Instead of finding out mistakes from just a random blogger, you can learn from 5 of them.
I reached out to 5 bloggers (big and small) and asked all of them pretty much the same questions.
- Common Mistakes amateur bloggers made that cost them a lot and how to avoid them.
- Mistakes they also made during their early days of blogging that actually cost them a lot.
So you are going to learn from these successful bloggers’ mistakes and how to avoid them at all costs.
Even if you found yourself doing any of those mistakes then they actually revealed to me how it can be corrected.
Eleanor Roosevelt said it best.
“You can never live long enough to figure it all by yourself“.
The response I got from these bloggers is pretty much alarming and trust me, you can’t find them using Google.
And I can’t wait to share all these golden nuggets with you.
With that, a big shout out to those bloggers who contributed to the success of this post.
So without further ado, let’s dive right in.
List Of Successful Bloggers I Asked?
Founder of Ryrob, a blog that covers in-depth tutorials on how to start and grow a successful blog with over 500k Monthly readers every month & Generates $30,000 dollars in revenue.
Ryan has Been featured on Forbes, Hubspot, Entrepreneur, and Business insider.
So I reached out to Ryan about those mistakes amateur bloggers make and his personal mistakes as well.
And the Good Part: He referred me to 23 of those mistakes.
So I Highlighted 4 out of those pain points that are likely to occur to a newbie or amateur blogger.
And they are.
Quality > Quantity:
Quality beats quantity in every niche aspect of blogging.
Better Misconception: Publish as much content as you can.
But the truth is the opposite, there is no guaranteed success for publishing content as much as you can.
According to earth web, there are over 7.5 million blogs published per day.
And for your blog to stand out from this huge list, it needs to be great and actionable.
So instead of focusing on quantity (publish more often), focus on Quality (less often but amazing content).
BackLinks (Relationships With Other Bloggers):
If SEO is primarily your source of traffic, then you should know how huge backlinks are important in Google’s algorithm.
In other words, backlinks are links from one page of your website to other websites.
And the more links you have the more authoritative your blogs are.
In fact, Google sees backlinks as a Vote of confidence, but building links is every blogger’s nightmare, especially for amateurs or newbie bloggers.
And I can tell you for a fact that it is not easy as I do build links for my client websites as well.
And after a series of trials and testing, the easier way to get links to your sites is through building relationships with bloggers.
Ryan Robinson said this,
Brian dean (founder of backlink also said this as well).
So instead of focusing your Goal on building links, redirect that focus to building relationships with other expert bloggers, and the link building comes naturally.
Learn More: Check Out This Link Building Guide By Backlinko
Keyword Research Is Your RoadMap:
Are you doing keyword research for your blog? If not then please start right now.
People won’t find your content if you are writing content that you feel your readers would love to read.
Quote and Quote “you feel type of content” is not going to move the needle.
Instead, write content your audience is already looking for a solution to.
And where are the best place to find them? Google.
This was the mistake I made earlier when starting out on my blog.
I derive blog content ideas from my head without putting my potential readers in mind.
And that alone cost me a lot and time wasted.
Not until I learned how to do keyword research the right way.
So I deleted all my articles and rewrote them all from scratch based on what my readers are looking for.
And that leads to an increase in traffic for a blog that was 6 months old.
Because when they search for any keywords in my niche, my blog appears in Google search results and I earn the traffic.
- Generate a potential list of seed keywords your audience is going to search on Google for in your niche.
- Use seed keywords tools to see if people are actually typing that exact phrase in Google
- Use any SEO tools to check the keyword difficulty, the lower the competition, the better you can easily rank.
Learn more: Check Out Backlinko Keyword Research Hub
Don’t Be In Haste (It Takes 6-12 Months To Make Your First $$ Blogging)
The primary purpose of every blogger is to make money.
But the reality behind it is not as fast as it seems.
In fact, Ryan suggested on average it takes about 6-12 Months before you can start making your first dollar blogging.
And I have seen this for myself after 2 years of blogging, and even though it took me longer than expected, the reality behind it is that. blogging isn’t a get-rich-quick scheme.
Learn More From Ryan Robbinson: A List of the 23 Mistakes he made During his Early Days of Blogging.
An internet marketer since 2012 who found success growing niche sites.
Rob W has grown his blog to a traffic number of over 10k pageviews every month. impressive!
With that, Rob also has some interesting mistakes amateur bloggers are victims of, and also he as well during the early days of growing his site.
Find What Works Before Outsourcing:
When you understand what works for your system, outsourcing becomes easier to do.
In fact, most amateur bloggers on a high budget is usually a victim of this.
They create a blog in a niche they knew nothing about and believe outsourcing everything could still move the needle.
And the real deal is, how can you know if they are actually doing the right thing or not? when you know nothing about it.
