How To Blog Successfully: 10 Blogging Pitfalls You Should Avoid

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Blogging has proven to be an amazing way for us to express ourselves, build memories, make friends, and even start businesses. Every blog has a different voice and it’s great to see the many directions people choose to take in their online journeys. However, many of us fall into traps that really should be avoided for an optimal blogging experience. Here is a list of pitfalls you should avoid if you want to blog successfully:

  • Becoming a slave to your stats.

Your stats are like your weight. It’s fun to dream about what it COULD be, but checking everyday or multiple times a day is not going to do anything for you. Make long term goals, subtle changes, focus on writing well, and keep a distant eye on your stats.

It’s good to know who is visiting your site, how they found it, and how much time they’re spending on it because this knowledge can help us improve our blogs by catering to what people seem interested (or not interested) in, but obsessing over those numbers will only distract you from better uses of your time.
10 Blogging Pitfalls To Avoid

  • Obsessing over comments

People are reading. Your content means something to you. That’s all that matters. It’s okay to want comments.  It feels good to get a response to something you spent hours putting your heart into, but it’s not the end all and be all of blogging. Engage your readers, invite them to comment, ask for advice, pose a question..the rest is up to them. It will do you no good to hem and haw about how you got more comments yesterday than you did today. Spend your time instead improving your site’s functionality.

  • Putting unnecessary emphasis on your page rank.

You may or may not realize this, but all sites are ranked in Google and yours is one of them. Alexa tells us where we rank out of millions and millions of websites. The theory is that the lower your Alexa ranking is the more desirable your site is to advertisers. For some, this translates into a competitive thing among bloggers. How can X site have X ranking when all they do is post reviews!?!!? I post amazing content everyday and she posts only once a week, how can she possibly rank higher than me!?!?!

It is easy to get wrapped up in this number and there are ways to improve it, but it’s not as important as we think it is. Alexa is not queen of the internet, Alexa does not consider your feelings when ranking you, and does not care if you hold a 1.5 million ranking and your friend is sitting at a ranking of 200,000.  The bottom line is you will never be number one, so let it go. Spend your time focusing on your content instead.
10 Blogging Pitfalls To Avoid

  • You’re blog envious

There will always be a blog better than yours. There will always be a design you want or a post you wish you’d written or a title you wish you’d thought of. It’s normal to aspire to be successful. It’s normal to find a blogger and hope to someday get as many comments. It’s not normal to hate them for it or to spend your time looking for something wrong with them or to leave anonymous comments calling their children ugly.

A blogger is usually successful due to a combination of time, effort, great content, and/or an expertise in their niche. Instead of expending your energy wishing you were as successful as another blogger, wish them well, and focus on your own site. With time, effort, great content, and/or an expertise in your niche…you will get there too!!
10 Blogging Pitfalls To Avoid

  • You’re responding to blog drama

It’s all around us. The setback of this hobby we all love is that through writing things are often misread or misinterpreted. Sometimes we write passionately and hit publish before we’ve taken a moment to think about the consequences of our actions. When you hit publish about anything you have an opinion on, chances are someone, somewhere will disagree with you.

There’s nothing wrong with having an opinion and saying so, but the moment you choose to personally attack someone or get involved in a scuffle between bloggers, is the moment you say no to supporting women online and yes to killing brain cells. Just walk away. Instead, spend that time focusing on your writing. (Are you seeing a trend here yet?)

  • Spreading yourself thin…and not the good thin that makes you want to go shopping

With SO many avenues to reach potential readers for our sites we all spread ourselves thin. Writing, commenting, email, Facebook, Twitter, FriendFeed, Flickr, The BlogFrog, YouTube…the choices are endless.  It’s okay to dabble in networks to see if they might work for you. Trying new things and staying current is important, but plan your time wisely. Unless you have hours to spare, you should think about how you can get the most bang for your buck before you get online. Creating blocks of time for the things you need to do will help you accomplish more, and faster.
10 Blogging Pitfalls To Avoid

  • You no longer leave your house

Maintaining a life outside of your computer is still important…if for no other reason than that it provides you with more things to blog about. You must fight the pull to spend every waking hour on your computer. Your friends will start calling you weird. Your husband will find a new wife. Your children will start skyping you for attention. And your mother will worry about you. It’s not worth it. You must continue to exist in the real world.

  • You’ve run out of things to blog about.

