This is a guest contribution by Amy Cowen
People are quick to judge blogging as an easy way to earn money. At one point in time, when things just started rolling, this was actually the case. There weren’t that many blogs around and if you hit any amount of traffic, you could get a decent amount of advertising going on and earn some cash. Things started to change pretty quickly, however. Today, blogs are a dime a dozen, and there is tens of millions of them out there.
The competition is fierce and if you plan on cashing in you have to be at least as good as the top guys in your blogging niche. That is difficult to do, but luckily, it is not impossible. You need to start with the basics, so get ready to read up on some common blogging mistakes that beginners make and how to avoid them.
4 Most Common Blogging Mistakes Beginners Make That You Can Avoid
1. Getting obsessed with starting out
People tend to overthink the beginning. They fuss over the blogging platform, the hosting, the domain name, and a whole lot of different things that can be solved in five minutes. Word of advice: if you are planning on building a blog, choose WordPress. It is completely free and simple to setup. In addition, there are a lot of themes on there, some of which are free so you can easily tinker with the design and the layout.
When it comes to a hosting provider, choose a reliable company that has next to nothing downtime. Site speed is paramount, so don’t toy with it.
Designing your site can be a little difficult, but if you’re using WordPress, you can easily customize everything. It is a fun experience. Do your best to make it as appealing as possible, but remember that you can always put in an extra effort if things start developing as you’ve imagined.
2. Neglecting your audience
Once you have a few people on your blog and following you on Twitter or Facebook, it is time to stop writing for yourself exclusively. That was a good idea at the beginning because you needed to test out the waters, but now you need to focus on what the audience want and need to read! Tweet a short point on a couple of ideas you have brewing in your mind and see which once gets the most traction with your audience. If enough people like or favorite it, write a blog post about it. Listening to your audience is important unless you want them to lose interest.
3. Dropping the whole thing at the first rough patch
A lot of beginner bloggers get seriously discouraged when, after a couple of months, there are still not blogging superstars. Guess what? Blogging is way more difficult than a bunch of 9 to 5 jobs, and there is no formula for instant success.
You have to be consistent and persistent. Abandoning ship at the first sign of trouble won’t get you anywhere. If you have trouble attracting more audience, engage the existing one in a different manner. Ask them to share your work on social media. You can do a lot of good for your traffic by self-promoting your content, and ask your audience to give you a hand. Also, publish content consistently. Studies show that blogs that add new content on a weekly basis grow twice as fast as those who add it only once a month.
4. Not giving it a 120%
After a while, you’re bound to run out of things to say, at least as frequently as you used to. Don’t get tempted to publish sub-par content when that happens. It takes some time to build an audience but rest assured they will be gone in a second once they realize you’re not giving them your best.
Make sure that all your topics are trendy and popular and put a unique signature on everything you write. Give an opinion or try to approach the subject matter from a different angle. A good way to produce quality content is to not stick to broad topics. Divide a broad topic into smaller chunks and create a piece of wide content that will appeal to readers that have a particular interest in one segment of your topic.
As you can see, blogging is serious and hard work at the best of times, and nearly an impossible endeavor at the worst. If you’re still interested in becoming a serious blogger, check out this list of tools that we’ve prepared. They will speed up your way to success considerably.
Amy Cowen is a content marketing strategist who specializes in maximizing the commercial impact of the content. She manages her own team of content writers at Aussiewriter and contributes to numerous sites and blogs.