Did you just say bloggers hurt customers? That was the initial reaction I got from my blogger friend while I sought his input on this subject.
He advised that I replace the phrase “hurt customers” with the phrase “hurt readers”. Indeed, it won’t be out of place if by now you share a similar opinion with my friend on this.
I like the fact that it played out this way. It’s based on this view that the subject has become very relevant.
A customer is an individual or entity that creates effective demand for goods and services. Mark the word CREATES. We put this clearly in our post A King is not just who a Customer is: the Customer is a Creator.
The visitors to your blog pages are your customers. They are the ones that react to the values you create (posts, adverts, sales, and announcements) daily by viewing and responding to your action calls.
They make it happen for you. They create your traffic and sustain it. They buy-in your products and adverts. They share your brand and validate your blog. And so it is actually demeaning for a blog owner to merely tag them as ordinary readers and audiences.
And this has given rise to the present internet ill-treatments meted out on the so-called targeted online audiences. What we have today are mostly bloggers who don’t give a damn. We hit the publish buttons without any concern for the feelings and satisfaction of the customers who we expect to read our contents.
If you are not blogging to give your readers satisfied experiences, then you are hurting them. People spend their time and resources to visit your page, only to have their hopes dashed and their sensitivity mocked. You glory in the thousands of hits and could well be smiling to the bank, but you may have lost the heart of your readers. And if you continue on that lane, then be sure to soon blackberry your business.
Before you blackberry your blog, let’s check 21 ways bloggers hurt customers
1.Misleading domain names
There are domain names that totally misrepresent the contents of the blog. Your readers would normally take your domain name as your business name. And they want to be able to match the name with the contents.
But some bloggers deceptively use names that can easily trigger the fancy of the audiences only to have them disappointed when at their visits.
It’s worse when you have a string of 2 or more words joined to make a domain name.
Like we have here – Domain name: whyilovegod.xyz.com
And then the site contains offensive and vulgar write ups. Or even non – religious/secular articles.
Imagine how a religious sensitive customer would feel when served with this kind of experience above.
You have a blog that cannot be defined and you tag it as general. What are you out to achieve? It hurts a lot when you find a blog that struggles to write about everything. Some bloggers just muddle up; politics, finance, health, tech, entertainment, business, entrepreneurship, education, religious, sports, inspirations, romance, relationships, welfare and weird stories. There is no cohesion. And at the end, the readers get confused and lost.
In our blog- Nigeria Customer Hub, we are focused on enhancing customer experience and defending the consumer rights. Visitors on this blog will expect to get posts that border on customer services and consumer experiences. You will not find headlines like Evans the kidnapper news or IPOB/trending political stories here.
This shows respect for our readers’ expectations. We have refused to be carried away by traffic hunger. Can you say the same for your blog?
3. Misleading headlines
The quest for traffic has forced many bloggers to do unethical things. The fact that you have access to a laptop and a story to tell does not qualify you to publish contents to the public. You must embrace the ethics of journalism. Blog followers are today are fed with fatally misleading headlines and titles. Imagine seeing a post with a catchy title as – 3 Notable Nigerian Presidents that were very bad and dangerous husbands. You open the post and what you see is a list of presidents that missed their wives birthday parties while in power.
This will definitely hurt customers. You have raised the attention of your readers, only to rubbish their experiences.
4. When you publish false stories
Now, this is the most prevalent blogging vice today. Thousands of bloggers fabricate stories just to drive traffic to their blogs. It’s that bad. Some of these stories end of defaming characters or leading to social conflicts. Your readers will certainly feel bad when they get to know that the news you circulated was falsified.
So many bloggers come up with flimsy excuses whenever this happens. However, every blog owner must be prepared to take ownership of contents published on their platform. It’s your responsibility to verify and authenticate every information before you push the publish button. Most especially, posts with sensitive and controversial contents.
5. Plagiarized contents
No thanks, to copying and paste blogging champions. It is criminal to plagiarize and you surely know that. If you fall into this category, then you must settle within yourself to turn a new leaf or flee from the blogging community. Your customers deserve and want original contents from your blog. Blogs are expected to become authorities that readers can someday make references to. Imagine the falsehood you put your audience through when you steal contents.
