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Post Frequency – How Many Blog Posts are Too Many?

Posted By Darren Rowse 6th of March 2007 Miscellaneous Blog Tips 0 Comments

Last week I published the results of an informal survey that asked for Reasons Why Readers Unsubscribe from Blogs.

There’s been a lot of discussion about the results – particularly the almost contrasting most common reasons:

  • Too many posts
  • Infrequent Posting

The above responses are fairly general and unquantifiable – so two further logical followup questions come to mind:

  • how many posts per day are too many?
  • how many posts per day are too few?

What is the range of daily posts that you personally prefer from a blog? What would the tipping point be for you at either end for you to unsubscribe?

In some ways this is a difficult question to answer as I suspect it’ll vary form blog to blog and what type of content that they’re producing (ie I suspect blogs with shorter posts would get away with more posts per day).

I’ll also make two more comment on the results of the previous post:

  1. These results were not my opinions but those expressed by readership of this blog – a blog for bloggers. I suspect that this skews the results somewhat (although perhaps they give some hints as to what our readers also think).
  2. If you look at a lot top blogs going around, they do break many of the reasons that were given for people unsubscribing. This particularly is so for ‘too many posts’. For example – if you look at Technorati’s top 100 list you’ll find that the top 10 post an average of 20+ times per day (I’m taking those averages on what they’ve done so far today – so it’s probably higher). So obviously there’s some disconnect between the reasons that ProBlogger give as a reason to unsubscribe and what’s going on in the blogosphere.

But enough of my thoughts – what’s an acceptable daily post frequency for you from a blog?

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
  1. For me, it depends on the depth of the posts. Lifehacker, for example, doesn’t bother me even though there are 10-20 posts per day, because the posts are short and don’t require much thinking or response.

    Other blogs I read, though, that require me to deeply process each post (theological blogs and entreprenaurial blogs, in particular) need to limit their posts to 1-3 per day at the most or else I’m on overload.

  2. I personally have a hard time keeping up with more than 3 posts per day. I subscribe to dozens of feeds and beyond 3 posts a day from one site it becomes difficult to read everything.

    Of course there are some sites that this can be done without a problem, such as those with shorter posts. But with some of the more lengthy posters I begin to lose interest if I see a bunch of new posts that are long and will take considerable time to read. Even if the content is good I simply don’t have the time to devote to reading everything.

    As was demonstrated earlier though this is largely dependent on the individual site. Some can post frequently without issue while others can’t.

  3. I think it depends on the content, and how many spare time the readers have.
    Probably top 100 blogs are mainly read by people with lot of spare time, while your blog is read by people that works :)
    For me, 3-4 posts a day is the correct frequency…

  4. For me it depends on the length of the post. Multiple short “breaking news” type posts are ok, but trying to keep up with multiple 1000+ word articles would be another matter. Even one post per day, or even every couple of days, would work as a “minimum” level, which is preferable to not making a post for weeks on end!

  5. 3 posts in a day is a maximum.
    1 post in 3 days is a minimum.

  6. I agree that it totally depends on the blog, as well as the type of posts. But if someone starts pushing upwards of six or more posts, their stuff better be worth wading through! On the other side, inactivity doesn’t bother me all that much, as long as they’re still posting every once in awhile — that’s what an RSS reader is for!

  7. For me, it’s an experiment that’s slowing down finally. I try to post daily now, aiming for at least 6 posts a week. Sometimes I do two posts a day. My readers are ok with it. I think having less than one post a day is too few, unless you slowly let your readers get used to it. A human day usually revolves around sleeping at night and then aiming for a new day, so it’s mostly human instinct to find something new on a blog after sleeping through the night.

    If I can get a good load of content ready for a week in advance, I can try more one post a day on a daily basis. I think I will have to ask my readers about it, since the best way to know is to ask them, since the success of a post frequency depends on them. Even if I write quality content and posted 20 articles a day, my readers might not like it. Many of the top blogs which post 20 or more posts a day are simply summarizing some original content written by someone else.j These sites have such high frequency of posting, like tech gadget news blogs, because they want to achieve a higher number of traffic that consists more of new visitors than long term visitors, and thus achieve success through them.

