Blogging can be a great way for your company to add some online spice about your business, increase your expertise and highlight the products and services you have to offer. As an individual, blogging can be a great way to gain some exposure and even earn some extra cash.

But just because everyone in the world seems to be blogging, doesn’t mean that everyone is finding success. There are certain things that you absolutely must do in order for your blog to be successful, including the following.

1. Stick to a niche.
Know the niche of your blog and stick to it. Are you going to start a mommy blog, a financial blog, a marketing blog, a photography blog? You have the option of choosing the niche for your blog, so make sure you do and then stick to it. If the focus of your blog is confusing, it’s going to confuse your audience.

2. Start with multiple posts.
Before you launch your blog to the rest of the world, make sure you put a few posts on your site and let it marinate. Not only will this help the search engines start to crawl through your site and rank you appropriately, but it will also provide your audience with more than one post to read when they land on your site.

3. Have a schedule.
If you’re going to blog, the most successful way to do so is to have a schedule. Know how many posts you want to write per week and stick with it. Your audience will soon start to notice your patterns, and this will help them learn when to come back to your site for new content.

4. Enable comments.
Some bloggers are afraid to allow comments on their site because they’re afraid that someone will post something bad about their content. While nobody wants to anger a reader or be told that their blog isn’t worth reading, enabling contents also allows people to post good comments about your work. Not only will you enjoy the praise, but you can also use these comments to engage with your audience and learn more about their interests.

5. Give your audience what they want.
When you listen to the comments of your audience, you can determine what topics they want to learn more about. This can help ensure you’re constantly giving your audience valuable information, forcing them to return back to your site. If you don’t give your audience what they want, they’ll eventually start following a blog that does.

6. Use share buttons.
Help your audience spread the word about your blog by enabling share buttons. Allow your audience to easily email a link to your post or provide a link to your site through their social media channels. When you make sharing easier for your audience, they’ll be more willing to actually do so.

7. Proofread.
Even if you do all of these tips, constantly pushing out content that has grammatical and punctuation mistakes will force your audience to go elsewhere. Having content with multiple mistakes takes away from your credibility, which will inevitably hurt your blog.

Darby Little is a reputation manager and avid blogger from Austin. She is currently using Review Trackers to manage online business reviews.