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I’ve been asked quite a bit recently “How often should I post to my blog?”

Since blogging frequency is a topic that most bloggers struggle with at some stage I thought it’s time we talked about it. And to be honest the key to success is more about a blogging routine than frequency.

How Often Should You Post To Your Blog?

There’s no magic formula when it comes to blogging frequency. Each blog is different and you need to consider what works best for:

#1 Your time commitments

Writing blog posts take time. Sure posts can be quick but posts are just the finished product of the whole blogging process. Researching informations, reading other bloggers’ posts and writing comments are all important aspects of blogging.

Think realistically how much time per week you can commit to blogging.

#2 Your Readers

Your readers are no different from you. They have commitments; limited time for reading posts and mightn’t handle a lot of content per day.

While bloggers often use frequent posts to build subscriber numbers, it can have the opposite effect and alienate readers. There are very few edubloggers whose readers cope with multiple posts per day. Larry Ferlazzo’s Website of the Day and Richard Byrne’s Free Technology For Teachers are great exception due to their type of posts.

Posting several ‘in depth’ lengthy posts on the same day means your readers will probably only cope with the first post and you’ve just wasted the other posts. It’s always better to schedule these types of posts so they publish a few days apart.

Contrary to what many think most readers don’t normally notice decreased posting frequency, and most won’t unsubscribe to your blog for this reason. Good quality content keeps most readers happy. Poor content, with increased posting frequency, won’t!

#3 What you want to achieve

We all have our own reasons for blogging.

If you’re after high reader comment participation you’ll find increasing posting frequency decreases readers interaction. If subscriber numbers are more important; frequent posts may build readership faster.

Developing a Blogging Routine

As I said “the key isn’t frequency but having a blogging routine”.

Make a decision on how many posts per week or month works best for you and then plan your routine to fit this. Every blogger, including myself, goes through periods where they struggle blogging. A routine, combined with your posting frequency, sustains your blogging while also getting you through blogger’s block.

As a general guide -most readers of edubloggers are extremely happy with two good quality posts per week.

FINAL THOUGHTS

Would love to hear about your blogging routine so I could share your advice to other readers. Please leave a comment to tell us about:

  • How often do you blog? And what determines your frequency?
  • Do you publish your posts on specific days? And if so why?
  • What other advice would you give to new bloggers in terms of blogging frequency and routine?

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About Sue Waters

Edublogs Support Manager @suewaters on Twitter

36 Comments

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  1. Pingback: Writing Better Blog Posts: What You NEED to Know | The Edublogger

  2. I have just started my blog and am considering the same question as to how frequent i should update my blog. Your post sheds light on a few issues I have not considered. great insights.

  3. Hi Sue

    I’m not sure if I have a routine or not. I just seem to post whenever I feel inspired by something I’ve read or seen or done. I reckon 2-3 postings a week is something that is manageable. I seem to write best late at night and not usually in the morning. I’m a bit of a night owl in this respect!

    When I decide to write a posting the first thing I do is think of a title and then other sub-headings. If appropriate, I do some research and add an image or video. I used to do a rough copy on Word but now I write straight onto the post. I read through it a few times to check it makes sense, check for spelling etc and then I hit the publish button.

    I treat my blog as an online experimental area where I can try out new tools whenever applicable. It’s also an online journal. One day, I hope to look back on this period of my life and it will provide a record of where I am at the moment.

    • @Janet Bianchini, LOL we write in different sequence. I put in a crap title – which I change as the last step before hitting publish.

      So I write the content, then add the sub headings, then add images (unless they are screenshots in which case they are added as I write), then add categories, tags, next preview, edit final step title.

      Writing on a blog has meant that I’m able to look back at past presentations, and things I’ve done to check dates and facts. I love having the record.

  4. Another great topic to discuss.

    During the summer I try to write a post every other day. I post fun games and activities for them to try. It also lets me try new things with blog to see what works and doesn’t without a lot of people watching.

