Blogging isn’t just about writing topics that interest you, promoting your products, and answering the questions of your readers. There are also blogging pitfalls you should be aware of as they could be detrimental to your business.
Here are bad blog formatting mistakes to avoid so you can start blogging like a pro and make your post stand out.
What Is a Blog?
A blog used to be like an online personal diary where people shared stories about their life. Later on, it has progressed into a medium that provides readily accessible information online. In most cases, it includes text, images, videos, and graphics interchange format or GIFs.
Anyone may start their own blog either for personal or professional use. If you’re blogging for business, your goal must be to rank your page high in search engines. This helps you reach out to potential customers, which may lead to increased business profitability.
Blog templates have undergone changes over time. However, most still include the following features:
- Title: This captures your readers’ attention. It also makes a promise to your audience which you must fulfill at the end of your blog.
- Introduction: In this part, you must set the mood and hook your readers.
- Main body: Your goal here is to hold your audience’s attention as you present your ideas.
- Sidebar: This helps your readers to easily navigate through your page. In this area, you can say something about your business and place your contact information.
- Conclusion: One of the best practices toward the end of a blog post is writing a summary or key takeaways and getting your reader to take action.
- Footer: This usually includes links to disclaimers and privacy policies.
Bad Blog Formatting Costs You Customers
Readers usually leave a page due to complicated structure, too much navigation, or broken links. When this happens, it’s possible that they won’t return to your blog.
If your competitor provides the same products and services but in a better format, you could lose your customers to them.
What to Avoid: Too Short or Too Long Blog Post
Put yourself in your readers’ shoes. How would you react to a blog with 150 words? Do you think that this length is enough to discuss a point and back it up with examples and evidence?
It’s also important to note that extremely short blogs can affect your page’s search engine optimization or SEO.
Meanwhile, how would you feel if you see a blog post with chunks of paragraphs? Will you have time to read an entire blog with more than 4,000 words?
What to Do: Limit Your Sentence and Paragraph Length
Determine the standard blogging length. Keep in mind that many viewers don’t read a whole blog. Instead, they just skim.
Use headline and subheads to break up long paragraphs. Write short sentences, and limit your lines to four per paragraph.
Create a separate blog post to explain a different concept so you won’t overwhelm your readers. You can also link your blog posts to each other and let your audience visit your other pages.
This way, you get your readers to stay on your website and explore more about your business.
What to Do: Embrace Spaces
White space offers a break for your readers’ eyes. It gives your audience room to breathe and guides them through your page. It also helps focus their attention on the most significant parts of your blog post.
Tip: You may also use bullet points and number lists to break down points into bite-sized bits.
Bad Blog Formatting Confuses Your Readers
Your readers’ eyes immediately notice keywords that are in different styles such as bold or italic. However, overdoing it can lead to the exact opposite - it can leave your readers confused.
What to Avoid: Poor Styling
If your entire blog has a bolded and capitalized text, your readers might think that your content is demanding attention.
Additionally, if you apply a big font size, your page might look childish. Meanwhile, a smaller font may be challenging for visually impaired readers.
What to Do: Be Critical with Your Font Selection
Apply font sizes and styles that’ll help your website visitors read your blog post without pain.
You may also be tempted to use fancy fonts to catch your readers’ attention. However, keep in mind that your font should depend on your branding.
If you want to show seriousness and professionalism, use the following serif fonts:
- Georgia: This style suggests maturity, practicality, and stability.
- Times New Roman: When you use this font, your readers might interpret your blog post as straightforward.
- Trajan: This gives your page a classical, traditional, and elegant look. However, it can make your brand appear non-adaptive and outdated.
On the other hand, if you want to add a modern touch to your blog, you may use these sans serif typefaces:
- Arial: It can establish brand authority, but readers might think that you’re unimaginative.
- Comic Sans: This font suggests playfulness which can affect your image as an experienced entity.
- Helvetica: Its clean design can give your page a sleek look, but it might lessen your brand’s impact to the readers.
Tip: Vary the sizes of your categories. Remember that the higher the topic is, the larger its font size should be. Your subheads must be smaller than your headers.
