“Don't focus on having a great blog. Focus on producing a blog that's great for your readers.”
I want to start by saying, we cannot go through life without making any mistakes.
I can say for sure when it comes to blogging, you WILL make many.
It's just a fact and we grow and learn from all those mistakes and become better bloggers and biz women for it!
I've wanted to give up sooooooo many times, but I didn't – I carried on, pushing through the madness and chaos of all the things swimming round my brain and I'm so glad I did, otherwise Blogging for Mums wouldn't be here now…
So that's why we're going to sit down and look at what to avoid when starting your mummy blog!
I'm going to keep this post simple and short (well as simple and short as I'm capable of lol).
I'm going to share the things you need to avoid when starting your blog, because with so much info out there and so many influencers, you can easily fall into the trap of trying to follow EVERYONE and in doing so, you'll end up doing NOTHING!
We all want to follow lots of people and see what they're all up to, but this can be seriously debilitating and overwhelming when they're all at different stages and growing at different paces.
The last thing I want you to do, is get knocked for six and get put off before you even begin…
So let's get into it and take a look at the 30 mistakes to avoid as a beginner blogger!
“This post may contain affiliate links and if you make a purchase using one of my links, I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you”.
Mistake #1 – Getting Shiny Object Syndrome
I wanted to start with this one as I briefly touched upon a part of this above.
It's so easy when you're brand new to blogging, to follow every blogger you come across, buy every product and course available and sign up to every person's email list!
The problem with this is, you're flitting from one thing to the next with no clear direction and no real idea on what it is you should be doing!
You're also spending and wasting a lot of money doing this too.
I'm super guilty of this and think I'm actually one of the worst people for getting in this trap when I started.
I bought sooooooo many products and courses, because I got carried away and didn't know what I actually needed.
Please don't this as I don't want your bank account to suffer like mine did!
My advice is this:
- Find someone you resonate with and like how they talk/teach and come across.
- Make sure they're further ahead of you in what you're wanting to learn.
- Absorb as much information as you can that they share (and only them) to start with, so that you're not getting overwhelmed.
- If they have freebies – sign up for those that are relevant to what you want to know, to get even more help!
- If courses and products are being offered – ONLY purchase something which you need and are wanting to learn about at that time.
It's far too easy to buy everything, thinking that you'll get around to doing them all at some point!
If you're at the stage where you need to know about how to build an email list, check out posts/freebies/products on that.
If you want to know how to create freebies – check out all the stuff to do with that.
Learning one thing at a time will not only stop the overwhelm and ensure you learn about that topic properly, it'll also save you time and money!
Mistake #2 – Not Defining Your Target Audience
If you don't get this one right, it could jeopardise your whole blogging strategy!
The majority of successful blogs are the ones which create content on one specific niche.
I'm not saying that there aren't successful blogs out there which talk about all kinds of things and are multi-niche!
I'm just saying that when you're first starting out, target specific people in one area, as it'll make it a lot easier for you, as there's so many people online.
It's important to do some research and make sure the topic you want to start a blog in is viable.
This means it needs to have enough people searching for problems, wants and needs within it.
Plus… it needs to be a niche that has a lot of people spending money in it.
Any niche and market that has people wanting to improve something about themselves (having a toned tummy, becoming vegan, becoming more motivated etc) wanting to learn or educate themselves on something (how to crochet, getting a fab garden, how to take care of a toddler etc) or make money (looking at personal finances, investing in property, making money online etc) you're usually onto a winner!
Some of the most popular markets to blog in are:
- Relationships & Dating
- Home Decor
- Arts & Crafts
- Frugal Living
If you can start a blog in something within these areas, there's a high chance it'll have a mix of a wide audience and the opportunity to make money too.
Mistake #3 – Not Using WordPress.org
There's a ton of different platforms out there to design and build websites and blogs on, Wix and Squarespace are just a couple that pop in my head…
But the platform I recommend you use over and above everything else is WordPress.org.