    For me, variations in posting is ok. If I post one post a day and then have 3 posts a day once in a while, my readers can be ok with it. But if I have variations that are too huge, then my blog readers will be overwhelmed. It’s like running a team or running in a team; you don’t want everyone to practice running 1 mile a day and then switch it to 10 miles a day and then switch it back to a mile.

    Basically, this all depends not only on the rhythm you face writing but the rhythm readers face reading. For example, if I find more than 3 posts in a day on your site, I will try to only read the post that is of most interest while hoping in my mind that I will remember come back some other time for the remaining posts. Many people get excited for weeks or even months, thinking “OMG! I love this site! Let me read all the 20 posts here everyday”, but over time, people automatically start prioritizing things when the excitement settles a bit and realization sets in that life has a lot of things to be excited or worrying about.

  8. Sharon says: 03/06/2007 at 1:07 pm

    I don’t bother to subscribe to a blog that updates more than 3 times a day because I know at any given time, I can just visit the site and know there will be fresh content. I subcribe to sites that post a few times a week or less because I don’t have to keep checking back to see if the site is updated.

  9. I online subscribe to ~12-14 feeds. Some I expect more out of. For example, I subscribe to alistapart (more of an online “magazine” than a blog, really). They post 2-3 articles at once (this happens like once a week). I know that, but the depth and quality of the articles is very high. Other websites, I expect generally a minimum of five posts a week. I would like at least one article to read each day, especially if most posts are short (and there is nothing wrong with that!).

    Even with short posts, four per day begins to get a little overwhelming. Websites like TechCrunch, however, I don’t really have a problem with, despite having incredibly high post counts. I only read about 20% or less of the articles there (the ones that interest me). I think it’s because TechCrunch is a different type of blog–they are basically reporting news.

    Bes Zain (#7 above) raises a very good point. I experience this a lot myself, except not over the span of weeks or months — over minutes! For example, I will arrive at a blog article and see a link that, in the context of the article, seems incredibly interesting. It is not uncommon for me to have 15-20 tabs in Firefox. The thing is, when I finally get to that tab (after going through the other 14 before it) that contains the site I thought would be really interesting — I no longer know the context and have no reason to be there.

  10. Hmmm…that’s not an easy question to answer. I guess, it depends on too many factors (including personal preference) to put a single number out there, at least that’s how I see it, let me take a closer look at some scenarios…

    1. Scenario one: News blog (about a certain area of interest)…well, if it’s a slow news day, there may be one post…if it’s a “wild day” there may be 10 posts…for me there would be “too many” posts once they stopped grouping stuff together (e.g. three different posts about the same or closely related topic(s)) and/or not using the edit function for updated (e.g. instead of updating the post, they fire out tiny news bits in rapid succession)…

    2. Scenario two: LIVE News blog…well…depending on the style of blogging, it’s either going to be one post which is updated/edited all the time, or it’s going to be numerous posts…(I prefer one post + edits, so 1 per “topic”/day, everything above that would be too much)…

    3. Scenario three: “regular (professional/business/industry/personal) blog”…see 1. (give me all you got, but don’t force “the action” by firing out mini-posts instead of grouping stuff)…

  11. Just depends how busy I am. When I get busier I tend to cull the feeds. When I have more time on my hands I tend to read more varied materials.

    Right now I have about 40 feeds I’m reading regularly. Half of them post once a week. The others post 4-5 times per day. The blogs that post more frequently than that I either love enough to visit the site (because it’s more appealing than a beyond full feed reader) or I drop em completely.

  12. If I’m reading for fun – like I read dilbert’s creator’s blog – once per day is just right. If I’m reading for information – critical stuff i need everyday – like your blog, as many as you can possibly give me! If it’s related to my business and the blogger is a PRIME source of info for me, 20 times per day is great. I’ll scan it and see what applies to me. 50 would be fine. If it’s a comic strip blog – just one is fine. I may not even choose to read it that day – but if it’s there – cool. For my own blog at ThaiPulse! I blog once and up to 3 times per day – but only one long article per day, the rest are just links or photos or videos or whatnot… mixing it up.

  13. Interesting thread. For me, it really depends on the topic. For blogs that are mostly skimmable links (Download Squad comes to mind) I don’t mind multiple posts over a day. But for anything I actually *read,* I like the 1 per day maximum, and one per week minimum.

