This is the second rewrite of this post. Originally, I was going to give a list " something like The 8 Characteristics of a High Quality Blog. BAM " done. Halfway through I started really thinking about this idea. I had to scratch the original.
What really makes a high quality blog? I decided to find out what others thought about it. I came across a few good articles, one of which is called 18 "R"s of High Quality Blog Content.
The author says there are at least 18 characteristics of a high quality blog. Eight. Teen. Im not downing the article " it has some excellent points -, but eighteen? Professional writers couldnt hold their work up to that list and go, Yup. I have it pegged. If you could get even three of these things down pat, youd be above the fray.
I found another one: 11 Characteristics of Highly Influential Blog(ger)s. Again, great points, and 11 is less than 18, but still Yes, its about being a highly influential blogger, but the points can be used to define a high quality (or highly influential) blog.
We also have What Makes a Good Blog? 9 very good, very humorous points to follow.
So where am I going with this? Nobody can possibly fulfill all of this. Nobody. If you look at these lists and say, Yup. I have it pegged, you need to be slapped by reality. Nobody is that good.
Out of all the points, all the blogs, all the industry knowledge available out there, only a few points really stand out…and, theyre attainable.
A high quality blog is unique
This one has many bloggers saying, How can I be unique? Everyone writes about this stuff!
The fact is unique doesnt always mean one of a kind; thats a misconception. It can mean unusual or remarkable. In blogging, it just means standing out from the rest.
Stand out from the rest:
- Add humor, when most blogs in your niche arent funny (hint: images can lighten up a heavy blog if funny isnt your strong point)
- Turn difficult or technical concepts into easy-to-understand ideas " if you can take a difficult concept and make it easy, your blog will stand out
- Use well crafted infographics (good infographics are rare for most subjects)
Summary: If the above points wont work for your blog, dont worry about. Look at your competition and compare them. Where are they most similar? How can you do something different?
A high quality blog is free of errors
Readers dont expect absolute perfection, but it doesnt hurt to be in close proximity to it. Blogs with a high number of grammatical errors, spelling errors and punctuation errors wont make the grade.
This isnt hard to understand if you know people are looking for an authority in your niche. The mindset of a person looking for a mentor is, A good teacher should be able to write well.
Psychologically speaking, errors are the equivalent of a good-looking person hitting on you. Youre flattered " until they smile and you find a huge chunk of something green between their teeth. Turn. Off.
Become a perfectionist:
- Once a blog is finished, read it out loud; you can catch a lot of errors this way.
- Use a spellchecker with all options set to On. Once youve tried this a few times, youll learn what options you can afford to turn off.
- Dont rely solely on your spellchecker. Its a program made up of code and itty-bitty parts. It could be wrong.
Summary: Errors diminish the quality of a piece of writing. Errors also diminish perceived authority, which is even worse. If grammar, punctuation and spelling arent your strong suit, hire an editor (or bribe someone with food, drink, vestal virgins – whichever).
A high quality blog shows passion for the subject
The great thing about this one is you dont have to do anything to make this happen. It just does. That is, if you really care about your topic. Now, if you chose a blog niche because it looked like a good one and you dont know or care about the subject " oops.
Passion for a topic shows in your writing. Its a natural progression from enjoying the subject to writing about it.
The Passion checklist:
- You read other blogs about the topic just because you want to
- You talk to others about it until their eyes glaze over
- You ask other peoples opinion about the topic and argue if you disagree
- You share links to other articles about the topic because their valuable to your readers " not because you expect something back from the link
Summary: If you love what you write about, passion will show. If theres no passion in your writing, your blog will die a slow and painful death. Sorry " no, you cant fake it.
- Stand out from the rest in some way
- Get as close to error-free as possible
- Be passionate and let your passion show
For the rest, you can try to attain them, but dont freak out if you only manage to add a few more. If youre getting good traffic, have sticky posts and people are sharing your content, then youre already showing characteristics of a high quality blog.
Okay, so Ive picked my top three. Do you agree? Disagree? What would you choose as the top three characteristics? Share with the readers!