Blogging for Beginners: 9 Toxic SEO Mistakes That I Regret Making

Blogging for Beginners: You are not doing it right if you are not employing the right strategies of SEO.

This is a true story.

I was studying in 9th grade when I discovered Blogger — Google’s Blogging Platform. I made a blog and was easily able to rank it in a few days.

I had no writing skills. I had no design skills. I had no technical knowledge. Still, I was able to win the game. The reason is obvious – less competition.

A bit later, I joined college and forgot all about blogging.

Approximately 2-3 years from now, when I started it again, I found it dead-hard.

I am being 100% honest, it made me cry sometimes.

Fast forward to today, over half-decade later my first blog, I have all the skills still it takes me a considerable time to get the results. But I’m able to do it now!

Today in this post, I’m gonna talk about the 9 STUPID and toxic SEO mistakes that I made which ruined my chances to RANK my blog on Google and how you can avoid these mistakes.

This post for beginners bloggers only. Don’t waste your time otherwise if you don’t fall in the category of ‘blogging for beginners.’

But before we proceed, if you prefer this post in video form, here is your stay:

Mistake Number 1: I didn’t write in a readable format

If the reader gets bored reading your content…

…well, they’re going to bounce back from your site which will give a negative signal to search engine bots which will ultimately impact your SEO. 

So don’t fluff, or write long paragraphs. Be concise and empathetic to your user. Make content readable by writing short paragraphs, bullet points and tables.

I did not do this and weaved my words to exploit the core of my blog.

Mistake Number 2: I didn’t write SEO friendly titles and meta descriptions

Your title is perhaps the single most important factor when it comes to capturing the attention of your audience. 

You don’t have to be a writing wizard to write a good title or heading. In fact, there are many free tools like SEOPressor Title Generator, Portent Heading Generator which you can use to generate great headlines.

SEOPressor Title Generator screenshot - Blogging for Beginners

I shall make a video and blog post on this topic very soon. 

Mistake Number 3: I didn’t compress images

According to a study by Google, 53% of visits are likely to be abandoned if pages take longer than 3 seconds to load. 

So make sure you compress images in order to make webpage lighter and hence increase the loading speed.

Certainly, this doesn’t apply to photography websites or any such related business/blog. 

There are many WordPress plugins available like reSmush. My favorite method is via a Mac tool called ImageOptim. If you’re on Windows you can use File Optimizer or Pinga

Mistake Number 4: I didn’t use WordPress caching

Caching is a method that will also increase your website loading speed. According to WordPress, it’s one of the fastest ways to improve site performance.

By now you must’ve understood the importance of a fast loading website. 

The best caching plugin out there is WP Rocket. There are some free versions you can also use like W3 Total Cache or WP Super Cache.

Mistake Number 5: I didn’t care about the focus/main keyword density

This is one of the most serious mistakes. So if you’re just filling your content with your focus keyword in a hope that it’ll get the attention of search engines, my friend, it’s not going to work in the long-term.

This type of optimization is called unnatural optimization by SEO experts.

Remember, Google or any other search engine will care for you if you’ll think from the perspective of the user. Make content user-friendly to a wide range of audiences.

Generally, keyword density should be around 0.4-0.5% but there’s no said rule. So, a 2000 word article should have around 10 times the appearance of focus keyword.

Mistake Number 6: I didn’t write alt-text of images

“Hmm Vipin, why would I bother what’s behind the images, it’s looking cool to me.”

Alt text of images is important for SEO - Blogging for Beginners

That may be the case but the problem is with the optimization. Bots can’t read images (not in SEO yet) but they can read other data such as title, caption, and alt text.

The alt-text is displayed when an image fails to load. Including focus keyword in alt text and description of images might not hugely affect the SEO but in the long term, it makes your site well structured and user friendly and that’s bigger than SEO itself.

Mistake Number 7: I didn’t use Long-but-Short technique

Long-but-short is a term that I made up to refer to writing long yet short content. Kinda paradoxical, don’t you think? This means content can be as long or short as it can until it solves the problem or talks out the issue in a crisp and concise manner.

Well, you see it’s all about balance. For long enough I wrote 400-600 word articles. Later I started writing 2000-3000 word articles. And now I write as per requirements and mostly my articles are 1200-2000 words long.

Mistake Number 8: I didn’t use LSI keywords

LSI or Latent Semantic Indexing is a method of including related keywords in your content so that search engines can understand your content better.

Okay okay I know you might have not quite got it. Let me give an example.

Google's Autosuggestion Feature gives LSI keywords - Blogging for Beginners

Suppose you’re writing an article on the latest iPhone. So you must include keywords related to it like Latest iPhone, Latest iPhone price, etc. Remember not to sound pushy and lose a natural tone. You can use Google’s autosuggestion feature to find such keywords.

Mistake Number 9: I didn’t submit my sitemap to Search Console 

With this simple technique, you can effectively improve your SEO as Google will automatically tell you the errors your site will have in the future.

A sitemap is an XML file that contains the structure of your website. 

Submitting a sitemap to Google Search Console - Blogging for Beginners

I didn’t care about sitemaps for so long until later I realized the importance of it. If you don’t know how to do add sitemap in the Search Console, comment if I should write a post on this? You can also read here on how to submit a sitemap to Google Search Console.

Blogging for Beginners: What can you learn?

By now you must have understood that I have made a lot of mistakes. These 9 mistakes merely represent the surface of deep waters. Blogging for beginners is often not easy. But the key to learning blogging, like everything, is to keep going and learn from others as well as your own mistakes.

Remember you’re writing for a real human and not bots. So don’t put anything ahead of what you think could increase the user experience.

Bonus: A Gift For You

I said blogging for beginners may not be easy – right? But it can’t be impossible. So, here’s a little gift for you: free on-page SEO checklist. Use this checklist to optimize your blog posts while writing and grow your blog.

So that is it for today guys! This was a post about blogging for beginners and the mistakes that I want you to avoid making.

I hope you would like the post. Don’t forget to subscribe to us and share this post with your blogger friends.

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