Thursday, 3 November 2016

12 Interesting Pros and Cons of Blogging Daily

The Pros and Cons of Writing Daily Blog Posts | Blogging tips | Not Dressed As Lamb

At the beginning of October I wrote a post asking what your thoughts were about blogs that posted every day, 

and whether it put you off reading them. The opinions varied enormously - from "Not at all" to "God no that's far too much" - but the most common view was that as long as the content was still of a high standard you wouldn't be put off.

I'll be 100% honest and say I asked the question because I wanted to to increase my page views and visitor numbers (they'd been stagnant for a while, even going down) and thought that publishing a blog post every day was likely the answer.

It's a known fact that because there are so many blogs around these days readership is stretched thin, plus with the increase in popularity of social media compared to five or more years ago people follow you in different ways, and often it doesn't include visiting your blog at all.

WITH THE INCREASE IN POPULARITY OF SOCIAL MEDIA COMPARED TO FIVE YEARS AGO PEOPLE FOLLOW YOU IN DIFFERENT WAYS, AND OFTEN IT DOESN'T INCLUDE VISITING YOUR BLOG AT ALL.

Now that the month has ended, I'm writing a follow-up post as promised - read on for the results and my personal thoughts on attempting to write a blog post every day, and what effect it had on my stats...!


What were the results of the poll?

At the beginning of the month I asked the question: "Are you PUT OFF by a blog that posts daily?"

Out of 182 people who voted, the results were as follows:

37% - No, as long as the quality is still high
36% - No, I say the more the merrier if it's a blog I love!
18% - Yes, it's far too much to keep up with
8% - No, it makes no difference to me

Therefore with a total of 82% effectively saying they're not put off by a blog that posts daily, I think it's a good idea to post daily if you can. At least it is where my readers are concerned.


How many posts did I write in the month?

I had every intention of writing a post every day, and initially I said I would only write a post if a) it were possible time-wise, and b) if I had something interesting to say.

I ended up writing 21 out of a possible 31. Not as many as I wanted to write, but it goes to show that quite often life just gets in the way (mostly on a weekend, unsurprisingly). I don't see it as a failure, just that it obviously wasn't possible for me.

I certainly had no lack of inspiration - I have over 70 post drafts in my Blogger account (albeit some are just titles - or ideas waiting to be written), but it was time that was the problem. With everything else that a full-time blogger has to do - social media, photographing, accounting, emails, newsletters - it's pretty hard to publish every day.

The posts I wrote (and the dates upon which I posted them) were:

2 Oct: Should Bloggers Post Every Day If They Can? (I Need Your Feedback!)
3 Oct: How to Style Sequins as Workwear + the #iwillwearwhatilike Link Up*
4 Oct: 4 Easy Ideas for Cheap, Homemade Halloween Costumes
6 Oct: Smart Casual Look for AW16 | Bold Print Blazer With Jeans, Over 40 Style
7 Oct: New: The Saturday Share Link Up (and New YouTube Videos!)*
9 Oct: What to Expect on the Body Coach 90 Day SSS Plan (Results So Far!) #notlambFIT*
10 Oct: What I Wore to an Informal Awards Ceremony + the #iwillwearwhatilike Link Up*
12 Oct: What to Wear With a Pink Coatigan | Head-to-Toe Black (Almost), Over 40 Style
13 Oct: Capsule Wardrobe Pieces That Suit All Body Shapes & Sizes | 4 Styles of Cashmere Sweaters to Shop*
15 Oct: The Saturday Share Link Up | Meeting Twiggy and Making a Spectacle of Myself*
17 Oct: How to Style a Camel Blazer For Autumn/Fall + the #iwillwearwhatilike Link Up*
18 Oct: Stuck in a Rut: The Importance of Updating Your Beauty Look and Routine Over 40
19 Oct: Capsule Wardrobe Pieces That Suit All Body Shapes & Sizes - 7 Classic Trench Coats to Shop*
20 Oct: Autumnal Layering | Styling a Camel Midi Skirt With Multi Textures and Warm Colours
21 Oct: The Saturday Share Link Up | A Star-Studded Event Vlog & Why Not Follow My Posts By Email?*
22 Oct: 12 Amazing Things to Buy From Marks & Spencer Right Now (Plus 20% Off Discount Code)
24 Oct: Cocktail Dress Code: A 1970s/80s Vintage Poppy Print Dress + the #iwillwearwhatilike Link Up*
26 Oct: The Best of the Blogosphere - 12 Unmissable Links (October 2016)*
27 Oct: 11 More Over 40 Fashion Bloggers With Amazing Style*
28 Oct: The Saturday Share Link Up | Sharing A Quiet Week Before Christmas Takes Over*
31 Oct: How to Wear Preppy Style in the Autumn / Fall + the #iwillwearwhatilike Link Up*