WordPress is unbelievably versatile and allows you to create a website which you have complete control over it's functionality.
I share how to use and setup the WordPress dashboard for your blog in my how to start a mummy blog post!
WordPress is definitely the way to go if you're serious about blogging and want to use your website for business and making money.
Mistake #4 – Not Picking A Good Theme
I want to say that when it comes to website themes, there are tons of amazing paid and free themes out there.
I don't want you to get caught up trying to find the “perfect” theme at this stage, because I can pretty much guarantee you that once you're established and a way down the road, you'll end up changing it to suit your needs more as you grow.
So my advice is, if you can, pick a premium theme (paid) which is affordable. I use the Divi theme by Elegant Themes, which is an amazing blog theme as you can do so much with it to make your blog look beautiful. It comes at a cost of $90 a year or you can pay a one off fee of $249 for lifetime access, which also includes other products too!
If you can't afford a premium theme, no worries at all, because that doesn't mean you can't start blogging – oh no…
There are many great free themes out there and one of the best is Astra! which has loads of free templates you can use.
You can install and activate it from within the WordPress dashboard…
Having a free theme doesn't mean you can't have a successful blog (Astra does have a paid, premium version too) it just means you may not be able to do as much with it and make it look exactly how you want.
Also, the other thing when it comes to a lot of free themes, is they don't offer regular updates and support, which is super important when you're relying on it to run your whole blog.
You need to know that if something goes wrong, you're able to reach out to them and get it sorted, so your blog can continue to run uninterrupted.
Premium themes have a lot more features, customizations and additional services that free themes just don't seem to offer.
Mistake #5 – Thinking Keyword Research Is Not Important
Keyword Research is where you seek out search terms which people are typing into the search engines online.
Although I don't feel like you should get all hung up over Keyword Research, I do want to let you know that it's super important when it comes to blogging.
In order for you to be in with a chance of getting seen online, you have to know what words people are typing into Google.
This is why you need to do some research to see what target keywords are appropriate for your posts.
This also helps with SEO and ranking for the topic you're writing on.
There's many tools out there to choose from and it can become sooooo overwhelming trying to pick and choose.
That's why I just use two:
You don't need to use anything really expensive when starting out and these are both free, but eventually you may want to look at upgrading to a paid tool for this as you get so much more information given to you.
I'm not going to go into all the ins and outs of Keyword Research in this post, as there's a lot you can go in-depth with.
I just wanted to touch upon it here and explain why it's an important part of your blog.
Mistake #6 – Not Including CTA's/Sign Up Forms
Getting people on your email list is one of the #1 things you should do as a beginner blogger!
Your email list are your VIP's and the people who trust you the most, so you want to be building and growing your email list all the time!
The way we usually get email subscribers, is by offering something for free in exchange for an email address.
I create freebies (also known as lead magnets, free gifts, opt-ins et…) and then I create a sign up form within my email marketing provider ConvertKit and when someone comes to my blog and signs up for my freebie, they're added to my email list automatically.
Creating freebies is a MUST in blogging, as not only are you giving away valuable information which is helpful and actionable to your audience, but your gaining knowledge and info that's vital for future product and course creations.
Do some research within Facebook Groups and blog comments or wherever your target audience hang out and see what it is they want.
What questions are they asking?
Create freebies on these and add sign up forms on your blog.
I find the best places to add forms are on your homepage (your primary freebie), on your posts (freebies which relate to that post in particular, which is known as a Content Upgrade) in a sidebar or as a pop-up!
Giving your readers multiple freebies to sign up to – for different things that may appeal to them and help them, is the best way to maximize your opt-in opportunities!
Mistake #7 – Putting Quantity Over Quality
The aim with your blog is to have lots and lots of posts, all getting traffic, ticking all the SEO boxes and making Google happy!
Blogging takes time.
It's a hard, slow game and can take months and sometimes even a year or more to get traction and grow!
It can be all over the place and sometimes you may get lots of traffic and other times, you may get nothing at all…
Shoving a load of rushed, badly written content on however, just so you can have “more posts” is never the answer.
