Blog, blog, everywhere a blog…

Seems like everyone is starting a blog today. On statista.com, they estimate that there will be over 31.7 million blogs in the United States in 2020!!! And the numbers just keep growing from there.

With numbers like that, can you just imagine the number of new blogs starting every day?

So, today, I’m going to hop in the Wayback machine and review some blogging tips for new bloggers. For you seasoned and experienced bloggers, sometimes it doesn’t hurt to take a quick refresher course.

1. Your titles are boring

Your titles are boring.

Your titles are boring.

Think of your title as the lighthouse to your blog post. The purpose of a lighthouse is to guide the ships (your readers) into port (your blog post). If the lighthouse is rickety and rundown, the ships will pass in the night. But if your lighthouse is bright and outshines every other light, it will be sure to guide your readers into port.
You should spend at least the same amount of time in developing your blog post title as you do writing your blog post. I always get a couple ideas and run them past Tracy to get her opinion. It never hurts to get another set of eyes on your title.

Here are a couple fill in the blank ideas that you can use to generate titles.

How to _____ in (#) Easy Steps.
The Ultimate Guide to _____.
The Beginners Guide to _____.
(#) Facts About _____.
(#) Reasons Why You Aren’t _____.
(#) Tips for Busy _____.
(#) Types of _____.
(#) Super Tips to _____.
Master Your _____ in (#) Simple Steps.
How to Instantly Improve Your _____.
Why You Should Care About _____.
(#) Things That Really Great _____ Do.

2. You are not using images

A well-written blog post will not attract many viewers if it’s not followed up with an eye-catching image.

A visitor to our backyard.

A visitor in our backyard.

Images are important for two reasons:

  1. They help break up the text and white space.
  2. They help in the reader’s retention of your blog post. LIke they say, a picture is worth a thousand words.

Content backed up with a few relevant images gets a larger amount of views than those without images.

And having an eye-catching image or two on your blog is key to engaging your readers and ranking your blog higher in search engines. Google love’s images. If you don’t believe me, do a Google search on any phrase. Then look at your selections at the top.

All    News    Images    Video    Shopping    More

There it is in the third position, Images.

There are several free applications that you can use to create unique images.
Here are 3 popular free photo editing tools that you can use.

Canva

This is arguably the most popular free online design tool specifically made for bloggers. It features a basic version whereby you can produce a professional and quality graphics image.

Creating quality images on Canva is quite easy. It has drag-and-drop functionality which makes it easy to create a great image.

Canva contains over 1 million preexisting graphics and images that you can choose from. Or you can simply upload your own images to be edited and used.

PicMonkey

Bloggers also use PicMonkey to edit their photos and create an amazing image for their blogs. PicMonkey offers image adjusting option whereby your images are sharpened or the exposure effect fixed.

It also features a custom effect that helps to boost your image color or soften your image. There are several functions embedded in this app which aims to give you a better image quality. You can learn more about them in the tutorial section of the app.

Pixlr

Pixlr is a great alternative to Photoshop. Pixlr photo editor offers a series of image selection tools such as the lasso tool, marquee tool, paint bucket, and essentially all the tools you would get in the Photoshop software. If you’ve ever used Photoshop before, you will find it easy to navigate through this software.

Editing apps like Canva, Pixlr, and PicMonkey offers great features that could turn a novice into a pro within a short time.

3. You did not niche down

Niche or not to niche...

Niche or not to niche… That is the question.

There are two types of blogs.

Non-niche blogs
I may step on some toes here, but I feel that non-niche blogs are mainly for the writers. It fulfills a need to write whatever the writer is thinking about. It fulfills a need, and that is okay.

The downside is that your reader won’t necessarily care about the topic that you are writing about tomorrow. If your reader is interested in dogs and your awesome post on “Why Labrador Retrievers Are the Best Dogs in the World” brought them to your sight, then your post next week on why growing cucumbers in a hanging basket may be of no interest to them. The problem with this is that the reader may go to some other place to get their dog tips and never return back to your blog…

Niche blogs
Niche blogs drill down and only concentrate on one topic or niche. The writer works to become the authority in their niche. As that happens their readers begin to see the writer as an authority in the niche and will keep coming back to see what is new.

To get there, your post should answer a question that your reader has about your subject or niche. Sit down and ask yourself, “What are 25 problems that my readers are having in _(your niche)  ?”
Then write a blog post that answers one of those 25 problems. Your reader will appreciate a post that helps them answer a question, and it will start to elevate you as an authority in your niche.

4. Your paragraphs are too long

The longer your paragraphs are the more likely it is that someone will click out. We’ve turned into a world of skimmers when we read. Having paragraphs that are written like a thesis paper will turn off your readers.

