13 Common Content Writing Mistakes to Avoid

Content writing might seem easy but requires thought, creativity, and skill. Each step is important, from crafting an introduction to capture the reader’s attention to finishing with a strong conclusion.

Your content’s main goal should be clear, interesting, and useful for readers. Whether you are a beginner content writer, a freelancer, a student, or someone interested in improving your writing skills.

Content Writing Mistakes to Avoid

Below is the list of 13 common content writing mistakes to avoid for better content.

Mistake 1: Chasing Perfection

Many writers spend too much time trying to achieve the perfect sentence. This can lead to writer’s block and slow down the writing process.

Focus on ideas or messages you want to present to the readers first. You can always go back and revise your sentences during the editing phase.

Remember, it’s more important to share your message clearly than to have a perfect sentence structure on the first try

Mistake 2: Grammatical and Spelling Mistakes

Grammatical and spelling errors can make your content look unprofessional and reduce its impact. Common grammatical errors include incorrect verb tenses, subject-verb agreement issues, and misplaced commas.

Proofread your content using grammar-checking tools such as Grammarly, Wordtune, QuillBot, Scribbr, and Grammar Checker.

These are easy to use and help you correct grammar and spelling mistakes.

Mistake 3: Rephrase/Rewrite Competitor’s Content

It is natural for humans to appreciate successful content and try to copy what works for others.

You see a well-written piece of content on the internet and start thinking about rephrasing it to make it your own, as copying seems easier than creating something original.

However, this often fails because your writing style may not align with the original content. It can lead to a lack of authenticity and originality in your work.

Instead, use competitor content to inspire your ideas and express them uniquely.

Mistake 4: Not Making a Content Brief

A content brief is a detailed plan that includes all the information you want to add to your article, such as the purpose, target audience, keywords, and structure.

Skipping this step can lead to disorganized and unfocused writing. Before you start, create a detailed content brief to guide your writing process.

This helps ensure your content stays on track and covers all necessary points.

Mistake 5: Writing weak Headlines

Headlines are the first thing potential readers see about your content on SERPs or Social Media, and they will decide if it is worthy.

A strong headline encourages readers to click and read your content. This is why writing strong, clear, and relevant keywords is important for what you will help with.

To attract more readers, use action words, ask questions, or highlight benefits to grab readers’ attention. 

Mistake 6: Missing or Dull Introduction

“The First impression is the last impression.”

The introduction section sets the tone for the rest of the article and hooks the reader. Ignoring this or writing a dull intro can lead to a high bounce rate.

The goal is to grab the audience’s attention by starting with an interesting fact, question, or a short overview of what the reader will learn.

Mistake 7: Lack of Structure

You must write content in a clear structure; lacking it can confuse readers and make it difficult to read your article.

Content that lacks a proper outline can confuse readers and make it difficult to follow your points. A well-structured article is easier to read and understand.

Use headings, subheadings, bullet points, and short paragraphs to organize your content. This not only improves readability but also helps convey your message effectively.

Mistake 8: Overuse of Jargon

Too much jargon can alienate your audience, especially if they are unfamiliar with the vocabulary.

Aim for clear and simple language that everyone can understand. If your content is hard to read with all those fancy words, the chances of people leaving are high.

Focus on Readability, which means that a 5th grader can read it. If you must use technical terms, provide explanations or examples to ensure your readers stay engaged.

Focus on the user’s search intent rather than adding unnecessary word counts.

Mistake 9: Inaccurate Information – Lack of Research

Do not rush to provide information without proper research and fact-checking. Providing false information can damage your credibility and trustworthiness.

To avoid publishing wrong information, thoroughly research and verify facts before including them in your content.

Mention reputable sources to back up your claims and provide accurate, error-free, up-to-date information to your readers.

Mistake 10: Lack of SEO

If you are new to SEO (Search Engine Optimization) writing, ignoring it is a common mistake.

SEO is an effective method of promoting your content and reaching a wider organic audience. Optimization improves search engine’s visibility and attracts more readers.

Some basic on-page SEO includes naturally adding primary and secondary keywords to your content, meta descriptions, and headings.

Mistake 11: Blatant Advertising

If you write content, your aim should be to provide value and information to readers. Content focusing too much on selling a product or service can turn readers off. 

You can promote your product or service by highlighting its benefits and how it solves the reader’s problems. Choosing this approach builds trust and encourages engagement.

Mistake 12: Editing and Proofreading

Why so Hurry to publish your article? 

After completing it, you must always go through a check; editing/proofreading is the final step in the writing process.

There are more mistakes in content than you know. Your article may seem the best in the world, but there is always room for improvement.

You can always ask your friend or family member to read your article and ask for suggestions. It is also a good idea to use AI for proofreading.

Mistake 13: Forgetting a Call to Action

A call to action (CTA) guides readers on the next steps. Forgetting to include a CTA can result in missed opportunities for engagement and conversions.

Adding Call-To-Action is easy, and it can be anything like subscribing to a newsletter, downloading a resource, subscribing to a trial or services, or contacting you for more information.

There is no fixed position for adding an action button; it can be above the fold, in the middle, or at the end, but it should match the flow and overall design and enhance the user experience.

Before You Go

Avoiding these common content writing mistakes can significantly improve the quality and effectiveness of your writing.

Understanding your audience, creating detailed content briefs, crafting strong headlines, and ensuring readability can help you create content that engages, informs, and converts. Remember to proofread, optimize for SEO, and promote your content to maximize its reach and impact.

FAQs

How can I improve the readability of my content?

Use readability tools like the Hemmingway test and aim for a grade 8 readability level to reach a broader audience.

What common grammatical errors should I avoid?

Common grammatical errors include incorrect verb tenses, subject-verb agreement issues, and misplaced commas. Using grammar-checking tools like Grammarly or Quill bot and proofreading your content can help avoid these mistakes.

How can I create effective headlines?

Use action words, ask intriguing questions, or highlight benefits to create effective headlines. Ensure your headline is clear and concise and grabs readers’ attention, encouraging them to read further.

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Hari Kumar Thapa is a blogger from Pokhara, Nepal, with two years of writing experience. He is currently advancing his skills in SEO to become a specialist. Hari loves creating engaging content and using smart SEO techniques to make his posts easy to find online.

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