Google is very savvy about what content they let appear on page 1 and if you put out bad content or content which isn't helpful or had any time and effort put into it, you won't show up at all, effecting your SEO efforts massively…
Blog posts which have had care and energy put into them, which give tons of value and really help your readers out are the ones you want to be writing ALL the time!
It's much better to write one post every two weeks or even every month, if it means the quality is going to be there.
Consistency is key when it comes to blogging, but that consistency comes in all shapes and sizes!
Your readers will get used to when and how often you put content out, as long as you're consistent with it – and yes that counts still if you only publish once a month.
One valuable post a month is far worthier than 4 mediocre, rushed posts because you think you have to get a post out every week.
There's no right or wrong when it comes to how often you write your blog posts.
The only right is that you show up for your readers regularly.
Start out with what works for you and your time and you can increase it the more you get used to blogging and putting your content out there…
Mistake #8 – Comparing Yourself To Other Bloggers
This one's a huge mental battle when starting a blog, because we just can't seem to help comparing ourselves to other bloggers online.
In fact, we pretty much compare ourselves with everything in life.
Comparing how we look to others (Instagram is full of filters remember) comparing how a good a mum we are next to our friends…
It can be endless and the comparison game is no fun that's for sure and it's no different when it comes to your blog.
But it can really damage your progress and set you back, if you're constantly looking at what others are doing!
There's only one thing that you need to be concentrating on – and that's YOU and what you're doing.
As long as you're moving forward and making progress daily/weekly/monthly towards your goals and objectives, that's what matters.
It can be small targets that you've set yourself, such as reaching your first subscriber, or it can be bigger goals such as creating your first course or product.
Every milestone you reach within your blogging journey is an achievement and something worth celebrating.
Do not ruin it by putting yourself down and not thinking your good enough, because someone else you've seen online is further head than you.
Those bloggers you see with the amazing looking blogs and lots of posts and products on there – they didn't get there overnight, they worked hard and it probably took them years to get it to that stage, so look at them as inspiration and motivation to get there yourself, but don't compare yourself, as you're a beginner blogger just getting started!
Mistake #9 – Not Continuing To Learn & Grow
Even if you're a teaching blog (like mine) in order to grow your blog, you need to be learning too!
Nobody knows it all and there's always new things to find out, whatever niche you're in.
Investing in yourself is a must when blogging and taking a course or buying a product which you know will really help you, is something you should be doing.
The more you know, the more you can teach and share with your audience too…
Keeping on top of what's going on within your topic is important, so that you're keeping up with the facts and changes in that industry.
I've taken many courses to grow more, but I only take things which I know are going to benefit me and my blog.
If I don't need it there and then, I won't buy it (this goes back to mistake #1 with the shiny object syndrome).
Too many products and courses causes mass overwhelm, so take one at a time, complete it, implement the things it teaches (very important otherwise what's the point taking the course at all) and then move on to another one when you're ready…
Mistake #10 – Forgetting To Drive Traffic To Your Blog
You've got amazing content on your blog, after all those hours of writing blog posts, and some awesome freebies to give away, but it doesn't end there.
So many bloggers write posts, hit publish and that's it!
Traffic doesn't get to your blog without you doing anything to get it there.
You can get blog traffic organically and you will at some point, but you need to be actively putting your stuff out there so that people see it and come to your blog.
I use Pinterest as one of my traffic drivers, because I love this platform and it's tremendous for bloggers.
I do also have all the videos I've created for my posts on YouTube, but again, this is a work in progress and not my main focus at the moment.
My YouTube channel is definitely the second platform I want to build up though, as I love creating video content, as I find it easier for people to absorb and learn the things I teach, when they can watch over my shoulder.
However you like to create your content, just remember to put it out there on your social media and get eyeballs on it.
If you want my opinion on which is the best when starting out – I would say Pinterest for sure, because it's a search engine (not a social media platform) where mums and people go to get info and they're ready to buy!