Shorter paragraphs

• are easier to read.
• makes it seem like there is less on the page.
• are just more appealing to the eye.

5. You did not include a Call-to-Action

Add a CTA at the end of your blog post.

Add a CTA at the end of your blog post.

A call to action is a simple request made to your readers to necessitate an action. You need to provide your readers with a clear direction on your blog. It could be to read other posts on your blog or purchase a product or engage in a conversation. Whatever you need to emphasize on your blog needs a corresponding call to action.

Most of the time, a call to action occurs at the end of a blog post. You have taken your reader on a long journey and they have reached the end and they don’t know how to proceed further from that point. They are waiting for the next set of instructions from you with a call to action.

Use a little creativity when you write to distinguish your CTA from the rest of your blog post. Let your words be more personal so it will sound more like you are talking to a friend and giving them a little piece of friendly advice.

6. You are not using social media

While you are writing that epic blog post, you need to keep in mind other ways to share your post. Clicking the PUBLISH button is only the beginning.

When blog posts are shared properly on the different social media platforms, it will attract a steady number of visitors to your blog.

You can’t just broadcast the same message across the different social media platforms. Each platform has a unique way to effectively promote your new blog post.

For example, the way you address your Facebook friends when you are creating a new blog post will be entirely different from how you address your contacts on Pinterest or Instagram and Twitter limits our tweet to 280 characters, so our messages have to be short and sweet!!

Pick one platform and work to grow that following. Move on to a second platform once you have grown your following.

You can effectively drive more traffic to your blog by employing different social media platform for posting your blog content. But you have to understand the strength of each platform and play to its strength in promoting your blog posts.

7. You are trying too hard on your keyword selection

How Do I Get Organic Traffic to My Website?

How Do I Get Organic Traffic to My Website?

There are two types of keywords structures, Short tail keywords, and long tail keywords.

Short tail keywords are keyword phrases that are three words or less.
iPhone, running shoes, pizza, or blogging tips.
It is very difficult to break into a short tail keyword category.

Long tail keywords are keyword phrases that have more than three words.
best blogging tips for beginners, best running shoes for men, best pepperoni stuffed crust pizza
It is easier to break into a long tail keyword category.

Longtail keywords by far give you the better advantage to rank in Google SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages).

8. You are not mixing things up in your blog

Writing the same ol’ same ol’ every day will get boring. So instead of slowing down on your posting schedule, or worse, giving up, try these different content types to spruce up your blog.

How-to Post
Do you have a skill? Is there a talent that you’d like to show off? Create a post explaining how to do something.
Ideas could include:
How to repair a faucet
How to install a battery in your car
The proper want to apply makeup
This is really an endless category…

Guest Post
Do you have a couple bloggers that you have gotten to know? Then ask them to write for your blog. Have them write a post aimed at your audience. It’s always a good idea to reciprocate is possible. Guest posting is a great way to get your name in from of other audiences.

Product Reviews
Do you have a favorite product that you like to use? Then, write a review on it.
Don’t know where to start, write about your favorite smartphone app or your favorite writing program.

Videos
Videos, where to begin… I feel that videos will surpass the written blog post, IMHO. Besides, they are fun and easy to do. All you need is your smartphone and you are on your way to posting videos. A couple quick Google searches and you’ll find some free video-editing software.

I’m using videos more and more on my website. Hey, you can find me on YouTube too!!

9. You are trying to sell too soon

This is a big one!! I probably should have put this at the top of the list…
Don’t come across in every post as “BUY, BUY, BUY!” I mean unless you are a part of NSYNC (Get it? See there’s that personality coming through…)
No one is interested in reading a post that is full of salesy stuff. It is a big turn off. The propose of your post is to help your reader. In doing that you begin to gain their trust. If you come out right from the start trying to get that sale, you will lose your reader’s trust and they will go elsewhere.

10. You are not linking back to your older posts

If you are not doing this then you are missing out on some homemade Link Juice.

Do you have a relevant post that you can link to in your new blog post? Great!!
Add a link to an older post in your new post to keep the link juice flowing.

I wouldn’t go crazy with the internal links. They need to be added and not look spammy. In my opinion, one or two internal links would work great.

No matter why you are writing, when you post your work for the world to see you want it to come across as professional and helpful. Adding these tips into your blog will help you come across as a seasoned veteran not so much as a novice. I hope you enjoyed this post. It’s definitely one of my longest post, if not the longest. Check back next week. I’m going to feature some new “How to” videos and a ton more of great new stuff!!

Don’t forget to get your free copy of my eBook, “How to Monetize Your Blog.”

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To your success.

Dan