    During the school year I try to write a new post every day. I try to keep my post short yet enticing enough for them to want to come back. I start out the year writing the posts but as the year progresses I start writing less and have my kids write more. I have a couple of kids who take turns writing our daily what we did in class post. I have others who pod cast poems or spelling words, and other report on various things we do in class so that by the time June rolls by I’m pretty much writing posts for the parents and the kids are running the show.

    But, and this is a big but, before they hit the publish button they have an editor come up and read what they wrote and fix anything that needs fixing and then I come over and proofread it too. I do that for a variety of reasons.

    I do all this because I enjoy doing all this not cause I have to. I think its fun and a great way for me and the kids to share the thinks we talk about in class with real people all around the world.

    Jim
    [email protected]

    • @Jim, I love how you describe the transition from you writing the posts to the students being responsible. Quite a few teachers use student editors and fact checkers which I think is an excellent way of ensuring students learn to verify information, learn to correct their spelling/grammar and also gain an understanding of copyright.

      Totally agree with it being a fun way of sharing around the World.

  5. Thanks to Sue and the commenters so far for their tips on how frequently to post. I don’t know if you’ve looked at this, Sue, but does the time of day that you post affect how many people read a particular Edublogger post? I read this post by Jeff Utecht. In the last section of his post (heading is Edublogging) he discusses the impact of Twitter and how time of posting affects # of readers. Mind you, Jeff Utecht has a huge readership, so time of day may not affect small fish like myself 😉

    • @Claire Thompson, the time of day and which day would affect the number of Retweets of his posts, and to a lesser extent the number of comments, but I would argue that it doesn’t effect how much his blog is read. But this is probably a topic I should debate with him as he has access to his blog stats.

      Based on what I’ve seen his blog has a vibrant blog community that would interact with his posts regardless of when he publishes; provided his posts were several days apart – due to their length.

      I’m thinking that day and time of day would have a greater impact on blogs with lower subscribers. Would love to hear others thoughts on this. But Twitter would be an important source of traffic to your blog. I would probably aim for Tuesday and Thursday day night USA times for maximum exposure. Saturday and Sunday are the very low traffic days s I would avoid – write but publish later. There is a reason why problogger doesn’t write on weekends and schedules his tweets for night time in Australia 🙂

      • @Sue Waters, thanks for your reply and suggestions on when best to post. I wonder how many of the small fish, like myself, tweet our new posts? I felt kind of weird doing it at first (not a big self promoter I guess), but the response has been good and I seem to attract new commenters this way which has been exciting.
        Cheers!

        • @Claire Thompson, I’m the same. Personally I don’t like to tweet my own posts. But the reality is that with so many people have decided not to read by RSS but only by Google Reader. Twitter is now an important source of traffic for all blogs.

          • @Sue Waters – I think I’m missing something here.

            Can you explain in single syllable words what Google reader is if it’s not exactly RSS?

            Also, if there is a significant difference between RSS and Google Reader, how do you figure “so many people have decided not to read by RSS”? Have you got access to some data on this? I’m genuinely curious.

            Catchya

          • @Ken Allan, Boy I was tired that day. Been a hectic week. It should have said are now choosing to read links from twitter and no longer Google Reader. Nice catch.

      • @Claire Thompson and Sue,

        Once again, something I never considered…the day/time a post is published.

        I have a classroom blog with my third graders and try to publish once a week. Last year, our goal was to publish by Friday. Often we could get two published on Friday. I liked it because then I had nothing to do for the blog over the weekend. (You know, it’s nice to have the weekend off.) Well…parents/students feel that way, too! What was I thinking?

        This year, I am going to publish during the week and see if that has an impact on the amount of parent comments I get…

        Thanks for more great advice! ☺
        Linda Yollis

        • @Mrs. Yollis, I’m wondering if Tuesday would be the best day for parents? Monday you have the whole — oh dear I’m back at work and Friday is the I just want to be left alone tonight.