Mistake #11 – Not Sticking To One Task At A Time
This mistake kinda follows on from the previous in a sense that, you should stick to one thing at a time.
No one can become a pro and an expert in all things at one time.
Multi-tasking may seem like we're great, but really, our brains can only concentrate on one thing properly!
If you pick something you want to get done and do it wholly and completely before moving on, you're much more likely to be successful than if you try and dabble in a lot of things at the same time.
For example, when you start your blog, there's a lot of moving parts and pieces to the puzzle.
It can become extremely overwhelming trying to think about and do it all in one go.
You just need to take it slow and start with one thing – like deciding what you want to blog about and sticking to it. This is the first thing you need to do when starting your blog.
Take your time and really think about the task at hand and get it done and dusted completely, before moving onto the next one (which in the example case would be to choose a name for your blog).
I've been that manic person before who's been trying to write a blog post, create a pin image, read emails all at the same time and I had far too many tabs open in my browser ?and quite frankly nothing was getting done, as I was flitting between each task, going backwards and forwards.
Mistake #12 – Not Having Legal Pages & Disclaimers
Legal Pages and Disclaimers are something you have to have on your blog, not only to protect you, but to protect your readers as well.
They protect you from liabilities, lawsuits and any other legal issues which may arise.
If you're affiliating yourself with any products or services, you need to let your readers know somewhere on your blog that when they purchase through your links, you're gaining financially from this.
This is also the case if you're receiving testimonials or reviews on your site.
Affiliate Disclaimers are a requirement of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) of which you have to comply with.
When you're just starting out, you can use free tools such as the page generators from TermsFeed.
TermsFeed is a really good website to help you get started.
They have all kinds of pages you can create, so check them out and see what your blog or website needs, which is dependent on what business you're in.
I use these on my site currently but am looking to soon use custom templates from A Self Guru, who is a highly recommended lawyer who has created templates and legal bundles for bloggers like you and me!
I am in no way, shape or form an expert on legal pages and I'm certainly not a lawyer, that's why there are sites like this to help us all when getting started in the blogging world.
We want to be safe for us and our customers and audience.
Legal pages are there for a reason and give us the ability to be transparent and honest with our readers about our intentions and the way we run our sites with the information we collect from them.
Mistake #13 – Not Being Consistent
Another mistake which I've briefly touched upon further up in the post is consistency.
No blog is going to survive if there's no consistency in the way it's run and put out into the online world.
You can't expect to write a post, publish it and then leave it 3 months before you put another one out.
Google won't like this and neither will your readers.
How can people learn to know, like and trust you if you aren't around.
They need to see you show up for them regularly!
You won't be seen as an expert in your field if you disappear off the face of the earth all the time.
Google can't rank you and your SEO won't be great if you're not putting content out there steadily.
If you have social platforms you share your content on, be on there putting regular content out.
Send emails to your list every week, even if you only have one subscriber.
That one subscriber is your VIP and you need to nurture them, take care of them and share your best stuff with them.
Quite frankly, blogging is hard work and takes a lot of effort to not only get it off the ground, but to keep it going and to keep that momentum, even when things are tough and you have stages where you're not seeing results or getting any traction.
Blogging isn't for everyone and you have to have a mindset where you can get over hurdles easily and move on!
There's many pushbacks, sweat and tears along the way, but you have to keep pushing yourself forward, onwards and upwards in order to see success.
It's 100% a long haul journey…
Mistake #14 – Trying To Appeal To Everyone
If you try and appeal to everyone, you'll appeal to no one!
Truer words could not be spoken and this remains unbelievably true when it comes to blogging.
With all the billions of people in the world, all of which have different hobbies, wants, needs and ways of living etc… you couldn't possibly write and produce content which they all want to see.
That's why we have to be very specific and niche in what our blogs are about.
You have a much better chance of reaching your ideal audience if you ONLY appeal to them and write content they want to hear about.
