You know, I look back at my first blog and think wow Yissel, why you such a dumb b!#$@? Well, I was a youngling back them. I was naive. I didn’t know any better.
But I see these mistakes all the time and bloggers wonder why their blog isn’t getting any traction. Well, the good thing is that we can all learn from our mistakes. I wish I knew this when I started my first time around but, again, that’s what mistakes are for.
I don’t want you to waste time trying to figure out what works and what doesn’t so I want to share with you the 10 blogging mistakes I’ve made and how you can avoid them when starting your blog/business.
#1: Giving up at the first signs of failure
Just because things don’t go your way, doesn’t mean you should give up. If you give up, then you’ll be left wondering if this blogging this would work out. You were probably so close to breaking through but gave up at the last second.
Don’t stop when you fail. Failure helps us grow and the fear is only going to drive you towards your success.
Let failure be your motivation to keep putting content out there because one day people WILL see your content. It just takes time.
Blogging isn’t an easy battle to overcome. I mean if it was that easy, everyone would do it. Right? But just like everything else, the things that we want don’t come easy. Keep pushing forward. YOU. GOT. THIS.
#2: Be on all the social meds
At first, it practically impossible to be on all social media platforms. You won’t have enough time to focus on creating high-quality content and growing your blog because you’re too focused on making your Pinterest look pristine, your Twitter having the best tweets, updating your Facebook status…it’s too much.
Ok, I confess! I’m guilty of doing this my first round of blogging. It was overwhelming but I thought, “Everyone is doing this. I. Must. Do. ALL”!
We need to come to the realization that being on all the social meds is UNREALISTIC. At first. Once you have made a presence in the blogosphere then you can start branching out to other platforms. Those that are all over social media probably have social media manager that run the blogger’s accounts. That’s probably why you see them all over the place.
It’s best to just focus on 2, at most, 3 social media platforms at the beginning of your blogging journey.
I highly recommend Pinterest and Instagram to start off.
#3: Quantity over quality
Think about it.
Everything seems to be much easier in your head when you say
I’m going to write 5 blog posts a week, promote everywhere, and keep my sanity.
Easy! This was my mentality, sadly, and quickly (very…quickly) realized Nah I can’t do this. I burnt out real quick, real fast. Real quick and fast.
The blog posts I was dishing out were not that great. Safe to say, they were sh*t. The format was all over the place. The blog posts were short in length and pretty vague. So I focused on writing 1 long, detailed blog post a week (to keep my sanity) and turns out, I had better results with one blog post a week as compared to 5 blog posts a week. Hmm, who would have thunk?
I’m not saying I’m a pro now, but I feel like I’ve improved a bit. I still have SOOO much to learn though to get to where I want to in my blogging journey.
All in all, people stick around when you write good quality content.
Trust me, less is more.
#4: Using a free domain instead of self-hosted
When I started my blog Adventures with Yis, I used WordPress.com as my hosting service. Once I found out that I can make money off of blogging, the “.com” version was not going to get me the muns and be able to accomplish what I wanted with a free blogging platform.
Yes, free is good, great even but it has many limitations depending on the situation. The .com site would benefit someone who is doing blogging as a hobby, like how I was initially.
It took me a while to build up the courage but I went for it and signed up for the Go Big plan on Siteground. So far, Siteground has not steered me wrong AND they offer FREE website transfers without all the hassle. That’s the free I’m talking about.
This is something worth investing if you are serious about monetizing your blog and making this a full-time job.
You get so much freedom with a self-hosted site cause:
You own what YOU create
– Anything you create, (blog content, graphic designs, email marketing) is all under the ownership of YOU. If WordPress.com were to shut down one day, all the blog posts you created, all of that hard work you put into making your site look beautiful, *POOF* gone! You don’t want that heartache and frustration. Go self-hosted.
You get to customize your site the way YOU want to
– You get to design your site the way you envision it. Have cute graphics and use plugins you couldn’t use in WordPress.com. Go self-hosted.
Bring in the muns hun
– The only way you can monetize your blog is if you’re self-hosted. Period. Go self-hosted!
What’s better than that? Invest in self-hosting. It’s worth it.
#5: No Email list
It’s like you’re asking to fail. Having an email list is one, if not, the most IMPORTANT things that you need in order to grow your blog.
I really was hesitant in starting an email list but I knew it was vital in the future success of my blog. I’m currently with Mailchimp right now but I do plan on moving to ConvertKit once I establish a good following on my blog.
(I have officially switched to ConvertKit. Let me know in the comments if you want me to write about my experience with both email services)
Think about it. If social media was to one day just disappear from existence, we can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that we have our email subscribers to fall back on.
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#6: Not knowing your audience
When starting out, you have to take the time and talk to your audience.
What do they like to read? What are their problems? How can you help solve their problems?
