Why Blogs Get Low Engagement

Graph Chart (Photo credit: Pixabay)

One of the hardest moments for me after I hit the publish button is The Wait….

Waiting…. to get some sort of feedback that someone out there, read what I chose to share.

When someone asks me who I write for, on my blog, I say that I write for myself, but that’s not entirely true. I also write to be read by others and that someone finds it worthwhile, to stop by my blog.

Blogging Gurus will tell you how you must not get too focused on your analytics; the traffic and statistics of it, lest you become side tracked with the Ego-metrics i.e. seeking validation by the number of views and hits your site gets. One of the reasons some bloggers stop blogging or even delete their sites altogether is that after the work they put into their blog; finding far less than expected responses.

This is also why you need to have a strong reason for WHY you blog.

Why I blog is an answer which comes out differently with the growth and evolution of my blog, how I answered it when I was beginning is different compared to the beginning of the year and that is different from how I would answer it today…

What’s never really changed is wanting eyes other than mine to read and hopefully comment and engage with my content. The comment section is one of my favourite parts about my blog from there I get to experience how others view what I have written. I have come to understand how the message I think I am passing along may be completely different from what the reader may choose to pick up and so through the comments, sometimes I see different perspectives and opinions and even learn a thing or two, about the world around me and me.

Which brings me to something that has always bothered me as a blogger that versus the traffic and views I get, only a very small fraction interacts, comments or even likes posts.

I have been trying to understand why this is so and have tried to come up with possible reasons:

-that people simply don’t like my content

This is an easy enough answer were it not that sometimes I run into people who tell me they look forward to every post on my blog and some whom if I go a long time without posting will even send an email just to check up on me.

Also I would hope that if people did not like my content they would take the time to let me know what is wrong with it so, I can fix it or if I should stop altogether if it’s that offensive.

-Nothing to comment about

Some posts have no comment necessary or possible or its deeply personal that unless you are familiar with the person it would be awkward to make a comment.

-Complicated sign up procedures

Some blogs have complicated sign up procedures which may require you to first log in before you can leave a comment. I have seen blogs like this and usually even I don’t comment if I find the procedure exhausting.

But I know WordPress blog have an easy one step comment procedure, if you are not signed into WordPress or gravatar you can simply enter your name and email address then click comment that’s not hard at all. On my blog to prevent spam, a first time visitor’s comments will be held in moderation until approved

-Some people prefer privacy

Some people just don’t like being visible on the internet they wont comment in a public space a few may send an email with a comment; some not even, you may never ever know they reading your blog like a well-kept secret.

-Busy schedules

Maybe they are just busy with other things to find time to comment.

I know that sometimes I can read a post but not have time to leave a comment I might even think that I will come back later and then the thought skips my mind life happens but usually I will click the like button like some sort of calling card that even though I did not comment you will know someone was here.

-Hidden or disabled comment or like button

I have noticed some sites that I wanted to comment that the comments will be disabled. Some people to avoid spam comments will automatically have their comments set to close off after a certain period. Other sites have hidden comment tabs you need to click somewhere for you to see the option to comment and see the other comments made on the article.

Sometimes an error during posting may result in comments being disabled. This happened in one of my last posts, a fellow blogger emailed me to notify me that they could not comment and that’s when I noticed that my comments had been disabled.

-Not appreciating the value of giving feedback

I am beginning to suspect that in the way people who have never had a blog may not fully appreciate the value of a blog, non-bloggers in particular may not see the value of giving feedback.

This is why most people who leave comments are usually bloggers and the few non-bloggers who comment are usually friends and people I know, whom I have bugged that could they make sure they make their presence known, so I know they are out there reading.

-Non response to previous comments

When I find a blogger who does not respond to their comments section I usually stop making the time and effort to give them my thoughts on their posts. I understand that sometimes one may not get time to go through their comments especially the really popular blogs. I always try to make sure that in exactly the way I have time set aside to create my own blog posts I take the time go through the comments even if it means responding to a comment weeks later I will eventually get to it.

