Simple things to remember to help you avoid failure!
It’s so easy to overlook things on your blog and some of these are the simplest tasks that you might do daily. We are here to point out some of the blogging mistakes that can affect your blog ranking and success without you even realizing it, so let’s start!
Not capturing leads on your blog
One of the most common mistakes we see is blogs that fail to capture leads on posts.
People generally just write a post and leave it and move on to the next, but what are your readers supposed to do next if you don’t try to capture them or lead them?
Getting them signed up and capturing their emails should be one of your top priorities.
So don’t overlook it.
Email marketing generates a return of around x38 – so for every dollar, you invest, you would, on average, receive $38 in return.
For many businesses, email marketing is a significant factor in their business revenue and growth, with 73% of businesses saying that it is one of the top-ranking parts of their business strategy.
But many businesses still fail at capturing leads on their blog posts.
Most of the successful blogs that you visit will be using email capture. You may not have noticed them as often as they can be subtle and integrate well into the content, but they will be there.
So why capture leads?
Leads are the contact information of a prospective buyer, or someone who can continue coming back to your blog. Once you have their contact details (email address), you can promote your products, recommend latest blog posts to keep them coming back, promote other peoples products (and make money).
Basically whatever your intention is of getting people to visit your blog in the first place, having captured them allows you to bring them back or do more with them.
You can continue marketing to them, and as they move through your funnel, you can slowly convert them into customers or lead them into taking action.
If you don’t capture the leads, then you could be losing these customers forever.
How to capture leads
If you are not currently capturing leads for your newsletter or promotions, you can get started by using a tool similar to Hello Bar.
You can use Hello Bar to start capturing leads today, which will integrate nicely onto your blog and is quite easy to setup.
Simply visit hellobar.com and enter your website address.
Then sign in with your Google account and select the “grow your mailing list” option; this is simply the best way of capturing leads on your blog posts.
Next, customize what you want the bar to say.
You can also customize how the bar will look so that it matches the style of your website.
You can also edit fields and decide the most important ones to display.
When your’ finished you’ll see a preview of how the bar will look.
When you’re happy with how it looks, you can easily install it on your website, and if you use WordPress, you can download and install the plugin. If you don’t use WordPress, you can copy and paste the HTML code provided.
That’s it! You can now start capturing lots of leads from all that traffic that you’ve worked so hard at attracting. Then they’ll come back, and your traffic will grow and grow along with your business!
Not using analytics
Using analytics is so important when it comes to running a successful blog. Analytics will give you insight allowing you to improve the performance of your blog content, and without using analytics, you are ignorant of what your audience wants and the potential progress your blog can make.
The most popular analytics tool bloggers and sites used is ‘Google Analytics,’ which is completely free and a must-have in your blogging toolbox.
Analytics will show you important data on your blog traffic, such as:
Your most popular posts
Analytics will easily show which posts are getting the most visitors, which tells you what content your audience is more interested in. You might notice a post called ‘How to Grow Your Blog – The Bloggers Guide to Driving Traffic & Income’ reaches 30,000+ visitors, whereas a post called ‘How to Set up a Facebook Page – The Ultimate Guide for Newbies’ only gets 2,000 visitors – what does this tell you? It tells you that the majority of your audience is significantly interested in learning more about SEO than advertising on Facebook.
This data is important because it allows you to shape more of your content around what people want to read and learn about but can also hint at some flaws you may have made on posts that aren’t doing so well.
How your readers are finding your blog
Learning how your readers are finding your blog is a very valuable insight as it can also be a good indicator of the significance of your content and where your advertising is lacking.
Readers can find your blog through search engines such as Google, Pinterest, Bing, through social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and through links and referrals from other sites and blogs.
Social shares and comments can help you to identify where your content is lacking and can also spur on new ideas for future content. You can install social sharing buttons on your blog and even on every post that you publish. Inbound links from other sites and blogs give your blog a sense of authority on certain subjects and also helps towards your SEO ranking.
Your bounce rate (people who leave after visiting only one page)
Your bounce rate is where people visit a page on your blog and immediately leave rather than viewing other pages on your blog.
This can tell you multiple things –
Your reader found a post specific to their needs and was only interested in this article and moved on. If this is the case, then it isn’t necessarily a bad thing. However, it would be ideal for you to capture the reader and make them come back in the future. In any case, you should always consider having a ‘call-to-action’ which prompts the reader to subscribe to your blog.
