Do you ever wonder why no one is reading your blog?
I know I did. Spending a lot of time writing a blog only to have your mom and a few friends read it is very disheartening (Thanks Mom!). This was basically how I spent my entire first year of blogging.
My readers were minimal, comments or sharing was zero and subscribers base was basically non-existent.
Many times I thought about quitting but knew that would never fix any problem.
In January of 2017, I had 1,212 page views…my highest month ever besides the month I was featured in Rockstar Finance in 2016. But I ended up finishing 2017 with 100,055 page views for the year. It’s still far from my monthly goal but it shows that with changes and new strategies you can achieve anything.
I’m not saying I’m at 1 million views a month (yet) but 2017 was a great year of growth for the blog.
Rather watch than read? Check out my Youtube video
There were so many reasons my blog got little traffic in 2016 it’s hard to even think about but here are some big ones:
- I used Weebly instead of WordPress
- Never used Pinterest (EVER!?)
- Didn’t use Yoast SEO or do any keyword research
- Site loaded incredibly slow (bad for search engines)
- Hardly promoted on social media (I had major imposter syndrome)
- Low-quality posts (spell check anyone!?)
And so many other reasons…Luckily I’ve learned from them (well most) and made huge progress in 2017.
You Write About You
It’s easy when you first start blogging to act like your blog is an online journal. This is especially true if you are tracking income, debt payoff or other goals you make public to your audience.
While your blog should be personalized it should not be 100% about you. Blogs are naturally more personal than professional websites but it’s important to always focus on the reader.
Before you hit publish on any post ask yourself, “What is the value my reader will get from reading this!?”
Your Topics Are All Over The Place
Again, this is a very easy mistake to make when you get started. I always feared that if I started writing about money I would be forced to always write about it. As you can tell this blog is no longer 100% personal finance but an array of other topics. The transition wasn’t overnight though it took months to begin to expand.
When you are first starting out it is important to write with some consistency on one topic. You can have several categories but make sure it is all going towards the mission of your blog.
For example, my blog is all about helping others becomes successful on their terms. Success to me is all about growth which is why my (soon to be new) slogan is “Grow Your Mind, Wallet, & Blog.” So all my posts are geared towards the growth of one or two of these areas. It is not as specific as other blogs but I think it’s important to love what you write about.
If one day you blog about knitting, the next day about cats, and the next day about side hustles it may be time to think twice about your niche. At the beginning of your blogging adventure focus on your niche, you can always expand it later.
You Have Zero Posting Schedule
Have you ever started following a blog and love getting their email to your inbox only to have them vanish?
I know I have and also did the same in the past. You have to create a consistent schedule to stay at the top of readers minds and also give Google fresh, new content. Pick a consistent schedule and stick to it.
It could be one day a week or two days per month (although I encourage more) but stick with it. You might skip a day or have something come up occasionally, that’s fine….but try to be 95% or more on schedule.
A great way to stay consistent with posting is to batch write your blog posts so you write several at once. This will allow you have a few extra posts for the future and decrease the likelihood of missing a day.
If you want people reading your blog you need to make a consistent schedule. Mark it on your calendar and stick to it for your reader’s sake.
You Never Promote on Social Media
Do you suffer from imposter syndrome?
I know I did my entire first year blogging.
Rarely, if ever, did I actually promote my content on a regular basis on social media channels. Then once I got started I tried to be all over each one and eventually burned out.
Instead of trying to be a social guru, focus on two platforms that will help you the most. For me, it’s Pinterest and Twitter. Pinterest has jumped way up to my #1 social channel for traffic.
Twitter is great to share others work, network with other bloggers, and access influencers. I get very little traffic from Twitter but think there is a ton of value in working with others in your specific niche.
Get over imposter syndrome, create amazing content and promote the hell out of it! Be proud of your work and share it off to your hard earned fans on social media.
Remember, you are only one post away from potentially changing your life!
Your Site is Ugly
First impressions are everything in life and your website is no different. If someone lands your page and it is sloppy, unorganized, and littered with irrelevant ads they will most likely leave (quickly). Wouldn’t you do the same?
Even worse, if your site takes a while it to load people will exit before your content even loads!
My site used to load so slow it was cringeworthy. Finally last month I got a professional site and speed package with Grayson at iMark Interactive and it helped tremendously. They cut tons of time off my site load time to make a better user experience and help appease Google.
Make sure your site provides a good user experience with a great blog theme, relevant unintrusive ads, and a quick load time. Your readers and Google will reward you!
