I’ve certainly wondered how often you should blog and of late I’ve carried out lots of research to see if there’s consensus about a sweet spot.
So for my discussion today I’m going to look at this in some detail to try to answer this for all bloggers, who like me who want a clear idea about what tends to get the best results.
I should say I have a view about post frequency already, but this is based upon the practicalities of blogging for me as well as what is optimal to grow visitors.
But for the purposes of this post, I’ve researched what dozens of online movers and shakers think… if they don’t know the answer, who does?
I’ll present what I’ve found and then add my own views at the end to sum it all up. Hopefully this will help give you a feel for how often you should blog.
Why Does How Often You Blog Matter?
It’s a cliche and we’ve all heard it… content is king.
It goes without saying… if your blog doesn’t have content, it’s not really a blog.
Adding content to your blog serves two principal purposes.
- It increases the likelihood that your blog posts will appear in search results, thus attracting new visitors.
- It encourages regular visitors to come back to see what else you have to say.
If you post too little, your site visits won’t grow as you’d like. This can lead to frustration on your part… a major reason why blogs fail.
If you post too much, you risk irritating regular visitors who find you too noisy. Additionally a hardcore blogging schedule might push you into blogger burnout.
So what is the blogging frequency sweet spot?
What Do the Movers and Shakers Think?
Like you, I look to others for advice and guidance. There are no better people to look to than respected sites and bloggers, right?
So I’ve checked out what people have to say about blogging frequency.
Here’s what I’ve found…
HubSpot’s research from 2015 showed that people who post more frequently see a substantial hike in site visits.
Their research focused on blogging data harvested from 13,500+ customers and showed the relationship between the number of blog posts and inbound traffic:
Of course we don’t know the size of the content estate behind the sample blogs in this chart and the effect that has on traffic. But at a glance this suggests something very clearly: the more regularly you post, the more traffic you get.
HubSpot clarifies this by presenting another chart from the test sample.
This shows the relationship between the total number of posts on a blog and inbound traffic. The takeaway form this is the more blog posts you have, the more traffic you get.
Interestingly this chart shows that traffic increases sharply for those blogs in their test sample with +300 posts.
Supporting this view, Buzzsumo also makes a reference to content volume by saying:
If you want your blog to really start to drive traffic, you should try to get to at least 50 blog posts as fast as possible (without sacrificing quality, of course).Buzzsumo
Neil Patel – NeilPatel.com
Neil is a content marketing high-flier and his blog, NeilPatel.com, has over 7,000 posts indexed in Google. Many of these are long form in excess of 2,000 words.
2 to 4 posts per week – this has been my personal strategy.
Creating engaging and high quality content should be your number one priority.
You’ll need to blog strategically and not just more frequently to attract such results.Neil Patel – NeilPatel.com
Three separate quotes from Neil here.
In the past he has explicitly recommended 2 – 4 blog posts per week, but emphasizes the importance of high quality content and adhering to a strategy.
With +7,000 indexed posts, Neil obviously has a team of writers, so it’s clear that he’s publishing more than 2 to 4 posts per week!
Notwithstanding, his content is incredibly detailed and well-researched.
High quality content is vital, not just for visitors who you want to come back, but also for search engines who demand it if you want a better chance to rank in their search results.
The one thing I know about producing blog posts that ooze quality though is they take time to write.
On average I’ll spend anything up to 5 hours writing a post. However, longer posts I’ve written have taken up to 20 hours to draft and edit before I’ve published them.
How many times a week is it possible for me to write posts like this on my own?
Darren Rowse – Founder of ProBlogger
Every blog is different and will be able to sustain different levels of posting. A variety of factors come into play.
There’s no ‘rules’ when it comes to post frequency.
I have been as high as 18 posts a week but these days we’ve slowed to 5-6 (with a change in the length and focus of the posts).
Aim for regularity rather than daily.Darren Rowse – ProBlogger
Darren knows a thing or two about blogging… he was an early adopter of the blogging phenomenon and is something of a pioneer.
You can see that at one time Darren hit blog posting hard, but his approach has adapted to the requirement for higher quality, in-depth posts.