* These posts are all parts of series or regular posts (link ups, blogger round ups, styling series, etc).

14 posts out of 21 - exactly two thirds - are all regular features. Having regular posts like these makes it easier to plan content in advance and always have something to post.


How did it affect my stats?

I'm going to compare October's stats to June's - this was the last month that has "normal" stats on my blog (my Google Analytics stopped working for a week in July, August is always quiet, and I had a blogging break in September). June was no different to most other months, so it's a fair comparison (and I have included 1st July so they are both stats for 31 days).

Good news - both page views and unique visitors increased:

Page views increased by 23%, from 71.6k in June to 88.3k for October.
Unique visitors increased by 22%, from 24.5k in June to 29.9k in October.
The bounce rate decreased marginally, and the pages per session and new sessions increased by a few percent (all good news).


How did I find it personally?

This is the interesting bit - although there were days when I thought I'm just not going to get this post finished and published in time, I'd usually written the bulk of the post by that point, so simply finished it and scheduled it for the next available slot. So in a way it made me much more productive: By trying to get it finished I stopped my usual online window shopping and spending an hour on the vicious cycle that is watching YouTube videos.

Case in point: This post. I'd planned for it to go out on Tuesday 1st, but was already an hour over my usual posting time of 3pm so simply moved it back to Thursday. Instead of rushing it and writing a sparse blog post just to get it out on the hour I took my time, but also didn't waste my time on other things either.

To be honest I didn't really notice that much difference in how much time it all took me - October seemed like a standard month no different to any other.


To summarise - the pros and cons of blogging daily

Pros:

1. It's very good for SEO - the more you post, the higher in Google searches you'll appear (Google favours more frequently-updated websites)
2. It gets you into a routine (especially if you post specific topics on specific days)
3. It increases page views and visitor numbers and therefore reach and visibility
4. It allows you to cover topics you may not otherwise have discussed
5. You will have plenty of posts to publicise on social media
6. It will keep your biggest fans happy
7. More posts can mean more earnings through more affiliate links
8. By aiming to post every day it can make you more productive

Cons:

1. It's a lot of work and may be too much for some
2. It can be added pressure that you don't need
3. Some readers may be put off by too many posts
4. You will (hopefully) have more comments to reply to - this can be time-consuming but is important


To summarise

In other words, you don't have to post daily, but it certainly shows that increasing your output has huge benefits. If you want your blog to become more visible, have more of a presence on the internet, reach more people and ultimately make your earning increase, you do have to post more often.

I've decided to always keep Saturdays a no-post day - it's my lowest day for traffic anyway. I'll continue with Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursday as I was doing before, I've now got the new Saturday Share link up on a Friday night (always a quick post) and I'll simply post on a Tuesday and Sunday only if I have time.

TO BE HONEST THIS LAST MONTH DIDN'T SEEM ANY BUSIER OR STRESSIER THAN ANY OTHER MONTH, BUT I PRODUCED 21 POSTS COMPARED TO MY USUAL 15-17. I'D CALL THAT A RESULT.

