6 Elements That Make Your Blog Look Unprofessional
Having a strong presence in the blogosphere is more important now than it ever has been before. But the problem is that most people think all that requires is putting together a blog, adding a handful of posts and that’s their work done. Then they sit there waiting for the flood of visitors, signups and orders….except all they get to see is virtual tumbleweed instead.
There are some key reasons why most blogs fail to attract initial and repeat visitors and we’ve listed the top 6 here for your viewing pleasure and enlightenment:
Using A Free Blog
If you’re running a business and you can’t afford the $40 – $50 a year for web hosting that includes a Fantastico one-click install of WordPress then you need to reevaluate your business plan. Using a free WordPress or Blogger blog can work if you’re running a charity or community blog but if you’re running a business nobody is going to take you seriously if you’re using a free service. Especially if they blog is all about how successful you are as a blogger or making money online.
Using Stock Themes
This is a bit of a sticky one. You see even the hosted versions of WordPress use a wide array of free themes and that’s what most people use. But the problem is that if your blog looks like 110,000 other blogs using exactly the same theme you’re not creating your own individual presence right? You can always take a stock theme and hire a coder to customize it for you and for a lot less than you might imagine – usually for well under $100.
This is usually the biggest newbie mistake we see. A fresh blog is like giving a kid some paper and crayons – they just go wild and draw all over the place. Most blog owners are the same and start including as many elements as they can on their pages and posts. If nothing else avoid wasting onscreen real estate by using a massive header for your blog.
I’ve seen some blog headers that are 400 and 500 pixels tall – that’s a total waste of space where real content belongs. Your blog header should be no more than 200 pixels in height – it’s just your blog logo and doesn’t really serve any other purpose.
Not Customizing Your Permalinks
If somebody bookmarks your content (which you want them to do) and it only shows up as Yourblog.com/P?=599 then it doesn’t really work to remind them why they bookmarked your fantastic content in the first place does it? It takes about 2 or 3 minutes to customize your permalinks to make them far more visitor and SEO friendly. Or just pay somebody on Fiverr the $5 to do it for you. Either way get it done.
If your content gets lost amongst all the ads you’re using then you’re probably not going to make very much money. Remember that Google is looking at how long a visitor stays on your site to gauge how much TrustRank to give your blog and there’s no quicker way to chase visitors away than to have them arrive on a blog that’s nothing but advertising block after advertising block. Sure they might click on one of your ads….but they’ll one ever do it once.
You need original content as well as featuring content from other sites. Curation is fine but far too many bloggers are using it as an excuse for being lazy and just not bothering to create any content themselves. Providing a digest of news once a week for your readers is a nice idea and is providing a valuable resource. Just copying and pasting snippets of content from other sites and using a No Follow link back to them is lazy, rude and gets your zero TrustRank points from Google.
When you’re looking at your blog forget that you own it and imagine that this is your first time visiting it. What’s your first impression when you see it? Creating a great blog that’s use-friendly is as much about common sense as anything else.
This was a post by a guy named Lior Levin who works for a website that showcases the best web hosting companies and also advises on a regular basis to a psd to html service for web designers and developers.