Starting a blog can be very exciting.
You can’t wait to finally share your experiences with the digital world and reach millions of people.
You might even make some new friends (fellow bloggers) if you are open to it, of course.
There are numerous benefits of blogging I’m not going to touch on in this article but believe me, it’s better to start today than tomorrow.
When you have set up a blog and are ready to go, it’s likely that you are going to make some rookie mistakes.
We are all humans, we all make mistakes, right?
But that doesn’t mean these could easily be avoided.
And of course, mistakes are part of the process but hey: prevention is better than cure.
To help you guys out I’ve asked 12 experienced bloggers to share their blogging mistakes they made as a beginner and how to avoid them.
I would say, take a cup of coffee and take some notes!
Here’s what you will learn in this blog post:
Common Blogging Mistakes According To Experienced Bloggers
Experience is the best teacher and that applies to blogging as well.
Keep on reading to find out what these bloggers have experienced and learned throughout their blogging journey.
#1 Not Sweat Your Stats – Helena Sula
My number one tip for new bloggers is to not sweat your stats just yet. So many people tell me: my blog only has 4,000 views a month.
Or I only have 100 subscribers. Don’t worry about the numbers! Right now you need to focus on the community that IS there.
Meaning, create content for those that are around. Start putting stock into the people that care.
So often, we focus on growing our numbers.
Numbers are important but losing a loyal fan is a far bigger loss than 50 fans that don’t really care.
I suggest talking with your readers. Feature them on your social media. Answer their comments. And make sure they feel like they are part of your community.
Otherwise, you will be gaining momentum without gaining the true fans. Bottom line: don’t forget about the people that are there for you right now.
– Helena Sula. She blogs about Travel, Blogging and Lifestyle.
#2 Dedicate Enough Time To Posting Fresh Content – Rachel Moffet
“One of the biggest mistakes new bloggers make is that they don’t dedicate enough time to posting fresh content on their sites.
Because their blogs aren’t making them money yet, many fail to treat it like a business from day one.
They let blogging tasks get pushed to the bottom of their to-do list, favoring everything else above it.
But if you want to be successful, you have to put in the work.
You need to focus on putting out valuable, high-quality information. That’s going to help you build trust and establish a long-term relationship with your audience.
In fact, according to HubSpot, 47% of people consumed three to five pieces of content before taking the first step towards making a purchase.
They also found small businesses that blog get 126% more leads than small businesses that don’t.
What does that mean for you? If you want to start making money through products and services, you need to start blogging regularly!
In order to succeed online, make blogging a priority in your life.
Treat it with the importance it deserves. And focus on creating a blogging schedule that works for you.
Does it mean you have to post five times per week?
No, but at least commit to one new piece each week to build your audience.
From there, stick with it and before you know it, you’ll be seeing the results you desire.”
– Rachel Moffet. She blogs about Business, Blogging, Social Media and Personal Growth.
#3 Giving Up Too Soon Or Too Easily – Marc Andre
The most common blogging mistake that I see is simply giving up too soon or too easily.
I’ve been blogging since 2007 and over the years I’ve known a lot of successful bloggers, and a lot of unsuccessful bloggers as well.
The biggest difference between people in these two groups is that the successful people have had the discipline to stick with it.
Most successful blogs took time to grow.
Sure, there are some that get a lot of traffic and start making money very quickly, but those are few and far between.
Typically it takes a lot of time and effort, and some patience, to build a blog’s audience.
Most new bloggers probably only have a few hours per week to work on their blog.
I don’t know anyone who would start a traditional business with no experience, working only a few hours per week, and expect to make a profit from the start.
But with blogging, most people want to see results right away.
There is nothing wrong with taking your time and growing a blog slowly, but it does take some patience in order to keep putting in the work based on the hope of results in the future.
My best tip for new bloggers is to have realistic expectations, and plan to work consistently on your blog for a year before making any money.
If you start with a long-term focus you’ll be more likely to stick with it and making it through the early months.
Those first few months can be really frustrating when it seems like no one is reading your blog.
But understand that many other successful bloggers have been there too, and almost all new bloggers have to go through this.
