declining-blog-stats

As bloggers, we love to see new traffic coming our way. There’s nothing better than seeing an increase in our statistics. It confirms we’re doing something right.

But, what about when our numbers slowly start going down? Either the recession has hit our blog, or we’re doing something wrong.

Today’s Lesson

We will from time to time, see decreases in our blog statistics. Holidays are often a factor, as is a reduction in our publishing schedule.

But if  those factors can be eliminated, what else can cause a decrease in blog readership?

Having thought about this, I’ve come up with the following list.

    1) Quit updating our blog

It’s one thing to post a few great pillar articles, but if visitors continually land on the same post, they’ll soon stop visiting.

    2) Stop visiting other blogs

Many of us take short sabbaticals from blogging, however, if we want our blog’s readership to grow, it’s necessary we continually get out, visit other blogs, leave comments and/or be visible in blogosphere.


    3) Stop being active on social networking sites like Twitter or StumbleUpon

When we first sign up for social networking sites like Twitter, StumbleUpon, Digg, etc, we’re often very active in the beginning. It’s when we stop interacting others begin to think we’ve lost interest – in networking AND blogging.


    4) Make other bloggers mad due to derogatory comments

A great way to lose readership is to leave negative comments on another person’s blog. Although not everyone will read the comment, blogosphere is actually quit small and word gets out. Don’t get tagged as a “spoil sport”.


    5) Close our comments

It’s not uncommon to see comments closed on large blogs, or occasionally on smaller ones, however, if a small to mid-size blogger keeps their comments closed all of the time, some may feel they have no reason to visit us. Blogs are meant to be interactive.


    6) Don’t answer our comments

When bloggers come to our site and leave a comment, they want to be acknowledged. Even if we don’t answer each comment individually, take the time to say “thank you, all” to let others know we read their words (You did read them, right?)


    7) Be selfish – Let others know “it’s all about me”

Bloggers love to show support for each other, but when a blogger is always taking and/or asking others for help and never giving back, they’ll soon be labeled as being self centered. Remember, we get what we give.  Update:  I am not saying we should not be blogging about ourselves or our lives.  I’m saying,  if we keep expecting others to Digg, Stumble, Tweet, or highlight our posts in some manner, and don’t reciprocate, we will soon be labeled as being selfish.

Listed above are seven ways to lose blog visitors. I know I’ve missed some and am counting on you to add to the list.

Today’s Assignment

For what reason do you stop visiting blogs?

Based on your blogging experience, what actions created a decrease in your blog statistics?

Feel free to share your thoughts.  Together we can all learn what not to do.

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  1. DavinaNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara. Good topic. You’ve covered most of the reasons why I stop visiting blogs. I think the biggest determent is when a blogger doesn’t respond to comments. I understand when there are huge numbers of comments, but not when we’re looking at numbers under 50.

    I recently added more blogs to my Reader and wonder if I’ve lost my mind because it is so difficult to get around to everyone. I’ve been loving Twitter these days. I like how it’s not all about business… guess you can mix business with pleasure after all.

    I noticed the greatest drop in traffic around Christmas. And there have been a couple of weeks where I dared to slack off from commenting and again the traffic dropped.

    One thing I’ve noticed: On Sundays during the summer the traffic is the worst. On Sundays during the winter the traffic is the highest. Hmmm… I wonder why that is? LOL.

    Davina´s last blog post..This Is Me, Then and Now

  2. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Davina – Your Sunday scenario is confusing to me. Sounds like people are spending more time indoors in the winter and less in the summer. Maybe? Like you, I also saw a drop in traffic during the Christmas holiday.

    Twitter is great, isn’t it? It’s a quick way to connect with others.

  3. DavinaNo Gravatar says:

    I think that’s exactly it. Sunday is a blogging day in the winter, at least on my blog anyway. Off to bed now… I feel like I’m on Twitter now only with more than a 140 character limit. Have a great night Barbara.

    Davina´s last blog post..This Is Me, Then and Now

  4. LanceNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara,

    This is pretty comprehensive list of how blog traffic might decline. Closing comments – I’ve played with this one recently. It has been if I’ve done a guest post on another site, and linked to it from my site. I was thinking that this way, people could just leave comments on the site where the post was at. Interestingly, I had more a few emails and comments on older posts – asking about this. It has me thinking – how often is too often for closing comments.

  5. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Lance – Good point. When you guest post, will the comments only be on the “other” site, or will they be on yours, too?

    With regard to closing comments, that’s not something I’ve done (yet), so I’m probably the wrong person to answer. Let hope others who have closed comments show up and share why they decided to do so, and how often they do.

  6. Dr. CasonNo Gravatar says:

    I see a drop when I stop visiting people and when I stop answering the comments. I do try to get back to everyone but when time is short I just say hi! and thanks for visiting. That at least shows other people that you are reading.

    I saw a big drop at Christmas time!

    I don’t know how people can twitter all day long! And digging takes a lot of time too! I can’t seem to keep up!

    Dr. Cason´s last blog post..Friday’s Photo Challenge- January 23rd, 2009

  7. ScottNo Gravatar says:

    Time is my biggest killer. I did pretty good there for a while, staying away from the TV and staying focused on family time, studying, reading blogs, and writing. For some reason I’ve started to get away from that and I’m not using my time as wisely as I did before. I felt…better..then too. I mean, better about my whole time management.

    As a consequence, the less time I spent out, the less traffic I’ve had in. Gonna get back to the less TV routine this week. Not to get traffic. To get conversation. (Sorry, rambled :) )

    Scott´s last blog post..Use The Force: Telekinesis

  8. I don’t check blog stats frequently or even regularly. Instead I measure my blogs success by subscribers and by the comments on each post. I did install the “post views plug-in” so it displays how many times that post was clicked, without going into looking at stats.

    I figure if subscriber counts keep increasing I can afford to be causal about stats for a bit longer.