The quality of your content isn’t compelling enough to make your reader want to stay and explore more. This is problematic with the ‘call-to-action’ scenario as the reader may not want to subscribe if your content isn’t good enough for them, so you should always analyze and reconsider the quality of your content.
Not having an email list or promoting it well enough
One of the most important things when starting a blog is setting up an email list. An email list will be what links you to your readers, builds your relationship with them, and keeps them coming back.
How do I get visitor’s emails?
The simplest way to getting your visitor’s emails is by having a CTA, and this can be in the form of a subscription or an exchange. If people like your content and are interested in what you have to say, then these people will subscribe to your blog off their own back because they want more of what you have to offer.
In other cases, you might be required to work a little harder to get emails, and this can be done through an exchange. People love a freebie, so if you offer a freebie (which is relatable to your blog and niche) in exchange for an email, then this could work really well.
What do I do now I have these emails?
The whole point of having subscribers is to build your audience and keep them. You can do this by keeping them engaged in your content through newsletters and competitions.
Not blogging regularly
Another mistake that bloggers make is not to blog regularly.
If you don’t continue adding new content to your blog then your blog will become stale as there will be nothing to encourage your readers to return to. Also, the more you blog, the more traffic you get and the more leads you can capture.
It is that simple!
The more you blog, the bigger and more successful your blog will become.
We try to blog every day, as it is important for our business, and our readers appreciate our content and what we have to say.
But whenever we’ve taken a break from blogging, to travel or just for work breaks we see a drop in traffic.
This is something that you’ll learn over time, and you’ll want to keep blogging regularly to avoid these dips and to continue growing your blog and making it successful.
As we’ve mentioned in another blog post, you can use the HubSpot blog ideas generator if you’re stuck for content ideas.
You just enter a few key phrases, and it’ll generate content ideas and is a great time saver for when you’re trying to think of blog posts to write.
Expecting every blog post to be successful
Another common mistake that bloggers make is expecting every blog post to become popular and attract lots of readers.
After publishing the blog post, you’re likely to regularly check the page views to see the traffic numbers of the post. We do!
After all, putting in the hard work to make a blog post as good as you can mean you’re naturally expecting a positive result from your efforts.
But not every blog post works. Some are more successful than others, and you may find that for every handful of blog posts you write, only one or two of them receive good numbers. This is the nature of things. It’s like when you take a hundred photos of a day out, most of them will be bleh, but one or two of them will look great.
We often analyze competitor blogs or blogs that we are interested in using tools like Ubersuggest. These tools show us what blog posts are most popular on other blogs, and often what we learn is that only a small handful of posts receive the bulk of the traffic. So you only need a handful of killer posts to have a successful blog.
Not to say that the posts that don’t attract much traffic will not be read – your readers will browse through your blog and come across other relevant posts that interest them, so you’re efforts won’t be wasted.
Not showing your most popular or most recent blog posts
Sometimes a new visitor just wants to see your most recent or popular blog posts to see what you’re all about and to see if you’re worth the follow.
It is important to have these easily accessible on your blog, so your audience doesn’t have to sift through all your content to get to ‘the good stuff.’ A simple way of making this content front and center is by linking to them on your sidebar or having your most popular post as a ‘featured’ post.
Not capturing your reader’s attention
Your blog posts need to capture the attention of your readers, and it needs to happen very quickly. Otherwise, they will lose interest and hit the back button.
So how do you capture your reader’s attention?
You often need to start with a hook, something that perks up their interest. Why are they reading this post? Make them relate to what you have to say as quickly as possible.
If you don’t capture their attention, your readers will get bored very quickly. People have limited time, and it’s in the first few seconds of reading a post that makes or breaks the article.
So to hook them in and keep their attention, there are some proven techniques you can employ in your writing.
Agree Promise Preview (APP)
One of our favorite writing techniques is the Agree Promise Preview which was developed by backlinko.
You begin by acknowledging and understanding the reader’s problem, thus making them want to stick around. Start your article referring to the problem, for example:
If the reader lands on a blog post about ‘the best platforms to make money blogging’, you could start your post like this:
It’s true, it is so confusing figuring out the best platform for monetizing your blog.
You are aiming to get the reader to relate to and agree with what you are saying right away.
Then next is the Promise step to set up the hook.
The promise step is where you let them know you can solve the problem –
‘Luckily, we have researched the best platforms to help give you the best chance of making money from your blog.’
