Before we focus on the "do's", here are some blogger "don'ts"!
- Don't clutter your blog sidebars with tons of buttons/ads. It is too distracting from the actual posts and the reader will leave. More than likely, they won't come back. You can use some, but make sure its organized so readers can find exactly what they're looking for.
- DO NOT have automatic music playing on your blog. If the reader has their sound on and you start blaring Rhianna or even heavy metal, they may be embarrassed (or even annoyed).
- Don't post just to post. It may seem like a good idea at first (especially if you're a new blogger) but if it doesn't make sense, it won't get read. When I first started, I posted about the whether and kittens. It got less than 10 views within a month. If you're a mommy blogger, it's okay to post about your children or husband- as long as it isn't embarrassing or doesn't pertain to your blog or life.
- Don't write long paragraphs. Use shorter paragraphs that are cohesive to the other paragraphs.
- DO NOT plagiarize other people's work. If you use an excerpt or picture, be sure to give credit to its owner.
- Don't be offensive. If you want to gain and keep readers, be likeable and warm.
- Don't beg others to visit your blog. Ask nicely. Begging will only get your blog ignored.
- Don't be rude to comments you may not agree with. If you offend someone with a rebuttal that's rude, you'll lose more than that one reader.
- Do post at least once a day. Even if it's just a small craft or recipe post, it will keep your readers wondering what's next.
- Do put a contact link somewhere, whether it's a page or e-mail link.
- Do make sure to link your blog's social media links to your blog. You can find social media icons through Google. Find one that fits your blog's theme.
- Do make sure that you interact with your readers. They'll know that you truly care about what they think.
- Do keep a record of your stats. It's a great way to figure out what you need to work on.
- Do keep a regular blog notebook.
- Do write blog posts that break up the seriousness of other articles, whether it be about your family or pets.
- Do be sure to use correct grammar. I have come across blogs that were all in lowercase and it made my head hurt. Even if you stink at grammar but are a great speller, readers will at least appreciate the effort. I'm not the best at grammar but I sure try!
- Be humorous. Readers like funny people (though I'm not a stand up comedian, as you can tell) and if they enjoy your humor, they'll want to keep coming back!
That may seem like a lot, but as you become comfortable with blogging, it will all become second nature.
Next on Blogging 101: Should you jump on the review bandwagon?