– Marc Andre. He blogs about saving and managing money.
#4 Don’t Wait to Start Backlinking – Tom Blake
When I first started blogging, I spent almost all of my effort and time on content creation. I would spend hours writing long-form content, researching SEO, and meticulously monitoring my rankings on search engines.
However, it wasn’t until I started putting in an effort to earn backlinks that my blog really started to grow.
Beginner bloggers should spend a lot of their time on content creation and social media promotion, but never neglect your backlinks!
Backlinks contribute to your rankings on search engines, and establishing backlinks to your blog from high profile websites can help increase your own authority and organic traffic over time.
I didn’t start backlinking for months because I was scared I didn’t have enough content.
However, if you take a look at my backlinking progress graph and the rate at which my organic traffic has been growing, you will see the 2 metrics have a correlation.
More backlinks, more organic traffic?
It seems so…
Long story short, don’t wait to start backlinking! Get your blog up and running, pump out some great content, but don’t put off your backlinking efforts for months/years!
Your organic traffic will thank you for it.
– Tom Blake. He blogs about Online Marketing, MMO and saving money.
#5 Selecting The Best Blog Topics And Creating Enticing Titles – Ruby Bucio
Long form keyword searches are the best way to get started.
It’s important to write about what you know, but you want to make sure it is something people will be interested in reading about.
Start by using Keywords Everywhere Tool and install for Chrome. Once installed you will be able to see which long-form phrases, in your niche, are getting the most hits.
However, don’t look for the ones with the most searches as they will be too competitive.
Instead, stick with hits in the 1,500 to 10,000 hits per month range. This will ensure that enough people are looking for this information but it will not be saturated by competitors.
Be sure to include those keywords in the title of your blog. Use relevant, eye-catching pics and graphics too.
When uploading the pics to your site, label the “filename” with a relevant keyword as well.
Google Image search will pick up this filename and can help get more hits to your site.
Another way I like to search for topic ideas is Quora.
This is a great place to look and see what questions people are asking in your niche. You can also post answers to questions and include links to your blog, thus driving traffic back to your site.
– Ruby Bucio. She blogs about Traveling.
#6 Invest In Proper Hosting, Pick A Niche You’re Passionate About & Patience – Valerie Estrella
I first started my blog while I was working full time.
Invest in proper hosting
I wanted to share my message of health and wellness to the masses so I decided that a blog was the way to go.
But I didn’t know a whole lot about blogs or technology.
I got really lucky and found the most amazing web designer that didn’t charge me an arm and a leg. A friend gave me a referral and that was my first blessing.
You see I never would have gotten it off the ground if I had to design it too. So I will say if you’ve been blessed to understand technology, then go for it.
But if not, don’t feel bad if you need to consult with a professional for help.
I decided to go with a WordPress website and signed up for the Premium website.
I didn’t realize how limited it is without having the SEO. So after a little over 2 years, I feel like I am still not getting the traffic to my website that I desire.
So a couple of days ago I signed up for the Business Website. This will really increase my ability to get traffic. I just didn’t have much luck with doing it the “Organic Way.”
So if you can afford it, go for the business package after you build up enough content. Either way you look at it, it’s still much less expensive than if you were paying rent on a building.
Pick a niche you are passionate about
I do believe it’s a great idea to have a target market. But it’s also important to write about things that you find interesting.
If you are writing about things that you aren’t passionate about, it will show and you probably won’t be having too much fun. So don’t be afraid to express your passion.
After all the world needs all the passion it can get.
Hopefully, you will make a lot of money.
But be prepared that it can take quite a bit of time to make $$. It depends on how much you “work it.”
Myself, I am lucky to be in the position where this is strictly a hobby for me right now. I use it for a creative outlet.
Maybe one day I can turn it into a novel or people will decide to shop on my website.
But either way, when I look at my stats and I see that someone in South Africa read a post about coping with disappointment, it gives me much satisfaction and gratitude that hopefully, this person found my words to be comforting to them.
My point is to be patient with yourself. The money will come but it may take longer than expected.
If you’re not technologically savvy, you will probably end up consulting with a professional for advice or you will have to learn to do it yourself. Either way, it’s great.