-Popups and newsletter subscriptions

Sometimes I never get through to leaving a comment on the site if a large pop-up page appears that covers the screen asking me to subscribe to a newsletter or the site or an advert. I usually just end up closing both the pop up and the page.

-Access to internet

This reason may mostly be for those in the global south where the internet is very expensive. I know people who cannot read my blog when I share a link to a post because they do not have internet data or access to wifi due to its prohibitive pricing. So the only time they read my blog will be on limited time and data such as at a public wifi or save pages for offline viewing but they wont be able to comment.

As I mentioned the comments section is my favourite part of blogging which is how I get to know more about the blogging community around me, people I would have never met in the real world but here, we are symmetrically just a click away…..

The idea to write a post exploring the reasons people don’t comment started as a comment on of my blog posts, and now here it is as whole Guest Post. That’s the other reason I love the conversations in the comments you may end up having ideas for future posts to write about, I have several articles and posts which started off as a simple comment.

I am curious if you have experienced this and if you have reasons that cause this low engagement and if you have any interesting solutions that you use for your blog to get people to step down from the terraces and interact with you.

Beaton

About The Guest Author:

Beaton Mabaso

Beaton is a digital storyteller and a builder of the African blogging communities helping shape a space where the world can meet African Bloggers and Africa meets the world; Afrobloggers.

Beaton is from Zimbabwe and writes about the beauty and chaos of the places that he calls home, celebrating the magic and mystery in his ancestry On www.BecomingTheMuse.net

Published by Beaton

I am not the words I write, nor the thoughts I share, but with each letter I become ME

62 thoughts on “Why Blogs Get Low Engagement

  1. Hi Beaton, you make really valid points here. The main reason I don’t comment on some of the posts I read is lack of time (like most people I’m busy!). But I also don’t comment if I struggle to connect to the content of their post or if I feel I have nothing to add to the conversation. I enjoyed reading your post – thanks to you and Renard for sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Julie.

      Time is such a buzzkill we need more time 😂
      Yes, connecting to a post is essential, my favourite blogs are those I find not only relateable but ring sincere.

      Sometimes that’s just it, there’s nothing to add and that’s that.

      Thanks for taking the time to comment its busy out there! 😂
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  2. 🙂 I always make it a priority of mines to respond to comments, Beaton.

    I might not be online around the clock, but when I do log back into my blog, I attend to the comments.

    Unfortunately, too many bloggers take comments for granted!

    Yes, huge pop-ups and adverts do turn me away from a blog (Especially when it pops up before I have had the chance to reach the bottom of the article).

    This guest post of yours is certainly going to attract a lot of attention and comments.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I noticed how always respond to your comments its very inspiring considering how some post seem to get a whole lot of comments each gets responded to.

      Some do definitely take their audience for granted I hope to never be like that.

      ~B

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Responding to comments is the first thing I do when I enter WP.
    Is so very true! After hitting the button Publish, the waiting starts!
    I do appreciate every single person that takes the time to like, read and interact with my blog! I feel so grateful! Not sure why but sometimes the engagement is better than other days…and sometimes lesser than expected…I guess I still need to learn more from this blogging journey 😊
    What I surely know is that we must enjoy what we do and that if we don’t go around and visit and interact with our fellow bloggers, we will be ending writing for ourselves only…😊

    Liked by 2 people

    1. 🙂 I love your attitude.

      People know when they are appreciated by another blogger.

      Also, if we take our viewing audience and our fellow bloggers for granted, they will never return.

      We all have a lot to learn on our blogging journey (The learning never stops).

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Thank you Renard!
        Very true! And is also such a great feeling! My blogging journey so far is not so long but being part of this wonderful blogging community is really amazing!
        I believe as in all we do, also in blogging, respect is very important! We should never take our fellow bloggers for granted indeed!
        Exactly! The learning never stops! And that’s pretty amazing 😉 we never get bored 😉

        Liked by 2 people

  4. I make it a point to try and not post a new article before I have responded to any pending comments or at least attend to them soon after.