    The audience for my business blog (holistic business professionals) are not online all the time like I am. I’ve learned that they max out at about 3, maybe 4 posts from me per week.

    ==> Unless your blog is a hobby site, you’ve got to post to the frequency your core-audience wants. Sure, Google loves sites that post several times a day, but most real people start to feel burdoned by too many unread posts piling up. We need to write for real people.

  14. Okay, after reading these I realize I may have an RSS subscription addiction. I think I currently subscribe to about 120 or so feeds. I certainly don’t read everything written, and two or three feeds are dead, but I leave them there just in case.

    But by scrolling through in Bloglines I can see interesting stories I do want to look at or read.

    I think a much better question would be how do you get people to subscribe to your feed.

    Maybe it’s that word subscribing that’s the problem. In the “Old” world subscribing to a magazine meant you paid money for it. Subscribe now, just means clicking with a mouse and no money exchanges hands. So now I and have subscribed to the New York times feed and feeds that maybe just me and one other person reads.

    No I can’t read everything, but isn’t that the point of Bloglines and Google reader? Put everything in one place and then read the interesting stuff?

  15. If a blog has 5 posts a day some of the time, I’m fine with it but if it’s that many every day I don’t have the time to keep up and generally unsubscribe. I’d rather have 3-5 posts a week that are high quality.

    I rarely unsubscribe from blogs that don’t post very often. It takes at least a month between posts for me to unsubscribe. An occasional month lapse isn’t enough to get me to unsubcribe. I do like to see at least one post a week so I can remember some context between posts.

  16. I try to post 1-2 a day, but our posts tend to be a bit longer than most. I actually make a point not to post that much, as I find if I post too often I end up burying my own content.

  17. A post per day would be best. Especially if the blogger writes longs posts and having to read 2-4 of it daily can be quite overwhelming. I myself am guilty of being an irregular poster during these past few week but it can’t be helped because I do have a life in the real world. Besides a little notice or announcement about changes in post frequencies would be guide the readers best.

  18. Hi Darren

    That’s an interesting incongruency you found there

    I have subscribed to most of the top ten then unsubscribed because of the extreme posting volume.

    There’s an important distinction here I feel.

    The heavy posting blogs that get away with it probably don’t have intensive content – maybe they’re blogging about funny, weird sites, tech news, unusual news. The blogs that are content intensive, where it’s hard to just skip over posts – such as yours, Yaro’s or Guy Kawaski’s – would probably be much more relevant to that complaint. I know that where blogs who are trying to mimic your success post too much (ie. more than 4 content heavy posts, regularly), they get the chop.

  19. It depends if it’s “throwaway” content or not. I couldn’t subscribe to a blog with 20 posts a day, but if I could just randomly visit their site when I feel like it and not feel like I’ve missed out, then cool. LifeHacker comes into this category. There’s no way I could put up with that in my reader, but visiting it every now and then is cool.

    In my reader I tend to get irritated beyond 4 or 5 posts a day.

  20. Personally, I find that about 7 posts a day would be my limit, I prefer a lower amount of good quality posts, versus high number, lower quality.

  21. For my site Highbrid Nation our site didnt start to thrive until we upped the amount of posts. We started with as few as 2 or 3 but now we usually do between 10-12 a day. Like some already have said, I think this has to do with the fact that in our niche (Entertainment news) people want info as soon as its availible and will check back often looking for new content.

  22. It definitely depends on the type of blog and how the person reads the blogs. I now get feeds from about 40 blogs, and its no problem to skim
    the feeds with google reader and only click on the articles that interest me.
    With a blog like boing boing, their posts are like popcorn that I can skim and occasionally read the full article. With say, a blog for “professional bloggers” that is often full of “textbook” information that I know I will want to
    study and refer back to in the future, 2 per day is plenty.

  23. If the posts are just *informational* blurbs then even 10~20 are ok. It’s like those blogs that publish daily deals/gadgets and stuff.

    However, if the posts are *heavy analysis* type, then I guess it’s difficult to read and think about more than 3~4 posts on any given day.

    It’s sort of paradoxical…a light reading type of blog might get away with 10 posts per day, but an extremely intelligent blog with very thoughtful and involved posts might see the axe with just 4.