    As for why I don’t revisit a blog, often it’s not anything that blogger has done. It can simply be a matter of priorities on my part.

    Blog content is a big reason to gain or lose visitors. Thank goodness it’s still the most important.

    Tom Volkar / Delightful Work´s last blog post..Speak Up – Silence Makes You Poor

  9. Hi Barbara, sometimes the blogger has done anything wrong. It’s just that I’m too busy or want a respite from the computer.

    Miguel de Luis´s last blog post..A better word processor than MS Word, Open Office or whatever the Mac uses.

  10. I’ve had my ups and downs with my blog and it can be frustrating. We can’t give up. Like Barbara said we need to keep reaching out to other bloggers through link love, commenting and social media.

    It takes work to build a blog and it can be tiring, but if you have a dream don’t give up. Keep networking and finding new friends because eventually you will have a little group that will support and promote you.

    Karl Staib – Your Work Happiness Matters´s last blog post..Why Your Company Should Give Motivational Booster Sessions

  11. Good topic!
    What makes me stop visiting blogs is the content….
    Sometimes a blogger runs after the traffic/comments/link love/etc and forgets about the main reason she blogs – the insight.
    When I notice such pattern I unsubscribe.
    In my opinion the blog should offer the value, the insight. otherwise why bother?

    Alik Levin | PracticeThis.com´s last blog post..Program Yourself For Extremely Fast Performance

  12. Great thought process going on here today … I am benefiting from your insight, Barbara, and from the insight of your commentors. I’m not trying to build a business out of my blog, but I AM interested in understanding what adds the most value for the time I spend on that project (blogging). I really never realized that responding to comments was so important. Perhaps I should focus a bit more on that area.

    One thing that has been said that I know for certain is true, visits to your blog increases in proportion to the number of comments you leave on other blogs.

  13. vikumNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Babara,

    I’m new to blogging and found your posts as very useful which gives a lot of tips on blogging. Thanks a lot. Keep the great work going.

  14. I’m wondering if adding blogs to readers could possibly be a reason to why there’s lesser visitors in the stats counter. I’m one of those who would read through the reader and click on the link to the original post to add in a comment (or read other’s comments).

    Daniel Richard´s last blog post..10 Things To Say To Your Friends During Chinese New Year!

  15. LingNo Gravatar says:

    Like you say, one of the main reasons to give up on a blog is because there are no updates or new posts. Another reason is the loading speed. If you weigh down your blog with a 100 widgets and heavy graphics and flash ads and stuff like that, then anyone who doesn’t really care much is going to stop visiting.

    So all you have to do is keep it simple and clean, and give people something new to read every day. I don’t think that’s a big ask.

  16. I stop visiting blogs when the author starts getting all “me” without any “you”. I also stop visiting when the blog gets all textbook and loses both “me” and “you”.

    Alex Fayle | Someday Syndrome´s last blog post..Waiting for permission: Wendi Kelly interview

  17. Hi Barbara,

    If I stop reading it is because the content no longer seems to be something that has value to me. Or is redundant. OR is all about the blogger. Another thing I have seen (Not very often I am happy to say) is when there is a quick rise to fame and then suddenly they lose ther focus and forget what made them so interesting and special to begin with.

    Wendi Kelly- Life’s Little Inspirationa´s last blog post..Inspired Movies

  18. ValNo Gravatar says:

    I too stop visiting when loading speed is long. Music particularly slows things down. And the fewer things I need to click, the better. For instance, I’m turned off by the partial entry dilly where you have to click, “read more.” But that’s my impatience talking. I love your site Barbara.

    Val´s last blog post..A funny that made me laugh tears

  19. LindaNo Gravatar says:

    I have to agree that holidays are just killer on traffic and not updating their blogs as well.

    I work on good content as well as commenting on as many as I can to keep the traffic coming. Social media takes time as well.

    If you do none of the above, then your traffic decreases dramatically and then you have to work harder to get it back. So I think consistency is the key.

    Linda´s last blog post..Passchal Bags

  20. Tell me about it :lol: I took a three-day break from posting and there falls my Google Analytics graph. It’s apalling how badly people dump blogs in case no updates for even two or three days.

    One way of get around the problem is to SEO your blogs properly so that in normal conditions (ie.when you post regularly) the search traffic is 60-70pc and hence when you dont post your overall traffic don’t come down by more than 15 or 20 pc.

    Ajith Edassery´s last blog post..SEO Challenge ‘09 – Week 3 Update

  21. EvitaNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara,

    What a great topic and great advice. I think you have covered some of the most important points as to what may happen to our traffic.

    I can definitely agree with the social networks, it is one thing to get up and going, but another to keep it going.

    I think for me personally, time is a huge factor. I want to write and visit other blogs and network on various social media, but at the same time I do not want blogging to consume my life. So I am working on finding a happy medium.

    Evita´s last blog post..Depth Seeker

  22. I agree with Alik. None of these will make me stop reading a blog. The content is the only thing that matters to me. I may stop commenting if the blogger never responds, but if I like the content, I will keep reading.

    As for MomGrind, I now publish just 1-2 posts a week and I close comments about once a week. This definitely results in less page views, but I do have more subscribers than ever.

    Since I need to balance time spent on the blog with time spent with my family and time spent doing other work, I’m basically doing what I have to do to keep my sanity and make sure I can keep blogging for the long term. The most important thing to me is avoiding burnout. If the result is less traffic, I’m OK with that.

    Vered – MomGrind´s last blog post..Breaking: Cosmo Magazine To Change Its Name

  23. I like how you said “the recession has hit our blog.” Fortunately, blogs are free to read (once you pay for internet access), so we have that option available no matter what the economy is doing.

    I wonder if a recession in the economy leads to a boom in the blogosphere, as people turn to free entertainment like reading blogs. On the other hand, maybe more people are spending time looking for jobs instead of reading blogs.