There’s no such thing. You can’t run out of things to write about because number one, whether you want to admit it or not there is always something going on in your brain and number two…I just won’t allow it. Draw your inspiration from conversations you have with friends, books you’re reading, current events, bloggers in your niche, and when all else fails, feel free to peruse my gigantic growing list of writing prompts.
10 Blogging Pitfalls To Avoid

  • Losing sleep

The less you sleep, the more obnoxious you are to be around. Blogland is not going anywhere and the only other people awake with you at three in the morning live in Australia. Please go to sleep. You will think more clearly, write better, and be altogether more enjoyable when you’re well rested.

10 Blogging Pitfalls To Avoid

  • Caving in to the pressure to perform

Staying consistent with your writing is important, but you do not have to write every single God forsaken day. Nobody wants you to get burned out and everybody wants thoughtful content. If writing every second or third day is what works for you then start there. We live our lives with enough guilt, feeling pressure to write more often or to not miss a day is not only irrational, but it’s not fair.

Live your life first, write about it later.

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About Kat

Member of the SITS Leadership Team. Hilariously funny. And tall. YouTube's next big superstar.

Where you can find Mama Kat:
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Comments

  1. LMFAO! You no longer leave your house! I laugh but I totally know it’s true!!!
    GiGi Eats Celebrities recently posted..A Thanksgiving Tale

  2. This is one of the better “tips” posts I have read. I gained something for myself (go to sleep) as well as insight into a phenom I have been watching around the internet (blog drama).

    Regarding stats and rankings, I think, to be fair, there are many new bloggers who see other bloggers making money so they DO obsess on stats and page rank because they know many sponsors (most) want the blogs they participate with to be at a certain level.

    I think a GREAT follow-up post would be one directed on new bloggers about making money, but not about all the avenues, instead about what they themselves need to do to get to each level.

    Does that make sense? I think new bloggers get burnt out and stat obsessed because they have no idea how to use stat info to their advantage and even less idea on what exactly they need to do to prep their blog to start making money.
    Cheri recently posted..The Evil of Ignorance

  3. Love your stuff. I struggle with a desire for comments at the moment. I’m sure I’ve struggled with all of this but that’s the one that gets me right now.
    Jennifer recently posted..Don’t Hate, Let’s Educate {Birth}

  4. Thanks for the help. It is definitely great advice I can use. My task for today (after I comment here)…is to WALK AWAY from the computer!

  5. Running out of things to blog this one is very common. Bloggers sometimes ran out of things to write. Ideas may come an go sometimes. But if you love what you do like blogging, you’ll never have a problem with regards in making it successful.
    Blog Writing recently posted..Finding Influencers on Twitter – The Purpose and Methods of Scouting Them

  6. Thanks for this! Especially the one about not staying on the computer ALL the time. When my brain starts spinning I can easily sit down with my blog and not come up for air for days. I know this is unhealthy! I literally have to make myself put the computer down and join the real world again when my kids come home from school. I try very hard to make the most of my day while they are at school so I don’t feel guilty about not being on the computer once they get home. It’s so hard though!
    Tammy Eakes recently posted..Congrats to All of the 8 Weeks to Swimsuit Participants!

  7. OMG– I just spent a whole Sunday afternoon doing all the above. I’m exhausted, overwhelmed and discouraged. This was the best piece of advice I’ve read all day.
    I just need to focus on quality posts. Period.
    Now I can go to sleep. Hopefully I can.

  8. I really appreciated this post. I am in the process of re-working my blog and I found this encouraging. Especially- “Live your life first, write about it later!” So true!!

  9. I really appreciated this post. I am in the process of re-working my blog and I found this encouraging. Especially- “Live your life first, write about it later!” So true!!

  10. Thanks for the info! As I continue to write, I find myself worrying less and less on comments, stats, etc. Now, I write when something comes to me or something that I think will be useful to someone.
    Sharon recently posted..How to Make a Light Bulb

  11. Thanks for the tips. I just finished reading your top 10 secrets book. I feel like I have so much to learn about blogging but I am going to start focusing on developing my niche and my content and worrying about the other stuff later. I have only been blogging for a few months, I have got to get it out of my head that I can do everything someone who has been blogging for 5 years can do.
    Danielle recently posted..Letter to a Friend

  12. Thanks for reminding me to keep things in perspective. I am from Australia and this made me laugh because the first thing I do when I wake up in the morning is check my stats to see who has had a look from the other side of the world- because it was daytime over there while it was nighttime here!
    Zoe recently posted..5 Questions to ask when choosing a cot for your child

  13. Thank you for this post! I’ve fallen victim to at least 5 of these “don’ts” once or twice…. if I’m low-balling. I’m definitely printing this out and putting it on my inspiration wall. Thanks again for sharing.
    Kerstin recently posted..Inspiration Can Come From the Strangest Places

  14. Love the tips, i am just starting out and the more help i can get the better. So far i have done pretty good but i just don’t know how so many of you become so successful. Hears to more study on my part!
    Cheers,

  15. great tips,especially about sleeping and going out,should make myself follow them!
    Lusine recently posted..WORD FAMILIES (-AT,-AD,-AM)

  16. I just read this and absolutely loved it–helped me find balance. I have child-free morning (don’t ask how–I just have it like that) and am losing myself in blog world and getting more irritated by the second–thanks for helping to add perspective–seriously needed!

