Stop Making These Silly Business Blogging Mistakes

business blogging mistakes

STOP IT! — Stop Making These Business Blogging Mistakes 

I’m sure you already know that a successful business blog offers tons of potential for attracting new customers and increasing sales to your business.

Unfortunately though, many bloggers make silly business blogging mistakes that can hurt traffic and sales.

Just to be sure you’re covered, here’s a look at the

Most common business blogging mistakes and tips for how to fix them.

You’re Not Posting Consistently

You don’t need to post every day, but you do need to be consistent.

For example, posting once a week is OK, but don’t post one week then neglect to post again for 3 weeks.

Keep it consistent. That’s how you’ll keep readers and the search engines returning to your blog.

It’s also how you’ll build community, and it’s your community of visitors who are most likely to become customers.

Fix:  Plan and schedule your posts ahead of time. Take a few hours at the beginning of the month and create blog post ideas, then schedule them.

Personal Tip:  If coming up with blog post ideas is hard for you or you have trouble with writing, you might try using PLR (Private Label Rights) content.  Now before you balk at using PLR, you might be surprised to know that I created this post using PLR 😉    PLR used correctly (yes, there’s a right way and a wrong way) makes it so much easier for me to write quality, unique content consistently.  I find that when using PLR my writing goes faster because I’ve got a foundation to work with.  All I have to do is add my personal thoughts, experiences and ideas.  It’s just an easy way to take ideas and expand on them without the frustration.

No One Can Find Your Content

OK, you just wrote a blog post but is anyone reading it?  Let’s make sure they are.

Fix:  Keep your RSS feed obvious and make it’s easy for your readers to find and subscribe to.

Engage readers on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn each time you write a post so that you notify followers and fans of your latest blog content. Also make it easy for your readers to share content with each other through social media channels by using social plugins on your posts.

Optimize each post for the search engines by putting relevant keywords in post titles, descriptions and URL slugs and write about the things that your customers are likely to search for.

Use this blog post checklist for publishing and sharing how to’s.

Your Blog is Hard on the Eyes

I’m amazed at how many blogs still make the mistake of using text that is hard to read with colors and flashing objects that give me a headache!

Fix:  Always use dark text on a white background with a large enough font that I don’t have to squint.  By the way, the recommended font size is 12.  Also, choose a website color palette that complements your site.  Go for classy not tacky.

Your Blog Title or Headline Doesn’t Grab Reader Attention

When a reader is looking for information, the only thing they have to go on is your post title or headline.  That thought alone indicates how critical it is to develop your headline writing skills.

You’re also competing with other blog posts writing on the same topic so if you want your post to compete and get the click, you need to stand out.

Fix:  Be specific with your title and if you can, add a benefit. A title that says “How to potty train your child’ will get far less attention than a title that says, ‘how to potty train your child in 24 hours”.  In 24 hours is the attention grabbing benefit.

‘How to make money’ won’t get as much attention as ‘how to make a thousand dollars a week from home’.  That’s pretty specific.

Here’s more on how to craft headlines that attract attention.

There’s No ‘About Me’ page

Always include an ‘about me’ page. In fact I’d suggest that you make it one of the first pages you create.

Outside of my home page this is one of my most visited pages.  That’s because my visitors want to know who’s behind the scenes.  That’s important for an online business. People don’t listen to or buy from people they don’t know and trust.

Fix:  Create an impressive ‘about me’ page that talks about YOU.  This is one time you can and should do that :-)  In fact I recommend that you set up your about me page before any other pages.  Make your about me page welcoming but keep the things you talk about related to the context of your business.  That means talk about the things that helped you with creating your business,  why you created your business, when you started and who or what inspired you; things like that.

Blog has Too Many Ads

You can’t expect visitors to believe you’re the real deal with a blog full of ads.  Ads can help you generate income from your blog, of course, but too many ads can be a turn off.

I recommend using only ads for products and services you use yourself.  If you use Google Adsense or text ads, keep them to a minimum.   Flashy, obnoxious ads scream tacky and will only diminish your blog’s reputation.

Fix:  Keep ads and banners in your sidebar and footer.  Avoid flashy ads.  Don’t allow ads to outweigh the amount of useful content you provide.

Blog Posts are too long, too wordy or hard to read

There’s a lot of controversy on whether writing long blog posts verses short blog posts and which is best.