That said, 5 – 6 posts per week requires some significant dedication in my opinion, especially as there are so many other areas you need to work on to make your blog a success.
Michelle Schroeder-Gardner – Making Sense of Cents
Michelle’s personal finance and lifestyle blog, Making Sense of Cents, is a runaway success, earning her over $100,000 per month. She’s built quite a following with a strategy of consistent, useful and high-quality posts.
Usually just cranking out posts just to publish it isn’t a good idea. Usually 3 to 4 times a week is good.Michelle Schroeder-Gardner – Making Sense of Cents
Michelle has a similar target for weekly blog posts, but not just for the sake of posting. She suggest that “cranking out posts” results in poor quality.
Bobby Hoyt – Millenial Money Man
Bobby’s online estate receives millions of visitors each year and Millenial Money Man itself now earns him in excess of seven figures.
Decide how often you can publish a post, and be realistic about it. You can start with one post a week and work up from there.
In the beginning I posted twice a week, and then eventually moved to three times.Bobby Hoyt – Millenial Money Man
Booby’s message is to set realistic targets, start with one post a week but increase your output as you become more able to commit.
Ryan Biddulph – Blogging From Paradise
I’ve recently started following Ryan and he offers two seemingly differing views.
Focus less on blog post frequency and more on writing quality posts that inspire your readers to succeed.
I also know erring on the side of being prolific tends to exponentially increase success.Ryan Biddulph – Blogging From Paradise
He’s right in both cases though according to the general consensus of other experts. You DO need to think more about quality than quantity, but if quality is not an issue prolific bloggers do tend to do rather well!
So How Often Should I Blog?
Personally I’d love to be in a position to post 3 – 5 posts a day… assuming I could guarantee they were of the same high-quality that added value to real people.
This simply isn’t possible for me to do on my own (at present!), so what’s more realistic for me is 3 – 5 posts per week… that’s what I’ve been doing to date, unless one of them happens to be extremely long-form (like this one… 31 Reasons Why Blogs Fail).
Andy Crestodina of Orbit Media says this:
The minimum blogging frequency is whatever you can reliably commit to.Andy Crestodina – Orbit Media
I agree of course… you need to be reliably consistent. But to make your blog move forwards at a rate that might make you happy (i.e. one that generates visits), I feel you need to consistently commit to between 3 – 5 posts a week, more if you can without impacting quality.
Regardless of frequency I do know one thing. If people reach your blog and don’t find too much in the way of blog posts, there’s not much too keep them there or encourage them to return.
A consistent schedule where you often make quality posts 3 – 5 times a week is tough but achievable.
Of course most of us need to work, run a business, balance family and other responsibilities… plus have a life too! It’s important to understand such boundaries and the limitations they incur and build this into a realistic blogging plan that enables consistency.
Consistency, we have found, is almost always more important than raw frequency.Moz.com
The one thing that popped up in every post I’ve read on the subject is that consistency is key.
You can’t write a glut of posts and then sit back and watch and expect miracles. Consistently publishing blog posts sends signals to visitors and search engines that your blog is one to watch.
“But how often should you blog?” I hear you ask.
To paraphrase Darren Rowse, every blog is different and each will respond in a different way to posting frequencies: SEO effectiveness and audience response is different for all blogs in a larger or smaller way.
With this in mind, the only way to understand fully how often you should post on your blog is by testing. Of course this might not yield clear results on newer domains… but you never know.
For me, I’ll keep on working on the idea of 3 -5 posts per week… ideally 5 but I find it difficult to hit the upper target if one of them ends up being a biggie.
I’ll leave you with one last thought about blogging frequency from Rand Fishkin, which may or may not cause more confusion
If you’re early stage, or if you were trying to build a career in blogging or in publishing, it’s great to publish a lot of content.Rand Fishkin
My aim is to get to a point where I have in excess of 300 posts (and counting!), which we’ve seen from the HubSpot research, might increase traffic exponentially compared to smaller blogs.
Bye for now.
Let’s talk! How often do you post? Do you have a blogging frequency secret to share. Let me know in a comment below.
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