6 Blogging Tips Every Newbie Should Know

A blog is a lot like your favorite bookstore. Organized, neat and with friendly faces to help you with your book hunting experience.

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.

Another example?

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
Your readers’ eyes will thank you for the breaks or white spaces, which gives the impression of a shorter and more readable post.

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?

It sucks.

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.

But wait!!!!

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!

Dino Dogan

Global Force for Badassery | Founder of Triberr | Refugee from Bosnia | Writer for Technorati | Speaker | Lousy Martial Artist | Pretty good singer/songwriter | Hi :-)

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  • Mapam30

    wonderful tips Had to PIN it!!!  =)

    • http://greeneggsandmoms.com/ Anne @ GreenEggs&Moms

      Pam, thanks for popping over and I do pray you pinned the lovely blackboard photo above and not the horrible picture I handed over to Dino. :)

  • http://www.solitarymama.com/ Solitary Mama

    I especially like the one about clutter. I see tons of blogs that look like blog de soleil. Reminds me of this girl i knew that had thumbtacked all kinds of pics and ribbons and souvenier type things to the ceiling of her car. Was super embarrassing to go anywhere with her. I am however one of the people that thought I needed every plug in that was available. Creates a huge mess. So don’t do that. Great tips, Anne.

    • http://greeneggsandmoms.com/ Anne @ GreenEggs&Moms

      She really placed all those things on the ceiling of her car?! Yikes! The key is to always think of how to keep things simple and user-friendly, otherwise people may not want to come back to your blog because as you say, it’ll look like blog de soleil. Good one :) 

  • http://justmewith.com/ Roxanne

    Great tips.  I’ve decided to ignore number one and understand that I’ll lose readers because of it, but I totally get it.  But the ones about avoiding clutter and making things easy to read, that is so important.  As a blog reader I do get annoyed if there are too many things vying for my attention — squirrel!!!  And it’s so easy to use big and easy to read fonts might as well do it.   I’m a big fan of headings, too.    As a reader, I appreciate all that stuff. Note to self:  I must make myself easier to contact.  I guess as a new blogger I’m always surprised that anyone reads at all and don’t think about someone actually wanting to follow up with me.  Another tip I’ve been using is to go back to older posts and make sure they are easy to read and tagged correctly.  Older posts still get hits so it’s okay to clean them up for the first time reader.  Thank you for your post, it was well organized and easy to read — and I actually read the whole thing!!! 

    • http://greeneggsandmoms.com/ Anne @ GreenEggs&Moms

      Thank you for reading the whole thing :) And yes, I have seen successful blogs that have no particular topic so you do what works for you.

  • http://www.thejackb.com/ The JackB

    You don’t have to have a niche to be successful. I agree with the rest of your advice.

    • http://greeneggsandmoms.com/ Anne @ GreenEggs&Moms

      Thanks for your comment, JackB :)

  • http://www.zoealexanderuk.com/ Zoe Alexander

    Anne, I’ve found some great points here that I can adopt immediately!  Font colour and contact details are some changes we’ll put to work!  Thanks for the great advice!

    • http://greeneggsandmoms.com/ Anne @ GreenEggs&Moms

      Glad you found things to apply to your blog! Woohoo!!

  • Nigel

    Thanks Anne. Nicely laid out and to point for this newbie.

    • http://greeneggsandmoms.com/ Anne @ GreenEggs&Moms

      Your welcome. My blog started out with tons of things on the sidebars too haha. :)

  • keithwtownsend

    These were all excellent tips Anee, Thank you! Loved the tip to break the post up with using headings and sections. Something for a newbie to remember is to be consistent with posting content. Not letting too much time pass between posts. Thanks! Retweeting this

    • http://greeneggsandmoms.com/ Anne @ GreenEggs&Moms

      Why thank you for retweeting this :) Have an great day!!