But most first time bloggers don't know that.
This is why there are a lot of blogs that are disorganized, cluttered, unfocused and impersonal.
Want to remedy that? Here are your…
6 Blogging Tips Every Newbie Should Know
1. Zone in on a topic
If you offer frugal living tips, don't post about the crazy driver who cut you off this morning.
You don't go to the barber shop expecting to buy freshly baked bread.
Be focused and stick to a topic. It helps readers identify what you offer so they can keep coming back fore more.
2. Avoid clutter
We get it. You want to show your readers everything so they don't miss a thing:
Recent posts, popular posts, recent comments, blog hop badges, top commentators, site statistics, advertisements and other blogs' buttons. Throw in a truck load of side bar widgets to the mix and you've got a blog that resembles Las Vegas.
There's nothing wrong with the above mentioned but if they're crammed into every imaginable part of your blog, it takes away something from the user's experience.
Keep it clean, simple and retain the essentials. Most readers care less about site statistics and more about what you have to say. Don't bury posts in ads and buttons.
3. Format your blog posts, please!
If you type a block of text that's 20 sentences long, there's a good chance you'll ward off readers.
Reading on the web is different from reading a book. Bloggers compete with a reader's short attention span, eye fatigue and divided attention.
How do you get busy visitors to stick?
Break-up long blocks of text by:
- Using headings or sections
- Writing 2-3 sentences per paragraph, with one idea
A block of 20 sentences can seem like a novel.
Also, use a font style, color and size that's easy to read. There are a few blogs that use light shades of grey or cursive fonts – these force readers to squint and then ditch your blog.
4. Take advantage of keywords
Using keywords in a blog post generates additional visits via search engines.
Let's do simple math here.
Being conservative, say you get an average of 50 visits a week by using different keywords. In a month, that adds up to 200 visits that you didn't even have to work hard for.
For a blog that's starting out, it's not bad at all!
Don't believe me? Try commenting on other blogs just to gain those 200 visits.
Use Google Keyword Tool Box, it's free. Take a few minutes to look for keywords people use, and then sprinkle – not douse – them in your post.
5. Respond to comments
A thoughtful comment deserves a response. Why, oh why?
Because the reader could have spent 10 minutes reading and commenting on another post. Instead he chose yours.
Responding to comments is also a good way of interacting and building relationships with readers. And when you have this, they're more likely to return.
Set aside a few hours a week replying to comments. Don't say you have no time, it's not like you're getting 100 comments per day (yet)!
Oh, and make sure your commentators receive your response. Use a comment reply notification plug-in or remind them to subscribe to comments and/or replies.
6. Have contact details
Have you ever visited a blog, had a question you wanted to ask the owner but couldn't find a way to reach him or her?
Have an email or contact form easily accessible. Spare a page or incorporate it in your “About” section. Don't make your readers dig through the widgets and links to find your email address.
You don't need a flashy blog design with blinking fonts to attract readers.
Keep things simple, readable, focused and have a welcoming atmosphere. Your readers and stats will thank you for it.
Did I miss other great tips for blogging?
Do let me know by leaving a comment.
Guest Author: Anne Mercado is a writer who is fascinated with psychology and horror stories. Luckily, you won't find the latter when she writes on her parenting blog, but she's seriously considering sharing spooky tales in her personal blog. Who knows, maybe she will!