    I don’t have a lower number. Some blogs publish like twice a week, but the content is excellent and I would stick with them. On second thoughts, probably less than once a week will not stay in my reading list.

  24. for me 1-3 posts / day seems ok.

  25. The rule of 1 and 3:

    Long articles:
    maximum 1 post a day
    minimum 1 post every 3 days

    Short articles:
    maximum 3 posts a day
    minimum: 1 post every day

  26. MAX: One post per day is my preference.

    MIN: One post per week is a good rule of thumb, but I won’t unsubscribe because they are not bothering me if they are not posting. Some of the people with the most valuable insight are busy “doing” as opposed to just writing about it. I want to hear from them more than I want to hear from the guy who overwhelms my inbox with posts (yes, I using rssfwd.com to route the blogs I care to keep up with into my email inbox. The rest I subscribe to my RSS reader, but I rarely ever get a chance to look at them.)

  27. If it’s a blog I really enjoy, I like to see 2 or 3 good posts a day. I only post 1 a day, but that’s all I have time for.

    The bottom line:

    I would rather see less posts of higher quality rather than more posts of lesser quality.

  28. For me 1 to 2 posts per day is ideal, if the posts are short 3 might be ok. More than that and it feels like a chore to go through them all. I think the top big blogs think that they have to do things bigger and better to stay on top. So they hire more staff who might produce good content but usually lots of it…

  29. My subscriber count showed real growth when I focused on content and quality, and moved from 1 post daily to 1 post in 3 days.

  30. I think it’s quite wrong to quantify it in terms of numbers and frequency.

    Webmasters should only post when they have something relevant and interesting to post.

    It would be excessive for a personal blog to post twenty times a day and inappropriate for a news blog to post three times a week. Each would probably lose readership if this happened.

    I guess really, it comes down to how interesting and relevant the average post it. Too many posts and the average may go down. Fewer posts and the average may go up.


  31. I tend to comsume my blogs in the evening after dinner. So for me I tend to prefer blogs that have one, rather lengthy and considered, post per day. That’s certainly what I try to do on my site (although I’m experimenting at the moment).

    I do subscribe to some sites that ‘break news’ and I can receive over 30 notifications from those in a day. I’m happy with lots of posts if they are short and genuinely offer me breaking news.

    I only tend to unsubscribe when I am getting over 30 updates a day when there is no real flesh to the content.

    So I think I am echoing Kumiko’s considered post above.

    Cheers, ploop

  32. If a blog is aiming to be any kind of authority on quite a wide subject area, then I’d argue more posts are expected.

    The UK-based tech blog I work for (almost certainly the highest-ranked European blog) now posts anywhere betwen 20 and 30 posts per day. I think a number of our readers come via RSS, and we don’t expect every article to appeal to everyone. That’s why good headlines and summaries are vital.

    The increased post rate has certainly boosted visitor numbers, since (as I’m sure is true for many bloggers) we have both regular readership and one-off search engine traffic.

    For smaller, niche sites, probably between 1-5 posts per day is good.

  33. It’s according to the blog. I read both John Chow and Steve Pavlina regularly. I like the fact that John posts two or three times a day, sometimes. I like reading Steve’s stuff, but he posts too infrequently, which means that I tend to loose interest in his blog and go elsewhere. That’s fine for me, but I’m sure he’s loosing revenue because of this. On my own blog, which is brand new, I’m trying to post once every two days to start with. I’ll post more as I get the blog more to my liking. So:

    Minimum: 1 post every two days.
    Maximum: 3 per day. (More than that, I can’t keep up with.)

  34. With working 65 hours a week and posting to my own blogs, 1 post a day is more than enough. Heck, most of the time I don’t even use my reader. I just go directly to the sites I enjoy reading.

  35. I’m a minimalist. Short posts could keep many bloggers read it. Why? It’s straight to the point and do not require much mind energy to grasp what it purports to tell.


  36. I think it is depend on your blog.
    I am agree with Kat Jacobs, if the posts are shorter and don’t need deeply thinking, you can post more than usually.
    If there is a long article & you need read or think it more than about 10 – 30 minutes, you must limit your post.

    You don’t need to post daily if you have a long article with deeply thinking.

