aim to post about three times per week in the beginning. As you grow more comfortable with the content creation process, you can increase that number.
Finding it difficult to come up with unique, compelling ideas?
Research help forums, Reddit, and other online platforms to find what people are talking about within your industry. This is a great way to find topics for regular blog posts that your readers will actually use.
You can also check out these content ideas when you want to make your blog as enticing as possible!
4. Failing to Capture Leads
If someone’s reading your blog, you’ve already captured their attention. That’s a valuable first step.
From there, you can easily use that leverage to increase your web traffic and grow your conversion rates.
The key? Look for ways to lure them in and encourage them to continue exploring your content. In addition to adding a Call-to-Action (CTA) at the end of your blog, try offering exclusive downloads or special promotions.
You can also add a link to a landing page at the end of your blog, where you can capture reader contact information in exchange for access to such resources.
5. Ignoring Reader Comments
If you have comments activated on your blog, it’s always smart to read what people say in response to your posts.
Of course, this means taking the praises with the criticism. While you don’t need to engage in an extensive back-and-forth with naysayers, take the time to respond to comments that ask questions or request more information.
This gives a personal feel to your blog and shows readers that you’re invested in the content you create.
6. Hyper-Focusing on SEO
Most business leaders understand the importance of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). They also know that an active, regularly-updated blog is a great way to boost their ranking on the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
However, in your quest to rise to the first page of Google, don’t focus so sharply on writing for SEO that your blog becomes unreadable.
Keyword stuffing is a great example of what not to do. You want to ping Google’s bots for a particular word or phrase, but you don’t have to saturate your post with that verbiage.
In fact, Google could even demote your page or remove it altogether if they catch wind that you’re doing so.
7. Overlooking Spelling or Grammar Errors
In your quest to blog consistently, you might be up against a tight deadline. Still, you want to get your blog out there, so you press “publish” without giving it a read-through.
Days later, you notice that it’s riddled with spelling and grammar issues. Not only does this reflect poorly on your business, but it also shows a lack of attention to detail.
Take the time to thoroughly proofread every blog you develop. Invest in online spelling and grammar checkers that can read behind you and make sure everything’s polished. We’ve put together a list of the best ones for your reference!
8. Publishing Weak Titles
The title of your blog is the very first thing that a reader will notice. If it doesn’t pull them in and grab their attention, it doesn’t matter what kind of insights you’ve hidden inside.
Not only will strengthening your blog titles amplify your readership, but it can also help you appeal to a particular niche. Specific, keyword-rich headlines are the key to piquing the interests of your target readers.
9. Forgetting an Image
Did you know that 65% of people are visual learners? Black text on a white background might look clean, but you’re alienating a wide portion of your readership.
Attention-grabbing images or infographics are a great way to make your posts interesting. When you add alt tags, they can even boost your SEO efforts!
Look for appropriate free images on a creative commons website, or pay for a stock photo. Either way, it’s worth the investment.
10. Not Sharing on Social Media
Once you’ve created an awesome blog post, don’t let it live and die on your website.
Remember to share it across your social media channels, so it can get the attention and activity it deserves! Add a customized message with each post, and encourage others to share it with their followers.
This is a smart way to build your online following, grow your brand community, and foster relationships with your users.
Learn From These Common Blogging Mistakes
Whether you’re a veteran blogger or you’re just starting out, there are always ways to improve your online space.
While these common blogging mistakes might seem intimidating, they’re easy to avoid if you take your time and approach this task with care.
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