Whether your post is short or long isn’t really the issue.  It’s about how to keep your reader interested from beginning to end.  It’s better to use fewer words and get to the point quickly than write long, wordy, text-heavy posts that will lose your readers quickly.

How to Fix:  Use a blog writing style that keeps readers interested and engaged.  Use appropriate headers and bolded bullets that make the content easy to read.  Use good punctuation, italics, quotes and exclamations that help emphasize ideas.  Also add personal ideas, phrases and thoughts that your readers can relate to.

You’re Not Using Images or You’re Using Them Incorrectly

We love to look at pictures; in fact I was just reading the other day that articles with images get over 90% more views.  Images can also trigger emotions which encourages visitor engagement.  And let’s not forget that they add another layer of search engine optimization.  That’s significant!  So use them.

Fix:  Use at least one image for each post you write.  To use images correctly be sure to add your post keyword phrase to the alt image tag.

Add a persuasive caption to your image.  This may not seem like a big deal but studies have shown that about twice as many people read photo or graphic captions as they do body copy.  If your caption grabs attention, visitors are more likely to read your post.  Did you notice I added a caption to the graphic on this post?

Your Content is Too Thin

Adding regular content makes the search engines happy, but now you need to make your visitors happy. That means create content that your visitors will enjoy and find useful.

If you have high quality information on your blog people will bookmark it, pass the information on and visit on a regular basis, increasing your traffic.

Fix: Add thought provoking questions and solicit ideas in your post. Try running contests or conduct surveys.

Add personal experiences and thoughts to your posts.

Ask for opinions on controversial subjects and be sure to make comments of your own when visitors add their comments.

Not Using the Best Keywords or Keyword Phrases

Keywords are the foundation of your blog post. They give the search engine clues about what your content is all about, so choosing relevant, highly searched on key phrases for your post is critical.

Fix:  Keep it simple and find the best keyword phrases for your post by simply using the Google Keyword tool and look for keyword phrases that have ‘low’ competition.   See my post on How to write a blog post, and jump to the ‘important elements’ section for all the areas of your post to use your main keyword phrase.

Personal Tip: I like to type my chosen keyword phrase into the Google search bar and review the ‘Related Search’ keywords at the bottom of the Google search page.  If any of those related words relate to my content I’ll use them in my post as well.

Comments Are Not Enabled

Comments add diversity to your blog, but they also add free content to your blog post, particularly if you’re attracting great commenters.

How to fix:  Allow comments to be turned on in your blog.  To attract quality commenters use the CommentLuv premium plugin. I use it for the quality commenters it attracts, but the best part of using CommentLuv is that it facilitates social media capabilities helping your posts go viral, which is exactly what you want.

In Summary…

Creating your small business blog takes a lot of hard work. It means thinking creatively and coming up with content that readers enjoy. But avoiding these business blogging mistakes and taking the fix advice will absolutely help you generate more traffic, interest and hopefully sales.

What are some of the business blogging mistakes you’ve made and how did you fix them?

Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles & Freedigitalphotos.net

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Comments

  1. Elke Feuer says:

    Thanks for the tips, Liz! I’m guilty of a couple of these, but going to make sure to correct that in my next post. :-)

  2. Jacqueline Gates says:

    Holy mackerel, Ms Liz ~ this is a jam-packed post!

    I winced a couple of times at things I ‘should’ be doing but don’t and I appreciate the tips you gave on how to make them easier. (Often wondered what an ‘alt image tag’ was.)

    I wondered whether you still feel an RSS feed is important now that Google reader is gone or whether an email optin is a better option?

    Anyway, thanks again for a very useful post.
    I’m going to share it with delight.

    Bliss-ings
    the goddess Jacqui

    • Ms. Liz says:

      Hi Jacqui,

      I’m so glad you found the post useful and I sincerely hope these things will improve your blog traffic and activity.

      I do still feel RSS is important. Google reader is gone but there are lots of great alternatives and many of them are mobile as well.

      As for which is better RSS or email, that could depend on your audience. I actually prefer email but many of my readers use RSS so for me it’s good to have them both.

      Thanks for your feedback Jacqui, and please don’t be a stranger.

      Blessings; Oops I mean Bliss-ings 😉
      Liz

  3. Nate Leung says:

    Hi Liz,

    I have to agree with you on the blog being hard on the eyes. I look at design first before I start to read, if I can’t get into the blog, I’ll struggle to read the post and not get the value of what the blogger is trying to convey.