  17. The drawings are just too funny!! A very good points that we all need to be reminded of often.

    Thanks so much,
    Alisha
    Alisha recently posted..10 Day YOU Challenge: {Day 1} 10 secrets

  18. awesome advice!!! I fall prey to being jealous of other blogs! I should instead just focus on mine : )

  19. Did my husband tell you these things about me??? LOL This is a really good post. I think it’s easy to get wrapped up in stats and compare your blog to others.
    Marie | Work From Home Me recently posted..My Journey – Short Version

  20. This is one of those timeless posts that bless us with common sense when it’s become uncommon. Good stuff!

  21. must.pin.this.

    great info and funnnnnyyy!
    Victoria Hamel recently posted..Veggies, Veggies, Veggies

  22. thank you for this post! i need to keep reminding myself of these things!

  23. As a new and aspiring blogger this post is wonderful! I appreciate all of the very helpful tips! I will be back for more! :)

  24. These are all such great ideas! Definitely something to think about.

    Thank you!
    Allyson
    http://cupcakescandycanes.blogspot.com
    Allyson recently posted..Did I Ever Tell You

  25. All I can say here is: *Thank you for this post!!!*
    Ann recently posted..How Not To Overparent Your Kids (And Love Them Better)

  26. I LOVE this post!!! I am working on managing my time better. Thanks so much! ~Blessings!
    Chari recently posted..Are you a Proverbs 31 Woman? Get this FREE ebook!

  27. This post was SO helpful! I think I have felt all ten things but reading this has put things back into perspective for me and reminded me of the reason I blog in the first place!
    Amanda / Bulldrogs and Bulldogs recently posted..wine country wednesday – red hills market

  28. Great blogging advice!!!
    Taylor – Goings on out in West Texas… recently posted.."You wanna go see those ducks?"

  29. I just started blogging and love this post. Thank you!
    Diane recently posted..The Spit Up Curse

  30. These are VERY good tips! Booking marking this page:)

  31. Great advice. I need to work on not obsessing over my stats so much!
    Teresa recently posted..The Beginning

  32. Do you have camera in my apartment? I do all these thing …well except commenting hate, and following drama that I stay away from. But the obsessing over my stats and not sleeping…oh my….*looks around the corners of her place for camera*
    Shannon McGee recently posted..Old Painting – Native American Woman in Blanket – 2007

  33. wow, Im suffering from quite a few of those starting with stats, not leaving the computer and losing sleep its 4am here right now!! Need to put things in perspective!! aaaargh! HELP
    Sadaf recently posted..Recipe: Leaching onto Lychees!

  34. Good grief this is a good article. I think I need to read it about once a week.
    Susan in the Boonies recently posted..Heart Break

  35. Wow, this was great to read. Great advice, exactly what I needed. I’m obsessed about the whole comment thing. I have to remember that I am writing for myself, and people *are* reading.
    Sarcasm Goddess recently posted..Remember When I Said The Husband Is A Wiener

  36. Great post! I’ve struggled with most of these and have actually uttered the same reminders to myself at various points. Although I’m happy to say I haven’t and will not get involved in blog drama, run out of content ideas (although writer’s block can be a problem), and will never EVER choose the Internet over sleep. :)
    Kristin @ What She Said recently posted..An Unappetizing Post Unless You Like Tuna Fish

  37. See what I mean… I meant I am going to BED! I need sleep.
    Bridgette recently posted..FRAUD – Don’t Be A Victim

  38. Thanks for the insight and I’m going to be, because it’s 12:55 EST. See, I’m a quick study. Tip 1 done and nine more to go!
    Bridgette recently posted..FRAUD – Don’t Be A Victim

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  1. [...] 10 Blogging Pitfalls All Bloggers Should Avoid [...]

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  4. [...] been through the WordPress migration this week and am back to concentrating on my blogging. Here’s a great post from Mama Kat on the SITSGirls Blog about when it’s time to step away from the [...]

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