    Hunter Nuttall´s last blog post..ThunderCats: Setting Kids Up For Disappointment?

  24. I do have Google Analytics installed but I haven’t looked at it in over a month, am afraid to in case the numbers are way down – what I don’t know can’t hurt me, right? (Silly reason, I know.) So, my focus is to keep blogging along and having fun doing my thing. What really matters to me is the friendships I’ve developed and the interaction we all have and if I never get any more readers than I now have, I’ll still be a very very happy blogger.

    That quote from Tammie, “…visits to your blog increase in proportion to the number of comments you leave on other blogs,” is what I have found to be very true too. So if people are getting depressed about not getting comments, they should sure “get out there” and leave them on others’ blogs.

    Of course this all takes time, so you have to find a balance and decide how much time you can devote to blogging and how deeply you want to get into it. I allow about 2 hours a day for blogging and have hit a happy stride.

    Jannie Funster´s last blog post..Sunday May 10th 7:30 p.m.

  25. Mike GoadNo Gravatar says:

    For what reason do you stop visiting blogs? Generally only if the content doesn’t interest me, either because my interests have changed or the blog author is writing something different from what it was when I subscribed to the feed. If comments are always closed, I probably won’t subscribe to the feed in the first place, unless there is something there that I hava deep interest in. I’ve also unsubscribed to a couple of blogs whose author seemed to feel the need to publish several times a day and to blogs where tha blogger was extremely condescending.

    Based on your blogging experience, what actions created a decrease in your blog statistics?The only metric I can see is how many people comment on my blog. When I post only pictures, there are generally few comments, while if I post text, there will be more comments, especially if I ask a question or two — which I’ve done in my most recent post.

    Mike Goad´s last blog post..Applying for Unemployment

  26. RuthNo Gravatar says:

    Based on my own experience, I’d say that my readership is higher when I a) comment around the blogosphere b) respond to comments and c) don’t force myself to write the post (though posts where I switch into “inspired mode” midway through don’t count).

    I think the only thing that can make me stop reading a blog for good is if the blogger is a jerk. If they’re always dissing other people, commenters, etc, I feel icky reading even if their content is good. Otherwise, it’s content (so stopping might make me stop coming, but if it was good, I maintain the subscription). But it had better be damn good content if they’re closing their comments…I hold those blogs to a much higher standard.

    Ruth´s last blog post..What Are You Valuing More Than Your Goal?

  27. I stop visiting blogs due to time, but I come back to them when I can. Often, too, I read and don’t comment – simply because of time. I’m working to manage my internet time a bit more effectively because I do see benefit, but when a lot of my work and life is still offline, the balance becomes challenging.

  28. I stop visiting blogs when I’m on vacation, or life just gets too overwhelming. But in both those cases, it’s for a week at the most.

    I have noticed decreases during National holidays. That’s about it. Otherwise, it’s pretty consistent.

    I don’t know about not spending as much time on social networks. I found that time spent there didn’t really increase my traffic, so not spending as much time there didn’t create any decrease in readership. However, maybe I wasn’t spending enough time there in the first place! But there are only so many hours in the day.

    Urban Panther´s last blog post..The true hunters are always female

  29. Hi Barbara – Content, content, content and the right amount. Too much or too little. I must need it to be like Baby Bear “just right.”

    Betsy Wuebker´s last blog post..FINDING VALUE IN UNCERTAINTY

  30. I think the most important quality of a blog is content. And I know – we’ve heard it all before.

    That being said, especially in the beginning, one has to get their material out there. If no one sees it, the quality will be irrelevant.

    Further, I believe that posting more doesn’t necessarily make people want to subscribe to a blog more. It’s posting inspiring material that really provokes people to subscribe.

    Being regular is important, but there is a question as to how regular one really has to be. I think one just needs to be regular enough – and should focus more of their attention on what it is exactly they’re publishing rather than if they’re publishing enough.

  31. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi again, Davina – I missed your second comment. Can you imagine if we only had 140 characters for a comment on a blog? Twitter would give us good practice. Haha!

    Hi Dr. Cason – You’re right. With time issues and other responsibilities, it’s hard to do it all.

    Hi Scott – Yes. Visiting blogs and answering our comments does get us into the conversation. But, living life is more important than the numbers.

    Hi Tom – Absolutely. Blog content remains the most important way of getting (or losing) visitors.

    Hi Miguel – I hear you. When our lives get busy, we often have less time to visit other blogs.

    Hi Karl – How true. Bloggers will support and promote each other. Even if it seems tiring at times, in the end it may well be worth all of our efforts.

    Hi Alik – Thank you. You’re right. If a blog stops offering value and is instead only concentrating on the numbers, it’s often obvious in what’s written.

    Hi Tammie – Thank you. One thing about commenting on other blogs is often that’s the only way we get found. As our reach expands, like you said, so does our traffic.

    Hi Vikum – You’re welcome. I’m so happy the post and comments are beneficial to you. Hang in there and enjoy the blogging journey.

    Hi Daniel – I think it might depend on the statistics program we use as to whether the visits via a reader are counted. I don’t understand how those “reader” visits are recorded – or if they are.

    Hi Ling – Good point! I forgot all about how long it takes some blogs to load. That’s frustrating isn’t it?

    Hi Alex – Haha! Maybe we should start a new campaign and say “There’s no “I” in blog” :)

    Hi Wendi – **smiles** Yes, some bloggers who do make the “blog of fame” forget they started just like the rest of us and lose their focus. That’s sad.

    Hi Val – Thank you. I agree. Having to click “read more” can be a pain. I’m guessing you’re not the only blogger who’s impatient. :)

    Hi Linda – Yes. Consistency is key. Like you said, it’s tough to get traffic back after we’ve lost it.

    Hi Ajith – Great idea. If we can use SEO (search engine optimization) in our blogs, at least we’ll get steady traffic from search engines when we haven’t updated.

