October 27, 2015

12 deadly mistakes new bloggers make and repent

This is sequel to our post on 'How to start a blog'. If you have not yet made a blog, do read that and take action, and then come back. In addition, we have posted an article '9 Blogging myths that bloggers must avoid'. We suggest that you read both the articles together so that intentional or inadvertent mistakes do not come in the way of your nurturing the nascent blog into a reputed website. If you already have a blog, you can cover most of the lost ground by following best practices and undoing the mistakes. 


One dozen deadly mistakes that bloggers make when creating a blog and maintaining it.

 

1. Bad URL, bad bog title, bad blog description.

Many bloggers start with giving the blog a domain name that is not related or is difficult to remember. They also give it an irrelevant title and a lengthy (but value-less) description. 

These are not BIG sins but they hurt the blog's search visibility, make it difficult for visitors to recall the blog and also confuse new visitors.

 

2. Copy-pasting text, images and videos.

In an urgency to fill the blog quickly, some bloggers just copy-paste others' material. Some do it purposely as they themselves cannot write well. Some think that pasting an expert's article and doing a bit of editing results in an article as good as the original. Many bloggers feel that copying an image or a video only occasionally is safe and ethical. 

Copy-pasting is like stealing others' property. Search engines would penalize you if you do so, visitors will punish by spreading a bad word about you.

 

3. Posing as expert even though a newbie.

It is somewhat like point 2. 
Keen to establish themselves quickly, new bloggers sometimes pose as big experts. If you are an expert or have experience worth value, people will find it out by reading your content, looking at your painting, listening to your music. But if you do not possess the expertise / talent / experience that you claim, people will shun you.

 

4. Unimaginative post headings, long prose.

It is not a sin or a crime to post bland headlines or to write long prose. But no web-surfer has time and intention to remain on your website / blog if it does not catch his / her attention.  

We are sure, 4 out of 5 visitors to this very page would look at the list titles, skim through a point that they find interesting and move on.

 

5. Posting in spurt, with long gaps.

You create an outstanding blog with a great design, highly relevant domain name, great content and what not. You write a few great articles too. But after that you take a long break, thinking that visitors and money will keep flowing in.

Don't do that if you want that visitors should come to you regularly and look for updates. Without visitors coming to it, the blog would die. Don't let that happen.

 

6. Readability issues.

Blogs are meant to be shared. If they have big text content, they are meant to be read. How does one read the text if you have written it in very small fonts, or there is a variegated background (e.g. leaves or a pattern) behind the text, or the text and its background have unsuitable color combinations and contrast? If you don't take care of these, the visitor will be put off and will leave.

 

7. Clutter.

Many things matter in deciding the appeal of a website, and nothing destroys the appeal more than clutter - too many elements scattered aimlessly. Too many widgets. Too many columns. Too many photos and video thumbnails. Too many blocks of texts. 

A bad web design and a good website design that is spoiled by too many elements, both make the blog unprofessional and clumsy.

 

8. Not doing any promotion, especially offline.

We said it somewhere else and allow us to repeat it here: Your blog is like a small shop in a crowded market. Unless you tell people about what you sell, people will not know about the shop or its merchandise. They will pass by it without pausing and making a purchase even if your product is best in the class. You need to put a good sign board, maybe a signage at the turning, perhaps also an advt in the local paper and a pamphlet inside newspapers. 

For the website, especially a new one, if you do not engage with bloggers, flaunt it on social media, submit it to directories, send emails to your friends and make it friendly to search engines, very few people will know about it.

 

9. Begging favors, especially for ad-clicks and comments.

How do you react when you see such notices on blogs, comments or emails?: 'Please click on the ads appearing on the blog. It will help me earn a cent.' OR 'Please comment on my blog and I will reciprocate.'
OR 'Please visit my blog and tell about it to your friends. Thanks!' Such appeals not only annoy, they harm your reputation.

 

10. Dividing time un-intelligently.

If you spend disproportionately big time on one aspect of blogging, you are likely to ignore other important aspects. The result will be that the ignored area will act as a bottleneck in the growth of the blog. 

If you give too much time to many areas but you do not have the capacity to keep doing so, it may lead to burnout. 

We have seen many bloggers concentrating on writing only, or doing SEO all the time while writing poor content, or commenting too much but not writing enough. Many bloggers give up when they find that they cannot cope with the work. 

Both these situations come not because too much work is involved in blogging but because such bloggers do not use time intelligently.

 

11. Too much money-seeking, too early.

A big number of people, especially young adults with engineering / IT background, are drawn to blogging and website-making just to earn money. Their blogs are stuffed with keywords and they apply SEO tricks to earn some fast buck.

We also find some less tech-savvy bloggers indulging in putting many advertisements on the blog without letting the blog to mature and establish itself.

Too much money mindedness can derail you from your path to being a successful blogger.

 

12. Being impatient.

This one is the key to some of the mistakes we have listed above. 

A very big number of bloggers are impatient from the beginning - they want to see their blog get good traffic, good reviews and mentions, good money too soon. 

Some bloggers get impatient when the blog does not give them the anticipated results - they either tend to apply unethical tricks or ignore the blog or open a new blog. 

In either case, lack of patience is one of the biggest enemies of successful blogging. If you want to start a blog that you will like to succeed, write on the wall near your workplace that you will not be impatient with blogging. 

We have written earlier about many of these issues as well as the best practices that you must adopt. You can reach them through this link: all blogging tips on TopBlogs. You will keep getting new tips if you subscribe to ITB posts.