    Blogs that have too many ads can be annoying. I do feel that ads should fall under the 80/20 rule and that most of the content should take up most of the site.

    Some of the mistakes I’ve made in the past was not taking advantage of comments, and also not posting consistently.

    Now a day, I post multiple times a week and keep it consistent. Initially I didn’t get the results that I wanted but this is where my belief came into play and now I’m getting alot more traffic and customers for my business.

    Thanks Liz!

    • Hey Nate,

      Belief is necessary. If you believe you can achieve anything :-)

      Thanks for your great comment Nate.

  4. Hi Liz!

    Very informative post! I’m with you on the “hard to read” or “flashy” blogs. They hurt my eyes for sure. If I can’t find their Follow buttons, I get annoyed and my not visit back. I think it’s important for all bloggers to know these tips, just not business bloggers. Ease of these things can definitely help your blog.

    • Ms. Liz says:

      Hey Bren,

      That’s a good point as well. We need to keep our follow buttons obvious. That’s to a blogger’s advantage. I think sometimes we work so hard at creating our blogs and making them look good that we don’t see the forest for the trees, so to speak. That’s where getting a second pair of eyes to look at your blog really helps.

      Thanks Bren for your great feedback :-)
      Liz

  5. Hi Liz – good to be over at your blog :)

    Wonderful post about the many blogging mistakes most of us make, and most importantly – the tips and fixes with each one of them.

    Oh yes…I’ve made most of these mistakes when I started blogging 2-3 years back! But it was with time and by visiting other blogs and reading about the right ways, that I learned a lot. Keywords is something that sometimes work and sometimes even those that you don’t target, rank, which just still amazes and kind of confuses me.

    This post would surely help newbies and other who have a tough time with their blog content.

    Thanks for sharing. Have a nice week ahead :)
    Harleena Singh recently posted..Is Divorce NecessaryMy Profile

    • Ms. Liz says:

      Hi Harleena,

      Yes, I think we all make those mistakes at first, but that’s how we learn — right? And the beauty of the web is that we can easily learn from each other.

      Keywords are a tough one. Just when I thought I had them figured out, things changed and now, like you, I’m just confused. Frustrating :-(

      Nowadays I just write based on what makes sense for my readers. I try to think like they do in terms of what they want to know and how they would go about finding the information. I think links are still a big part of ranking well, but links have also changed in that links in sidebars, footers and resource boxes don’t offer as much link juice as text links within copy on authority sites.

      Thanks Harleena for your comments. Good to see you here :-)

      Liz

  6. Reginald says:

    Hi Ms Liz!

    Nice article and lots of good tips here. Definitely worth a share.

    Keep it up and thanks for sharing the info!

    *nice to meet another Genesis user 😀

    Reginald

    • Ms. Liz says:

      Hey Reginald,

      Great to have you here! Glad you liked the post and yes, we’re both Genesis users. Great minds think alike LOL! :-)

      Liz

  7. Reginald says:

    Haha Ms Liz!

    In fact, you are probably right :)

    Have a great day ahead!

  8. Hey Liz,

    I don’t need to say more. All of these tips really stuck out and every blogger needs to follow and using this post as a reference. I’ve made some of these mistakes in the past and I see a huge difference now, especially from reading other blog posts! Thanks for sharing this informative post on blogging mistakes and what to do to correct them!
    Sherman Smith recently posted..Is There Such A Thing As A “Ready-To-Buy” Lead?My Profile

    • Hey Sherman,

      We learn a lot from reading other blog posts too, don’t we? I can spend an hour a day just reading and I get such a wealth of personal information. Gotta love the web :-)

      Thanks for your feedback Sherman,
      Liz

  9. We completely redesigned our blog site and we are getting good feedback. Thanks for your personal tip about your chosen keyword phrase in Google search bar. That is a fantastic idea.
    I do that on our main site but have never thought to do it on our blog site. Thank you

    • Hi Arleen,

      You’re very welcome, I hope it helps you. I actually got that idea from reading Google’s SEO guide. They didn’t say that directly but after reading about what they said about keywords it sort of made sense to me to use similar key phrases in my copy and of course Google gives them to you each time you do a search so hey, what could be easier?

