How often should I post on my blog? Thoughts, facts, and some common sense.
Some of us set up blogs for fun, some for the challenge, some because we have something we want to share with the world, some in the hope of making money. (This post is part of Changing Lemons’ ‘be nice’ ethos).
How often you should post depends in part on the above, but not wholly.
And of course, how often you post is only one of many factors that will affect your success.
Which is in itself a factor in how often you should post!
What is success?
Easy, right? Lots of hits every day.
Well, yes – and no!
It you are looking to monetise your site, you need lots of hits. But you could have thousands of hits a day and not make a penny if none of those people do whatever it is that’s needed. (eg click on the adverts, or buy your products). It’s no use having a huge audience in Canada if you are selling your service as a hairdresser or tree surgeon in Brisbane.
Getting the RIGHT audience is a whole big topic in itself. So are topics like defining success and measuring it. (And SEO, and keywords, and algorithms…).
Why do you want readers?
Sounds daft, right? Maybe not.
If you are writing a blog as a hobby, the number of hits need not be a measure of success/failure.
Does it actually matter if you get 1,000 hits a day or only ten?
Who do you want to be reading your material and why?
Are you looking for a huge, anonymous audience? Would you be happy making ‘friends’ with a handful of regular, like-minded people?
My first blog, mothballed some years ago, was shared with a friend who lived in another country. It was an outlet for his brilliant photos, I wrote lighthearted stuff between (for the fun thinking it up). We had a small following of people – three of whom we got to meet and become friends with ‘in real life’.
I have an elderly relative who has a rare hobby. Thanks to someone else’s website, he can share his interest and talk about it with this other man. I’m not actually sure there are any other people who share their hobby, but the site is a success in finding possibly the only fellow enthusiast!
So, how often should you post?
If you want people to stick around, you need to give them something to read. It needs to be fresh, it needs to be good-quality, and it needs to be good-value.
It also needs to be relevant to your blog.
Which doesn’t apply to Changing Lemons, because it’s the exception that proves the rule! A blog should have a theme and stick to it: recipes, poetry, new mums, cinema, travel… whatever. That way, you can build up an audience who want to read about that topic and know your site is a good place to do so.
Changing Lemons doesn’t have a single theme, so is never to going to get a huge regular following. This post will be of use to many people, but unless they are interested in gardening, they won’t find much else that is. So, they won’t stick around or come back.
That is ok by me: the purpose of this post is to (hopefully) be helpful. Not to benefit my blog or myself.
Getting to the original point!!
So, how often should you post?
The answer is a Goldilocks one – not too rarely, but not too often, either.
Any less than once a week and your audience are going to lose interest. And your blog will look like YOU aren’t interested, so why anyone else be?
It’s not a hard and fast rule. I follow a couple of blogs that are updated maybe once a month or less. I know when they are, it will be worth it.
They are hobbyists, not selling a service or product, mind you.
However, there is such a thing as too much information, too much of a good thing.
These days, we are all ‘drowning’ in information. We are bombarded with social media updates, with emails from companies/sites we once bought something off (if you live in Europe, you’ll know all about that lately, thank ironically to the new GDPR rules designed to protect our data privacy).
Be honest with yourself. Do you read every commercial email you receive? Every tweet you are notified of? Every blog post you’ve subscribed to?
Do you welcome all those updates in your feeds/inbox with a happy smile?
Or do you feel slightly irritated, overwhelmed, under constant seige?
Do you delete messages wholesale, unread?
When everyone is talking, talking, talking – who has the time to listen?
Maybe you don’t, but lots of people do. And it’s easy to transfer irritation at being bombarded with updates to being irritated with the people who created them.
How often? – Your time
Another factor in ‘how often should I post?’ is your time. If you want to build up a big audience, you’ll need a lot of it.
Ok, if you’re doing it to promote a business or service, you need to do it. You also need to do a whole lot more, but that’s another topic.
If you’re not, then it boils down not just to how much time you have, but whether it’s worth it.
If you’re finding it a chore when it’s supposed to be a hobby, you’re doing too much.
If you think the effort you’re putting in is absurd for the return you’re getting back, then you are doing too much.
A few facts
The following aren’t meant to put anyone off, but to give you a realistic idea. I’ve not quoted sources, as these things change very quickly
- 45 per cent of users who click on a piece of content don’t actually read it
- a non-business blog probably needs about 200 views a day to be worth monetising
- every 60 seconds in the world, in 2016, there were:
* 1,212 WordPress posts;
* 3.3m Facebook posts;
* 422,340 Tweets, and a lot, lot more.
- that’s 72,720 WordPress posts an hour
- that’s 1,745,280 WordPress posts a day
- or 12,216,960 a week
It is possible to be heard amid all that ‘noise’. But, don’t be too disheartened if you’re not.