    Hi Evita – Ture. Finding a happy medium between life and blogging is important and time is the biggest issue. Being able to do it all takes practice.

    Hi Vered – You’re right. Some blogs have such great content it doesn’t matter whether the author responds or not. The value we gain from their posts is priceless.

    Hi Hunter – With all of the layoffs that are being announced, I would bet we’ll see a rise in the search term “how to make money online”. So, in answer to your question, I would say people might be visiting blogs more, but not to socialize as much as to extract information on how to supplement their income.

    Hi Jannie – Yes. We do need to “get out there” if we want more traffic. We can be our best advertising, can’t we?

    Hi Mike – You’ve raised a good point. We may see less comments depending on our post, but that may not mean our readership goes down.

    Hi Ruth – I hear you. Hearing the blog author dis others is a huge turnoff. Being condescending gets us nowhere. We hear enough bad news in our daily life, so we definitely don’t need to read negativity in blogs, too.

    Hi Stacey – How true. The balance can be challenging. It takes time to read all we want to, but by returning to a blog when we have time shows the author we’re still “there”.

    Hi Panther – Haha! “…there are only so many hours in the day.”. How true. Doing it all certainly takes a lot of time.

    Hi “Baby Bear” Betsy – Yes, having the content good, and just the right amount (per post) makes a huge difference.

    Hi Bamboo – Good point. Our content is often more important than our publishing schedule. Like you said, if the quality is there, people will subscribe.

  32. TumblemooseNo Gravatar says:

    When John Grisham first came out with “The Firm”, I read it like a mad man. One or two sittings max. Then he put out another – cool! Then another then another – pretty soon he was cranking them out every 5 months. Sorry but that was just too much. Even though I liked his stuff, for some kinda pissed me off and I’ve not read one since.

    The lesson here: Get on a realistic posting schedule, one with your audience in mind.

    Also, over the last six months I kept hearing about this new blogger shooting up the ranks. I heard lots of great things and ultimately I wound up at his site. Disappointed is an overstatement. I sure didn’t see anything there that was special, he didn’t seem to treat commentors particularly well or anything. In fact, I made a few attempts to build a relationship and got nowhere. I see him twitter his latest posts and it just seems to me his focus is very “niche -ey” I’m not going back to his blog anytime soon.

    Lesson #2. Careful on your rise to the top. It could be a long way down.

    My 2 cents

    George

    Tumblemoose´s last blog post..The long and the short of it

  33. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi George – You’re right. We do have to keep our audience in mind. Not only are they busy, but we certainly can’t expect them to read everything we write without reciprocation.

    That’s an interesting story about the blogger shooting up the ranks. Saying “it could be a long way down” hits the nail on the head.

  34. Evelyn LimNo Gravatar says:

    Traditionally, web traffic tend to be down during Christmas and also over the weekends. The best days to publish content is on Tuesdays and Thursdays, apparently. Knowing these general trends/stats are especially helpful if you are planning a big marketing campaign and when timing is important.

    I also find that if I publish content that is better than average, I tend to get more comments. I agree with Bamboo that publishing good content is far more valuable than sticking to a regular schedule.

    Evelyn Lim´s last blog post..Benefits To Meditation

  35. TracyNo Gravatar says:

    I find that my blog traffic does go down when I don’t post regularly and when I don’t have time to comment on other blogs. I think that there are so many great blogs out there, it’s easy to get overlooked if you don’t let people know you’re still alive.

    A fair bit of my traffic comes from search because I write a lot about different snack foods. I always know when the Food Network reruns a show about Pickle Pops because my traffic spikes. I should send them a gift basket.

    Personally, I stop visiting blogs when they become boring or repetitive. It’s not a conscious thing, there are just so many great blogs out there that the ones that aren’t really delivering anything new and exciting get pushed to the bottom of the pile.

    Tracy´s last blog post..Nutella and Go!

  36. PatriciaNo Gravatar says:

    The worst way of all to loose readers and comments and sanity – Have your Internet Server go up and down for 7 weeks and try to not use the MONOPOLY provider in your area….the 28th I have a signed contract that I will have a new server and fast enough connection.
    I can not tell you twitter is just about impossible when you start a comment and loose connection or attempt to write on someones great post and go down! Stumble upon is not possible…

    I have been running around with my laptop trying to stay tuned in,
    But I go to other blogs and subscribe for content, content, content as Betsy said….I read every word and like the discussion of writing something thoughtful back.
    Your post is wonderful…and thought provoking…as I attempt to get a dialog going on my partner’s site,
    Can you feel my frustration?
    I can not even read my stats I have to rely on my IT person to tell me…
    Monopoly servers are not very good on customer care…I need to figure out how to address this – we are becoming like China?
    I so enjoy reading what you share Barbara and all your good commentors…Thank you

    Patricia´s last blog post..Pooh Patrol

  37. CarolineNo Gravatar says:

    How do you do this…come up with great great advice! The biggest reason I stop visiting blogs is no updated posts…or when I visit blogs and they don’t reciprocate.

    Caroline´s last blog post..A gift for yourself…do one less thing today

  38. melanieNo Gravatar says:

    For what reason do you stop visiting blogs?
    Too much writing. I have a short concentration span.
    Dont worry though Barbara, yours is just the right amount:)
    When bloggers make alot of references to religion/gods I leave/unsubscribe/never go back.
    Disinterest in content or after a while finding that the content wasnt going to continue, it was just good on the day you landed on the blog.
    Condescending people also get the ol’ leave/unsubscribe/never go back

    melanie´s last blog post..Trash Talk

  39. MarelisaNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara: I’m subscribed to a couple of blogs that only post about once a month, but when they do post it’s usually great. I unsubscribe from blogs if the content becomes uninformative or uninspiring. I have noticed that my stumbleupon juice has gone way down. That is, even if 10 people stumble my post I don’t get the same amount of visitors that I would get three months ago when 10 people would stumble my post. I guess I need to spend more time stumbling :-)

  40. GayanaNo Gravatar says:

    Very obvious :) and I read with pleasure, laughing at the situations, Barbara. All so true. I tested it myself and since I have stopped helping one client with no update in the blog, with no reading and commenting on other people’s blogs, I have 0 visitors now.