          • @Sue Waters,

            Tuesday is what I was thinking, too. The students always want to publish as soon as possible, but I think that Friday is a dead end.

            I am really curious to see if it changes anything…

            Thanks,

            Linda

  6. On my school blog (not sure if it’s still up, they are converting everything), I tried to post every Thursday, since the point of the blog was to keep parents updated on what was going on in the classroom. However, as other interesting tidbits came across my path I would pop them up, too. I tried to keep the posts short and sweet since the majority of my subscribers are e-mail subscribers and Feedburner compiles all the posts into one message.

    Another aspect of routine that I had to integrate when first starting out was to make a mini checklist for each time I made a post to make sure I assigned tags, categories, actually uploaded the docs I referenced in the body of the text, etc. I was wasting a lot of time going back and editing at first. Now I just glance at my mini checklist.

    I also wasted a lot of time wracking my brain over what tags to use or trying to remember what tags I’d already used. Was it “games” or “online games”? Was it “family” or “families”? So I pre-made a master list to maintain consistency among the tags I use.

    In my personal blogging life I need to adapt some of my own tips and others – no routine there! Just when I feel like it!

    • @kmccully, Tags totally drive me crazy. I try to remain consistent by having my blog open in another tab so I can see what I’ve used in the past. I also always preview and read my posts before publishing. To check visually how it looks, fix errors and make sure I’ve remembered all the categories, tags etc.

      My hardest challenge is post title. I always write the post title last and really struggle with ideas for snappy titles. If any one has tips for writing posts tittles would love to hear it!

  7. I struggle with this on a regular basis. I have several blogs and I try to post to them each week. For example, for my personal blog, I post “My Opinion Mondays” and “WAHM Tips Wednesdays.” Can you guess which days I post on? 😉

    My professional blog was ignored for a while but I’ve begun to post again to it. I try to post on Mondays and those tend to be a bit lengthy.

    For work, I post once a month to our blog on various topics we’ve decided upon months in advance (typically).

    I also have a writing blog that I post short stories to once or twice a month.

    And I work full time, at home, with three kids! I figure that quality trumps quantity but regularity makes it a habit.

    For any new blogger, I suggest using a blogging calendar or using alliterative days.

    A blogging calendar is a roadmap of topics to write about on specific days of the month. The topics can change but it gets the blogger into the habit of blogging and doesn’t strain the brain on what to blog about.

    Alliterative days (Tech Tuesdays, Follow Fridays, etc) are another way to determine what to write about on a weekly basis. This works particularly well since you only have one set of topics rather than a month of changing topics.

    Thanks for the post!

    • @April Hayman, Definitely quality trumps quantity. Thanks for sharing how you coordinate your blogging routine and as some one with lots of blogs I can relate to the need for coordination.

      Here is how I balance my different blogs if it helps? The Edublogger and The Campus both have specific number of posts I aim for a month. And both have different focus – which makes it easier. I also blog at WPMU.org and Edublogs Live. With Edublogs Live I only write the post if I presented the session and try to encourage others to write the post if they did the session. WPMU.org is when I want to talk about WordPress MU. And my personal blog is when I just want to be me 😎 — it has no specific post targets and I give myself permission to write whenever and about whatever.

  8. Sue, good point about going overboard and posting too much. That may alienate readers who have limited time like everyone else. That’s why I try to keep my almost daily posts short and focused. The routine works for me. I consider blogging an online journal. It’s an enriching hobby for me and I appreciate the global contacts which can be made at the same time.

    I look forward to your helpful perspectives on this blog.

    • @Paul C, I think that posting too much is as tiring for the blogger as for the reader. While over a short period of time (months) a blogger can sustain high postings it does become draining eventually. With the 31 Day Project I did it full on for a month – it felt like running a marathon.

      As you said it is about what routine works for you and enjoying what you do.

  9. Since my blog is primarily directed toward student families, I can get away with a weekly blog post. It started out as just an online newsletter that had a hard copy going home with the students each Friday. Once I started using more pictures and learned more tech tools I added an occasional special post. These included VoiceThread and videos for a variety of purposes.

