I’m sure you’d agree that starting a new blog is an exciting experience!
You have hopes and dreams that people will come to your blog, love what you have to say, and grow to know, like and trust you.
But, in the excitement of getting started it’s easy to make some big blogging mistakes.
I got my start back in 2012 and since then I’ve made my fair share of mistakes along the way.
And don’t get me wrong, I’m still learning as things are always changing in the blogging world.
With that said (and with some experience under my belt), I’m definitely aware of some blogging mistakes most beginner bloggers make.
So with this blog post, I’m going to share with you seven of the biggest blogging mistakes so you can avoid them.
Beginner Blogging Mistakes
As you’re building your blog, try to avoid the following mistakes…
Note: I’m assuming you want your blog to be a business that you can make an income from, so this post will be from that perspective.
Also, some of the links in this blog post are affiliate links. That means that I will receive a small commission at no cost to you if you click through and make a purchase. I’m proud to say I only partner with companies that I believe will provide good value to my readers.
Blogging Mistakes Video
Below the video you’ll find the full details on all the mistakes.
But, if video is more your thing, check this out:
#1 FOMO Induced Failure to Execute
FOMO means “Fear of Missing Out” and it can subtly cause a lot of problems for your blogging business.
As you learn more about blogging, online business and internet marketing, you’ll discover more and more people to learn from.
You’ll also discover more and more strategies and techniques.
Each strategy will sound better than the one you just learned. Before you know it you’re chasing each one, fearing you’ll miss out on the ultimate solution.
But here’s the thing…
FOMO slows you down from moving forward with launching or growing your business because you’re forever learning about the next big thing.
A better plan is to understand where you’re currently at in your blogging business journey.
Then, only spend time learning the strategies and techniques that are specific to the step you’re trying to take RIGHT NOW.
Maybe that step is choosing a hosting package, or choosing a website theme, or deciding on an email service provider.
The point is to focus on just what you need to learn to move forward with that specific step.
Spend a short but focused time learning, and then pick a solution swiftly.
Then, execute on that solution and move on to the next step.
Don’t worry… You can always change things later.
#2 Choosing Free Hosting
In some cases, the best things in life simply ARE NOT free.
This is the case when it comes to hosting your blog.
While there are options for hosting your blog for free, they usually have serious limitations.
For example, your site won’t look nearly as professional, you won’t be allowed to put ads on your site and (most importantly) you’re at the mercy of the free platform’s wishes.
If they decide to shut down, you could lose your blog without notice.
Definitely not a good thing.
If that isn’t enough, you’re also seriously limited in terms of flexibility in how you want your site to look. You have to make it look like THEY want you to, not how YOU want it to.
So, going with free hosting is definitely a blogging mistake you don’t want to make.
I can’t think of any well-known blogger that uses free hosting.
So, the right thing to do is to go with what’s called “self-hosting.”
With self-hosting you pay a small monthly amount to have your blog professionally hosted by a provider.
You’ll have the ability to monetize your site however you want.
And, you won’t be limited in terms of how you want your site to look. You’ll be the one in control.
My suggestion for affordable, self-hosting for your blog is a company called Bluehost.
They’re perfect for beginners, give you your domain name for free, include SSL for free and make WordPress super-easy to setup on your site via a one-click install.
Plus, they have a 30-day money back guarantee on their hosting service if you decide they’re not right for you.
#3 Not Using a Premium Website Theme
When you launch your blog, you first choose a content management system and a website theme.
The theme determines the look and feel of your website.
Most people choose WordPress as their content management system.
But a big blogging mistake people make is they choose a free theme instead of a premium theme.
The problem with many of the free themes is that they’re not coded cleanly, may not load fast and can be more susceptible to bugs and security issues.
With Google putting more and more emphasis on page speed these days, you definitely don’t want your blog to be slow. It will hurt your search engine rankings.
My recommendation for a premium theme is any of the themes sold by StudioPress.
When you visit their site you’ll see all the reasons why they’re so good.
I use one of their themes for my Honest Wine Reviews website and am very happy with it.
Check out my site and see for yourself, if you’d like.
It loads fast, looks good and ranks well in Google and Bing.
#4 Not Building an Email List
Your email list is your list of people who have opted-in to receive emails from your online business.
This list is one of the most critical assets your business will have.
The people on your list are your leads and they are the ones you notify when you publish new blog posts, create newsletters and produce your products or services.
In essence, you’re selling to the people on your list and you want to be building your list as soon as your blog is up and running.
In order to have a list, you need to use an email marketing service provider that follows the CAN-SPAM and GDPR laws and can mail out to multiple people at once.
I use a company called ConvertKit.
I like them because they’re super easy to use, have great deliverability rates and continue to evolve smartly as new email marketing strategies emerge.
Plus they recently announced a free plan that’s perfect for newer bloggers.
#5 Not Keeping SEO in Mind When Creating Content
SEO stands for search engine optimization.
It’s the practice of optimizing your website and content so that it appears high up in the search engine results pages (SERPs) in Google, Bing, etc.
A big part of that practice means keeping SEO in mind as you are writing your blog posts.
If done successfully, in the long run you’ll be more likely to get your articles near the top of the SERPs.
This will result in free, organic traffic to your website by those interested in your niche.
SEO is a topic that goes very long and deep, but here’s a few tips for optimizing your content:
- Know what keywords people are searching for related to your article’s topic.
- Ensure your page titles and content incorporate those keywords in a normal human-readable fashion.
- As soon as your website is up and running, install the Yoast SEO plugin. It’s free and it will help you optimize your site for search.
If you’d like to learn more about SEO, check out this blog post I wrote:
#6 Not Focusing Enough on Promotion
“Just build it and they will come” is NOT a good strategy for getting people to come to your website and view your content.
In reality, you’ll build it and then be met with the sound of crickets if you don’t put in effort to promote your site and blog posts.
Content promotion can take many forms, but expect to spend 20% of your time on creating content and 80% of your time on promoting it.
Avoid this blogging mistake by starting with the basics. Consider promoting your posts on social media and notifying your email list.
You can also get the word out about your blog by doing guest posts on other sites and getting interviewed on podcasts and other people’s blogs.
You might also try using Pinterest as a place to promote your blog posts.
The fast-track method is paid promotion, including things like Facebook Ads, Google Ads, Bing Ads, Pinterest Ads and more.
#7 Focusing on Too Many Social Media Platforms
As mentioned above, many bloggers will take to social media to spread the word about their site, products and services.
The social media platforms are also a great place to really engage with your audience by answering their questions and having conversations about your business’s topic.
Facebook and Instagram are especially good for sharing some “behind the scenes” content about your blogging business.
However, with so many platforms available to us now (and probably more to come) it can be very overwhelming and time consuming to maintain a solid presence on all the sites (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.).
So, to avoid this blogging mistake, just pick one or two and try to master those first.
Pick the ones that are most appropriate for your business and where the majority of your community would likely be.
I hope you found this post on blogging mistakes for beginners helpful.
To recap, here’s the 7 blogging mistakes for beginners to avoid:
- FOMO induced failure to execute.
- Choosing free hosting for your blog.
- Not using a premium theme for your website.
- Not building your email list from the start.
- Not keeping SEO in mind when creating your content.
- Focusing too little on promotion vs. content creation.
- Being active on too many social media platforms.
Now let’s hear from you.
If you’re a beginner blogger, did this help you?
If you’re an experienced blogger, what do YOU think are the most important blogging mistakes to avoid?
Please share in the comment below…