  41. MayaNo Gravatar says:

    I think it is content – all about the content really. For me it is. I love to leave comments on blogs where I have gotten to “know” the blogger a bit. Or I stumble their posts if I find a lot of value in them. Yes, I do love to get comments on my post – but honestly, I take so long to write some of my posts that first of all, I hope they provide value. I will more or less catch up with reading ALL the blogs that I love and have subscribed to.
    My blog is growing nicely – and very steadily …so I guess I am somewhat happy :)

    Maya´s last blog post..Preparing to Believe in Yourself: The Science of Ditchiness

  42. RibbonNo Gravatar says:

    Hello,
    As I’m relatively new to the blogging world I’ve been doing a lot of blog hopping and the one thing that stands out in the crowded blogosphere is “Integrity”.

    Not something to be forgotten.
    Best Wishes :-)

    Ribbon´s last blog post..Tips, hints, Clues, ideas for Bloggers

  43. bermudabluezNo Gravatar says:

    I think you have covered the reasons very well!! I notice that some people don’t seem to read or comment on other’s blogs at all! And that is frustrating to me. I try really hard to get around to as many blogs as possible…within reason. That’s the other hard part….trying to stay current on Facebook, Twitter, Blogging, and managing every day life!! You seem to have a great handle on getting back to everyone!! I try to respond to every comment on my blog…whether it be via email or comment on my own blog. Great Topic! I love your blog!

    bermudabluez´s last blog post..Taste of Tuesday?

  44. NaturalNo Gravatar says:

    i stop visiting when people disappear from my blog or i don’t see them on the regular blogs that i normally do. sometimes i don’t to log in to my reader, so these things are like reminders to me to go visit their blog.

    i read that if you don’t update your blog on a regular, at least once a week, that people will lose interest. i thought about this when i was in my funk and decided not to pay too much attention to that. i’ll give a person more than a week of not posting before i stop visiting completely.

    i can’t think of anything i’ve done to decrease my numbers other than move my feedburner account.

    Natural´s last blog post..My Other First Time, Part I

  45. Debbie YostNo Gravatar says:

    #2 is my problem. I try to visit the other blogs, but time makes it difficult. I know from my side if I regular commentor disappears, I slowly do the same on their end. It’s not out of spite, but when you only have so much time, you hit the spots that visit you. However, if a person continues to drop in from time to time even if it’s not as often, I am more likely to remain active on their blog.

    My next biggest problem is the acknowledge your comments. I do a pretty good job if I have an email and I can respond directly to them. But if I have to go into comments like you do, I’m less consistent. On occasion I will do a follow-up post on a subject and I always thank everyone for dropping by and giving me support and advice.

    Debbie Yost´s last blog post..The Fallen Princess

  46. Dennis EdellNo Gravatar says:

    As you can see on my “top posts” list, I and many others agree with #6; I know I won’t return much if the blogger doesn’t.

    Another reason I’ll drop a blog (and not even comment the first time) is the lack of a subscribe-to-comments plugin – I like to know who responds to my replies as I may have more to add or find other blogs to visit.

    Speaking of plugins – threaded comments maybe? :)

    Dennis Edell´s last blog post..Banners Ads or Text Links?

  47. I read and respond to blogs based on my time, health, and stuff going on in my life. For example, I tried to write a comment here last night, but my husband wanted to talk about his day. I started to write this comment this morning, and already my Mom (she has Alzheimer’s) has caused three interruptions. I have read how to build my blog numbers up repeatedly, but it’s not my passion. (I like to read about it, though, for future use.) For right now, I digest great blogs, post on my own blog, and comment elsewhere without regard to building numbers.

    SpaceAgeSage — Lori´s last blog post..There is a time for everything; a season for every activity under heaven

  48. Wow #1 is probably been the biggest in my experience. I had another blog where I updated it a lot at first, but then I stopped updating it as often as when I first started. The readers/subscribers, page rank, and search engine traffic all went down because of that. That definitely taught me how important it is to update a blog.

    Broderick Allen´s last blog post..Life is Short?

  49. SaraNo Gravatar says:

    Barbara,

    Great post.

    The main reason I stop reading a blog is because it’s difficult to read — no white space, written in IM style, crowded with advertisements, etc. As an older reader, I am not as good at reading freestyle blogging.

    In answer to your other question, one of the reasons my numbers aren’t as high as would like is that I don’t have a clear theme for my blog. I think it needs a name that reflects the content, as well as what it offers to readers.

    Thanks for making me think!

    Sara´s last blog post..Blogging: Choosing Your Avatar

  50. NeilNo Gravatar says:

    I noticed a drop in readership when my posting schedule changed. It didn’t drop much, granted it was never very high. Right now it’s a difficult balance between posting, commenting on other blogs, commenting on comments on my own blog and spending time with family which is really my #1 priority.

    Neil´s last blog post..The Responsible Use of Credit

  51. MarkNo Gravatar says:

    Great advice, thanks for sharing!

    Mark´s last blog post..Validation and Judgment

  52. I think the sheer number of blogs out there can be overwhelming. Sometimes I wonder how anyone finds my blog and takes the time to read it regularly—it’s not like people are lacking for ways to fill their time!

    When I think about it from the perspective of a reader, though, it all makes a bit more sense. As I find out about new blogs that I like, I add them to my reader. When I’m going through my reader, if I find that I consistently skip over a certain blog, because it’s really not doing anything for me (by that I mean it’s not entertaining, making me think, engaging me, etc.), I’ll eventually remove it.