Bad Blog Formatting Makes Your Business Look Out of Touch
Most people nowadays use their mobile and surf the internet. You may strengthen your presence on various mediums to help boost your brand. However, your blog layout should be compatible with your readers’ devices.
What to Avoid: Not Keeping up with New Devices
When your website is outdated, it can hurt your brand’s credibility. Additionally, you can lose customers if you don’t provide them with an optimal viewing experience.
What to Do: Use Responsive Web Design
When you use cascading style sheets or CSS, flexible images, and fluid grids, your blog can have a responsive layout. Your website then adjusts depending on the device and automatically fixes its format and elements such as width, graphics, buttons, and icon.
Afterward, you may maximize search engines like Google, and post on social media such as Twitter and Facebook. These will let your readers feel your online presence and make them think that they can easily connect with you.
Tip: You may use a responsive WordPress theme so your blog’s layout will adjust based on your readers’ screen.
Bad Blog Formatting Lessens Visitors Engagement
Rich content may grab your readers’ attention, but plain text and no images may reduce audience engagement.
What to Avoid: No Interactive Elements
When viewers go to your page, they just don’t want to read. They also wish to see photos and videos. Multimedia makes your content richer and more engaging. Avoid filling your entire blog with plain words.
In addition, avoid disabling comments on your page. This decreases interaction with your audience. Besides, isn’t it better to get feedback from your readers to make your content better?
What to Do: Spice up Your Blog Post
Add images, GIFs, infographics, and polls to your blog. Additionally, create a safe space on your page where you encourage healthy discussion among your readers. These will keep them glued to your blog.
When choosing images for your blog, keep these tips in mind:
- Use Creative Commons images: With tons of free images you can find online, there’s no excuse for you not to add images to your blog post. Before using them, be sure that they are licensed under Creative Commons.
- Add relevant illustrations: Ensure that the images complement the meaning of your text and suit your post. However, don’t add too many photos to the point that they already become distracting.
- Check the image size: Your photos shouldn’t be too large that it already occupies too much space.
- Add alternative text (alt text): Put description in the alt text field of your images to help your blog rank higher in search engines.
- Choose high-quality images: Avoid adding blurry pictures to your blog post if you don’t want to be perceived as an amateur in your field.
You may also incorporate strong call to actions or CTAs to your blog to capture your readers’ interest. This element is a powerful lead generation tool that can help convert your readers into high-quality leads, and later on, into customers.
Tip: Another way to engage your audience is by writing in a casual or conversational style. Make your blog post personable. Remember that you’re creating a blog, not a research paper. Use “you” or “your” often to make your readers feel like you are talking to them.
Bad Blog Formatting Targets the Wrong Market
Your post title and domain name play a major role in targeting the right customers.
What to Avoid: Absurd Titles and Domain Names
Misleading and irrelevant titles and URLs can attract the wrong audience to your blog. In addition, generic titles can lead to misunderstandings between you, your readers, and search engines.
What to Do: Craft a Good Title Tag
A title tag is an HTML element that lets you give your page a title. Here are some tips to create a title tag that’s perfect for search engines:
- Follow a certain length: Avoid the risk of your title being cut off. When it’s too long, three dots would appear at the end. When this happens, readers might not identify what your blog is about.
- Accompany with keywords: Your title tag can work miracles for your SEO if partnered with the right keywords.
- Be unique: You may be offering products and services similar to other ecommerce pages. Ensure to make yours as unique as possible.
- Add action words: Using action words can help attract viewers to click on the link and visit your page.
What to Do: Provide a Table of Contents
Another way to ensure that you’re targeting the right audience is by offering an outline of what readers can expect from your blog. This way, they can easily jump to the topic they find interesting.
Tip: You may use a WordPress plugin to improve your post title.
No matter how high-quality your content is in your field and niche, bad blog formatting can interfere with its readability.
At The Virtual Hub, we can help you create purposeful blog structure and content that your target market will read and share. Talk to us and learn how we can handle your content marketing.
Aside from content marketing strategies, what other steps are you making to take your business to the next level? Please let us know in the comments section!
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