I had so much fun writing the first 10 Newbie Blogger Mistakes post that I couldn’t resist writing another one. So, drumroll please! 10 more mistakes you might be making as a newbie blogger! And yes, there are for sure more on this list that I am guilty of making, hopefully not as often these days.
1. Skipping the Intro
If you write any type of tutorial or informative post you might not think the include an intro. For example this post, does it really need an intro? You probably guessed what it was about from the title right? Even though your readers know from the title what the post is about it’s still worth writing a little introduction before launching straight into the information.
It doesn’t need to be something super long and in depth, just a little something that lays out what the rest of the post is about.
2. Skipping the Outro
Likewise with the intro, you’ll want a little outro for your posts. Without an outro it can feel like the post just abruptly ends.
Some bloggers prefer to have a standard outro that they include at the bottom of the post while others like to have a custom sign off for each post. I prefer a custom sign off so at the end of every post you’ll notice I have a sentence asking you guys what you think about the post, or if you have anything to add. It’s a great spot to encourage some engagement with your readers and kick off a discussion with them.
3. Going Off Topic
Even if you’ve defined your niche and have been sticking to it like a good little blogger, it can be tempting to go off topic sometimes. Maybe the customer service girl at a company really annoyed you and you just want to have a big old rant about it, maybe you just had an amazing holiday and you want to share your snaps with the world, maybe you just discovered the perfect way to defeat the big boss in sonic and you feel like the world needs to know about it, if it’s not in your niche leave it out.
Every post you write you should have your readers in mind. If I suddenly write a post here about the bbq I had last weekend how many of you are going to be scratching your heads going “Hey wait what? BBQ? On a tech blog?”. It’s not what you guys are interested in so I keep it off my blog.
4. Not Linking Content
Interlinking your content is a great way to make your readers aware of other relevant posts that you’ve written. In this post one of the first things I did was link to another of my blog posts that is very similar because anyone reading this post might be interested in the other post.
Don’t go crazy with the interlinking though, make sure you’re only linking to relevant posts. I wouldn’t link this post to one of my posts about youtube because chances are if you’re reading this you’re interested in blogging not youtube. The link wouldn’t be relevant to you.
Interlinking helps keep readers on your blog for longer, consuming more of your content, and hopefully the more they read the more they’ll want to read.
Another great way to link up your content is to have a related posts widget at the bottom of your posts. That way when the user hits the end of your posts they’re instantly presented with some other posts they might enjoy.
5. Producing Generic Content
Stop writing generic content! Generic content is the blog posts that have already been written by 574,645 other bloggers already. If you’re not bringing anything new to the table then there’s little point in spending time writing it.
If someone lands on your post from a google search are you going to be giving them information that they haven’t just read on all the other search results they click? When I write a post that could fall into the generic content category I’ll go and check out other posts people have written on the subject to see if I really have something interesting to say about it. If not I don’t write it because the post would be of little value to readers.
6. Not Promoting Your Content
A lot of new bloggers neglect the promotion part of blogging. The truth is, as wonderful as google is at helping people find their way to your blog, you don’t want to rely on it as your sole source of traffic.
Hop on social media and start building up a following. The beauty of social media is that the people that are following you are interested in what you are putting out. You’re not just shooting in the dark hoping that you’ll hit someone that wants to know about whatever you’ve written about. Social media is going to help you reach a targeted audience of readers.
7. Blogging Sporadically
Blogging is a lot of work. Before I got started with blogging I had the naive idea that I’d be able to post an informative post every single day in an hour or two. The truth is there’s a whole lot more that goes into it, and chances are you’re not going to be able to post quite as much as you thought you’d be able to.
One of the biggest things to avoid is sporadic posting. You post nothing for three weeks, then suddenly you put out 3 posts a day for a week then you go silent for another month. Most blogging platforms have a schedule feature that let’s you schedule your blog posts to go live in the future so use it. If you write a tonne of posts in one day schedule them to go out over the next few weeks rather than dumping a load of content all at the same time.
8. Ignoring Analytics
Analytics can seem a bit daunting when you’re starting out. There’s so many graphs and filters and numbers that it can feel like you’re staring at a math textbook. It’s well worth figuring out how to read your analytics data to figure out what is working for your blog and what is falling flat.
With analytics you’re going to be able to quickly identify which posts on your blog are getting the most views, and you can use that information to shape your blog. If no ones reading your posts about your favourite brand of guitar but you’re getting a tonne of hits on your guitar tutorials it’s probably worth focusing a little more on the tutorials.
9. Focusing on Money
Most bloggers are hoping that some day their blogs will turn into a money making machine allowing them to quit their regular job to focus on writing content. For 99.9% of bloggers that’s not something that’s going to happen fast.
The most important thing with blogging is your readers. Produce content that they’re going to want to read, and is going to keep them coming back for more.
If you focus on the money side of things from the get go chances are you haven’t built up any kind of trust with your audience and it’s something you really need if you are hoping to be promoting brands to them or having them click on affiliate links.
10. Not Making Friends
We were all newbies at some point, even your absolute favourite bloggers had to start somewhere. It may seem intimidating to reach out to other bloggers but networking is a big part of blogging. The best people to give you advice are people that have already been there before you.
Start becoming a presence on other peoples blogs, leave them genuine engaging comments. Follow them on social media and reply to their posts. They’ll start to recognise you as one of their regular readers and part of their community. The more you can get your name out there and start to be recognised as part of that niches community the better for your blog, and the more chance you’ve got of making some friends on the way.
Have any of you got any tips for newbie bloggers? What were your top sins when you started out blogging? Mine was definitely going off topic! I used to throw up all kinds of posts about totally irrelevant things to my niche ☺️