Are you outsourcing for a system that has not been working or tested before? if so why waste your budget?
A PR marketer, Mikaela Robertson said it best.
OK, so now you get the gist.
Let’s move to the second gist from Rob.
Worried About Blog Design & Themes:
Am a victim of this approach as well.
During my early days, I was bothered about the looks of my sites compared to others.
And it was frustrating because I spent almost half a day on Elementor drag and drop builder working on designs myself and also installing and reinstalling wordpress themes just to find those that are design appealing.
The reality is, am not in any way a web designer nor do I have a budget to hire one.
But as time goes on, I realise I spent half of my time designing my sites instead of dishing out content on my sites.
And that causes a decrease in my productivity.
Now, there is nothing wrong with spending time on your blog design.
As a matter of fact, the looks of your sites distinguish your brands from others and also entertain the eyes of your readers.
There is a lot of advantage to making your site’s design looks good.
But at some point especially when starting out, your goal should be focused on building an audience first then blog design later on as there will always be room to modify your blog design later on in the future.
So instead, get a lightweight wordpress theme and start publishing and when you get some decent amount of traffic or visitors then you can start thinking of spending more on design.
Picking A Niche With No Interest:
If you have no interest in a particular niche then you don’t deserve to go into it, PERIOD.
Meet Emmanuel, a digital marketing consultant and also the founder of Enterpreneurbuinessblog.
He won “2019 Blogger of the Year” at the Global Excellence in Marketing Awards In the US.
He was also listed on Statusbrew as one of those 100 social media influencers to follow in the year 2018/2019.
And that also tells us that there is a lot we can learn from Emmanuel, and I reached out to him based on mistakes he made and amateur bloggers as well.
And the Good Part: he mentioned 2 of them and you would love to hear them out.
Choosing A Long Domain Name:
At first, it never crossed my mind such mistakes like this are likely to happen.
But when it does happen, there is no going back.
Emenike as he said was also one of his biggest regrets.
His domain name “enterprenuerbusinessblog” is 24 characters long which is bad from an audience standpoint.
Even though it sounds easy to pronounce (entrepreneur-business-blog) but when typing, there is a possibility of typos or misspellings.
And this can cause a huge downfall in terms of proper branding.
“One of the mistakes he made when starting his blog was using a long domain name of 24 characters”.
“If he were to start all over again with the same amount of knowledge he have now, a brandable domain name would have been the best option”.“Most brandable domain names are always short, meaningful, memorable, and easy to spell”.Recently, he had an opportunity to flip one of his domain names for a huge amount but the buyer kept wishing it was a brandable name.We went back and forth and I changed my mind.I thought to myself, “If he’s willing to pay this now, that means if I keep working on it for the next 5 years I might as well flip it for a million dollars.
Choosing The Wrong Permalink Structure:
A Permalink is a hyperlink that allows readers to have a glance at what the whole article covers.
They are meant to be unchanged for years and that doesn’t mean they can not be changed.
From an SEO standpoint, they help Google understand the URL structure of your content.
But taking it from another angle, not all amateur bloggers finds these permalinks worthwhile and it cost them a lot.
For example, using dates in your permalinks can cause more harm to your blog in the future, if you are in a niche that requires evergreen articles.
And Emenike was once a victim of this approach as shown.
The downside to it is that,
If it requires you to update your articles in the future, the dates will still be unchanged making it seems like the article is old content despite the update.
And also when sharing that post link on most social media platforms that only show the first 25 characters of your links, when wasted on Dates, may appear as irrelevant content.
Learn More: Neil Patel Guide To Permalinks Structure & Optimization.
An SEO Blogger with a blog that generates 10k Monthly and makes 100% of his revenue through affiliate marketing.
Prosper also has some interesting things to share and it begins with these common amateur bloggers’ mistakes.
- Using free Blogspot blog
- Not Doing Keyword research
Using Free Blogspot Blog:
If you’re serious about making money with blogging, you shouldn’t be blogging on a free Blogspot blog.
A Blogspot blog limits you to a lot of monetization features that could take your income to next level.
So if you are blogging on a free Blogspot blog, then it is in your best interest to move to wordpress as it offers room for multiple income streams.
But if you have no money for hosting and domain then blogging on Blogspot is still not the best option due to the following reasons.
- Limited Monetization features
- Your contents can be deleted anytime without your consent.
- Complex coding experience.
So if you have no money to get started with hosting and domain then you should consider blogging on sites like medium, Linkedin, etc.
But there are still some downsides to it, and that leads us to the next mistakes.
Blogging Under Someone Else Establishment:
Sites like Medium, Blogging on Linkedin, Tumblr, etc. allow you to blog for free under their platforms.
This can be great especially when you are on a zero budget to open a wordpress blog.