There are some good groups for bloggers on Facebook.
So hopefully you can find the support and encouragement to keep going.
Know that no matter what your goals or dreams are, that you can do it. Don’t give up and the world needs to hear from you.
– Valerie Estrella. She is a Health and Wellness Coach and blogs about green living and the New Climate Economy that’s happening to cultivate a more Eco-Friendly Planet.
#7 Not Building An Email List – Victor Joseph
I’ve started blogging in 2006 and my biggest blogging mistake was not starting my own email list.
Had I started my email list back then, I would have tens or maybe hundreds of thousands of subscribers today.
If you want to make money from blogging, the money is in the list.
So much so, an email list is probably the most important asset you’ll ever have as a blogger.
Also, it makes you less dependent on traffic coming from Google or social media.
If for some reason your website got shut down, or Google, Facebook and other social media channels decided to stop sending you traffic, you’ll be dead in the water.
You can’t control those traffic sources and you don’t own your followers – Google, Facebook, Pinterest and other social media network do!
Unfortunately creating a mailing list for your website from scratch can be overwhelming and expensive. That’s why so many bloggers are putting it on the back burner.
The good news? Starting your own email list doesn’t have to be difficult nor expensive.
In fact, you can do it in 30 minutes or less (and for free too).
If you haven’t started your email list yet, check out my step-by-step guide on how to start your own.
Mistakes are part of the journey. The most important thing is to learn from them. And one of the smartest things you can do is to learn from other people mistakes and not to repeat them!
– Victor Joseph. He blogs about SEO and Email & Social Media Marketing.
#8 Don’t Aspire To Be A “Jack Of All Trades…” – Lexis Hershey
In this high-paced society, there are plenty of ways to market your blog; Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, and Tumblr only begin to cover all of your options.
Mistakenly thinking “more is better”, a new blogger may attempt to utilize all of these sites, resulting in mediocre content at best.
However, these days, mediocre content just doesn’t bring in the ‘big bucks’.
To really derive the most payback of your efforts, concentrate on optimizing your content for one site – or two, at the most.
This way, you can produce killer content – the type that everyone will want to share, pin, like, subscribe, and so on.
Great content – even if it means producing less content – has the potential to go viral and can lead to phenomenal growth.
When I changed my marketing method to focus mainly on one site (for me: Pinterest) the traffic to my site quadrupled (and it’s only been two months).
I always ask myself, “Is this graphic eye-catching? Does this offer a solution to my readers’ problems? Will consumers be drawn to click on this image? Is this photograph optimized for Pinterest?”
Of course, you may have to tweak the questions slightly depending upon which method of marketing you choose.
However, ALWAYS keep in mind that quality wins out over quantity.
Remember, the old adage “Jack of all trades…” ends with “…but, master of none.”
Go out there and master your marketing, bloggers!
– Lexis Hershey. She blogs about Lifestyle, Traveling and DIY.
#9 Always Double Check Before You Publish A Blog Post – Claire Donovan-Blackwood
The biggest mistake I ever made as a beginner blogger…
This is mortifying.
It’s mortifying to me because it had such an effect on my mental health.
Years ago, I wanted to feature a blogger but didn’t send her the email as a request.
It just totally left my mind, I was convinced that I had sent the email, but I had only written it in Google Docs and saved it so I could check grammar and spelling, etc.
But I was in such a rush to publish some great content that I skipped the step but convinced myself I had done it.
I then stumbled across the ladies post on Instagram complaining and being furious, which she was fully in the right to do.
I apologized profusely, and I get it, I understand why she did it that way, but I was kind of annoyed that she didn’t email me directly to deal with it and to ask me to take it down.
Instead, she just wanted to sh*t talk. Which again, I get, but it’s not a great way to handle a situation.
I felt so guilty about it, about how angry I had made her that I had a complete breakdown.
I’m not kidding.
I ended up having to go on pretty strong anxiety medication that summer that left me totally blank, but I still felt sh*t.
Getting through the day was a real struggle. I would get to 3 pm and need to meditate to break the day into two.
That was the summer I discovered mindfulness meditation, and it changed my life completely.
