For aspiring blogger signing-up at Blogger.com or WordPress.com can be an easy way of learning blogging. The instructions are very simple to follow, and in no time you could be on your way to blogging journey. This is where you learn and make mistakes.
These free sites are definitely the easy way to learn but also have many drawbacks, which can turn out to be fatal if you want to establish a professional blog. You must try these tips which will give a better start to your blogging career, and will furthermore help you in making your blog stand out from others.
Get a Custom Domain Name
It takes time to make a blog popular; however, it will still look amateurish if you don’t have a domain name.
In the long run, if you want to be a serious blogger, the best advice would be to get a domain name. Think carefully about a short catchy domain name and register it for yourself. Owning a domain name means you have complete control over everything from choosing your web host, developing the website, adding advertising and content. Having your own domain name will give your blog professionalism and an identity.
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Implement Responsive Blog Design
Many people like to read a blog while they are traveling, while waiting for someone or just hanging around. They also click on blog links while checking social media accounts on their handheld device.
According to Google, 61% of people said that they quickly moved to another site if they didn’t find what they were looking for right away on a mobile site, 67% of users are more likely to buy from a mobile-friendly sites and nearly 75% of users prefer a mobile-friendly site, so if that site’s not yours, you’ll be missing out in a big way.
A great mobile site experience for users is becoming increasingly important, and they will keep looking for a mobile-friendly site until they find one that works for them. That means your competitors will benefit if your site falls down on the job (and vice versa). When your blog is responsive, readers will stay for longer. They don’t need to leave your site to go to a more user-friendly website for the same information.
Use Your Advertising Space Carefully
When a user land on a site that is covered with full of ads turns them off. Remember first impression is the last impression; they may decide to never visit again. Experiment with ad space carefully and keep the amount of banners you display to a minimum. If you are monetizing your blog with Google AdSense make sure you read and understand what you can and what you cannot do.
The priority of your blog should be your content; the advertising should be secondary and not all “above the fold.” The layout of your page should encourage a visitor to read your entire article and not to distract them by flashing banners, dozens of links and annoying pop-ups.
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Layout and Design
Good blog layout and design are very important. Obviously, you want your blog to look attractive but there are a couple of things you should remember. Users always find it easier to read dark texts against a light background, the other way around is extremely tiring for the eyes. If you’re going to have a background image make sure it tiles from top to bottom and/or left to right. Check on different computer to make any necessary adjustments.
Your blog should be attractive and allow visitors to navigate from one page to the other easily. If it takes too long to find what they need they will simply leave.
It’s good idea to limit the number of font’s usage to no more than three. Too many fonts tend to make a page look really busy. Additionally, when choosing fonts for your text, aim for legible fonts in a readable size.
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Publish Only Quality content
Quality content engages the audience, stimulates a response and persuades the audience to take action. The most important thing you need to remember is that your content is for humans and not for Google Panda and Google Penguin.
Often, amateur bloggers prefer writing content to boost their visibility on the SERP, instead of quenching the thirst of their readers. This habit is likely to backfire, if practiced long-term, as the readers will lose their interest in interpreting the hidden message, in your content.
The best practice is to write an article first and then tweak it to make it more suitable for SEO.
Such a procedure may seem time-consuming first; however, it would impress your readers and make them believe in your blog. With this technique, you would be able to generate high-quality content, without violating any Google rules. SEO Optimization is a never-ending procedure, and it is always better to go back to previous posts and optimize them, instead of concentrating only on fresh posts.
Your articles should contain plenty of white space by keeping paragraphs to a maximum of four to five sentences and incorporating bulleted and numbered points wherever necessary. It should look easy to read. Always proofread your work and remember you can’t copy other people’s content or steal their pics.
It can be really frustrating to visit a blog with lots of great content but painfully slow to load. There are different factors, which make a blog slow, but this problem is especially common with image-rich blogs.
Try to reduce the size of images before using it in a blog post. Try to avoid using too many images in a blog post.
Allowing people to comment on your blog is a good thing to do and can give you useful feedback. However, if you allow people to leave links back to their own sites, you’re going to get a lot of spam comments.
Always moderate and trash irrelevant comments that make your blog look amateur and reward those who take the time to leave genuine comments.
About Me Page
Most of the amateur bloggers overlook the importance of an About Me page. Be loud and clear! Post a photo of yourself (if you want to) and let the people know why you have built a blog, your experience and a little about your life. It doesn’t have to be a much but its part of the essential trust-building process.
Migrate to WordPress Self-Hosted
WordPress has many benefits. When you create an account at WordPress.com you will realize that you are restricted to the basic blogging functions for security reasons. However, this security measure removes a lot of the customization functions that WordPress has to offer.
These limitations are lifted when you install WordPress on your own WordPress hosting server. You can have full control over every feature as you are the site administrator and a server admin. Since it is an open-source software, you can re-engineer WordPress to better integrate with other parts of your blog and can expand the functionality beyond blogging by adding new plugins and themes.
WordPress runs on a template system, which makes the blog run faster, and it keeps the overall design of the site consistent. There are plenty of free and premium themes available to make your amateur blog looks more professional.
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