A blog is a living thing…until it’s dead. You determine if your blog lives or dies.
The overpopulated blogosphere is home to somewhere around 150 to 170 million blogs. No one has calculated the number recently, and the manner of calculation varies considerably. But what we do know for sure is that more blogs appear on the Internet daily.
The other thing we know is many if not the majority of blogs die. In 2009, the New York Times cited data suggesting that 95 percent of blogs are abandoned. After the initial feeling of inspiration, these bloggers struggle to continue posting on a regular basis. They lose their enthusiasm for their blogs and for blogging, and they simply leave the sites lying dormant…to die a slow death in cyberspace.
How to Know if Your Blog is Alive (or Dead)
If you have a blog, or you’ve blogged a book or are in the midst of blogging a book, how do you know if your blog is alive? Here are five symptoms of a healthy blog with a chance of living a long life:
- Your site features new posts frequently and consistently. If you publish new content regularly, your blog will thrive. A visitor to your site can scan your content and see that you’ve published once a week or twice a week every week for as far back as they care to look. Current content shows the site is alive and well.
- Your site is regularly updated. Keeping a blog alive involves more than just publishing new content. It also entails updating your bio or about page, publishing a new head shot occasionally, and changing out anything else that might be outdated. If your version of WordPress or your plugins are outdated, you aren’t helping the health of your site. By making sure everything looks fresh and is cared for, your site maintains a healthy glow.
- Commenters on your site receive replies. Although some very successful bloggers have discontinued the comment function on their sites, most bloggers find reader comments a usefully way to engage with and get important feedback about the needs of site visitors. A blog that is alive and well has a blogger who responds to comments on a regular and timely basis.
- Your blog readers subscribe to your posts or email list. Healthy blogs have constantly growing subscriber lists. Your statistics program or email marketing program show at glance if your site is on its deathbed or becoming stronger and more full of energy every day.
- Your blog reach constantly expands. If more people daily, weekly or monthly share your work, such as on social networks, your site is bound to enjoy a long life. Their interest and support, and that of the people they know, feeds your site and make it strong and healthy.
What do you think? Is your blog alive or dead?
This list is by no means exhaustive. Add some additional “healthy and alive” blog characteristics you’ve noticed in a comment below.