    I am still yet to figure out why engagement is better on some days than others, is it the weather or the content or something in the internet.😂

    I agree, first you must love what you do, you can tell when someone loves their work the energy is infectious….

    In the Great blogosphere sea I tend to check up more on Bloggers who stop by my blog regularly and some even become friends
    Blogging is community

    ~B

    Liked by 2 people

    1. 🙂 A week is more than enough time to respond to comments, Beaton (Unless you are on vacation or were just returning from vacation).

      I publish my own content on a weekly basis; doing so grants me sufficient time to respond to comments that were made on my blog, read the blog posts of my fellow bloggers, press the “Like” button and leave a thoughtful comment in the comments section of the blogs that I visit.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Well explained Beaton.Thank you so much.
    Readers have all the three options….reading,liking and commenting.
    My guess is majority go for ‘liking’ ( not sure whether they really read the post).
    The blogger is lucky if some body takes time to comment.
    Unfortunately majority of bloggers don’t respond to these comments ‘ontime’
    Another thing I noted about those likes which come in fraction of seconds, soon after the post is published ,( though the post requires minimum 120 seconds to complete reading).I wonder!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Liking has less commitment and work😂

      I am guilty of sometimes not responding to posts in time, but I always respond eventually... I have known myself to respond to a comment that’s weeks old posted while I was offline 😂😂

      Interesting case of the mysterious liker!!! Maybe they are trying to click bait you into going to their site

      …but maybe they could be like me and sometimes I use my like button as a bookmark button to find posts to read later because in a sea of blog posts some just get lost and I can’t remember where I saw the post but I can find it in my *likes* tab

      Thanks
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I made it a compulsatory habit of mine to leave a Like at every blog that I read, if I liked it or not. Due to WP’s stupid system we can’t leave dislikes so I leave Likes, more to leave a sign for the blogger: “Hey, you’re read by people.”
    Greertings and salutations from big brother Saffa to little brother Zim. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Greetings and salutations

      I wish WordPress would upgrade its like system to show a kind of rating from strongly dislike to strongly agree instead of just forcing a like on us like someone writes about a bereavement in the family and you click *like* what does that even mean

      But I like to regard the like button as meaning “hey you are read by people”

      Cheers
      ~B

      Like

  7. What a good post 🙂 I leave comments quite often. It can happen I have really nothing to say about the content because 1. it’s all said in the post 2. it’s too personal for me to comment 3. I agree with the post but it doesn’t give me inspiration or a spark.
    So now I figured out some advice from me to me: I’m going to read less filler posts, less posts because I ‘think’ I need to because well, I’m ‘nice and polite’ and I’m going to focus more on reading content that does give me that ‘spark’. Thank you for your interesting post! It gave me definitely a ‘spark’ to comment 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Conversely it also helps one to think :are you writing things that give other “that spark”

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts and glad to have given some brain food for the spark!!
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  8. A great post Beaton, the reasons you mentioned are very understandable. All of us have encountered these situations at some point or other. I leave comments quite often but sometimes you really have nothing to say but I make it a point of at least hitting the like button before leaving.
    cheers 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I enjoyed reading your thoughts on this subject, Beaton.

    All bloggers go through the initial process of no or little engagement. When I first started to blog, I found that engaging with other bloggers and writers by leaving good meaningful comments on their blog posts helped kickstart comments being left on my own blog. Not all would come over to my blog, but some did.

    I also found that participating in various blog challenges helped improve engagement on my blog.

    I get asked a lot “How do I get people to visit, read and leave comments on my blog.” I always respond with the question “Are you visiting, reading and leaving comments on other blogs?” I’m always amazed by how many of the replies I get are “No, I don’t have any time to do that.” The person asking the question has adequately answered their own question.

    Of course, content is key. I’m not going to read a blog post (let alone leave a comment) that does not interest me. Likewise, I don’t leave comments that add no value to the post I’ve just read. Our time is precious, so why waste it on something that does not interest us?