      Thanks for your comments Arlene :-)
      Liz

  10. Viola Tam says:

    Hi LIz,

    Wow, great content! Your readers are lucky that you are sharing so much gems here!
    Absolutely loving your ‘fix’ approach. This is an awesome client-focused approach that would work well for ANY business.

    Optimize each post….indeed, this is an area that I need to be learn AND take action. The Google search tips is very helpful. Thanks, Liz!

    Wishing you a Wonderful Giving Blogging Journey!

    Viola Tam – The Business Mum

    • Ms. Liz says:

      Viola,

      It always makes my day to hear that my advice and tips are helpful. Thank you for adding your comments. It’s so nice having you drop by :-)

      Liz

  11. Nice tips Liz, reminds me I have to get going on one of my retail sites for a new post. Just past that week mark. I need to get “fired” up for it. Have a topic in mind too.
    I find images are important and the use of h2 and h3 tags to break up the content of long posts so one can scan. Helps on mobile too!

    • Ms. Liz says:

      Hi Lisa,

      Fantastic! I’m glad I was a good reminder for you :-)

      All of those easily scannable things like graphics, bullets and headers make reading easier but they offer a double benefit in that the search engines favor them as well :-)

      Thanks Lisa.

      Blessings, Liz

  12. Hi Liz,

    Well you’ve really put everything here.

    Of course there nothing wrong with using PLR as long as we use them more for ideas than just use the article as is. I never use PLR but I do get inspired by other articles and posts.

    All those tips make sense of course, posting regularly, using right color background and font, and making sure that people can find our blog, of course.

    I like the fact that you give nice suggestions for those who would be wondering what they should do, and not only what not to do.

    Great and complete post.
    Sylviane Nuccio recently posted..How To Become A Money Magnet – Part OneMy Profile

    • Ms. Liz says:

      Hi Sylviane,

      PLR is controversial and frowned upon but that’s because people use it incorrectly. You can NEVER use it as is, if you do you’ll simply be creating junk content. But some people feel junk content is better than no content which is so wrong! Makes me sad because creating good content is what I’m all about.

      I’m so glad you liked the post and found it useful. Thank you so much for great feedback.

      BTW, love your site Sylviane. It’s given me lots of inspiration :-)

      Blessings,
      Liz

  13. Hi Liz,

    What great advice for the blogger! Consistency for me is the key. I only can handle to post one blog a week, but I won’t miss a beat. And yes, I do have them written ahead of time (just in case) because you just never know what life throws at you!

    Replying to your comments and going to those blogs are another key component for having a strong blog.

    Oh and my pet peeve is going to a blog that has so many ads and pop-ups that I can’t read the content. Plain and simple is better than bling to me!

    Excellent Advice!

    -Donna
    Donna Merrill recently posted..SocializeMy Profile

    • Ms. Liz says:

      Hi Donna,

      There are certainly lots of things that go into the mix for blogging. There has to be a lot of doing and planning but one thing I’ve noticed is that not everyone is serious about treating their blog like a business. If you don’t think of it as a business it will turn out to be a hobby. Focus and attention on a daily basis is key I think.

      Thanks for your feedback Donna. You’re awesome :-)

      Blessings,
      Liz

  14. Ms. Liz says:

    Hey Pst,

    Thanks for your spot on comment. I like that “fear of making mistakes is already a mistake”. So True. But I think you’re right, we are often afraid of mistakes because sometimes they are hard to recover from. It means more time and effort put into something that already took lots of time and effort. But we can grow and learn if we don’t make mistakes and I think that’s something we need to focus on.

    Thanks so much for stopping by :-)

    Blessings,
    Liz

  15. Hi Liz,

    Consistent post. A lot of information on important topics.

    1. An About me page? Yes, it is important. However, I see more and more people doing what is called a resource page. They use that page to present themselves, provide people a place to start, links to important sites and links to important posts on their site etc.

    2. I’m still struggling with keywords. Low competition? What about search volume? It is very difficult for me to find keywords with high volume of searches and low competition. This principle seems … I don’t know … hard to put in practice. It is very easy to find keywords with high volume of searches. It is also easy to find keywords with low competition. It is extremely difficult to find a keyword that complies to both rules. Can you explain a little bit more about how you do your keyword research? Do you limit yourself only to keywords that are low competition? No attention to the search volumes?

    Have a nice day

    • Hi Silviu,

      Great questions.

