Most people think blogging is easy, and it is if you think blogging is a person sitting at their computer typing away. It’s basically just writing.
Blogging for money on-the-other-hand takes thoughtful strategies, methods, and effort from the blogger. I myself have made all of these 13 mistakes I am about to share. It’s almost impossible to avoid them if you started a blog without a plan.
I didn’t have any guidance and I didn’t know where to look for guidance, but thankfully I managed to get there in the end and now I blog professionally, making a full-time income. But not before I had many
So let me save you the time and emotional energy by listing out 13 massive mistakes beginner bloggers tend to make.
These mistakes are preventing your blog from growing, gaining traction and ultimately succeeding. If you find you’re making any of the below mistakes then you really ought to focus your attention to correcting it ASAP.
1. Writing for Yourself
If you want to be a professional blogger that makes money, then you’re going to have to approach your writing differently. You need to create content for a consistent target audience your blog is catering to.
You have to stop writing posts for yourself. From blog post ideas, topics, writing style and even structure, you need to serve your reader first and foremost.
If you keep writing for yourself, then it might not be inline with your target audience. But more accurately, most beginner bloggers make this mistake because they don’t have a target audience to begin with.
Your blog should have a niche, where you write about one or a few topic areas. You need to identify a demographic of readers within each topic area and then create content they will enjoy reading.
2. Not Collecting E-mails From Day 1
Anyone who runs a website of any kind should be collecting e-mails from day 1.
This is the most common mistake beginner bloggers make. They put it off because they think there’s no need to collect e-mails when their traffic numbers are still low or that their blog doesn’t have much content.
That train of thought is completely
E-mail marketing is also the most profitable forms of online marketing there is. Everyday you’re not actively collecting e-mails is another day your blog is under-monetised!
3. Not Linking Out
Most bloggers will have heard of backlinks. The more the better because you want people coming into your blog and not people going out from your blog.
This commonly accepted notion has created amateur bloggers to never link back out to other sites. And this can be damaging your SEO efforts. It is true that backlinks are important, but linking out is just as important.
Good on-page SEO should include good quality links (where appropriate) from external sites and not just links from within your own site. This indicates to Google that your content is well researched. A.K.A Good quality content they should recommend people to read.
When you link out, makes sure you check the site isn’t spammy. Its best to stick with big name authority sites if you’re not sure.
4. Starting Your Blog with No Strategy
This goes hand in hand with the mistake above. Many amateur bloggers start blogging right away without any plan.
Although the enthusiasm is great and taking immediate action is better than those who never start, blogging without a plan is like hitting in the dark. Your blog will never be able to build a readership and strong brand.
If you really want to blog for money, then you need to treat it like a business. Create a business plan and figure out who your target audience is, what your blog’s niche is, how you will monetise and all that good stuff before you start blogging.
5. Blogging Whenever
Consistency is key to most things online, and if you are blogging irregularly then you’re making a big SEO and blogging mistake. New bloggers cannot afford to have long periods of nothing new, compared to established bloggers.
Until you reach success, you HAVE to blog consistently and regularly to build up your traction, brand and readership. Because until then, you’ll just seem unprofessional and unreliable.
Both of which is bad if you’re trying to make money online.
Create a work schedule and a content strategy to help yourself publish new blog posts at a frequency that works for you.
6. You’re Not Self-hosted
A lot of bloggers who struggle with finding success start blogging by dipping their toes in. What I mean by dipping their toes in, I mean they hesitate to use any money when it comes to creating their blog.
And so they go for free blogging options.
Free blogging options is the perfect blogging solution for hobby bloggers, but if you plan to make money, then self-hosting is the only option. Running a self-hosted WordPress site might sound intimidating but it really isn’t.
If you need help understanding it all, you can read my article on why self-hosting works better for making money and you can also read my comprehensive review of the two best hosting companies, if you’re ready to start.
7. You Don’t Clean-up Regularly
The more content you create and the longer you blog, the more you need to give it a spring clean now and again.
Having the habit of auditing your site once a month from the beginning will save you a lot of time in the future because you’ll approach your blogging in a more organised and structured manner.
You can edit links faster, identify out-dated posts faster, change images, make sure there are no broken links etc etc, the list can go on.
Start the good habit of auditing your site every month now and you’ll ensure every visitor has a great user experience on your site.
8. You Think SEO = Keyword Stuffing
There’s a lot of outdated information floating around the internet, which makes most new bloggers follow advice that are no longer true.
The most common advice is to keyword stuff your posts hoping it will climb to the first spot on Google. This doesn’t work anymore, and can actually get your blog penalised.
Your keyword should be located in the URL permalink, title, metadata and within the post whenever possible. You can go further and put it into the media file names within the post, but that’s it.
Anymore and its called keyword stuffing, something Google really doesn’t like.
9. Your Blog isn’t Protected
If you’re blogging with the intention to make money then your blog is a business. Even if its not making money yet, you still need to treat it as such and protect your blog from legal threats.
You don’t want to wait until something happens to correct this mistake! You can read my guide on GDPR to protect to get your blog compliant.
10. You Have Too Many Ads Too Soon
Adsense and running Ads on your site is a great way to make money with your blog easily. However you don’t want to exploit this income stream by turning your blog into a spammy site no one wants to spend time on.
Your blog should never be a place for ads to appear. Your content is the reason readers come to your site, not the ads they didn’t ask for. If your site looks like ads are taking centre stage and not the content itself, then its time to rethink your blogging strategy.
11. You’re on Facebook
There are many Facebook groups for bloggers to join and get peer support, but they’re not all created equally.
Many beginner bloggers join blog groups that play “SEO games” where you comment on each other posts, click, share etc.
If you don’t sleep or eat and spend all day doing this…maybe, just maybe you might see some sort of positive result. But if you’re like everyone else with busy lives to tend to, these Facebook groups are a waste of time.
Only join the ones that provide feedback, support and advice. SEO games never work and your time is better spent elsewhere.
12. Weak Headlines
Weak headlines are one of the biggest reason for low click through rates, and it can mean blogging death for new bloggers.
Without an established readership or loyal following, new bloggers are relying on how eye-catching their titles are to get people to click. Anything less than click-worthy and beginner bloggers will fail to get anywhere.
It’s time to learn how to compose brilliant headlines, if you haven’t already.
13. Thinking About The Money Before The Reader
A lot of people start a blog with the full intention of making it their full-time profession, which is great because it means you already have the right mindset to succeed.
The bad news is when you rush things and get impatient. You haven’t provided the reader with enough value and you haven’t created enough trust to even start selling to your reader, but you do it anyway.
A common example of this is putting affiliate links everywhere on your site or having pop-up banners to a product on almost every page.
It ruins the user experience and people just end up clicking off your blog, but in your rush to make money, you don’t understand where you’re going wrong.
Never put the sale above your reader. Serve your reader well and they will naturally buy from you.