    As my blogging is developing, I find I am moving outside of the parents circle and my audience is much larger. I have many peers who include me in their readers and together we share new ideas and tools.

    I like the way Karenne has organized her blogging into specific post categories. This can help establish a routine that is easily accepted by her readers.

    • @poulingail, I think a weekly post if your main audience is parent is definitely the way to go. Most of these people would prefer subscribing by email so 1 email per week works well.

  10. Hi ya Sue,

    I agree with you and very much reckon that 2 – 3 posts are enough per week especially when you want to make sure your readers get a chance to read all of your posts.. and especially if some posts tend to err on wordy.

    One of the best things I learned from doing the ProBlogger 31 day challenge in May was to create an editorial calendar.

    On my blog I pretty much have 4 things that I discuss regularly (tips about teaching skills to English language learners, lesson plans, discuss tech in teaching and have some ELT professional development rants too).

    So what I did in order to give myself a framework and ‘deadlines’ plus manage my drafts was to set up days when these types of postings would occur e.g. Mondays are for tech-tips, Wednesdays are for lessons… etc HOWEVER my goal is not to publish all 4 per week – (have to teach classes too) yet whenever I find the time and it’s a Monday, for example, then I immediately know the “theme” I’m going to be working on and often the actual subject/ details of what I want to write about.

    Hope this is useful!

    K

    • @Karenne Sylvester, I did the 31 Day Project back in 2007 and I attribute it to the reason why I am now doing what I do. You gain so much from working through Darren’s tasks.

      Thanks for sharing how you organise your blogging schedule. To be honest I really need to do this 🙁 — now that I write on so many different blogs I should be doing it. I like the idea of breaking the posts in terms of types of posts.

  11. Kia ora e Sue!

    I’ve thought about this a lot.

    I think Tony Karrer hit on one theme when he let loose that I blogged about everything. I’ve found that my eclectic interest in many subjects means I’m seldom short of a topic to write a post about. It’s just that the context of the topic has to be addressed, for I’ve become increasingly aware that I write for readers as well as for myself. But writing for oneself is very important. It seems narcissistic but it is nevertheless true of writers – in the main they write for themselves as much as for anyone else.

    I’ve tried to keep most of my posts relevant to present day learning and the technology associated with it – that is a common strand of my writing. I think that it is important to identify the strand or strands in one’s writing early on in the blogging journey.

    I publish about 12 to 15 posts a month. Usually I come up with ideas for posts through the week but seldom have the time to sit at the keyboard mid-week and do much, so I make notes. My ideas incubate till the weekend when I might write a post or two or more. Even then, not all that I write about at the weekend gets published then, though it’s a time when I do tend to publish for that’s when I also have the time to potter around with the post as it doesn’t always screen the way I’d like it to and I tweak things after their published. I also write a lot of posts that I never publish – doh!

    That’s bullets 1 to 2 covered.

    Advice to bloggers? I’d say write at the frequency your comfortable with. What works for one doesn’t always work for another. If I posted less than 6 or 7 a month I reckon I’d simply run out of inspiration (if that’s what you’d call it). My endorphins would desert me and I’d pack it in. More than 16 posts per month and it would become an invasive activity impacting on the rest of my life. I like the rest of my life, so I only manage a higher frequency when I’m on vac (and not on holiday!) such as from December through to February, as I found out last year and this.

    As for the topic . . . I think the writer has to have a passion for what they are writing about. Writers have to want to write. And they have to especially want to write about certain things. Identify your main areas of interest early on and then set about writing posts that are about these areas.

    Don’t listen to the Tony Karrers (sorry Tony! 🙂 ) who might raise an eyebrow about a hodge-podge of interests. I believe, as does Skellie, that an eclectic range of topics appeals to most readers. And it is educative – the writer will learn at least as much from the experience as the reader.