– Claire Donovan-Blackwood. She blogs about Social Media and Blogging.
#10 Not Having Specific Goals To Grow Your Email List – Björgvin Benediktsson
I think one of the biggest mistakes bloggers make is to not have specific goals to grow their email list.
Every time you finish a blog post you should include calls to action at the end of their blog posts to further that goal.
Make it easy and clear for the reader of your blog to join your email list.
You should not be afraid of asking them to join. You’ll get 0% of the things you don’t ask for.
If you’re wondering where to ask people to subscribe to your email list, I wrote an article discussing this.
Honestly, your biggest goal should be to collect email subscribers when you’re starting out because it allows you to build your audience, interact with people who are interested in what you have to say, and grow your blog by blogging about topics they want to read about.
Building an audience of email subscribers, and using a specific, clear, call to action on your website to do so is one of the main building blocks of growing your blog.
For myself, because I have 30,000+ email subscribers on Audio Issues, my blog posts and emails now include product links and reasons to buy my courses, but that’s not where you should start.
At the beginning when people don’t know you, it’s easier to create goodwill by creating something free for people to get when they subscribe to your email list.
– Björgvin Benediktsson. He blogs about Audio and Recording.
#11 Have A Unique Voice And Purpose – Somto Ugwueze
The biggest blogging mistake you can make is to not have a unique voice and purpose.
There are millions of blogs out there!
That’s why you have to build something that only you can create.
Recently at Travel Con, a conference for travel bloggers, I listened to a keynote speech by best-selling author, Ryan Holiday.
He stressed that you shouldn’t be afraid to piss people off. If you want to create a lasting brand that stands for something, there will inevitably be people who disagree with you.
Trying to please everyone will result in pleasing no one.
Your unique voice and purpose will attract your tribe, the people who love your message and will support you.
The most successful bloggers understand exactly who they are serving.
Oneika Raymond, another keynote speaker at Travel Con, empowers black travelers by tackling topics others shy away from.
In fact, she received death threats for a video challenging the Dutch blackface tradition of Zwarte Piet. You don’t have to be an activist, but you have to stand for something.
Do some soul searching to discover what makes you tick.
What legacy do you want to leave? Make that as loud and clear as possible.
My blog started as a solo travel diary, and I had no idea who my audience was.
Then I realized that what I truly care about is location freedom. The thought of working a cubicle makes my blood boil.
Now, I write for adventurous spirits who feel suffocated by the 9 to 5 life.
– Somto Ugwueze. She blogs about Traveling.
#12 Getting Stuck In Learning Mode – Marlene Srdic
One of the biggest mistakes beginning bloggers make is getting stuck in learning mode.
There are so many amazing resources out there and tantalizing freebies that promise big bucks and big email lists seemingly overnight.
It can be tempting—and addicting—to jump from one resource, webinar or e-course to the next.
But what happens to a lot of bloggers is they end up consuming so much information that they feel overwhelmed, stuck and stop creating.
Or, even worse, they never get started!
Continuing education is great, and if you are looking to up-level or master a new skill, such as email list growth, do it.
But don’t try to do all the things at once.
And don’t try to learn everything at once. At the end of the day, you have to just start and make your own mistakes along the way.
The most important thing you can do when starting a blog is to be consistent, the rest will fall into place and it’s ok if you make a few mistakes and learn along the way.
But just start, everyone has to start somewhere.
You don’t have to have everything figured out. It is totally natural for your blog to evolve as you evolve and as your audience grows.
It’s a journey, not a finish line you can get to right away.
– Marlene Srdic. She blogs about Copywriting, Blogging and Visual Branding.
Wrapping It Up
As you can see, there is a lot to learn as a beginner blogger.
Well, lucky for you, they have made these mistakes so you shouldn’t anymore.
I hope these ‘11 Common Blogging Mistakes Beginners Make (And How To Avoid Them)’ are useful to you!
Lastly, I want to thank all the wonderful people that contributed to this article. Thank you!
Now Over To You
I’d like to hear from you:
Are there any other mistakes you made as a beginner that you didn’t see on this list?
Or maybe you have a question.
Either way, let me know by leaving a comment below right now.