This is where Keyword Research comes into play and finding out where your target audience hang out, what problems they have, what questions they're asking etc…
Once you know this information (check out Facebook Groups, Instagram accounts, Pinterest…) it makes it a lot easier to write the content your audience need!
Mistake #15 – Just Blogging To Make Money
Classic mistake when starting a blog – only blogging to make money!
Trust me, if you're only in it to make money, you're going to mighty disappointed.
You've got to want to blog for more than this.
Bloggers who are really successful are the ones who have spent time (often years) building up an ideal audience of raving fans who hang off their every word and can't wait for their next product or course to come out!
Do you know how they've done this?
By consistently showing up for their readers, putting themselves out there and always having VALUE at the forefront of their mind.
They're the ones who always think about what can they give to their readers which they'll love and then what MORE can they give to their readers, so they'll love it even more.
If you blog to give, you'll get back what you put in!
You can make money and a lot of money with your blog, if you do it the right way and are in it for the long road.
Just earning that first £1 online is such a milestone to reach, because it proves to yourself you can do it and if you can make £1, you can make £100, £1000 etc…
Build an audience, give away amazing, valuable content and freebies…
Find out what it is they really want and need, so that you can create products and courses they'll actually want to buy!
This is how you make money with your blog, alongside other added things too!
Mistake #16 – Not Building An Email List From Day 1
If there's one piece of advice I can give you above all others, it's to start building an email list from the very beginning.
I can't stress this enough as your email list will be the one place you'll earn the most money from with your blog!
Your email list is literally gold…
It's where you really build that relationship with your readers and where you can share exclusive and insider information with only them.
They're your people, your tribe and you should take care of them like crazy!
To build an email list, you need to get yourself an email marketing platform.
There's loads out there to choose from, but I use ConvertKit because I love them, they're easy and simple to use and out of all the ones I've used over the years (and that's a lot) they fit me the best.
I will be doing a blog post all about ConvertKit very soon, because there's so many cool features and benefits they offer.
It's a fact, we all want to be getting new subscribers
Start building your email list right now – I promise you won't regret it as it will become the lifeblood of your blog!
Mistake #17 – Not Looking After The Subscribers You Already Have
So many bloggers make this mistake when it comes to their email lists!
It all becomes about getting “new subscribers” but then they forget about the current subscribers already on their list.
It doesn't matter whether you have 1 or 1000 people on your list – once they're on there, you have to nurture them and treat them like you would your best friend.
Email them weekly or every other week (however long you've advised them you'll stay in touch in your welcome email) giving them top tips, awesome advice and helping them as much as you can.
Your email list is prime real estate and you can find out so much from them, way more than you can from just checking out comments on YouTube videos and in groups.
You have the opportunity to ask them exactly what they want to hear from you about and what they'd want you to create.
It's also the ideal time to test out future products, as you can offer them snippets of your course or products, to see how well they go down before you create the whole thing and waste time if it's not going to be a hit.
Mistake #18 – Trying To Be Perfect
I'll say this right now – everything on your blog does not need to be PERFECT!
I have a saying when it comes to my blog, which I repeat back to myself a lot and that is “It doesn't have to be perfect, it just has to get done”…
I can't remember where I heard this, but it's really stuck with me.
Getting your awesomeness out there into the world is what's most important.
You can go back and add, tweak and change your posts at any point, but if you try and sit on something for too long, it'll never get published.
Procrastinating is never good when it comes to your blog and you need to be in the mindset that it's OK to hit that publish button!
It's too easy to feel like it's not good enough or that no one will want to read it, when really this is us just being so self critical…
I'm a prime example of this with this blog.
It took me ages to launch it, because I was so critical to myself as to whether everything was looking right and exactly how I wanted it.
In the end, I just clicked it “live” because what's the worst that could happen hey…
I went back and made changes here and there as I went along and people were reading my posts and sharing them, so they can't have been that bad.
The more you write and publish posts, the more confident you'll become.
You don't have to be a perfect writer, you just have to get the valuable information out there in your way.