    But as I said about having a passion, like Skellie, I believe that you need to have a desire to write. Let it burn!

    Catchya later

    • @Ken Allan, you so make me laugh always. I’m so telling on you to Tony Karrer.

      Since you raised the topic here is my view point – blogging like we do, as edubloggers, is firstly about meeting our own needs. You should write about what you want to write about and are passionate about. Readers are important but not to your detriment. You may have noticed I blog about whatever on my personal blog — who would have thought a post about Chocolate and Coca Cola would have chased such a reaction?

      But on the other hand you also need to be aware that if you do blog on a wide range of topics that not all of them may interest your readers 🙂

      Great advice for new bloggers — wonder how many of us find our blogging grove on the weekends?

      • @Sue Waters – Ha ha ha! Tony Karrer will delete me from his list when he reads this post! They’re only words. Ha ha ha! . . . oops!

        Catchya later

        • @Ken Allan, mmmm let me see? How much chocolate will you pay me NOT to tell Tony?

          • @Sue Waters – What makes you think Tony hasn’t already found out? If he has, what a waste of chocolate that would be!

            I’m quick.

            This is all virtual. Any chocolate I offered would have to be virtual too. Here’s all the chocolate you want.

            Catchya

          • Ken and Sue – somehow this took a very long time to appear in my various searches.

            Ken – you do have diverse topics – but I like that. And I like our exchanges. Sue – you as well. Both of you are a little outside the tiny little world that corporate eLearning types live in, which makes it that much more interesting. And both of you are willing to step in and challenge me.

            It’s great! And appreciated! No chance I will delete you. Maybe disagree. Never delete.

          • @Tony You are now going to have to explain to Ken which search found the post otherwise he will definitely think I told on him 😎

            I also enjoy both yours and Ken’s posts because you challenge my thinking — whether I agree or disagree you both make me think.

            PS thanks also for making me chuckle Tony and Ken. After an extremely long (hard) week, where it feels like I will never get this support material finished, it was good to end with a chuckle.

  12. Great post and good advice!

    One thing I like about blogging with Typepad (not sure if other blog services offer the same function) is the option of pre-setting your blog posts to appear on later dates.

    I tend to write for my blog in waves, and rather than everything getting thrown up over one or two days, I can preset their publication to later days during the week. Helps to keep a constant flow of posts on your blog, and a semblance of writing regularly even if you’re actually doing it in big chunks at different times!

    In any case, thanks for these tips – most appreciated!

    ~ Jason Renshaw
    http://jasonrenshaw.typepad.com/

    • @Jason Renshaw, yes most other blogging services allow you to pre-setting your blog posts to appear on later dates.

      I recommend all bloggers take that approach. It makes me cry when I see someone who blogs infrequently publish 3 posts on the same day because you know they will have bigger impact when spread out over days.

  13. I was just thinking about this today. I asked myself, “Just how is it that Larry and Richard post so consistently on their blogs?” Then I read your blogpost here and see that you read my mind today and decided to offer advice. 🙂

    I agree that the type of blog they have allows for such frequent posting. And, a new blogger like myself must now feel pressure to post so often. I needed a plan to get me kick-started into the blogging habit. I decided that 2-3 times per week will be a goal I will try to stick to. Here’s my plan: take time on Sun. afternoons to write 2 posts, which I will schedule for Monday and Wednesday. (This works well for me as the beginning of the week can get busy.) On Fridays, I’ll write a post that I’ll publish immediately that day. We’ll see how it goes.

    Thanks for the advice! Takes the pressure off. 🙂

    • @Donelle, you know what I still don’t know how people like Larry, Richard and Stephen Downes do it. They are all amazing bloggers. A considerable amount of research goes into their posts before they are even written. We are all lucky they enjoy doing what they do.

      Your plan sounds excellent. For some unknown reason I often prefer to write my posts on the weekend. So writing on the weekend then schedule them to post during the week is a good approach. Glad I reduced some of the pressure for you.

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