Blogging is a crazy big industry, with bloggers of all backgrounds writing about basically every topic imaginable. Have you been blogging for a while now? Feel a little bit stuck in a rut? Or, are you just starting out and want to know the blogging mistakes you should avoid?
Read on to find out how to grow and thrive and build a more successful blog!
You’re not Investing in your blog’s platform & brand
It’s entirely possible to set up a blog for cheap, even in some cases for free. But, very often, the cheaper the solutions are less effective in allowing your blog to grow and thrive.
The biggest mistake you can make with your blog is thinking that it will become successful without you investing a lot of time, and at least a little cash.
You’ve started your blog on a free platform like WordPress.com or Blogger.com – that’s great, and free platforms like this are a really great place to test out different writing styles, figure out what you enjoy and gain a few regular readers. But these platforms can become limiting, both in design and ability.
With a free platform, you don’t really own your blog’s content – if your blogging platform ever changed their rules (like
Going self-hosted is the easiest way to take control of your blog, giving you full access to a whole suite of plugins and SEO tools to help your blog grow and thrive. Easy!
You’re in the wrong niche
Your niche is basically the category of topics you really want to focus on. It could be beauty, fashion, sports, health, food, travel or anything you want to write about. Think of your favourite blogger, someone with a hugely successful blog. They probably have a specific niche – a theme all of their blog posts relate back to.
The The Problem:
Your writing is all over the place. You’re a food blogger but your last three posts have been about movies you enjoyed this month, your political views and your neighbours puppy. It’s fine, if these are the things you really want to write about, but your readers won’t keep coming back if your content isn’t consistent and they don’t know what to expect.
You build readership and authority by being consistent in your writing. That includes your topics. Choose a topic you’re passionate about, something you enjoy researching endlessly and can write about for days on end. Then write about this topic in every post. If you find you want to write about something entirely different every so often, that’s okay! It’s your blog and your voice, but try to come up with a way for all of your blog posts to feel cohesive and relate, in some way, to one another.
You’re lacking consistency
Consistency is Key. It’s a cliche, but it’s a completely true one. It’s important to take your blog seriously, and part of taking it seriously is ensuring you’re not being a bit… flakey. Readers aren’t going to consistently read your blog if you’re not consistently posting!
Since I started blogging, consistency has been my greatest hurdle. I’ve never had problems with blog growth except when I’ve not been consistent. If you don’t work for your blog, your blog won’t work.
You’re not sticking to a schedule when you post to your blog, or your writing style and imagery changes from post to post. When you’re not consistent with your blog’s topics, voice, schedule and appearance, your readers don’t know what to expect. This means you’ll have trouble building trust and influence with your readers.
Create a blogging schedule and stick to it. If you can’t find the time to post once per week, don’t promise to. Publishing once every two weeks or once per month is entirely acceptable, in fact, I’d recommend creating a schedule like this. Weekly is great, but hard to stick to! Don’t set yourself up to fail, make a promise to yourself to post regularly, create a plan and stick to it.
You have Unrealistic Expectations or Goals
It’s easy to get carried away with blog expectations when you see how successful other bloggers are, but it’s important to remember that all of the most successful bloggers have been blogging for years. It takes time and patience to build influence and grow a blog.
You think every blog post should go viral, and are disappointed when they don’t. You want your blog to get thousands of hits and start bringing in enough income that you can quit your job and focus on it full time (You will get there eventually, I promise!). These are perfectly valid long term goals, but you want them right now.
Having unrealistic goals and expectations is setting yourself up for failure, and it can be so disheartening that you’ll probably want to quit.
Respect the process; Consistently write well-researched and helpful content that you know people will find useful and want to share. When you do this, your blog will start to grow – slowly at first and then start to pick up the pace.
Set some small, measurable goals, but keep them focused on things you can actually control. Things like sticking to a blogging schedule, commenting on a certain number of other blogs, interacting with other bloggers and sharing your posts daily across the internet.
Like everything in life, a successful blog takes time and effort and dedication. It’s only with the right groundwork that your blog will thrive!
You think hitting ‘Publish’ is the end of the process
I’ll tell you a secret about blogging: It’s about 20% writing and about 80% pushing your content on every platform imaginable so that people can actually see it.
You’re writing quality content and publishing it on a consistent basis, your blog is professional looking and self-hosted, but you’re not growing at all. You’re not getting any new visitors, just your parents and best friend.
You need some sort of marketing plan for your blog. Publishing strong content is a step in the right direction, but there are many things you need to do after you hit publish to ensure people are actually finding your content. You need to:
- Make sure your blog posts are search-engine friendly; if you’re self-hosted, I highly recommend using the Yoast plugin.
- Share your post across social media – send tweets and post on Instagram and Facebook so that all of your followers know you’ve got some fresh content
- Harness the power of Pinterest to Grow Your Blog with Group Boards
All in all, realise that blogging isn’t easy and that you’re going to make mistakes along the way. It’s all about what you learn from the mistakes and how you use that knowledge to continue to grow and push your blog forward!
What’s the biggest mistake you’ve made so far in your blogging journey?