  37. I personally use about 2 or 3 per day. Any more than that is too much for many blogs. BoingBoing is an exception to this, where it is not invasive to have 20 or so posts in a day.

    I subscribed to Gawker Media blogs once, and then unsubscribed soon after because they post at such a high rate. 20+ is too much. Then they had an RSS glitch where things showed multiple times. That day I got about 60.

    Really, it depends on what you write, and who you are, but too many hurts.

  38. I think it really depends on what the topic of the blog is about, and how much it appeals to your readers. If you are posting about tip or long articles, I think 3 a day would be a good number. Too much is overload.

  39. 3 seems about good for a max per day, and a min of 1 post every few days at the least.

  40. I don’t actually subscribe to any blogs. Instead I bookmark them and go to them when I want to. I’m a big pull person rather than push. I want to choose when to read something, not have it sent to me.

  41. Too many posts per day is 3.
    Too much is 0.

    The ideal, in my opinion, is 2 posts per day, but 1 is great too. That’s because you need to give your readers some time to “absorb” your posts. If you flood them with a thousand posts per day, they won’t absorb none, or maybe the last one only. Give them space to think.

  42. 1) For Marketing and Internet blogs, 3/day is enough.
    2) For blogs like Steve Pavlina, 1/day is suitable.
    3) For Problogger, 2/day is optimum.
    4) I post 1/day in my blog :).

  43. I have a 3 posts per day maximum. Infrequent posting is not an issue with me.

    Technorati does their popularity measurement using incoming links – not number of subscribers. Perhaps if feedburner gives out some stats, we will find the right answers.

    By the way Darren, what’s your magic figure?

  44. If you publish a bunch of posts in a day, spread them out so they’re digestable.

    Too many: Over 4 is too many. I can handle 3 (depending on length)
    Too few: Once a week is too few. The length is usually longer and I begin to wonder why I subscribed to the newsletter.

    If these questions/answer change anything, can we do ‘hours’ next? I think 24 is too few.

  45. I have a 3 posts per day maximum. Infrequent posting is not an issue with me.

    Technorati does their popularity measurement using incoming links – not number of subscribers. Perhaps if feedburner gives out some stats, we will find the right answers.

    By the way Darren, what’s your magic number?

  46. Gerald says: 03/07/2007 at 12:40 am

    I subscribe to a number of blogs, and irregularly visit several others. For me, I would like to read one short news item and one long discussion document (800-1000 words) per day. I don’t often get this, so I think I would hope for at least 1 news post per 2 days (speedlinking?) and 3 articles per week.

  47. Max – approx 3 per day is plenty for me, for most types of blogs

    The more frequent the posts, the more important it is for the subject of the post to be summarised well in the title and first couple of lines.

    Eg. If Lifehacker have 6 or 10 posts in my Google reader, but I can’t tell from the first few lines (which is all I see) what the first few are about, I’m tempted to skip the lot. On the other hand, a news site could get away with a lot because the headlines are concise, descriptive, and easy to scan.

    Min – no minimum.

    I agree with what Kumiko said: “Webmasters should only post when they have something relevant and interesting to post”. A lot of the blogs I like are by regular Joes with day jobs, who only blog occasionally – when they get the time and have something worth saying. I don’t care if its only once or twice a month, as the feed reader takes care of checking for new stuff.

  48. Depends on the length of the post of course, but more than 2-3 in a day is too much for me. In fact, I’d prefer 1 a day personally. Some bloggers though write books in each post…in those cases, 1 every other day is probably sufficient.

  49. I don’t care how many times they post, as long as I can get some good content out of the posts.

    For instance, I rarely read Engadget (http://engadget.com) posts, yet my Google Reader stats say they own the largest proportion of posts. Every two days or so, however, they throw up something that I think is cool enough to pass around.

    Meanwhile, a blog like Logic+Emotion (http://darmano.typepad.com/logic_emotion) posts once every two days, but they’re all stellar.

  50. I think it’s clear that there’s no final answer for this question. It all depends on an individual blogs readership.

    I found what works best for my site now by spending a few weeks watching comment participation and site stats as I varried the timing and frequency of different posts.

    I write about 1 primary post each day, and 1 – 3 shorter, asides posts.

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