You don’t want to be that blogger that cranks out blog post after blog post that doesn’t pertain to your audience’s interests and not engage with them either. Your audience will quickly realize that you are not there for them, and they’ll leave for a blogger who actually engages with them and provides solutions to their problems.
Always ask what your audience is looking for and tie that into your content.
Engaging with your audience builds TRUST (you’ll want this if you want to sell products in the future) and they’ll come back for more because they know that you are going to respond when they comment. Not only in the blog comments but emails and on social media.
Take about an hour or so to reply back. Your subscribers will appreciate it and will come back for more.
Or maybe you’re just downright AWESOMESAUCE and just like you for you!
#7: Lack consistency
This is what is going to make your blog get noticed. If you don’t have a plan and schedule your blog post throughout the month (whether it be once a week or once a month), whatever it is, make it a habit of being on point with your uploading schedule.
Those that genuinely love to read your content will be waiting on whatever day you decide to upload to read your fresh blog post.
Also, you never know what can happen like, oh say your computer crashes and erases all of your hard work. Plan ahead at least a month or two in advance with blog posts ready to be uploaded and upload these blog posts where you can access them from anywhere.
For me, I use Google Drive and OneNote. Yes, I back up my content on multiple places, just in case. So I can start my post on my computer and then continue on my phone when I have some free time when I’m on the go.
This tip kind of meshed with this next one…
#8: Not being organized
Blogging is serious work. It’s not as simple as whipping up a quick blog post the day of publishing said blog post and expect to get thousands of views. No no no. There’s writing content, creating graphics, promoting blog posts, networking, doing sponsored posts, managing emails lists, etc…
You need to be on your A-game, so it’s important to keep yourself organized or you will fall through the cracks and burn out quickly.
Planners are a great way of organizing yourself. I have heard of editorial calendars and I would like to delve into that but for now, I’ll stick to good ol’ paper planner for now.
Plus, I just really like post-it notes and office supplies. You can’t utilize colorful stickers and clips on a computer. I mean there is the digital kind but that’s just me.
#9: Not using a mobile-responsive theme
We are all glued to our phones nowadays. And I’m sure that you’ve experienced those non-mobile-friendly sites.
You know, like the ones where you have to scroll sideways to read the post. Or the ones where the text is so tiny you feel like you have to use a magnifying glass to read the text. Yeah, we don’t want that.
When looking for a theme, make sure that in the description, it says that the theme is mobile-friendly or mobile responsive.
An easier way of finding out if your site and theme are mobile friendly use the Mobile-Friendly Test
#10: I have to be perfect!
Trying to have every single detail perfect is a total waste of time. I mean, I agree that you want your site to look visually inviting and appeals to both you and your audience. I fell into this hole of wanting to have everything, right down to the style of text, needed to be perfect.
If I continued on this path of perfectionism, I’d probably wouldn’t have launched my blog on time and still be working on designing my website and not have a single post published.
I have to remind myself that people come to my site for me and my content and not by how my site looks. Visuals are one thing but if you have an awesome-looking site with crap content, yeah people won’t be around for long.
My blog will never be perfect, no matter how much I fix it. And neither will yours. Keep focusing on what’s important: CONTENT, ENGAGEMENT, and GROWTH.
I know I said 10 blogging mistakes but I wanted to include these as bonus tips. I find this important to keep in mind when wanting to find the RIGHT way to succeed in making your blog/biz your job.
Also because why not?
#11: Not utilizing Pinterest
When you think of Pinterest, you think of searching up recipes and wedding dresses and all the flowers and rainbows. But Pinterest is much more than that.
Pinterest is WHERE IT’S AT when it comes to promoting your blog content and getting traffic to your blog. I find myself going to Pinterest multiple times a day and is by far my favorite social media platform to promote my content.
I purchased Ell Duclos’ Pinterest Strategies and I just starting implementing her strategies. Let me know in the comments if you want me to write a post about my results on this ecourse. So far my results have been…not too shabby.
Pinterest is not the only way to drive traffic to your blog but it is the most popular for that purpose.
#12: Not giving yourself a break
It’s really easy to get sucked into the work grind but at some point, we burn out. Yes, we want to publish content left and right but in order to really manage a blog/business, you need to take a BREAK.
There’s nothing wrong with taking a break. We need to rejuvenate and have a fresh mind before we delve back into our work. I refreshed mind results in awesome content for your readers.
Watch your favorite show, go for a walk, spend time with family and friends.
We need breaks in order to produce the best content we can for our audience.
Related: The Importance of Self-Care
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That’s it! Those are my 10 blogging mistakes that you can avoid and do things the right way!
If you are already an established blogger, what mistakes have you made and what have you done to fix it? Let me know.
Also, follow and share on the social meds.
Until next time,