Of course, there are popular news stories that may have originated from an authority news vendor. If you deem such fit for your readers, then ensure to state clearly the source of the news. Let your readers know where to get the original content. See our post on 80% OF Bank Customers Express Concern Over Indiscriminate Bank Charges – NOIPolls.
6. Vulgar/Offensive contents
I have seen blogs where the sensitivities of the readers are not considered. I take it that such bloggers are just being cruel or ill-cultured. Today, we find blogs that use vulgar languages and expressions rampantly. They just want their followers to read and move on.
But it doesn’t just work that way. Your blog is a public space. Most people are easily offended when they are presented with indecent or lewd information. I like to ask bloggers this question; can you be proud to share the contents of your blog with your family members or loved ones? Think about that.
7. Writing only for search engines
Organic traffic is sweet. But your readers’ satisfaction is sweeter. It disgusts me when I stumble upon blogs that write for only search engines. They drive search engine optimization (SEO) by creating contents that they know will not fit into peoples’ lives and then flood them with keywords. Their keyword chasing posts are hardly interesting and always dry or disconnecting. Let me tell you what your readers want.
People want to connect with your contents. They want to read your post like a letter. They want to have the feeling that you just made a presentation to them in the theater of their dreams. Have you for once written a post to reveal your heartbeat to your readers? Our first post on this blog – Don’t Miss This: Why Nigeria Customer Hub, clearly defined our mindset for our present and future readers. And we have tailored every other post to reflect that creed.
Shift your gaze away from search engines (Google, Ding, and Yahoo) to your readers. Remember that search engines don’t make brands it is the avid readers that do.
8. Fake promotions on Blogs
So many bloggers in a bid to drive traffic and participation on their blogs offer pseudo promos. Readers are encouraged to make more comments, sign up, or activate downloads so as to win prizes. In the end, most of these prizes turn out to be fake vouchers. Some bloggers go to the extent of running fake affiliate programs. Seriously, this is cruel and fraudulent.
9. Watery contents
If your focus as a blogger is to brag about the number of posts on your blog, then be ready to produce shallow and meaningless articles. So many blog posts we have today are so unhelpful and can really not meet any reader’s expectation. People just churn out contents with little or no concerted efforts. Subject matters that are meant to receive detailed treatments are shabbily written without any depth.
If your blog is in this watery state, then you must strive to address the anomaly. Do your research properly and be able to articulate your findings in a detailed and comprehensible format. This is what your audience desire and it’s never too hard to deliver.
10. Poorly written posts with grammatical blunders
It’s good that you have an interesting story with appreciable depth. But you could spoil it all with typos and poor grammar. You may not know that so many of our online visitors easily pick out these error- infested lines. And to most of them, it shows that you value their intellectuality lowly. Some readers may even find it hard to comprehend the meaning of the article.
Although this surely is not an easy ride for most of us that are non-native English writers. Yet, we can still make concerted efforts to improve. With the support of writing aids and spell checkers a lot of improvement can be attained.
11. Splitting post into many parts unnecessarily
Simply because of post count and improving SEO, some bloggers just take delight in splitting even their very short blog posts. You find a blog post having up to 5 PARTS. What could this mean? Even our Nollywood home videos scarcely have more than 2 parts.
Admitted, if you write a blog post that‘s is longer than 3,000 words, then you are definitely right to split it up into multiple pages.
It’s is really unfair and user insensitive to subject your readers through clicking several scarcely worded pages on your blog just for one story.
12. Poor Blog navigation mistakes
Is your website inaccessible? Your poor website navigation will send readers into uncharted territory. Visitors will definitely term your blog to be woefully designed when it lacks a decent navigation menu. Bad web design equals bad user experience. Nothing can be more certain than that.
It’s a pity that some bloggers find it difficult to procure the services of qualified web designers. In the end what they have are strings of several posts that look like scaly cobwebs and puns. The outcome is simple. Visitors get lost, then get angry and then flee. And in the real sense, your blog will suffer negative impact.
13. 404 / broken links
Dead hyperlinks on blogs are not just extremely annoying but also frustrating to customers. It is your duty as a blog owner to keep track of moving contents, relationships between pages and obsolete links. Save your visitors from the pain of clicking cold links that don’t lead to any valid resources anymore. People hate 404 errors much more when it is frequently.
