“How often should I blog?” is one of the questions I get asked most frequently by authors starting a blog. While many bloggers have a casual relationship to exactly when they publish new content, I think you’ll do better for yourself and your readers if you establish—and stick to—a real publishing schedule.
How often should you blog? There’s no one answer to this question. Bloggers have different aims, write in different categories, and have wildly different abilities to produce content.
If you’ve identified the top blogs in your niche, you’ll already have a head start on understanding what readers might expect.
Remember that successful blogs have already answered these blogging questions—that’s why they are successful. So use what you learn when researching the other blogs in your niche to inform your own decisions.
Sample Blog Posting Schedules
Here are some typical posting schedules used by bloggers with varying aims, writing for different audiences. See if one of them fits your situation, or suggests a solution you can use. I’ve tried to give you examples of successful bloggers using each of these approaches.
Finding what suits you and your readers is really the most important part of building a community around your blog. But I also think that growing your site into a more mature media publisher has merit. And one thing that will help you take responsibility for your content creation is having a specific schedule.
When I started this blog, I decided to publish almost every day to try to attract readers as quickly as possible.
When I told Jill my plan, she said “You’re crazy! You think people want to read about type fonts 6 days a week??”
Of course, my reply was, “Okay, you think I’m crazy? I’m going to publish 7 days a week!”
(If you’re married, you’ll understand the way these conversations go.)
But the strategy did work for me, and after 2 years of publishing 5 or 6 days a week, I eventually switched to a more sustainable long-term schedule of 3 days per week.
I can tell you from experience that trying to produce high quality content several times every week, month in and month out, takes both dedication and some pretty brawny writing muscles.
Think about how big a commitment you’re willing to make to this part of your platform building as you look through these examples.
- Several times each day—this type of publishing schedule is suited to blogs that focus on short news items, technical alerts, “gadget” blogs. Often these posts are derived from press releases or news items from wire services or other sources, so there may not be a lot of writing being done on the part of the blogger. Another type of frequent blogger is someone who curates other people’s content, which allows the blogger to post multiple times each day.
Example: The Passive Voice blog has grown a large and dedicated following by posting 5 to 10 items a day. Some are short quotes, others lengthy discussions, all have links back the the original articles.
- Daily posts—Lots of blogs are suited to the post a day schedule. Examples include short inspirational posts, “thought of the day” blogs, daily writing prompts, and similar types of blogs. Also keep in mind that posting more often will almost always result in more traffic to your articles. Knowing this, many bloggers choose to post every day during the early months of their blog to help get traction with readers quickly.
- 2-5 posts per week—This is a very popular frequency for many top blogs. One of the best ways bloggers use this type of schedule is by assigning each day to a different topic or specific type of post. For instance, a blog about baking might feature a “recipe of the week” on Mondays, articles on “baking basics” on Wednesdays, and “baking tools and tips” on Friday. Many readers enjoy checking in for their favorite features on specific days, and this also helps you as a blogger organize your plans for future articles.
Examples: Joanna Penn has built a strong community around her The Creative Penn blog by publishing 3 times a week with great regularity, with many readers being attracted by the endless stream of content. Similarly, C.S. Lakin’s Live Write Thrive blog explicitly posts on a Monday-Wednesday-Friday schedule, so readers always know when to expect a new article.
- 1 post per week—Many bloggers use one post per week to keep their blogs updated with fresh material for readers. Like a weekly magazine, readers will look forward to your really great content, and if you give yourself a week in which to produce each article you can really make your work shine.
Example: Legendary copywriter Bob Bly’s blog comes out once a week with his typically pithy and practical advice for entrepreneurs of all kinds. This results in excellent traffic and non-stop signups for his email list where he can make available the many information products he’s produced over the years.
- 1 or 2 posts per month—This type of frequency might suit bloggers who aren’t very concerned with building traffic for business reasons. It will keep search engines, which seem to prefer sites that are updated regularly, happy, and you can establish authority in your field.
Example: Cathryn Ryan Howard posts about 3 times a month to her wonderful Catherine, Caffeinated blog, with great success, since her dedicated fans look forward to each post.
Examples: For years, Copyblogger has produced one helpful article every day like clockwork. Drawing on a powerful network of expert bloggers to expand the work of the Copyblogger staff, they’ve built a small empire on the strength of this daily content. Also very suitable for tips blogs like Daily Blog Tips.
Pick one of these publishing schedules that appeals to you. Keep in mind that posting more frequently will grow your readership more quickly. What’s crucial in my opinion is that you pick a schedule that you can actually keep, long term.
There’s no reason you can’t change to a different schedule if the one you’re using doesn’t work out, but if you want to keep readers coming back for more, sticking to whichever publishing schedule you’ve settled on will help.