In this article I will take you through some of the most basic blogging don’ts which almost all newbie bloggers will fall victim to frequently. I hope this list will serve you well, and who knows, perhaps save you some time and money in the process.
I think the number one basic blogging mistake is to become mislead. There are countless websites out there which have one purpose – to sell products and services to newbie bloggers which have little to no value.
As a new blogger, you are vulnerable to these kinds of websites because I think we all want the easy road with guaranteed profits. So, to be fair, it is understandable why people fall into the trap of “easy money” because it is so tempting. I fell into that trap many times, and I wasted a lot of money in the process.
Here are a few guidelines to help you identify if a website is a low-quality website
- They promise you “guaranteed” profits.
- They promise easy money for 30min work per day.
- They lure you in with a discount trial period – All legitimate services will not charge to try their services.
- After you join, you get hit hard with upsells for additional services.
- They have pictures of expensive cars, homes, and people sitting on the beach with a laptop and drinking. Trying to lure you in with vanity and greed.
At some point, you WILL get sucked into one of these low-quality websites. There are a lot of them, and their sales pitches can be very tempting – especially if you are inexperienced and eager to succeed quickly.
If, or when, this happens then simply brush yourself off and move on. Try and get a refund if you can but don’t let it get you down because it is part of the learning experience.
Here are a few guidelines on how to identify HIGH-QUALITY websites.
- They offer 100% FREE trial periods
- Once you join there are little or no upsells for additional service
- They give you realistic goals and talk to you in a sensible way – E.g. – they do NOT promise $1000 per day profits by day 20.
- They have clearly laid out websites with transparent support and help option
- their communities are active and are spam free
- their training modules are thorough and cover all the relative aspects
Thinking Too Big
Next up on the blogging don’ts – to keep your feet on the ground. A quite common mistake – which I also fell into – is thinking too big very early on.
When you first get started online, it is very exciting and as you see traffic coming to your website you can’t help but imagine all kinds of wonderful things happening. More traffic, more revenue from advertising and commissions, etc.
As a result of this over excitement the following can happen;
- Expanding your target audience to increase traffic levels – you must not grow your target audience until you have created a lot of content on your initial niche. Remember that if you are targeting a particular niche but all of a sudden you get excited and you want to start writing about other, less relevant topics, purely for financial gain then Google will be confused as to what your website is about. Not only that, you will quickly lose the focus of your site as you start to drift off topic.
- Creating larger article projects like Ebooks and large training modules – imagine if you have been working hard, and you have created 50 blog posts, and you start getting a reasonable amount of traffic – let’s say 1000 hits per week. At this point just keep writing – DON’T get side tracked by bigger projects yet. If you spent two weeks writing a great Ebook to distribute to your readers, you could have created another 15 blog posts which would bring a lot more traffic. Avoid creating larger project until you have a much greater readership and continuous traffic.
- Creating other niche blogs to potentially create more profit – this is a common mistake. As soon as a little traffic comes to your website and you get your first sale, it is tempting to create more websites to capture even more visitors. As you start you have a lot of energy and your adrenaline is pumping. But over time as the workload increases, you will ditch one of your websites, and the result is a lot of wasted time and effort for nothing. This is the same principle as point number 3. Use the time and effort you spent creating a second website on writing more blog posts for your existing niche blog.
- Start outsourcing your writing to expensive ghost writers – I remember when I first started making sales I thought I would just outsource my articles and I got lazy. The end product of which was a lot of articles which I spent more time editing and sending back for revisions, which I could have spent writing the articles in the first place! As always, this is wasted time. Outsourcing your articles is a great way to increase your input to your blog but only if you know what you are doing. If you receive poor quality articles, then you will spend a lot of time editing and communicate with other writers. When you are first starting out, it is simply easier to create your content yourself.
- Losing the focus which drove you to create the blog in the first place – try to remember why you created your blog in the first place. As your traffic increases and your readership becomes more stable. Keep writing the same way and doing the same things because it is apparently working! Try not to change things up too much and stay focused on the structure and routine you have.
Now, these points above aren’t necessarily a bad plan to have for your blog and the first 4 points will be something you are going to do once your blog gets bigger and more popular.
All I am trying to emphasise is that just because you have 15 blog posts, and you get your first commission after your first 1000 visitors – don’t think you can expand and start overreaching too soon. Keep writing and keep your feet on the ground.
This is a big one, and it WILL happen to you, so look after this topic. There so SO much information out there about making money online it is very overwhelming.
Most of the information is bogus and is only created to take your hard earned money, others are excellent and will help you create sustainable income but how do you know what is real and isn’t.
You will find many websites giving very different tips and advice on how to rank in Google and to make the most out of your site. Things like;
- Where to place keywords?
- Are backlinks still a valid ranking method?
- How to make your website SEO friendly?
- How many words to write per article?
- Where do you place images?
These a but a sample of the hundreds of questions you need to find the answer too but if you have five different authority websites telling you five conflicting ways of achieving the best result, who do you believe?
Unfortunately, the most common outcome from information overload is confusion and a slow down in blog posts. New bloggers often lose heart and start to give up at this point. If you are reading this, then I urge you to keep going. It will be worth it in the end.
The only place I recommend you go, to avoid information overload, is a spam free and active community.
Always proofread your work! No one is perfect, and there will always be one or two mistakes here and there. However, try and avoid glaring and obvious misspelling and grammatical confusion.
This is the most basic blogging don’t!
Why do you need to proofread?
- It is tough to read poorly spelt content
- no one will respect your advice if you have poor spelling
- you will never gain a readership with poor grammar and spelling
Ideally, you want to create a brand on your blog. You want people to understand and respect your content which is only achievable if you have correctly spelt articles.
Trying To Sell, Sell and SELL!
A lot of newbie bloggers make the mistake of trying to sell too hard. Readers are very astute these days and are quick to dismiss websites with too many pop-ups, adverts, and hard sale tactics.
It is very easy to clutter up your articles with Google ads and product placements. Unfortunately, this does not look good for potential visitors as it takes away from the user experience.
Your aim – at least at eh beginning – should be to create quality content which ranks well and give a good user experience. If you have a small blog with only a few articles but with way too many adverts then you will not get many return readers.
At the beginning try and keep your monetizing at a minimum – you can always place adverts on your old posts later once you have a lot more traffic.
All In All
I hope the points above will give you hope and help to keep you on track. The world of a newbie blogger is a treacherous one.
These basic tips on what not to do will steer you in the right direction as you progress to the next level. Whenever you feel like you are losing your momentum, just remember to create good quality content. Engage your audience and cover the basic layouts of your blog content.
The rest will fall into place naturally as you learn, develop and hone your skills as a newbie blogger.