As a new blogger, there’s so much to think about, from designing a pretty yet practical website to defining your niche.
But what about the actual blogging part?
Sure, knowing how to write and publish effective blog posts comes with experience, whether you’re a freelancer, product-based business or full-time blogger.
That said, there are some blogging tips for beginners that you can use to fast-track your success — and ultimately maximise your earnings.
1. Pick Topics That Are Useful for Your Audience
Blogging tips for beginners 101: think about who your ideal reader is.
After it all, it’s your target audience and your niche that will determine what you blog about — and how you’ll try and connect with your reader.
For instance, if you’re trying to target budget-conscious fashionistas, it wouldn’t make sense to blog about high-end clothing, would it?
Put yourself in your reader’s shoes and try and consider what they need help with. Then create blog posts that essentially answer their needs.
2. Do Your Keyword Research
It’s all well and good having a topic in mind for a blog post. However, you need to make sure that your topic gets the maximum amount of eyeballs.
How do you do this? Well, you optimise your blog post for search engines using a primary keyword that people are searching for.
For example, say I had a pet blog and wanted to write about the best collars for dogs. I would use a keyword research tool, such as UberSuggest, to check which search term has the highest monthly search volume and lowest competition score.
I would then use this term as my primary keyword and sprinkle it throughout my blog post.
This way, when search engine users perform a search on this term, my blog post would come up as one of the top results on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). They would then click through to it which would provide me with more traffic, views and sales. Winning.
3. Plan Out Your Content
Once you’ve done your keyword research and you’re all clued up in terms of what people are searching for, you can create a blog post outline.
This would state what information you want to cover based on your keyword research.
And it’s important to make sure this is extensive. After all, readers don’t tend to appreciate a blog post with half of the key points missing.
Sure, you can’t possibly pre-empt everything your audience is going to want to know on a subject. But try and include answers to the main questions they’re going to have.
If you don’t want to write a 2,000-word blog post every time, you could always link out to relevant articles or even link to other blog posts on your website that offer more value. It really is a no-brainer!
4. Use an SEO-Friendly Structure
One of the best blogging tips for beginners I could give you is to create a structure in line with Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) requirements.
This will ensure that your blog posts are able to be indexed by Google quickly and easily. It also makes your blog posts scannable and more straightforward to digest for your readers.
You can break up your content by:
- Using subheadings, such as H2, H3 and H4 headings
- Using lists and bullet points
- Inserting images
If you fail to do this, your reader might take one look at your blog, see a massive wall of text and click off it faster than Usain Bolt on a race track. Byeee.
For further guidance on SEO blog writing, check out my “Superstar Your Blog Post SEO” eBook.
5. Improve Your Readability
As a freelancer who audits, creates and edits blogs for other businesses for a living, readability is an issue that I see time and time again.
In other words, the blog post doesn’t flow. It’s difficult to read. And it doesn’t speak directly to the target reader.
In this case, one of my top blogging tips for beginners is to write as you talk. It makes your content so much more personal and unique. There’s only one you and that’s your superpower.
You should also:
- Stick to short sentences (under 20 words)
- Use short paragraphs (2-3 sentences max)
- Use transition words (likewise, as a result, above all, firstly, etc.)
- Avoid filler content (don’t write academically like you did at school, get straight to the point and simplify your ideas)
Following this golden rules can also significantly improve your position on SERPs.
For more help with this, check out the blog post I wrote all about readability here.
6. Choose an Attention-Grabbing Headline
If you think about it, your headline is one of the most powerful aspects of blog post creation.
I mean, when you’re promoting your blog post on social media, the headline is the first thing your target audience sees.
If it doesn’t jump out at them, they’ll simply keep scrolling.
(Just keep scrolling, just keep scrolling, just keep scrolling, scrolling, scrolling. What do we do, we scroll, scroll… Finding Nemo, anyone?)
The good news is that you can use a tool that will help you write better headlines. For instance, the CoSchedule Headline Analyzer will analyse one of your preferred headlines according to its technical, emotional and SEO impact.
Just make sure that whatever you choose isn’t clickbaity. You don’t want to overpromise with your headline and then underdeliver with your blog post. Capeesh?
7. Pick Relevant Images
The truth is, nobody wants to read a blog post that’s all text and no images.
Humans are visual beings. We like to read interesting articles, but we also like to see pretty pictures that support the article. Right?
When they include an alt tag, images are also great for telling search engines what your blog post is all about. They can strengthen your SEO, which can consequently improve your search engine rankings.
8. Look for Earning Opportunities
If you want to make money from your blog posts as quickly as possible, you need to look for potential earning opportunities.
For example, say you’re a business that sells travel gear and you run a travel blog to push traffic through to your products. You could write a blog post about “what to pack for your next holiday” and include links to your products where relevant throughout the text.
Or, if you run your own business finance blog and you’re an affiliate for a management app like QuickBooks, you could write a blog post about how to save money as a small business and include your affiliate link.
It’s all about being savvy with your topics and what your business offers, without compromising the quality of your blog posts.
Everybody say it with me now: “Content is King.”
9. Avoid the “Sell, Sell, Sell” Approach
Look out for ways you can earn money while you’re blogging, for sure, but don’t stuff your blog posts with product links.
Why? Well, I personally don’t like the “sell, sell, sell” approach. I think readers can see straight through it and it often diminishes trust.
And this is not ideal when you’re trying to build trust, right?
After all, building trust is the secret to establishing a long-term relationship with your reader, which can turn them into a paying customer one day.
It’s important to nurture your reader and help them as much as you can for free. Don’t scare them off by trying to get them to convert too early. If so, they’ll never convert.
10. Include a Call-To-Action
Newsflash: sometimes people need to be told what you want them to do. This is exactly what a Call-To-Action is for.
Let’s go back to the example in the previous section (the business finance blogger). You could include a CTA at the end of this blog post that says: “Click here to sign up for QuickBooks, an accounting software package that will help you to manage your business payments.”
Alternatively, a CTA doesn’t have to be an affiliate or a product link. It could be a link asking your reader to subscribe to your email list or follow you on social media.
Either way, it leads your reader to what you want them to do next to encourage engaging with your blog further. And it’s extremely effective.
11. Focus on Quality Not Quantity
There’s a lot of conflicting advice on the blogosphere regarding how many times you should publish blog posts per day, week or month.
To be honest, there’s no set rule book.
However, when you’re a beginner blogger, you might want to publish posts more often to build your audience and SEO presence faster. (I’m talking once or twice a week.)
It just depends on what your current capacity is. I mean, I completely get that your daily to-do list often feels never-ending as a new business.
One thing I will say though is this: don’t jeopardise the quality of your posts just because you want to stick to a certain publishing schedule. It’s better to have blog posts that go live less frequently that are amazing than blog posts that go live all the time and aren’t as amazing.
Think about it.
12. Promote, Promote, Promote!
Last but not least of my blogging tips for beginners: don’t forget to promote your posts!
It seems like a lot of newbies think that the hard work ends as soon as you click the “Publish” button, but this couldn’t be further than the truth.
To grow your audience, you need to splash your blog post link everywhere you possibly can. From Instagram to Facebook, LinkedIn to Twitter, shout about your blog — and keep shouting about it until people are listening.
(FYI, the listening will then equate to increased views, subscribers and customers — hurrah!)
Actioning These Blogging Tips for Beginners
These blogging tips for beginners can feel overwhelming when you’re just getting started.
However, just take one piece of the puzzle at a time. The more you practise blogging for your audience, the better you will become at it.
And if you need any more help, you know where to find me!
Can you add anything to these blogging tips for beginners? What’s your top bit of advice? Comment below!