    I want the connections I have with other bloggers and on Twitter to be meaningful. It’s quality over quantity for me. And I guess the “right” blogs for each reader, with the best content for them, will continue to rise to the surface, pushing the so-so blogs out of the way.

    The real issue is connecting the right blogs to the right audience in the first place, I think.

    Thanks for this great post!

    (Regarding point #3, I hate to admit it, but I’m clueless about how StumbleUpon and Digg work. Anyone know of a good overview/crash course?)

    Kristin T. (@kt_writes)´s last blog post..Learn from your successes (just not too much)

  53. I thought my recent absence from my blog and from visiting others would affect my stats but it didn’t. Maybe the regular visitors understood what was going on.

    I’m not commenting on other blogs as much as I used to because I don’t have the time even though I’m still reading them. I’m pushing harder with the freelancing and found I was spending more time commenting than earning money. I also have a very laid back job but I am currently located in a building that has installed websense (I don’t work for that company but am temporarily on that network). Many sites that I used to visit are now blocked, even my own. ;-)

    I think the lowest traffic day I’ve ever had was Christmas – I haven’t noticed the same type of drop on other holidays.

    Kim Woodbridge´s last blog post..How to Make a Post Sticky in WordPress 2.7

  54. GennaroNo Gravatar says:

    I’ll stop visiting a blog if it’s rarely updated or the content quality starts to drop off for a significant period of time. Sometimes a good blogger become so successful that they stop posting and rely entirely on guest post who are often good, but not the reason people went there in the first place.

    Gennaro´s last blog post..6 Steps To A Lucky Chinese New Year

  55. ShirleyNo Gravatar says:

    I think we all know something about losing visitors. haha.

    I often stop visiting blogs if:
    1. They stop blogging.
    2. They’ve added annoying features like popups.
    3. They’ve changed their theme, and I am on a temporary boycott.
    4. I get busy.
    5. I get bored with the content. Some bloggers forget to spice things up…

    Shirley´s last blog post..Does Your Website Need A Sitemap?

  56. WaldoNo Gravatar says:

    I can agree. I haven’t really found a way to get consistent traffic yet, but I am working on it. People only seem to get directed to 1 page, and not the rest. sadly he one they are directed to is one of my worst pages (IMO). But thanks for the tips.

    Waldo´s last blog post..5 Reasons Jury duty is a waste of time.

  57. My top reason for not reading anymore is that the content doesn’t interest me. There are some themes that are really hard to read, and I have come across blogs that were just too intensely personal for me.

    But the biggest obstacle is time. I’m not reading, commenting or posting as much as I was so I’m trying to be selective and spend time on the blogs I do enjoy.

    Vintage Mommy´s last blog post..Show & Tell: Nothing to Show OR Tell!

  58. [...] How To Lose Blog Visitors at Blogging Without a Blog [...]

  59. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Evelyn – Thank you for the tip about publishing on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Ironically those are the two days I eliminated from my schedule. :(

    Hi Tracy – I like that. Your blog gets more search engine traffic when the Food Network reruns stories about Pickle Pops. That’s a new one for me. I’ll have to google the term.

    Hi Patricia – Yes, I can feel your frustration. How great it is you’ll have a new server on the 28th. I’m betting you’re counting the hours.

    Hi Caroline – Thank you. Yes, reciprocation is very important. It lets others know we care.

    Hi Melanie – **smiles** I’m happy to hear my posts aren’t too long winded. You’ve raised a good point. Sometimes we do land on a blog on a “good” day, but when we go back, the writing and/or topic is no longer of interest to us.

    Hi Marelisa – That’s interesting you mention Stumble and how it’s not as “powerful” as before. I wonder if that has anything to do with Twitter. Oddly enough, I’m not hearing as much about Stumble these days.

    Hi Gayana – Ouch! That hurts. Hopefully you’ll be updating your blog again real soon.

    Hi Maya – Yes. Your blog is growing nicely. I’m not certain how you do it all though, with a second blog and a business endeavor.

    Hi Ribbon – Oh yes. Integrity is very important in blogs. Thank you for the reminder. :)

    Hi Bermudabluez – Thank you. You’re right. Finding that balance between blogging, social networking, visiting others, emails, etc., can be a challenge.

    Hi Natural – I agree with you on that one; give someone more that an week to update. Often a blogger will go on a sabbatical for a month or so and come back with fabulous ideas.

    Hi Debbie – That’s true. When others stop visiting us, it’s almost like we forget about them (not completely). Having a name in our face makes us more apt to visit them as well.

    Hi Dennis – I know you like the subscribe to comments plugin as I’ve often answered your comment and you come back. :)

    Hi Lori – You’re right, interruptions from our real life can make a huge difference in our blogging activities. Sometimes it tough to find that balance, isn’t it?

    Hi Broderick – Thank you for verifying how important it is to keep a blog updated. Once we lose page rank and readership, it’s tough to get it back.

    Hi Sara – You’re welcome. You’ve brought up two great points. Small print, crowdedness, etc can make it difficult to read a blog post.

    And having a clear theme is important, as well. Readers need to know what to expect when they land on our blog.

    Hi Neil – Balancing real life with blogging is tough. Family should definitely be #1. I think most bloggers understand the responsibilities we all have elsewhere.

    Hi Mark – You’re welcome.

    Hi Kristin – You’re welcome. I’m thinking about what you said and it makes sense. When we go to our reader, we are often drawn to some blogs, whereas others continually get overlooked. It does come down to blog authors connecting with a specific audience, doesn’t it?

    Re: Stumble and Digg. I’ll keep my eyes open for a good tutorial, and will let you know.

    Hi Kim – I’m wondering how many bloggers do blog or access other blogs at work. If companies monitor the employees online activity and block sites, that could also result in a decrease in readership. Hmmm. Sounds like a good idea for a future blog post for me. Thank you for the inspiration.

