We all have things that get on our nerves. If you’re a blogger, you probably have a running list of things that drive you mad. Finicky technology, anyone? I read about 30 blogs on a regular basis and browse a bunch more and over time I’ve taken mental note of what’s cool and what’s not.
Here’s my list of what’s definitely not cool.
Blogging pet peeves
Let me preface this by saying I’m no blogging expert and am certainly not perfect. I started blogging in 2009 and Oui In France has been around for 2.5 years and I’ve made my share of mistakes. We all do, but hopefully we learn from them. Also, this post isn’t meant to single anyone out or offend. As a blogger, I know how time consuming it can be and we all have other priorities and focuses, so if you do something on this list and it’s working just fine for you, well keep doing it!
These are my top blogging pet peeves.
When it’s difficult to comment.
Part of the beauty of blogging for me is the blogger/reader interaction. If all communication is one way because the commenting system you employ is impossible and/or time consuming to figure out, readers aren’t going to leave comments. Specifically? Commenting systems that require you to log in, enter a word verification, register or enter a Captcha take too much time. Just name and URL comment fields are awesome. They are my friends. And so is CommentLuv. Simple is good.
Impossible to share your post.
Most of us have lots to do and taking an extra 30 seconds to manually share your post will discourage most people form sharing it at all. But don’t despair — this is one of my blogging pet peeves that’s super easy to fix. Do you have visible share buttons on your site? If not, grab the Sociable Plugin on WordPress or something similar for your platform. It’s easy to install and makes sharing your fun content a breeze. Get it.
Pop-ups that get in the way of reading your content.
Sometimes pop-ups on your homepage aren’t a problem at all. Maybe signing up for your newsletter is a wonderful idea and that pop-up that loads immediately will offer tremendous value. But when your pop-up appears 30 seconds later after I’m 3 paragraphs in, it’s plain annoying. If you have a pop-up, make sure it adds value to the reader experience and pops up at the beginning, before it becomes disruptive.
Blurry pictures all the time.
Pictures are a blog must. They help illustrate points, add personality and are great for social media. We’re all not photographers, but I think we’re all capable of taking a clear shot. If you take a picture that turns out blurry, don’t put it on your blog (unless it’s for artistic effect). If your pictures are consistently blurry, maybe it’s time to get a new camera or brush up on your skills?
No contact page.
Out of all the blogging pet peeves, this one is huge. Maybe because it’s fresh in my mind. Just a few weeks ago when promoting my holiday expat exchange, I reached out to a bunch of other expat bloggers. More than half didn’t have a contact page or their email address anywhere on their site! Or if they did, it was difficult to find. How can anyone contact you if this basic piece of information is missing? No need to make an elaborate contact page but a simple contact box in your sidebar or top menu is majorly helpful when people want to get in touch.
OK, we’re all guilty of this — me included. Pesky typos happen, but it’s still important to proofread your post and at least make sure it’s readable. If grammar is not one of your strong points, maybe have a friend proof your post for you. If you don’t know how to properly use an apostrophe, look it up. Google is our friend. When there are typos constantly, it takes away from your content and makes it look like you don’t care. And I know you do care! 😉
Bloggers who don’t reply to readers’ comments.
We’re all busy and some of us get more comments than others. Some bloggers do their best to reply to just about every comment received and create a great sense of community by doing so. Other bloggers reply here and there. The worst is when a blogger doesn’t reply to any comments. At all. Ever. If we have time to leave a comment, you have time to reply to at least a few.
Readers who don’t even say thanks.
As a blog gets more popular, it’s inevitable that the blogger behind it will start to get reader emails. I love each and every one of you and if you’ve taken the time to email me, I will always write back. But the problem begins after I reply. People write me often asking for advice, so I take the time to write back within a day or two and then radio silence. More than half the time, I never get a thank you or any acknowledgement I took a couple of minutes out of my day to help them. How long does it take to write simple “Thank you!” email? About 2 seconds. Common courtesy, people! If I take the time out of my day to help you find a pharmacy cream, advise you on where to eat, solve your intercultural relationship problems or give general pointers on moving to France, maybe you can at least send a one-line “Thank you” email to acknowledge you’re a kind human being.