These have been my biggest blogging mistakes so far.
In the guide I wrote on how to start a blog, I mentioned that you will always make mistakes when you start a blog. My blogging journey wasn’t any different. I made a ton of mistakes.
I never bought any course to guide me when I started blogging. At that time I didn’t have enough money to afford a course.
Some of the mistakes I made could have been avoided if I followed a guide. But because I already made them, the best I can do is share them with you so that you can avoid them.
First Blogging Mistake: Cutting Costs when Creating a Blog
Don’t fall for this blogging mistake. A blog requires an initial investment of money to set it up. When I was starting out, I thought I was smart enough to avoid the cost of setting up a blog which at that time seemed like a lot of money.
Instead of buying a domain name and a hosting plan, I used a free hosted domain name from WordPress. The free hosted domain from WordPress had so many limitations. It didn’t take long before I realized that the free blog I had created had so many limitations.
A self-hosted blog gives you freedom to choose its layout, colors and much more. A free hosted blog only gives you a place to write your article and a little room to edit the written article.
Eventually, I gave up the free hosted blog I had started and decided to pay for a self-hosted blog.
Using a Free Theme
The mistake of cutting cost during my early days of blogging even after I moved to a self-hosted blog. Once I had spent money to buy a domain name and a hosting plan, I didn’t want to spend any more money.
I chose to use a free theme. For plugins that required me to pay a fee to access all the features, I chose to use the free features only.
Before long, I encountered the same limitations I had encountered when using a free hosted blog. The theme I had allowed me to change a few colors and some parts of the layout but others could not be changed.
I didn’t like how my blog looked even after spending days trying to make it look good. I accepted that I had made a mistake and paid $50 to get the premium version of that theme.
Blogging is a business. If you want a good blog that stands a chance to make money, be ready to invest money you would invest in a physical business. You get what you pay for.
Second Blogging Mistake: Spending too much Time on Unnecessary Details
This is a common blogging mistake. A blog has many aspects to it. There is the technical side of the blog where you deal with hosting, website speed etc. There is the production side where you generate content for the blog and the marketing side where you market the blog.
To have a successful blog, you need to balance all these areas. Your blog must load when users click on it, it must have content for them to consume and it must be organized to make money.
When I was in my early days of blogging, I spent too much time dealing with aspects of the blog that didn’t matter much.
For instance, I spent days thinking about the name I wanted to give to my blog. While the name of a blog has some significance, it is not a detail that will deny you success even if you get it wrong.
I came to realize that there is no right name for any blog. Whatever name you give it, people will get used to it. It is just that some names stick easily compared to others.
I also wasted a lot of time changing colors on the blog. Provided the colors you are using are not clashing, you are good to go.
When starting a blog, remember that there are many aspects that you have to deal with. Divide your time proportionally so that you don’t get stuck on unnecessary details. Put the most important aspects of your blog on top of your priority list.
Third Blogging Mistake: Having no Clear Plans
This is a huge blogging mistake. A blog must be given clear direction for it to grow. Without direction, it will stagnate. I made this mistake when I started my first self-hosted blog.
The only plan I had was to set up a self-hosted blog. I didn’t know what I was going to write on the blog, how I would market it or even how I would make money from it.
I took weeks setting up the blog and when I was done, I got stuck. I tried writing all kinds of articles but I had different ideas every day.
A year went by and the blog had nothing to show. I eventually deleted everything.
When you start a blog, make sure you know how you want it to look like, what content will go on it, how you will market the content and how you will make money on the blog.
A clear plan will make your blog grow faster.
Fourth Blogging Mistake: Picking a Blog Topic I didn’t Enjoy
This is a controversial blogging mistake. If you are starting a blog where you outsource writers, you can pick any topic you want. But if you will be writing articles on the blog yourself, make sure you pick a topic that you are familiar with.
When I started my blog and realized that I needed to decide a topic to write about, I picked a topic in the electronics niche. I had considerable knowledge on the topic but I didn’t realize that having knowledge and writing it are two different things.
I began writing articles about electronics but I didn’t enjoy. The knowledge was fun but writing it was hard.
I would experience burnouts and take weeks off from writing. Though the blog achieved some success, I knew I couldn’t keep up with it for long.
I quit writing on the blog after a year and started a different blog.
Fifth Blogging Mistake: Being Inconsistent
This is the last blogging mistake and arguably the worst. I have learned the hard way that for a blog to be successful, you have to do one thing consistently. Whatever direction you choose to go with your blog, matters little. The deal breaker is the consistency you will have with your blog.
It takes time before people learn the direction of your blog and join you in the journey. When I was starting out with blogging, I kept changing the topics I was blogging about.
The constant changes meant that the few readers I had could not tell what my blog was about. And the lack of direction turned off many of them.
I put in a lot of work but since the work wasn’t consistent, the results were not great.
Consistency in how you run your blog, how you write your blog posts, how you market your blog matters a lot. The more consistent you are with what you are doing on your blog, the greater your chances of success.
Blogging Mistakes Conclusion
These are the five blogging mistakes I made when I started blogging. Correcting these mistakes took me four years and some months.
Be patient and ready to learn if you want to be successful in blogging.
All the best!