    Hi Gennaro – Good point. Some blogs do turn their sites completely over to guest posters, and like you said, that’s not why we visited originally visited them.

    Hi Shirley – I like your #3 – “They’ve changed their theme, and I am on a temporary boycott.” :)

    Hi Waldo – You’ve raised a problem I haven’t thought of. If our readers are directed to one of our poorer posts, they are more apt to not return. That’s where navigation of our blogs come into play.

    Hi Ann – I hear you. Blog posts that are extremely personal can be a turn off. I don’t know about you, but I feel like I’m eavesdropping and quickly leave.

  60. J.D. MeierNo Gravatar says:

    Stop being active on twitter and stumbleupon? .. I still need to start ;)

    My traffic patterns are so weird I can’t figure them out. For example, it shoots up on Thu, Fri, and Sat. It also does weird spikes, like a few thousand a few days suddenly down to a few hundred. I think I’m around my six month mark since launch, so I think I need to do a checkpoint and analyze results.

    I might change some strategies, but first I need to step back and get a good handle on my results so far. It’s been tough shipping a book, starting a new one, updating my blogs, and testing some new paths through today’s economic forest, and all that jazz. I’ll be picking a vital few things for full focus and I may invest more in my blogs if it makes sense. The only ROI I’m measuring is energy. I think passion and drive are today’s key fuel to survive and thrive.

    … or maybe I’ll just try twitter.

    J.D. Meier´s last blog post..7 Deadly Logical Sins

  61. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi J.D. – It sounds like the spikes you’re seeing is from your readers Stumbling, Tweeting and/or Digging your posts. Are you using WordPress Stats, Google Analytics or another statistical reporting program?

    Another book? I’m sure it will be a hit just like your last one. Sounds like your plate if FULL. Try Twitter. I’m having a lot of fun with it.

  62. This has been amazing reading all of the above comments. I am a silent reader of sorts. Since I am really not about getting my numbers up and I am interested in only getting to know my readers I find myself floating around the blog world reading a great deal. I go back if I just feel a connection. I do notice that I will usually go right past a “busy” page. I don’t like clutter.

    As I was reading the above comments I noticed how different each of us are. I will tell you Barbara that I seem to link off of great number of your tweets. Twitter has been a wonderful source of information for me.

    Once again…a wonderful post.

    Cricket/A Day to Share´s last blog post..My week for thought

  63. Dennis EdellNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Dennis – I know you like the subscribe to comments plugin as I’ve often answered your comment and you come back. :)

    OK so this is a worthless comment, but I figured it would be TOO ironic if I didn’t respond. :)

    Dennis Edell´s last blog post..Banners Ads or Text Links?

  64. Barbara – Great! I love it when comments give us ideas for posts :-)

    Kim Woodbridge´s last blog post..WordPress 2.7 Post_Class Template Tag and Sticky Posts

  65. DaisyNo Gravatar says:

    Thanks Barbara,

    That was a great post and excellent comments. I suppose this will show how “out of it” I am when I say “What’s Twitter?” – oh, so much to learn, and so little time.

    Darn – I never have anything really fabulous to add that someone else hasn’t already written – always on the late side of adding my 2 cents worth. :)

    Daisy

    Daisy´s last blog post..What rhymes with Orange?

  66. I suppose that as I have had several months experience now with blogging, I have grown toward the bloggers that respond to comments. Some of them are even nice enough to visit my blog, which makes me feel like it is a two sided relationship and not just one. There were a few blogs that I frequented that after many comments, I never heard back so I just gave up being a visitor to their site.

    With regard to my site, it seems like sometimes I try so hard and no one comes to visit and then other times I have lots of visitors when my blog has not been updated for the week. So, I don’t really have a rhyme or reason answer for that one.

    Danifer (Jennifer)´s last blog post..PMS – Or Just A Bad Day?

  67. FriarNo Gravatar says:

    If Blogs shut off their comments, then I don’t visit. I mean..what’s the POINT? If that’s the case, I might as well read a book or pick up a newspaper.

    Another thing that turns me off is bloggers who get antagonistic towards their readers.

    (Remember many months ago, when a certain someone had “melt down”?) ;-)

    Even though it had nothing to do with me…I saw how that person was attacking and abusing other bloggers in the comment thread…and it totally made me lose total respect for them.

    Fortunately that’s the exepction and not the rule. But it HAS been known to happen.

  68. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Cricket – Thank you. You’re right about all of us being different. What works for one, may not work for all. That’s the great thing about blogging, the “rules” are pretty lax.

    I’m happy to hear you like my tweets. If I find articles I enjoy, I try to link to them so others can benefit, as well.

    Hi again Dennis – I was wondering if you would come back. You did. :)

    Hi Kim – Thank you, again.

    Hi Daisy – Thank you. Twitter is a social networking “tool”. It allows you to send messages to each other (called your “following” and “followers”), but you are limited to 140 characters for each message. It’s a great way to quickly communicate with online friends, share articles you’ve found, or just let others know what you’re doing. It can aid in helping others find your blog, and for you to find theirs. If you click on the link just below my Twitter badge (left sidebar), you can read my “tweets” and see what I mean. Keep in mind, you’re only seeing one side of the conversation. It’s still a pretty new “tool”, but is becoming very popular.

    Even though you feel you’re “late”, I’m always watching for new comments coming in, so please don’t hesitate to share your thoughts.

    Hi Jennifer – You have probably hit the nail on the head. Often there is no rhyme or reason to why and when blog visitors will show up. Visiting other blogs is a great way to get exposure. Some will reciprocate, some won’t. It takes time, so please hang in there.

    Hi Friar – The melt down? Haha! I had forgotten all about that. But you’re right, attacking and abusing other bloggers in a comment section is totally unprofessional. It’s a great way to lose readership and our status in blogosphere.