And lastly is the Preview where you tell them how you are going to solve the problem and heighten the reader’s attention –
‘In this article we have broken down the best platforms, giving you the pros and cons to each one and showing you how to maximize your money-making potential with them.’
So rather than starting with a blank canvas each and every time to start a new blog post, try using a method that’s proven to work – it’ll not only help you get started easier, but it’s more likely to help make your blog post a success.
Not writing long-form content
I’m sure you’ll agree with me that it’s not that easy to write long in-depth blog posts.
It’s not only time-consuming but also quite mentally taxing.
Many bloggers choose to write shorter, quick, and relatively easy to write blog posts.
However, one of the mistakes that bloggers make is not writing in-depth, long-form content. Long-form content is proven to be up to 9x more effective at generating leads than shorter blog posts.
The average blog posts have around 1000 words, but that is far below the amount that is often used in long-form posts. Writing a few hundred words and expecting good results is only a waste of your time.
Posting short content is a mistake that many bloggers make, and by simply creating more valuable content for your blog posts, you can rank better on the search engines. The top-ranking content typically averages around 2,000 words or more, and they rank well for a reason.
Long-form content typically is full of actionable information that helps solve the readers’ problems. From how-to posts to informative guides like this one, long-form post is generally usable content that people can use.
It is harder to produce longer, more informative posts, but here are some tips to help make it easier for you.
Don’t just mention solutions, give them solutions!
When you are explaining things in your blog posts, it is important also to back up what you say with solutions, but not short solutions such as this example:
“Capturing leads via your blog posts is easy. For this, we recommend HelloBar.”
This doesn’t really help the reader as it doesn’t really explain much and is certainly not an in-depth, actionable solution.
Try this instead:
“Capturing leads via your blog posts is easy. This can be done by using tools such as HelloBar. HelloBar is one of the leading email capture tools online and is quick to set up and activate on your site. Let us show you how….”
Do you see the difference? We are giving you help and also talking you through the solution with step-by-step help.
Follow this on with step-by-step instructions, ideally with screenshots, and you’ve given them a how-to guide within your post, which is great actionable and highly valuable content that helps solve their problem.
Back up your assertions
In addition to this, you also need to back up any facts that you state with assertions.
You cannot simply state that the average blog post has only around 1000 words; you also need to show the reader some statistics to prove to them that this is the case. This not only helps build trust but helps inform the reader with the facts.
The ideal way of doing this is by using statistics.
A great site to use for data on most topics is MarketingProfs, which has a search feature to help you find information to use in your posts.
This site can give you access to lots of data that you can screenshot and use in your posts to back up your assertions.
Skipping past the proofreading
I know, I know, like mentioned earlier, it can be extremely tiring writing your long-form content, and all you want to do is get to the end of it all and call it a day, but unfortunately, there is a mistake in calling it quits so quickly. No matter how many hours you spend on a blog post, you should always add on 30 minutes extra for additional editing and proofreading.
It’s common knowledge that if you work on something for too long, then you become blind to mistakes, flaws, and potential improvements. In those extra 30 minutes, take the time to look on your post with fresh eyes, heck, get someone else on board to give it a read, and sort out any typos, any grammatical errors and make sure your content is fluid and to the point.
If time allows, consider waiting a few hours or even a day before you re-read your content, and if your budget allows, then you could always take on a proofreader/ editor to take the task off your hands. To help with grammar, we recommend Grammarly (a chrome plugin which will flag up any errors and suggest alternatives).
Having said this, don’t spend too much time trying to perfect your blog post and put off publishing. This brings us to our next mistake.
Dilly-Dallying (or trying to be a blog posting perfectionist)
Some people might think that being a perfectionist isn’t such a bad thing, but there comes a time when you can become hung up on perfection (which doesn’t really exist, right?) and postpone publishing your post. Dilly-dallying around the idea of releasing your post into the world just adds extra stress, extra time, and can be detrimental to keeping on track.
As we mentioned above, take those extra 30 minutes for your quick edit and proof, and if something slips through, then something slips through. It’s always better to post and update than not post at all. We are all only human, after all.
It’s easy to make mistakes when blogging when you don’t know what you’re doing wrong. But making these important changes to how you work can help you become a more successful blogger than you may have been otherwise.
So take the time to write good quality content. Write often, capture the reader’s attention using proven techniques and make your content actionable with in-depth solutions and back it up with screenshots and facts.
And just as importantly, make sure you have good calls to action and capture leads, or you’re hard work won’t be rewarded!