Mistake #19 – Thinking Starting A Blog Is FREE!
It's banded about a lot that you can start a blog for FREE but unfortunately, this just isn't the case…
There are a few costs involved, but they're no where near as much as if you were starting a brick and mortar business.
Starting a blog as a side hustle is actually one of the best things you can do to earn additional income.
When you first start a blog, the following tools are ones you'll need to pay for:
- A Domain name and Hosting from Siteground
- A really great blog theme
- An Email Marketing platform (although you can get this for free to start with but with limited features).
All the above tools don't cost the earth! In fact they're all very reasonably priced!
The hosting you'll have to pay for annually, but the above blog theme and email marketing platforms offer monthly or annual payments, so you can find a payment plan to suit you.
Mistake #20 – Not Writing With Purpose & Goals In Mind
Every blog post you write should have a purpose to it!
That purpose could be anything from getting new subscribers, to getting someone to purchase the product you've reviewed.
Whenever I plan out my posts for the next few months, I always think about why I'm going to be writing them.
What do I want to achieve from them.
Pretty much all my posts have freebies on them (content upgrades) because I want to give even more value and offer something else which can help them alongside the content on that post.
Never let your readers go without giving them the opportunity to sign up for something and get on your email list…
There's so many purposes and goals your posts could have, such as:
- To get a reader to sign up for a freebie
- To get your reader to click through to a sales page for a product or service
- To share a story
- To entertain
- To review products you use and share your experience with your readers
- To take your reader on a journey
Plus there's many more…
I look at the three main purpose categories:
- Are you looking to make money from the post?
- Are you looking to drive traffic from the post?
- Are you looking to build your email list from the post?
Every month, your blog should contain a mixture of all these, so that you're covering all areas and growing every area within your blog.
Mistake #21 – Worrying Too Much About Numbers & Page Views
Statistics – the thing that you either love or hate when it comes to blogging…
Whichever category you fall into, it is a necessity when it comes to your blog as you need to know what people are looking at, what's doing well and what isn't doing well.
This helps you create more content that your audience are digging and ditch the content that isn't floating their boat!
There's not a lot I'm going to say on this topic, because it can be very easy to get sucked into the numbers, which distracts you from the important blogging tasks (writing awesome posts/writing great emails to your list/creating pin images etc)…
The figures will go up and down, fluctuating a lot, especially when you first start out and I don't want you getting disheartened if you don't see a lot or any pageviews when you begin your blog!
If you concentrate on giving valuable information and helping as many people as you can, the numbers, stats and pageviews will speak for themselves.
Mistake #22 – Not Following Copyright Rules
Copyrighting rules are something you need to become familiar with because if you don't, you could find yourself in hot water and in a lot of trouble.
It's not unknown for bloggers or companies to sue other bloggers for using their content and images.
This information I am providing is in no way, shape or form legal advice. I am not a lawyer and neither has a lawyer been involved in putting this information together. I am just giving you the very basics so that you are aware of them and what they are.
What is Copyright
Copyright is where work (music, artwork, images, photos, written content, podcasts etc) is protected legally for the creator of that work.
As a blogger, as soon as you hit “Publish” your content is protected automatically under copyright laws and no one else can legally copy your work.
The only way the work can be changed or copied, by someone other than the creator, is if permission is granted by them.
This is done under a licence, of which there are many different types.
All countries have their own copyright laws and way of doing things, so it's always best to seek some legal help when dealing with this type of thing.
The World Intellectual Property Organization is also there to help you with regards to protection of your site and work.
One of the ways I make sure people know my work is protected, is to have the © symbol on each of my web pages.
It sits at the bottom of my footer (which is on every post and page on my site) and as my footer is set to appear on all pages and posts as a global setting, I don't have to worry about adding it manually every time I create a new page or write a new post…
Let's take a look at the licences now:
Work placed in the public domain category is basically work which has no copyright and was created without a license, or work whose copyright has expired.
This means it can be used without any restrictions and no permissions are needed to use it.