But as time goes on you need to have it in the back of your mind that you are not in full control over the blog.
They can have the right to delete your contents which can cause a huge pain.
Just the way medium flagged my account a few years ago.
All my articles went lost and I lost control of myself.
And I don’t want you to fall victim to such an approach.
So instead of that, I suggest you check out my posts on the cheapest way to start a self-hosted blog the very best way as low as $40.
- Open a self-hosted blog
- Publish content on your self-hosted blog and republished them on other blogging platforms like medium, LinkedIn, or any microblogging sites, etc
A Website Manager at Peer Through Media and also found success growing affiliate websites within short timeframes.
And he has some advice as well.
Choosing A Competitive Niche:
Blogging in a competitive niche can be harder than ever and sometimes not a good idea.
The word “sometimes” can only be applicable in a scenario where you are well experienced and doing things your competitors aren’t doing as that gives you the opportunity to grow your blog faster.
But 80% of the time it is usually a bad piece of advice.
You hear bloggers say choose a niche with high search demand and thus, not all high search demand niches are worth going for, why?
Because they are thousands of Higher authority sites dominating that space making it harder for you to grow.
Despite that, there are still some micro niches you can start dominating as you expand your way higher, and it all depends on your research.
Learn More: How To Choose A Micro Niche & Start Growing Your Blog Fast
Adam P also suggests.
Relying On A Single Keyword Research Tools:
If there is anything most bloggers wouldn’t like to listen to is simply relying on a single keyword research tool to make decisions for you.
Tools like Semrush Ahrefs and Ubbersugest or any SEO tools are useful especially when trying to get some important Metrics you couldn’t just find by searching Google.
But that is not just the only way to approach things.
These tools analyses are judged based on certain metrics and correlations based on their mode of operation.
In my own opinion,
I won’t condemn the fact that you shouldn’t rely on a single keyword research tool but one thing I know for sure is, all SEO keyword research tools aren’t accurate.
So relying on a single keyword research tool wouldn’t hurt that much but when it comes to making SEO decisions based on what this tool offers, the best answer to these problems checking the SERP (search engine result page).
So if Tools A gives you a keyword difficulty score of 50%
And Tool B says it is 30%, then which is right?
I don’t condemn both tools but the best solution to these scenarios is to see Google SERPs ranking for that keywords and ask yourself these questions.
- Those ranking for that term, is the article relevant to that topic?
- Do they cover the article in depth?
If not, then your decision should be based on writing a well-relevant detailed article and ranking for that term.
Google prefers solutions to answers and not the other way around.
Other Amateur Blogger’s Mistakes
So here are some common mistakes from other random bloggers as well.
Desperate For Google Ads Approval:
I have always been a victim of this approach because I already planned ahead during the early days of my blogging career.
What was the plan? to monetize my blog as soon as possible and make money fast.
Not bad, but this approach was quite different than that of a successful blogger.
I was so desperate to monetize my blog with google AdSense as soon as I have 10 blog posts published on it, even before I bought my domain and hosting.
Not just me, but others too.
And I won’t blame them.
This usually happens when bloggers show screenshots of how much they earn from displaying ads on their site.
Instead of trying to motivate others to work hard and let them know how far it takes, they only brag about it.
So this triggers mostly amateur bloggers’ mindsets in a negative way.
And builds their hunger to get monetized fasts. which in reality, it doesn’t work that way as it takes time and effort.
And I could tell you for a fact that it was the greatest mistake I ever made.
And this mindset killed my perspective towards blogging because my primary aim was to be approved by Adsense without knowing traffic comes first before monetization.
I ignored building an audience and traffic first before thinking of monetization.
In other words.
Traffic + Audiences = Monetization.
So stop worrying about getting ads approved on your blog rather than building an audience first.
If you have a Traffic + Audience, then Monetization becomes an easy task to do.
Pro Tips: Make sure you start having traffic first before displaying ads on your sites.
Ignoring Semantic Keywords:
Back in the day, Google would rank your content if you added keywords in almost every portion of your articles.
That way Google can rank you for that keywords.
Now thanks to the Hummingbird algorithm, Google now sees this approach and terms it keyword stuffing.
And once done, you get penalized.
So here is what to do instead
Use keyword-related terms a.k.a Semantic or Lsi keywords (more on that later).
If you are writing an article about Blogging tutorials.
Then Google is expected to see related phrases like “hosting“, “domain“, “blogs“, “Keyword research“, “blogger,” etc.
Put the keywords you want to rank for inside LSI keyword tools, and it generates a list of semantic phrases you can fit into your article.
You might also want to check out these posts on how these SEO tools helped me structure my content and ranked my article on Google’s first page.