As mentioned earlier this last month didn't seem any busier or stressier than any other month, but I produced 21 posts compared to my usual 15-17. I'd call that a result.

It's not always possible for everyone, but I'm satisfied that the harder I work = the more I gain (and, hopefully, earn). I'm simply going to continue doing as much as I can without killing myself and without compromising quality.

And that's the best we can all do...!


WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THE RESULTS OF MY EXPERIMENT, AND HAS ANY OF IT SURPRISED YOU? COMMENT BELOW, OR TAKE IT TO TWITTER @NOTLAMB!

Catherine

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28 comments

  1. What a brilliant and informative post Catherine. I too have been dabbling with blogging more and seeing good results. But i think like you said, it has to feel right to you and not something to get stressed about. If i've had a sparse week because i know i took a step back,i always feel the self employed guilt of 'i should be doing more' But some times the words simply do not come.. #bloggersblock which incidentally is something i'm hoping to post about next week... or maybe the week after LOL!
    But thanks for sharing this, its something i've thought of but not measured and this has quantified some of those thoughts for me!
    (but obviously on a smaller level for me LOL!)
    Rxx

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    1. Thanks for your thoughts, Rachel! It's interesting when you do some solid research in connection with your blog to find out what readers really think and what the results of specific changes are. It's great to hear you're posting more often too, hope you're enjoying it...!

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  2. I literally do the exact same thing is you. I only post at the weekends if I want to post something on a specific date and I give my self the loose rule of 4 - 5 posts a week. I actually love posting almost daily and like you, I'm never lacking in ideas and content.

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    1. We sound very similar, Angie! I think writer's block (as Rachel mentioned above) is one of the biggest things stopping bloggers posting more often, but like you I fortunately don't have that problem…!

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  3. I do make a point of visiting you everytime you post; although I do not always leave a comment. I try to post every day, for my own pleasure mainly, hahhahha. I love blogging!!! It is hard work, but being my passion there is no pain. I do 3 outfit posts a week and lighter ones in between; although most of the time the lighter ones require more research and time, any way, bla, bla, bla. I do agree with you, the more you posts the more you are seeing.
    I have a question for you, why do you post American time, reasons???

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    1. Thanks Sacramento, it's always lovely to hear when bloggers have a real passion for what they do! I've always posted in the afternoon because my biggest audience is in the US – many more readers are from there than even the UK. If I publish in the morning my time then my biggest audience are either in bed or just going to bed. By publishing at 3pm my biggest audience share - the US and the UK combined - are all up.

      Plus to get a post to publish in the morning my time would mean I'd be up really late finishing it… I go to bed too late as it is already!

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  4. I have recently started reading your blogs again after disappearing for a while. I am not sure why I stopped reading your blogs but of late I have enjoyed rediscovering your blogs and Instagram and have really been enjoying the content which I have found very informative and interesting.. So whatever you are doing please do keep it up.

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    1. Hi Pauline, it's lovely to have you back – thank you for "rediscovering" my blog! I'll do my best to keep the content as good as I can ๐Ÿ˜Š

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  5. Thank you so much for sharing all that you learned as you increased your content creation! I used to post 5 to 6 days a week but reduced to 3 to 4 post as I feared being to spammy to my readers. This is all so helpful to understand though and I do agree that quality is key.

    Heidi || Wishes & Reality

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    1. Thanks Heidi - I don't think you can be spammy if what you're producing is good quality. If you think of it the other way round: Do YOU get fed up if your favourite bloggers post nearly every day...? I certainly don't!!

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  6. This was a great post, Catherine. I appreciate all the work you did to look at how posting every day affected your views and so on. I try to blog consistently three days a week. When I first started back in February I was shooting for five days a week and that was just too overwhelming for me. I'm at a point now, where I am enjoying what I am doing and don't want it to be additional stress. I work part time, take care of my Grandson and have a busy life, as well as pursuing my passion of finishing a novel and trying to get published. So for now that works for me, but I am also not making a living at it, so that might change my motivation. Ha, ha. I appreciate your wisdom and your work, Catherine. You were one of the first bloggers I started following, so I've learned a lot from you. Thank you! - Amy
    http://stylingrannymama.com/

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    1. Thanks for your lovely comment Amy...! Adding too much stress is definitely a key factor - there's no way I could post as often if blogging weren't my f/t career. Doing what's right for you is the MOST important thing...!!

