How many blogs do you follow? And how many do you read?
I spend a lot of time reading and commenting on blogs; a minimum of 2 hours a day, and sometimes much more. I decided to take a closer look at how many blogs I follow, read and comment on.
Since my platform is WordPress, I use the WordPress Reader as a blog feed. I subscribe to 41 blogs through WP. I subscribe to another 40 non-WP blogs through Bloglovin, for a total of 81 subscriptions. A few blogs I get through both readers to make sure I never miss a post. I don’t do any by email or Facebook.
Of the 81, I calculated that I read every post by 30 of the bloggers, and most of the posts by another 20. Of those, there are 20-25 blogs that I comment on regularly, and the authors read my posts and comment back. You are my Blog Friends: thank you! There are another 25 or so that I comment on occasionally, but the authors don’t necessarily visit my blog, and that’s OK.
The rest of the blogs I read occasionally and rarely comment on, but I stay subscribed to show my support.
I had a look at what my blog subscriptions were about.
- Home (House, Garden, Food, Relationships, Family): 32
- Crafts, Decor, DIY: 3
- Daily Journals: 6
- Daily Photos: 2
- Musings about Life (other than above topics): 9
- Personal Finance: 11
- Transgender Issues: 8
- Healthy Living (fitness and vegetarian): 3
- Other: 7
I realize that lots of bloggers post about multiple topics – I like to think I do, too – but I reduced everybody to one of the above 🙂
I estimate there are about a dozen blogs that I used to follow. The top reasons I unsubscribe to blogs are:
- Despite frequent commenting, I get minimal replies
- The author uses their blog as a forum for complaining. Everyone needs to whine sometimes, but I don’t choose to read daily doses of negativity
- The authors brag or call attention to themselves in a way that irritates me (rather subjective, because I don’t mind a strong dose of self-esteem at all!)
- I find out that the author’s religious or political beliefs clash with mine in a way that isn’t respectful or enriching
- The author is in a very different place in their life than I am, and I can’t relate to it (for example, as an empty-nester, I don’t read many “mommy blogs” by women with young children)
As for the followers of my blog, you are an interesting assortment of people!
I have 31 followers on Facebook, 23 through email and 9 through Bloglovin. I know only 12 personally! And there are 10 people who subscribe more than one way.
Of 255 WordPress followers, I probably interact with 25. I don’t know if the rest read my posts or not. For those who subscribed and don’t read my posts, I can think of two reasons: sometimes people subscribe because they liked the topic of a recent post (such as “clothes inventory”) and they are hoping I write about that all the time. And some have their own agendas, mainly trying to attract readers to their blogs.
The bloggers trying to increase their own readership or traffic tend to be:
- bloggers who post about blog income, blog traffic, how to leave the work force, motivation, or productivity
- authors establishing a readership for their short stories or poetry
- and sometimes niche writers in the areas of travel, fashion, fitness, food writing, and so on
When someone comments on or follows my blog, I always check out their blog, but I don’t automatically follow back. I know it’s the courteous thing to do, but I’m not looking for big numbers – I am hoping to get to know a smaller number of people well! If I followed everyone who followed me, the posts by my Real Blogger Friends would get lost in the feed and I would lose touch with the people who take time to interact.
It all comes down to why we blog and why we read blogs.
I blog because I like my circle of Blog Friends and it creates a community that makes me feel warm and fuzzy! And also because once-upon-a-time I imagined myself as a writer, and it enables me to keep up that illusion. I try not to give advice. I read blogs because I like to stay in touch with a community of like-minded people, and a few who challenge my way of thinking. I can also share things semi-anonymously that I would hesitate to share with real-life friends. And while I don’t read blogs to seek advice, sometimes I absorb some helpful ideas, whether I’m looking for them or not!
And my secret agenda? Yes, I have one. As a humanist, I like to write about my world view and see if others relate to it.
Tell me a little bit about your subscriptions and/or followers!