Learn More: How Google Hummingbirds Works
Copying what is out there on the internet:
This is the most common mistake 80% of amateur bloggers make which is paraphrasing people’s content and republishing on their blogs.
I won’t stress this enough but if you are copying others’ content that is already published out there, then you are simply not providing value.
Don’t copy others people’s work, I am against it and so is Google.
You can only copy how they structure their contents but not their work.
If you find yourself paraphrasing content from other people about a topic, Google won’t see you as an expert on that topic.
Instead, look at what your competitors are missing and create a better version of it.
Learn More: How To Create a Better Version Of Your Competition Using The Skyscraper Techniques.
Ignoring List building At early stages
Do you know one of the most common mistakes bloggers make is ignoring building their email lists at an early stage of their blogging career?
Don’t quote me wrong, You may still have it in mind to build your email lists but not starting sooner is very risky.
In fact, backlinko founder, Brian dean who has over 1m pageviews said one of his biggest regrets was not growing his email list sooner.
And I can explain its importance.
A while back Google recently rolled out an algorithm update that wiped a lot of people’s sites from search.
I mean quite a lot, and that means site owners lost almost 80% of their rankings.
In fact, most site owners were even in tears because they also lost part of their revenue as well.
And that can cause a HUGE PAIN.
So if you have built your list earlier, you still have control over your readers because you have their emails and marketing continues.
Even though you lost rankings but you still have an army of people on your lists you can still reach out to.
So at any point, you start getting traffic to your sites, build your lists immediately.
Learning All by yourself:
You can not live to figure it all by yourself.
At any point in your blogging career, you definitely need advice from someone who has been there before and succeeded.
That why a lot of amateur bloggers don’t seems to understand.
Even if you watch a series of free Youtube videos on how to start a blog from different experts.
Putting all those pieces and tactics together can cause you a lot of time and effort wasted.
Giving up way too soon (sandbox phase):
Blogging isn’t a do-or-die affair as It takes time.
If you are blogging in a niche where there are a lot of other giant sites in that space.
Then getting massive traffic will definitely take you time, if probably months before you can start seeing results.
This is absolutely normal because it takes a couple of months before your blog exceeds the Google sandbox phase.
In case you don’t know what that is,
The Google sandbox phase is an isolation period where Google watch out for some signals before they can start ranking you on search.
If your site is new there is no way you can avoid this period.
At that point, it will look like all your efforts are going in vain and you ain’t seeing results.
As long as all other SEO measures are correctly put in place, it could just be Google sandbox doing its work.
Most bloggers tend to Give up and consider blogging as a dead scheme.
In other words, Don’t Give up & keep building EAT aka authority so you can quickly get out of this phase.
Learn More: A Research Study By Ahrefs On How long does it take to Rank On Google First Page
Complete Guide To E.A.T In Google Algorithm
Paying for backlinks to manipulate webmasters’ Guideline:
One of the major factors of Google’s algorithm is backlinks.
Over the past few years, Google has changed quite a lot in their algorithm but backlinks still seem to be the same and most important factor.
Google sees backlinks as a Vote of confidence.
In case you don’t know what backlinks are all about.
A backlink is a link from another site to your own website as I mentioned earlier on.
Think of it this way,
If a website wants to link out to you it means you have something important they need their audience to see on your blog.
And when they do, Google sees your sites as a valuable resource and then ranks you higher.
Due to that a lot of people now focus primarily on building links rather than content (more on that later).
And due to this importance and how tough it is to build links, many amateur bloggers now pay for links that are against Google webmaster guidelines.
And then Google penalizes them by issuing them a penalty and then they lose all their traffic and rankings.
If you have it in mind or planning to buy links then you need to stop.
So how can I build links the right way?
- Guest Blogging
- Write Link Worthy Articles
Not having a content plan:
Failure to plan is planning to fail.
During my early days of blogging,
I made the very great mistake of not having a content calendar or plan and that reduces my workflow making me focus on unimportant tasks that didn’t add to the growth of my blog.
In fact, from my personal experience, it is best you have a list of keywords you want to start working on as soon as you even purchase your domain and hosting.
And then set a content calendar based on the data you have with you.
And start working towards it, as this increases your workflow rates and helps you set a better and clear goal.
Poor content UX:
If your texts are like this.
Then that is poor content UX.
And if it is like this, Then this is Good Blog content UX.
In other words, bad content UX makes it hard for your readers to skim your posts.
These mistakes I do make back then and that was the number one reason I increased my fonts to 20px so my readers can easily read my post easily.
So if you had bad content UX you are exposing your brand to only fewer readers.
What Did You Learn From Todays Post?
Now I have come to the end of today’s post.
And would love to hear from you, what mistakes do you find yourself doing that are actually causing a delay to your blog success or,
Did you just realize mistakes from a particular blogger, then let me know in the comments.