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  7. Hard work Catherine. What will you do if the "spreading thin" increases? As I really have a hard time following allbthe bloggers I like and their posts. There is a real life I want to live and I can only see the impossibility of following everything increasing. And then there are ad blockers. If they grow bigger (and I bet they will), then advertisers will not place ads online anymore. Then what?
    Greetje

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    1. Thanks for your thoughts, Greetje! If the spreading thin increases I guess we'll all just have to accept that page views and stats will come down, but then it does for everyone (I've noticed that the really big bloggers - Atlantic Pacific for example - don't get as many comments as they used to. So it's all relative).

      The more I post the more new readers I'll get, so it's not just about keeping the ones I've got.

      I'm not sure how ad blockers will affect me so much, when you say advertisers do you mean through Google AdSense? If so, that's only a small part of my revenue anyway - working directly with brands is where I make most of my money...! x

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    2. Yes I meant through Google AdSense and any programmatic online buying facilitator. The future is still a blanc.

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  8. I do want to say that I'm very aware of different type of posts. Link posts, or roundup posts, as opposed to outfit posts or original musing posts. The former, I consider "filler" posts, and I'm more likely to skip.

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    1. It's funny you say that, Ahuva - my round up posts are usually guaranteed to bring me twice as much traffic as an outfit post or a musings post as they're good for SEO: They're normally the things that people are searching for online! Occasionally I'll hit the nail on the head with a musings post but generally they appeal to my current readers only, and not new readers, so I don't get as much traffic from them...!

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  9. I really appreciate you sharing the results and takeaways from posting more in October. I'm glad that it was a positive experience with positive results for you. I used to post five times per week, and I'm sometimes toying with the idea of posting more again (I'm currently only posting twice a week). And I think I may give it a go after reading this post. Certainly not every week, but sometimes I actually have things to share, and I think I may just add a third post a week here and there while still sticking to my regular posting days.

    Happy Weekend!

    Andrea
    Andrea’s Wellness Notes

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    1. Thanks Andrea! It's best to only do what you can do, and I knew that I'd probably be able to post daily with the odd exception here and there. In other words, posting the day after another post certainly doesn't do any harm, only potential good, as long as it's not too much work for you! x

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  10. This is great news! I'm glad it's working for you.

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    1. Thank you Amy - I was quite pleased with the outcome in the end...!

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  11. Very interesting information! I have been posting every 2 to 3 days, but my traffic gets really slow in between posts. I've been thinking about trying to go to everyday, but it is a bit overwhelming. I've been also thinking about doing a miniseries of multiple posts. #brillblogposts

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    1. Funny that you find traffic is slow on the inbetween days, Barrie - most people find that it's not that much different to days with posts. I agree it IS overwhelming to try and write every day, but I'm glad I did the experiment to see if it was worth it...!! Mini series are a great idea as it gives you structure ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

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  12. Really interesting experiment and hats off to you for doing it! I have just 'upped' my blogging to 3 times a week as I have had a massive increase in products to review which is great as I love it! I don't think I could fit in anymore but with that consistent posting, I too have noticed an increase in stats :)

    #brillblogposts

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    1. That's great to hear, hon! We can only do what we can do, upping to three times a week is excellent x

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  13. Interesting experiment. Not one that I could manage to keep up with unfortunately ... would like to blog more regularly in the future though. #brillblogposts

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    1. I think I was asking the earth, Meg (to post EVERY day), but 4-5 times a week seems to work for me. Just stick to what you can do, and if you get more time to blog in the future then all the better! Thanks for dropping by x

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  14. In summary, it all nails down to time management!

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