Are you new to blogging or just curious what I did wrong? 😉 Check out these blogging tips for beginners so you can avoid these common blogging mistakes.
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure for more info.
When I started blogging I knew almost nothing about it. I knew I liked to read blogs. Once I had my daughter, reading blogs on my phone replaced the novels I used to read. My sleep-deprived brain preferred the bite-sized nature of blogs.
A few months ago I decided I wanted to join in the fun and help people too so I started a blog. I read up as much as I could in my limited time about blogging tips for beginners. I learned from all that I read and then I made other new mistakes. 🙂
There is a lot to learn about when you start a new blog, but there are also a lot of free resources to help you (including right here on this site!).
If you haven’t started a blog yet but you want to I have an easy tutorial here: start a blog in the time it takes to drink a coffee.
You can learn a lot from other people’s mistakes. Here are my best blogging tips for beginner bloggers based on what I would have done differently if I knew better at the time.
Spending too much time on Facebook reciprocation threads
One of the important blogging tips for beginners relates to finding a balance with social media. If you don’t know as a new blogger, so much of blogging is promotion and getting your wonderful posts out there. Unfortunately we are not in the days of the internet where you just write great content, post it, Google finds it quickly, and hoards of people come to read your site.
One of the ways bloggers get the word out about new posts they have published is through Facebook reciprocation threads. These groups are so great! You can drop a link to a post and follow the rules of the group but they are usually something like you have to share so many other posts when you leave a link. It is a way to get your post out there further and faster and the people in the groups I am part of are really nice and supportive.
That’s all good, but when I started I got waaaaay too into these groups. I was spending probably a couple hours a day sharing other people’s content. This is too much and not a good use of your time as a beginner blogger. Pick one or two threads a day and then focus on other aspects of your blog.
I have heard from many other new bloggers and one of the tips for beginner bloggers they told me is spend more time on your content and less time on recip threads.
Keeping the date in the permalink settings in WordPress
I could have eliminated the use of an extra plugin and cut down on some extra work for myself if I had set up my permalinks right away so they just have the post name. Many many new bloggers do this. The default setting in WordPress includes dates in the url that is attached to your post. I didn’t notice this when I was first setting things up and just accepted that default. After a bit of time I decided I really didn’t want the dates in my permalinks. You can’t just change your urls because your old urls are still floating around out there. If someone happens to click on an old one you want that user to not get a big old error. You want them to be redirected to your (same) post but with the date not in the url. So you can use a plugin to redirect your old permalinks to your new. No biggie but I’m a frugal person even when it comes to how many plugins I want 😉
One of my blogging tips for beginners is before you start adding posts to your blog, change the permalink settings right away to just the title of your post. This will save you having to get a plugin and do the redirects.
You can start a blog here and get a free domain name by using this link!
Signing up to be an amazon affiliate too early… and then doing nothing about it
If you have a clear vision for your blog and know the types of products on amazon you want to be an affiliate for, then great. Apply to be an amazon affiliate right away when you start your blog, and start linking away. But you are only given 180 days to make 3 qualified sales. I signed up too early, and didn’t add any affiliate links to posts until the last month. I made two qualifying sales and then my 180 days was up…so close! But I was booted out right away. They are exact on the dates. So I reapplied and focused on what I wanted to promote – things I really love and use all the time anyway – and easily made the 3 qualifying sales within the first month of being back in the program.
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I was literal about “keyword”
Okay this one makes me laugh and might be a little embarrassing for me but I’m going to share it in case there’s someone else out there who thought the same thing. When I was totally new and had just installed the Yoast SEO plugin, I took the entry field for “keyword” literally. Meaning I initially thought that you had to pick just one word for your blog post SEO keyword. Not words. So “baking” or “photography” I thought were okay, but not “keto chocolate baking” or “best wildlife photography” because those had multiple words. Stop laughing at me.
Sure that was okay for one or two posts, but once I had several, I started wanting to use the same keyword for another post. What to do! So yes I did figure it out after learning more about keywords, and long-tail keywords, etc etc but yes initially when I kept hearing about the importance of choosing your keyword (singular!!), I took that to mean one single word. Don’t. People mean keywords and you can and should be picking multiple words to enter into your Yoast SEO plugin.
Being a perfectionist about pinning others content
At the beginning I spent waaaay too much time scrutinizing pins and reading the posts to see if they aligned with the look and tone of my own blog. This is other people’s content remember. Yes you want to choose to pin things that make sense to your brand and your Pinterest boards but keep it reasonable. I became a perfectionist about curating. This was not the best use of my time. I should have spent more time as a beginner blogger creating content for my own site.
Final thoughts on blogging tips for beginners
As you can see there were many mistakes that can be made as a beginner blogger. If you’re letting fears of not knowing what you are doing stop you, then you need to read this: doubts and fears about blogging…and how to get over them. I’ll admit, it’s not fun to make mistakes, especially publicly, but putting yourself out there is worth it if this is something you have been thinking about doing. Most likely you will make mistakes too, but now maybe not these ones I gave you a heads-up about here! 😉
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What blogging tips for beginners would you add? What blogging mistakes have you made? Did anyone out there think the same as I did about the “keyword” or am I all alone on that one?