As of this year (2021) any work that was copyrighted prior to 1925 will be entered into the public domain for use freely.
Traditional Copyright means that no work can be copied, changed or published without the creator's permission.
It applies to ALL original work created.
Creative Commons licenses allow creators to grant permission for the public to use their work under copyright law.
The license allows the creator to retain copyrights over the work, but lets others copy and distribute their work in a non commercial way, without having to get permission.
You can't change the work and you have to credit the author.
The Creative Commons license only applies to work which creators have placed into this license type.
Royalty Free is a licence used by stock photo companies for the selling of stock images.
Royalty Free does not mean that the image is free…
It means that a buyer pays once for the use of a stock photo and then they get various rights of how they can use it.
Images and photos used in this category are still owned and copyrighted by the creator, however, the companies (such as iStock) sell licences which give the buyers rights to use them.
The profits are then split between the agency and the photographer, from the licence which has been sold.
Images & Photos
Because we use a lot of images and photos when blogging, I just wanted to touch a bit more upon the licenses you'll come across.
Sometimes the licenses allow them to be used for commercial and non commercial purposes, with no attribution and sometimes in order to use them, attribution needs to be given.
Whenever you're getting an image or stock photo from one of these sites, always, always check the licence agreement as to how you can use it, so you don't get caught out.
Mistake #23 – Not Being Part of Other Blogging Communities
Blogging can be a very lonely journey sometimes!
It's not like when you go to work in the office and you're seeing people, chatting away and having that adult interaction.
I remember when I started my first blog, I was just at home with my baby writing lots of posts, but I wasn't interacting with anyone who really understood what I was doing.
My family and friends were all super supportive, but I don't think they really got what I was trying to achieve and thought I was just writing my thoughts and feelings on this little blog!
When it comes to blogging, a lot of the time it tends to be mums at home with babies and young children, trying to do something for themselves to make them feel good and earn a bit of extra money.
But the thing is, there isn't anyone to reach out to for help when you don't get something…
You literally have to try and figure it all out for yourself, which can be overwhelming and exhausting…
This is when joining online blogging groups and communities can really help.
They're amazing places where you can hang out with like minded people and ask questions that you need answers for.
There are so many benefits to joining online communities, but the main one is being able to talk to people who are into the same thing that you are.
You can build friendships and network with other bloggers and it's amazing to be able to help others out too.
Don't go and join tons of groups though, as you'll be wasting so much time in them and not doing any actual blogging!
Just join one or two really good ones, that you can check in on every day or two, get some help if you need it and also help answer other people's questions if you can too!
Don't just take, take, take, you have to give something back.
Mistake #24 – Not Interacting With Your Readers
When readers find bloggers they really like, they want to leave comments, hang out on their socials and build a trusting relationship with them.
The worst thing you can do when starting out is not interacting with your audience.
In the beginning stages, you have the time to answer all the comments and help your readers out as much as possible, so utilise this time to do so as it really builds that relationship up for the future.
People want to know you're a real person behind the screen and by responding to emails and continuing the conversations on your blog comments, it shows them you're real, you're there to help and you show up when they need you!
Of course as your blog grows and you're busier with more tasks, it'll become near on possible to respond to everyone, but you should still try and communicate with your tribe as much as you can…
Mistake #25 – Not Being YOU!
When I read a blog I love, I love it not only for the content on it, but because I really like the person behind the content!
If I don't get the person, or resonate with the person, than I won't continue to read their blog, no matter how great the articles may be.
Reading a blog should be an experience for your reader and a journey and this all starts with being who you are…
You can tell when people aren't being themselves, or they're trying to be something they're not, as it comes through in their writing.
I want to say this – Write like you talk!
Talk to your reader like you would your bestie.
Be honest, transparent and share your story with them, because you'll be relatable and will attract like minded people to become part of your tribe.
Mistake #26 – Not Keeping Your Blog Posts On Topic
I'm the first one to admit I go off on a tangent when I'm talking lol!