Your Content Sucks
Even if you get your site to load quickly and create a great user experience bad content will make readers leave.
If you’re just starting out know that some of your content probably isn’t great, it’s part of getting good at anything. As Malcolm Gladwell says in his book Outliers, “It takes 10,000 hours of deliberate practice to become an expert.”
How does that apply to blogging?
Just like it does to learning a new sport, starting a new side hustle, or writing on your first blog. Everyone sucks at the beginning of anything new, that’s life.
While some people are more gifted writers than others, 99% of new bloggers will produce some bad (or in my case, really bad) content. But that’s part of the process!
If you stick with anything and want it to succeed enough you can figure it out. Blogging is no different.
Don’t be afraid to suck, be afraid to never try. As legendary speaker Les Brown said, “You got to fail your way to success.”
Make writing a daily habit. Whether you write in a journal, start freelance writing or just publish more posts. Eventually, you will get better with practice and time.
Not Writing With Specific Keywords
One of the biggest mistakes most people make when writing blog posts is neglecting keyword research prior to writing a post. I was no different. I read an endless amount of keyword research articles but it never made much sense until the past few months.
While I think it’s still very early in my blogging/keyword research career I know this is incredibly important to help Google understand your content.
Remember, you can write the best content ever but if no one reads who cares?
Don’t neglect keyword research like I did, check out these posts to help get you started:
Spend time researching keywords before you start writing. This can have a dramatic impact on your traffic.
One great post on page one of Google can produce readers for years to come.
You Have No Formatting (H1, H2, etc)
When I first started blogging I didn’t understand the importance of formatting a blog post. I would put H1 tags in the post, have an H4 follow an H2, just rookie mistakes. Luckily, this is an easy fix to help clean up your site quickly.
Basically, your headers provide an outline for Google on the content of your blog post. It will also help guide your readers through the natural flow of the blog post.
For example, your title will automatically be an H1 header when you input the title field in WordPress. As you write the post you will need to expand and use H2 for main headings and H3 for sub-headings. You might use H4 and H5 as well depending on the post.
Use H2 for main points, H3 for points within the main point, and potentially H4 for another subpoint.
Your Headlines are Boring
I remember reading a stat about email marketing that 80% of people will see your email but only 20% will click through. Yikes!
It’s easy to spend time on your post as it takes a while to create 800 – 3,000-word posts with epic content. But, if you have a lame, boring headline it won’t make readers want to click through. Whether you use CoSchedule headline analyzer, buy an ebook, or read a ton of articles make sure you prioritize your headlines.
The biggest rule about headlines is to educate the reader what your post is about. Don’t set super high expectations to only have a short post that doesn’t meet their expectations.
While you want them to be catchy you don’t want to lie to readers.
Here are some good ideas to get you started making headlines sexy:
- The Little Known Secret to (Insert what post is about)
- 89 Ways to Improve Your SEO (be bold and make a big list)
- What Everyone Should Know About (Insert topic)
- Are You Committing These (Insert topic)?
Similiar to keywords don’t skip the headlines and spend all your time on writing your post. Test which headlines perform better on similar posts and always ask yourself…”Would I click on this headline?”
When I first started blogging I reached out to J$ at Budgets Are Sexy to ask for some advice as a newbie blogger. Being the nice guy he is, he responded and let me know the importance of guest posts. By posting on others sites you gain access to a new audience, grow your exposure, and create a backlink to their site.
The more backlinks from well-known sites you have the more Google will begin to realize the importance of your site and will rank you higher in search results. This strategy will take some time but should not be overlooked.
And remember, never, ever pay for backlinks!
Make friends and reach out to fellow bloggers. Let them know you love their work and would love to contribute! Most of the time they will welcome guest posts and love giving their readers fresh new content.
Get People Reading Your Posts!
Blogging isn’t easy, if anyone tells you it is run the other way. But, I’ve proven to myself that it isn’t impossible to get people reading your blog.
While I’m still well short of my traffic goals I am confident these tips will help you increase your page views dramatically!
Don’t be like me and spend all your time writing posts that no one will read.
- Creating an awesome site with a clear message
- Doing keyword & headline research
- Writing a great post with proper formatting
- Using spell check
- Adding lots of white space and images
- Promoting like a crazy person! Be proud of your work 🙂
Are you a blogger who has felt no one is reading your blog? Are you making any of these mistakes currently?
Let me know in the comments!