  69. Hi Barbara,

    This resonated with me. My biggest problem is often that I’m too insular. I know I need to be more active in the blogosphere and in other communities, but it’s difficult when you’re trying to write decent unique content for your own blog and other writing jobs.

    Thanks for the timely reminder!

    P.S. I actually saw an increase in visitors over the Christmas period, with many people coming from Google for some of my Christmas related articles.

    Melanie Thomassian´s last blog post..7 Ways You Can Encourage Your Friends to be Healthy

  70. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Melanie – You’re welcome. Finding the time to visit others can be very difficult when we have other responsibilities that need our attention. I would suggest to just take your time, and when when you have a chance, “out there”.

    That’s great how your traffic went up over the Christmas holiday. Search engine optimization works well, doesn’t it?

  71. It totally works!

    To be honest, when it comes to the technical side of blogging (design, plugins, SEO) I just ask my hubby. He even does keyword research for me sometimes, giving me article ideas for what people are searching for!! :)

    Melanie Thomassian´s last blog post..7 Ways You Can Encourage Your Friends to be Healthy

  72. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi again Melanie – How fortunate you are to have a husband to help you with keyword searches, articles for ideas and back end maintenance. Having a helper is a great way to reduce our work load, plus is great for bonding, as well.

  73. [...] People have “expectations” when they subscribe to your blog.  You’re here because this blog is about making YOUR blog successful.  While you might be interested in diet tips or exercise advice – if I’m going to share that kind of information with you – I’d darned well better “wrap” it in “make your blog successful” paper!  Going off topic is a GREAT way to lose blog visitors! [...]

  74. [...] Swafford over at her very successful site, Blogging Without A Blog, in a recent post called How To Lose Blog Visitors, talks about selfish blogs that are ”all about me?”  For purposes of me taking blog [...]

  75. This is very interesting. I’ve definitely shied away from talking too much about myself on my blog, and have in the past found myself turned off by people who seem overly self-absorbed and/or go on and on about things!

    I try to keep my posts short and concise, and to make them about interesting/funny observations in my life, rather than my inner thoughts. It’s an ongoing effort.

  76. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Tea House Blossom – You’re right. Blogging is an ongoing effort. As we evolve, so does our blog. What a great journey to be on, hey?

  77. The most common reason that I stop visiting other blogs is that they stop posting either all-together or much, much less frequently.

    It’s been my experience that people get used to (and start to expect) content from you especially if you’ve developed a consistent schedule with them.

    Ricardo Bueno´s last blog post..Social Media is NOT for Everyone!

  78. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Ricardo – That’s true. People do start expecting content from us, and if we don’t produce they may stop visiting.

  79. Dennis EdellNo Gravatar says:

    Another awesome reason to not blog every single day, especially right from the start.

    Do it for even a couple months before you really realize how much work it is, and you’re stuck.

    Dennis Edell´s last blog post..Both Contests End Tonight! Important Info…

  80. Hey, Barbara, thanks for the update above and for the comment clarification over at my blog.

    There is always so much to learn and I am grateful for the handle you have on blogging.

    And for what it’s worth, I am now officially about to become a Tweeter under Jannie Funster (as I had an old account under my real name,) thanks to you blogging on the importance of that.

    Heck, I may even get my feet wet with Stumble Upon :)

    And at the risk of being perenially redundant – your blog is The Best!

    Jannie Funster´s last blog post..3 & 1/2 days

  81. “2) Stop visiting other blogs”

    I know just what you mean! I spent a month or so on a blogging sabbatical (perfect term you came up with there!) and comments took a hit. Traffic held pretty steady, but being part of the general conversation absolutely leads to reciprocity for those of us with small or growing blogs.

    Sara at On Simplicity´s last blog post..Does Decluttering Make Sense in Hard Economic Times?

  82. Barbara – the one take away from this post for me that really hit the mark was the part about answering comments left on our blogs. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in looking for fresh content and posting, that sometimes I know I get off track on this front.

    Thank you so much for keeping these ideas in front of us all!

    Kevin Sandridge´s last blog post..First-Time Home Buyer Tax Credit Unwrapped

  83. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Dennis – Haha! That’s what I did; blogged almost every day. I soon cut it down to five and now it’s three. Like you said, we may get our readers conditioned to daily posts and if we don’t produce, they may leave.

    Hi again Jannie – You’re welcome, and thank you for your kind words. I’ll be looking for you on Twitter.

    Hi Sara – Yes. When we stop visiting other blogs, we will normally see a dip in our comments, and maybe even visits. It’s a tough call as we also have a life that needs our attention.

    Hi Kevin – You’re welcome. Definitely. Answering comments is very important. With you having a business blog, it’s probably even more so. Your readers, who may become clients, want to know they’re being heard.

  84. DotNo Gravatar says:

    For what reason do you stop visiting blogs? — Not interested enough n the content is the main reason. Also if they talk down or give too much advice when they may not have had much experience.

    Based on your blogging experience, what actions created a decrease in your blog statistics? The main reason seems to be the subject matter. I had one post where I talked about something that interests me but is way off the beaten track. Almost no one commented on that, and I lost readers as well. I also don’t gain new readers if I don’t add new blogs to my reader, but I just don’t have time. Don’t have time for Twitter either.

    Dot´s last blog post..OpenOffice Extensions

  85. janiceNo Gravatar says:

    What a fantastic post, Barbara. It’s taken me ages to read all the comments, but it’s been well worth it! What a fantastic resource. So many of the posts and comments threads in your blog would make a fantastic compilation ebook for new bloggers.

    I stop visiting blogs when the blogger’s ego swells and they forget the folk who supported them at the start, or when they consistently treat certain folk like their ‘tribe’ and are thoughtless or dismissive towards others.
    .-= Check out janice´s awesome post: The House of the Thousand Horrormoans =-.