You know, I look back at my first blog and think Yissel, what the flubber nut are you talking about?
I read back at my old blog post and I just think, I really thought this made sense. Well, I was a youngling back then. 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. Mistakes exist so you can learn and grow from them. Make better, more educated decisions.
You would be shooting yourself in the foot if you didn’t learn from your mistakes the second time around.
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.
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MISTAKE #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 never know if pushing forward will reap the reward. 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. And a lot of patience.
MISTAKE #2: I NEED TO BE ON ALL SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORMS
At first, it’s 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 the first time around. 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 media platforms is UNREALISTIC. You’ll be spreading yourself thin and not giving 100% to your audience.
Once you have made a presence in the blogosphere then you can start branching out to other platforms, if your schedule allows it.
Of course, you can totally incorporate more platforms as time goes on. But in these situations, less is more.
Remember, you have content to dish out, graphics to create, a website to run and look nice, answering comments and emails, etc. The list goes on. Know your limits and what you can efficiently handle.
Personally, I highly recommend Pinterest and Instagram to start off.
Pro tip: It’s best to just focus on, at most, 2 platforms that you frequently engage in and really aim at mastering the ins and outs of utilizing social media to drive traffic to your blog.
MISTAKE #3: QUANTITY OVER QUALITY
Think about it.
Everything seems to be much easier said than done when you say:
I’m going to write 5 blog posts a week, promote everywhere, and keep my sanity.
Easy, right? Pssh! That’s a big fat nope. If you have a team of writers, hell yeah, it would be a breeze to dish out blog posts left and right.
We got to think realistically here. If you’re a one-man-band, I would stick with publishing one post a week.
Looking back at my own writing, it was short, scattered, and very vague. I still got a bit of traffic but I knew I could do better.
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.
Always trust that you can do better than before; that your potential to grow and improve is limitless!
All in all, people stick around when you write good quality content. Trust me, less is more.
MISTAKE #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 mula in my pocket.
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 I’ve had ZERO complaints since Day 1.
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. Let me share with you some perks:
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. It speaks for itself. Go self-hosted!
IF YOU WANT TO START YOUR ONLINE BUSINESS, I highly recommend you choose Siteground as your self-hosting service.
MISTAKE #5: NO EMAIL LIST
Might as well throw in the towel right because you’re just asking to fail.
Having an email list is one, if not, the most IMPORTANT thing that you need in order to grow your blog. This is another tool that is completely owned by you. If for some reason, social media decided to bounce out of existence, you wouldn’t have to worry because you have your email list where all of your loyal followers are kept up to date with anything you post of your website.
I really was hesitant in starting an email list but I knew it was vital in the future success of my blog. I found email marketing so confusing to implement but with Mailerlite, they make it so easy to embed beautiful customized opt-in forms and campaigns
If you are new to blogging, definitely start your email list with Mailerlite. You can start off with the FREE PLAN for up to 1,000 subscribers and they have other very affordable plans that will fit your needs. You can click this link here or the image below to get started.
MISTAKE #6: NOT KNOWING YOUR AUDIENCE
When starting out, you have to take the time and talk to your audience. Engage with your audience to build 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.
What do they like to read? What are their problems? How can you help solve their problems?
They may have ended up on your blog for the following reasons:
- They want a solution to their problem
- You reply back to their comments and engage with them
- Are curious about a certain topic that you’re talking about OR
- They genuinely enjoy your content and love hearing from you
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 someone else 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.
Or maybe you’re just downright AWESOMESAUCE and just like you for you!
MISTAKE #7: YOU 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 a certain time frame (whether it be once a week or once a month), make it a habit of being on point with your uploading schedule.
Those that genuinely love to read your content will be looking forward to seeing your new blog posts pop up on their feed or newsletter.
Plus, it’s always good to plan ahead in case you run into some obstacle along the way, you don’t have to worry because you already have content ready to be uploaded.
Where’s the best place to write out your blog posts?
For me, I use Google Drive and Excel for all of my posts and keeping everything organized.
It is super convenient with these tools because you can start on your computer and continue on your phone, then finish on your tablet.
PRO TIP: 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.
MISTAKE #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.
MISTAKE #9: NOT USING A MOBILE-FRIENDLY THEME
The reason this is emphasized is that when people are scrolling through Pinterest or searching for information on Google, where do you do it? On your phone.
A lot of websites will disclose in their description whether their theme is mobile-friendly, which the majority are.
An easier way of finding out if your site and theme are mobile-friendly use the Mobile-Friendly Test.
It was super easy to customize and transfer all of my data to my new blog.
MISTAKE #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 would not 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?
MISTAKE #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.
MISTAKE #12: NOT GIVING YOURSELF A BREAK
Yes, burn out is real you guys and there’s nothing wrong with stepping away to refresh yourself to get back in the game. It’s really easy to get sucked into “I have to do this, I need to get this done, let me just write one more sentence, I’m almost done” at 4 AM.
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.
Do the things you love to unwind and not think about blogging for a little bit.
RELATED: THE IMPORTANCE OF SELF-CARE
If you are already an established blogger, what mistakes have you made and what have you done to fix it? Let me know.
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Until next time,