New to Blogging? Never Make These 8 Big Costly Mistakes
If you’re new to blogging, you might easily get caught up in the excitement of creating your blog and rushing to get it going.
When I first started, I never knew I was sabotaging my blogging efforts and losing opportunities I should have taken advantage of.
I see a new blogger making some big mistakes and I thought about putting together a list of things you might be getting wrong. It starts with..
Blogging For Beginners – Meaning
Still many bloggers still don’t grab what blogging really is. Initially, blogging involved a personal web log, in which a person would journal about their day.
[Tweet “Blogging is just like keeping a diary, and from “web log” came the term “blog.””]
Blog Vs Website
When you look at a regular website versus a blog, you might ask yourself “What’s the difference?”
Both a website and a blog exist on the internet with web addresses each. Both of them are hosted on similar hosting services to make information remain online
A website and a blog target a specific audience and they both contain links, pictures, videos etc. Why not learn more about the key differences between a blog and a website in this aritcle.
Starting Your Blog – The Basic Mistake
Almost all new bloggers are tempted to start their blogs by using free hosting services. Interestingly paid hosting services are cheap and also reliable, and I recommend Namecheap, one that gives you 100% satisfaction.
If you go through my comprehensive step-by-step guide on starting and creating a blog all by yourself, you’ll understand the disadvantages of free hosting services.
Straight to the point, don’t use free hosting services for your site or blog. Invest in paid services under $3 per month and you’ll be starting on the right foot.
Not Using Images
When I first started out I never thought about using images. Guess what? Since 2008 and average visitor reads less than 20% of text content! Yes, you can’t expect people to sit down and read words?
You know why images are so important? This image below say it all:
People want engaging contents fortified with images, illustrations, screen grabs etc. I explained these at length in my content creation guide.
When I started to use images, I got more inspiring feed backs in the comment section of every blog post and my readers are always wanting more.
Don’t make the same mistakes I made, and to help you get this right I urge you to read the 8 cool places on the web to get free stock photos for your blog contents.
Not Using Headers or Whitespace
Even if the ideas you’re presenting on your blog through posts, the presentation will be a shoot to ones own foot if your blog looks like a big, scary wall of text, readers are just going to bounce off your page.
To use white space effectively, use paragraphs and break these paragraphs by using headings between them. This will help you give your readers eyes some anchor points.
Using bullet points can also help. Blog readers love it when they can get what they’re looking for so quickly. Numbering your points or ideas presented using bullet points are a great way to encourage more reading.
Not Using Social Media Sharing Buttons
We all want our blog to get exposure isn’t it? Once you’ve created a unique engaging piece of content, you need to make it clickable and shareable.
Obviously, when your blog audience finds your content value-adding they’ll want to help you get the word out on social media.
So why not add a little convenience for your readers? A Twitter or Facebook button can increase your traffic by 20% Just be sure that you don’t overload your page with sharing options, or you may actually drive users away.
You can’t just place your social sharing buttons anywhere. Placing these buttons on the bottom of your blog and calling it a day isn’t good enough—studies show that most visitors will click the top- and left-side of your blog most often.
When you make sharing easy, people are more likely to respond. So what are you waiting for? Adding social media buttons is easy and the ROI might be huge.
Not Using Real Anchor Texts In Links
All of us have clicked on a link before – and as a blogger, you’ll want to use links to help move people through your site, show them your sources and get them to look at other contents you’ve created.
What are anchor texts?
Anchor text is the clickable text in a hyperlink. SEO best practices dictate that anchor text be relevant to the page you’re linking to, rather than generic text.
For example, if i intend to link to another post on oasdom.com that explains ‘content marketing’, I could write something like: “I wrote an article on content marketing which gives practicable tips to boost your blogging efforts“.
As you can see, the keywords “content marketing” was used to link to that particular article. Hence “content marketing” is the anchor text(s)
The blue, underlined anchor text is the most common as it is the web standard, although it is possible to change the color and underlining through html code.
Wordstream gives a detailed post on the various types of anchor texts, one I’ll urge you check as it gives you more information on best practices.
Never Do the Following When Linking to other contents
Want to start a blog? CLICK HERE
Never use ‘Click here’ as an anchor text, it’s wrong! But why?
- It’s overly wordy. Your links should be concise and focused.
- It’s unnecessary. Your title already contains all the clickbait you need; “CLICK HERE” adds nothing.
- It adds uncertainty. Have you ever visited a site that wanted you to “click here, here, and here” to learn more information? The problem with these is that users can’t differentiate those links from one another. Also, your links should be descriptive of what comes after the user clicks so that there’s no mystery.
- It costs you trust. This is the internet age, and the average consumer is wary of ambiguous calls to “CLICK HERE,” which might be sheltering (at best) spam and (at worst) a virus.
So how should you embed links in your blog posts?
Look at this: Even amateurs can blog like professional after taking our free blogging course. Now you see, that’s linking that works.
Not Replying Your Blog Comments
Your blog comments add extra value and credibility to your blog as a whole. Sometimes a reader that scanned through your post might skip right down to the comments to see what others found useful, before jumping back up to the body of your material.
Why is replying your blog comments important?
Answering comments on your blog gives you the following benefits:
- Encourage more comments. Nobody likes to feel like they’re talking to a wall.When someone comments on your post, they’re opening a dialogue with you, and only by responding can you continue that conversation.
- Build your credibility and establish your authority. Many times, people taking to the comments will pose questions and expect you to have the answers. Other times, they might disagree with you, and raise some counterpoints. In both of these cases, responding is a great way to establish your expertise on the subject and share some knowledge.
- It helps you create a New material. If you notice people asking the same question repeatedly in the comment box, or if someone raises a great counterpoint that you hadn’t considered, guess what? You’ve found your next blog post!
Whatever you do, be polite and professional when responding to your comment section—even if it’s to a less-than- courteous comment.
Not Showing Your Most Popular or Recent Posts
I never thought this was important when I started blogging, but in my journey I realized that new visitors just want to see what’s most recently published or the most popular pieces to know whether my blog is worth following or not.
You need to give your audience an easy way to find your newest and best stuff so that they don’t have to comb through an ocean of posts to find where the gold is.
I put my most popular posts on my right sidebar and I keep getting more readers checking them out. You can do the same.
And there you have it, the big costly mistakes you should never make if you’re a new blogger.
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