You can take a step to avoid these dead hyperlinks by using Free Online Broken Link Checkers to find all the dead links. Follow that up by effectively fixing them. Am sure by now you know that having lingered broken links on your blog speaks volumes of your lack of commitment to your visitor’s satisfaction. You can be sure that this will rub off on your SEO rankings.
14. Poorly managed comment section
Comments are often regarded as a healthy way to encourage participation and engagement with your visitors. Some people truly find great value in comment sections. But they have the potential to do more harm than good when poorly managed. In the absence of strict moderation and follow up, you are much better off without them.
Some bloggers allow an anyhow type of comment to float around. Vulgar and unguarded words are paraded without any civility. At the end, visitors get offended and harassed in the process. I welcome comments. But I believe that it is a blogging suicide to not moderate comments. The bad comments you allow temporarily will definitely drive out good visitors permanently.
15. Cluttered and distracting adverts
We all love to smile to the bank. And the journey starts this way; get WordPress installed, thrown in some posts, flag the sidebar with some ads, learn some traffic tricks and then just relax and watch the cash flow in ceaselessly. After you will discover that your ads pay you peanuts. And you are then told to push in more ads. And that ushers in the distraction and pains to your readers.
Seriously, I have seen some blogs that are just littered with so many ads. It takes ages for their pages to load. And you will be utterly disappointed when they finally do. If you are on this lane as a blog owner, then just know that you are hurting your visitors and killing your blog’s long run growth.
16. Forceful/ interfering signup pages
It’s 2017 and your website still has annoying pop-up signup forms. I hate to see those interfering signup forms. If you own a blog, then am sure you know what we mean here. They get in the way of the visitor. People don’t like to be interrupted while surfing the web.
If you want to promote your blog, then you must do it without shouting. You may consider putting the call for action forms on the side of your pages. The aim should be to avoid interrupting the user experience journey while on your blog.
17. Very High mobile page load time
Website visitors care more about speed than all the bells and glamour we add to our blogs. You can’t impress a user when your page load time is up there. Readers get absolutely frustrated when it takes ages for a page to load on a blog. It is said that nearly half of web users expect a site to load in 2 seconds or even less. And they tend to abandon a website that fails to load within 3 seconds.
Many bloggers are not just concerned with how fast their site load on mobile. But you should be concerned because more than 75% of your visitors will on the average use mobile devices.
18. Non – Mobile responsive Blogs
So many bloggers are yet to accept the fact that; mobile is here to stay. It’s therefore no surprise that we customers still encounter blogs that are not mobile responsive. Some website owners just limit their mobile responsiveness test to top – end smartphones. But have you considered users with low – end smartphones?
19. Browser selective themes on mobile
I know many bloggers are hardly bothered about this. But be sure that it does affect your visitors. Many blogs today perform poorly on some mobile browsers. Users without Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox browsers may not be able to access the full benefits on some blogs.
And then I want to ask this; must every phone owner have all browsers installed? Is it not in your place as a site owner to get a template that will accommodate all kinds of browsers?
Just look at Google or Facebook. Does it not interest you to know that these sites can be accessed through all kinds and sizes of internet enabled phones? I think this is something we should ponder over.
20. Auto- play Videos on the Blog
This can be very embarrassing and distracting. You will only succeed in sending someone away from your page at the end. Videos are not a bad thing to have on a blog. But the ones that play automatically are totally bad.
Imagine a prospect comes to your site and suddenly a video starts playing a few seconds on the site. It gets even worse when their speakers are turned up. I can further picture the startled look on the visitor’s face as he struggles to find the mute button. It is the right of your visitor to control how they want to use and view your site.
21. Abandoning your Blog without notice
It’s true that people don’t just abandon their blogs. There are reasons. When the thrilling for blogging is gone or when there is no possibility for carrying on with a blog due to some conditions, then we know the time to say goodbye has come.
Announce the end of your blog, thank the readers and wish them well.
But most bloggers never care to say goodbye. And I think that can be hurting to your readership community. Considering the fact that these people have followed you all though. They surely deserve a simple notice.
Finally, there could just be other ways that bloggers hurt customers. Please be kind to share with us.