      High search volume Keywords with low competition are harder to come by nowadays. If I’m having trouble I’ll start looking at the long tail keywords. So for example, instead of ‘brown handbag’, I’ll look at ‘womens brown handbag’ or ‘ soft leather womens brown purse’ or ‘womens brown evening purse’. The long tail keywords often have fewer competitors. You’ll have less search volume but I don’t really care about that. If search volume is only 10 with few competitors I’d rather have those 10 than none.

      Hope that helps,
      Liz

  16. Adesanmi Adedotun says:

    This is an epic, touching,captivating, motivating and appealing to the readers the meaning of blogging. You got everything, in fact am short of words but I’ll still have to say consistency is blogging watchword else procrastination will set in and the outcome will be nothing to right about

    • Absolutely Adesanmi, consistency is key and setting up a schedule to keep consistent will help you.

      Liz :-)

  17. Sandy Halliday says:

    Excellent tips Liz,

    When I first started my detox blog I didn’t know about using images in my posts. It wasn’t until I did a short course with John Yeo that I started to add them. When I look back now at some of my original posts I realize how boring they appear. When I have a moment ( if ever) I would like to go back and add some images just in case the old posts ever make the light of day.

    When using images it pays to have a plugin like WP Smush it which reduces the files size and can help with blog loading speed.

    Have a great weekend.

    Sandy

    • Hi Sandy,

      I’m glad you’re using images now, they really do add character to your posts and they also catch the attention of your readers. But even better they give you some search engine love as well :-)

      Thanks for the tip on WP Smush. Anything that can reduce files size is a good thing.

      Thanks for dropping by Sandy and please come back, I appreciate your comments and great feedback.

      Blessings,
      Liz

  18. Hey Liz,

    What a great list and boy where do I start.

    Now the consistency thing always gets to me. I’m always being asked why they’re not getting results and I always find that they aren’t being consistent. Not only with their posts but putting themselves out there in front of other bloggers so that people will notice them.

    Too many ads, a blog that’s hard to navigate, the comments aren’t enabled or they don’t have their social share buttons correctly always seem to get on my nerves. I’ll comment anyway for the most part but it really makes it hard for me to keep coming back.

    I’m still horrible with my headlines but for the most part my faithful readers will keep coming back so I’m good with that. I’ll get there, or so I hope.

    Thanks for this post and I know it will be helpful and an eye opener for many.

    ~Adrienne
    Adrienne recently posted..WordPress Safety And Security Issues (Infographic)My Profile

    • I hear you Adrienne, consistency is important but if you don’t have a daily plan or schedule it’s harder to stay consistent.

      I think you’re doing pretty good with your headlines. I spend quite a bit of time on them myself, headlines and keywords, argghh! It all takes practice :-)

      Blessings,
      Liz

  19. Robin J Emdon says:

    Some really strong points here Liz!

    I think the one that is most often overlooked is the ‘About Me’ section! I never cease to be amazed how much this section does NOT appear on blogs! I mean… what’s the point?

    ~Robin~

    • Hi Robin,

      I know! Your ‘about me’ page is so important. With so many websites, so many scams and people that aren’t genuine, site visitors are taking more notice of the person or people behind the scenes. No more do people feel confident to blinding listen to or buy things from people they can’t get a good look at.

      For me if there’s no about me page with a name, and a phone or email, I’ll move on.

      Thanks for your great comments and feedback Robin :-)

      Blessings,
      Liz

  20. Gary Boardman says:

    Hi Liz,
    This post is very informative and has some really good reminders and pointers for people to follow.
    I definitely need to look at using keywords and key phrases more.
    Thank you for sharing

    Onward And Upward To Success
    Gary

    • Ms. Liz says:

      Hi Gary,

      Glad you found the post useful.

      Yes, keywords are huge when it comes to online marketing and being seen but they’re not a miracle remedy, they’re just one cog in the wheel of SEO, but they’re an important one.

      The really hard part about keywords is that it’s getting harder to find highly searched phrases with little competition, but we shouldn’t get too hung up with that, wbatever keywords you choose you can help with ranking for those keywords by getting good backlinks.

      I could go on all day with SEO strategies, but the main points are spend time finding good keywords, use them correctly, keep your content useful and relevant and then spread the word.

      Thanks so much for stopping by and do come back :-)

      Blessings,
      Liz

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