Five Pieces of Bad Blogging Advice

467477733You have a blog, and whether you’re new at this or you’re just hoping to boost your readership (or perhaps find some ideas to come up with fresh content), chances are good that you’ve been looking around the Internet for advice. The thing about blogging advice is that anyone can give it, whether they have a successful blog or not! I went searching for blogging advice, and here’s some of the worst that I ran into:

  1. Follow the Rules: There are certain rules to blogging. You must set up your posts to go up at the same time on the days that you post. Every piece of content should be about 300 (or 500 or 1,000) words long. You must decide ahead of time on your editorial schedule, and you must stick to it. All of these are examples of rigid rules that should usually be broken. If you’ve committed to writing 300 words every odd-numbered day, eventually you’re probably going to burn out. And what if something really interesting comes up that needs double (or triple!) that length, and it happens on an even-numbered day? Be flexible and break the rules.

  2. Use Lots of Links: Link to your own pages, and link to other pages. Aim for three (or five or ten) links per blog post. This is silly advice. First of all, your readers are not going to want to click on all of those links. Secondly, you will probably get dinged by Google if you are linking to random sites, particularly if they have little to do with your post and are affiliate links. If you want to link to something that you have written or to a great deal that you’ve run across, then by all means, do so! (Note that there is a page linked in the first paragraph.) Just don’t turn this into a bad habit.

  3. Use Spinning Software: You can plug an article that you’ve read into free spinning software that you find online, then you can use it for your own blog. You’ll get unique content with no real work at all. As an experiment, I tried spinning this last italicized piece of advice, and here’s what one particular software program came up with: You can connect an item that you’ve read in the freedom spinning software that you locate online, then you can use it for your own blog. Here you find unique content to get no actual labor anyway. Is this what you want to have on your blog?

  4. Be a Constant Commenter: You follow other blogs, right? Great! Make sure to comment plenty on those blogs, as well as others in your industry or field of interest. Of course, reading blogs takes time that you don’t have, so don’t feel like your comments have to be relevant; just write, “Great article! Thanks for sharing!” and be sure to leave a link to your last blog post. Don’t do this; blog owners can see through it, and very few readers will follow a link to read more from a blogger who leaves a generic comment.

  5. Learn How to Keyword-Stuff: If you want to get more readers, you need to use lots of keywords. For example, if your topic is about hotels in San Diego, your keyword could be “hotels San Diego.” Fit that phrase several times into every paragraph if possible. That keyword is not natural at all, and while a skilled writer could get it in a couple of times without making the entire blog entry look like it was written by a non-native speaker, it’s not a good plan. Use each keyword once or twice in the entire article. That’s plenty.

As you blog, you’ll need to keep an eye on which posts bring you the most traffic, and you’ll begin to see what works. Of course, nothing is set in stone, because Google changes its algorithms very frequently, and what worked in the winter might not work in the spring. If you’re following advice that seems unnatural or exceedingly difficult, then chances are good that it’s probably not the best advice, or at the very least, that you’re making your job harder than you have to. If you’re just starting out, feel free to check out others’ advice on how to create a blog that will attract readers, but be aware that much of blogging success is trial and error.