BUT when it comes to your blog posts, you need to keep the content in line with the post title.
When people are searching on Google, Pinterest etc… they're searching for something specific and when they come across your blog post, they're expecting you to be talking about that particular topic.
The more specific you are the better and the greater your SEO ranking will be.
Also, don't try and be clever or cute with your titles.
Just be specific and to the point, so that you're readers know what they're getting.
Branching out into a million different areas in one post isn't a good idea.
You can write separate posts for each individual topic and link them to each other – which is also another great way to boost your SEO efforts.
Mistake #27 – Not Proofreading Your Posts
Do not press “Publish” once you've written your post!
I know you're desperate to get it out there, but you have to proof read it first and make sure you're spelling and grammar are ok.
You also need to read it through to see that it reads great.
I tend to write my posts in stages over a week!
- Stage 1 – I write the first draft.
- Stage 2 – I take a break for a day and then go back in and bulk the post out.
- Stage 3 – I take another days break and then go back in and finalize the post.
- Stage 4 – I go through and check all the links are added and I proofread the whole thing.
The reason I do it this way, is because I don't like to sit and write a whole post in one sitting.
I find I make tons of mistakes, my brain goes fuzzy and shuts down.
Having the day breaks in between resets my brain and gives me a fresh perspective when I sit down to revisit the post.
I wrote a post all about how to write blog posts here…
Mistake #28 – Not Planning Out Your Content
In the beginning, your posts can be all over the place, as you just want to write and get information out there, but after a while you need plan out the content you want to have on your blog.
I don't use a proper content planner tool, I just use good old Microsoft Excel and plan out my posts for the next few months/year.
It's super simple and just has the month, how many weeks and the dates for those weeks, along with the post title, URL and a box where I type “DONE” when it's published for the world to see.
That's it, simple and easy to put together and keep on top of.
Having an Editorial Calendar will really help you stick to consistent blog posts being written, although as you can see from mine this year, it hasn't gone to plan!
Due to living in a Global Pandemic and having my kids home all the time, it hasn't been easy and I haven't been able to do half as much as I wanted to on my blog, but it's still easy to get back on it and I can see exactly where I am with this spreadsheet.
Having a calendar will keep you organized and on track and is a much needed framework for your posts!
Mistake #29 – Not Keeping Things Simple
Don't overcomplicate your blog and try and have too many bells and whistles on it.
Honestly, the simpler the better, as having lots of animations, sliders and fancy imagery can slow your site down and site speed is really important.
What matters is the content you put out on your blog!
People are coming to your blog to read your awesome articles, not to see how pretty it is.
That's not to say you can't make it beautiful.
I use brand colours and fonts and have made it look pretty, but I haven't gone to town on it.
Keep your homepage easy to navigate and have your layout clean and effortless to move around from post to post.
If it's too hard for people to read and sign up etc, they'll just leave.
Mistake #30 – Giving Up Too Easily
The final mistake I want you to avoid is not to give up easily…
You won't see success with your blog overnight and it can take months to see any kind of traction and movement.
Results take time and you need to consistently publish posts, show up on your social media platforms (if you're using them from the start) and communicate with your audience.
Help, help and help some more and give valuable, actionable information that people want and need!
Keep at it and you will see your blog grow into something truly amazing.
Nothing great ever happens in an instant.
Patience is key and it's very easy to throw in the towel at the first hurdle, but you'll have many hurdles and hoops to jump through.
Don't let it stress you out and upset you.
Take a break for a day or two if you're feeling too overwhelmed and can't focus and then get back to it when you're feeling back to yourself and fresh as a daisy to dive back in again.
Avoid these 30 blogging mistakes…
Save a ton of time and be successful with your blog quicker by avoiding these mistakes…
So that's it for today's post.
I hope I've helped you out with some of the things you can avoid when starting your blog.
I know I wish I'd known at least a few of these when I started out.
All I want to do is help you out as much as I can lovely, so that your blogging journey is as smooth as it can be…
Reach out if you need any more help.