In today’s modern digital age, almost every business has a blog of some kind, and many people’s blog serve as their standalone source of revenue. At the same time, not every blog is equal. While some may have #1. Your Design Isn’t Appealing The old saying “don’t judge a book by its cover” certainly doesn’t apply when it comes to your blog. As with most things in the world of content and general digital marketing, readers want to see things that are visually appealing. It’s that visual appeal that can make a break a blog, regardless of how great your actual written content may be. Research shows you have about five seconds to grab the attention of a site visitor, and good design is one of the make or break aspects of getting the reader’s attention for longer than the initial five seconds. Think about features such as how much white space your posts have versus the words, the color schemes, and how updated and modern your blog appears to be. Include plenty of visuals to illustrate points, but not so many that your posts seem cluttered or jumbled. As well as considering things like color schemes and visual design elements, it’s also important to lay your blog out in a way that’s easy to read. No one wants to read what looks like one long paragraph of 2000 words. Instead, use subheadings, short paragraphs, and plenty of white space to give readers the ability not just to read but really digest your content. #2. Your Site Isn’t Responsive Think about what people look like when you’re out and about. Whether it’s on the street on their way to work, or in a restaurant in the evenings, their phones or mobile devices are never far from their reach. So, why would you consider having a blog that isn’t mobile responsive? If you have a beautifully designed blog with great content, you’re still not going to be able to drive the traffic you want if it’s not fully functional on a smartphone or a tablet. Your blog needs to look as beautiful and user-friendly on any mobile device as it does on a desktop or a laptop. Otherwise, those pivotal mobile visitors are going to abandon it without even giving it a chance. #3. Your Posting Patterns Aren’t Regular You may already have an understanding of how important it is to post frequently on your blog, but do you have the same level of understanding when it comes to the regularity of your posting? If you go in spurts where your posting every day and suddenly that drops off, readers are likely to become frustrated and lose interest. In addition to establishing a blogging schedule that allows you to post plenty of fresh content, you also need to create a plan that’s regular in terms of the days or times you’re posting. That will help readers know what to expect from you, which is an important part of developing a loyal blog following. #4. You Don’t Really Know Your Audience If you don’t know who you’re writing for, how are they going to find you? How are you going to create that essential connection that will differentiate your blog from the millions of others? Even if you understand your larger market, and you’ve honed in on an original tone and voice, if you don’t understand the complexities and details of your audience, your blog is likely to fall flat. In Neil Patel’s Guide to Starting a Blog, he suggests looking to resources such as social media to learn more about your targeted audience. His idea is to search for your keywords or topics on sites like Twitter and then look at the conversations happening around these themes. This will help you drill down to the specifics of what is impacting and appealing to your desired audience. #5. Your Blog is One Big Advertisement This is probably one of the most common mistakes both new and experienced bloggers continue to make. They focus almost entirely content self-promotional content. This means that rather than being informative, engaging and adding value to the life of the reader, your blog posts are one big advertisement. The concept of blogging as a marketing tool is one that’s unique from traditional advertising. You’re working to gain exposure and build relationships, not through an ad or hard-sell techniques. Instead, your blog posts should always be aimed at providing something that is actually relevant and also useful to your reader. They’ll start to look at you as a resource, rather than eyeing you with the skepticism today’s discerning consumers use to view ads. #6. Your Titles Over or Under-Deliver A title can be one of the toughest things to tackle when crafting a blog post. They are what’s going to help a reader decide whether or not to click, so they need to carefully balance over-promising or under-selling your posts. You want to create titles that feel useful and are directly description of what you’re writing on. You want them to feel actionable and broadly appealing, but don’t make them sound so ridiculous that it seems like an immediate oversell to your potential readers. Keep your language simple and direct, but also make sure it’s clear what your readers are going to get from the content you’re offering. Any of the above six mistakes are all-too-common, but luckily they’re also easily remedied, so you can correct them and quickly move on to driving more traffic to your blog. Image: Blog concept cloud chart print document, keyboard, pen and smartphone.