    Likewise, a cluttered blog that looks and feels unfriendly is not a place I will stay. I’ve found that good housekeeping of a blog attracts readers. Give them a nicely laid-out blog that is easy to navigate and easy to leave comments on, and they’re more likely to keep coming back.

    Engagement comes in peaks and troughs, and I think that is only natural. The main things to focus on are to ensure we keep enjoying our blogging experience and to never ignore our readership. Without them, we’d might as well be on stage talking to an empty theatre.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hi Hugh
      Thank you for this concise feedback.

      1. Unless you happen to already be famous your blog will start off on the low side of each engagement and it will take awhile build a meaningful audience

      2. You get what you put in…. If you check blogs with which seem to get all the interactions you will find they normally also actively engaged

      3. Blogging challenges and participating in blog awards are an excellent way to jump start your way into blogging communities

      And of course a common element I have seen from the other comments is that it helps to love what you do first…

      Thanks

      ~B

      Oh another effective way I noticed is to do the occasional blog roll where you simply write about and shout out to some of your favourite Bloggers

      Liked by 3 people

  10. I think for me with regards on comments on blog posts, I usually try to comment whenever I feel like I have something to say regarding the post. But that depends on the blog post itself too because some blog posts I read and enjoy, I just don’t know what type of comment to leave though. And I know with my blog I try to be active in responding to comments whenever I get them. But I know there are probably times I forget or even don’t know how to respond to a comment someone has left on my post. I try not to allow that to happen because I want those comments and I want people who read my blog to know that I appreciate them stopping by. Even if it’s just to tell me they enjoyed my post.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. with bloggers I interact with regularly I can almost picture the personality behind them, I know what to say whereas with an out of the blue blog sometimes I fear sayin something that might be offensive although personally on my blog I am usually tolerant and like a good laugh so will good naturedly accept any comment
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Lots of good info shared in the world of Blogosphere 🙂 excellent post. I did something different this morn. In addition to this comment I decided to like several other bloggers’ posted replies. Always a first!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. fun fact sometimes I find new blogs to follow by checking out the other comments in a blogger’s post and fining those who have interesting perspectives…
      Thanks and we are always learning in the blogosphere world
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Blogging is not for the faint of heart. It can be more discouraging than uplifting. I have to constantly remind myself why I started bogging in the first place, and that is to share my heart and soul to those who care to read my posts. And putting your honest feelings out there in the blogging realm is very scary especially when you haven’t a clue if you touched someone’s soul because they don’t let you know. Some days I feel like crying. Other days I do. Again, thank you for sharing your heart.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Sandi
      This one time I wrote on how blogging is like sharing a naked selfie picture of your soul!!!
      It takes a lot of heart and I always appreciate the men and women brave enough to put themselves on the spot..
      One really needs to know why they do what they do
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Excellent post, Beaton, but I’d like to add one more reason: occasionally, WP disables comment buttons unbeknownst to authors. We (the bloggers/authors) would not know about it, unless a kind soul uses contact info to send an e-mail that tells us. Meanwhile, we are wondering why everybody out there doesn’t like us anymore.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thank you
      yes that has happened to me especially if I post using the WP app from my phone…
      For the bloggers whom I interact with regularly I am the kind soul that usually email them to ask if they are hiding from an unpopular opinion
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Terrific post, Beaton!
    I have found that some blogs don’t provide a comment section to their blog too. It drives me crazy, but for whatever the reason may be… all I can do is hit (like). Sometimes, the blogger themselves don’t even realize that their comment section is nonexistent. Quite frustrating.
    I, like yourself, enjoy comments. However, with that being said… I notice that some comments become a post in itself at times. This is not such an issue as it is time consuming. It takes away from more reading/writing.
    Then, there are the days I thought I posted something really interesting, and I hear crickets, no response whatsoever. Go figure?
    Renard, has posted several posts on being noticed and drawing in more readers. There are several ways and most of his advice is sot on. Because of Renards advice, my blog received more traffic, more comments, more everything.
    Now, it’s a matter of keeping up.
    Definitely read more of Renards posts, the man knows his stuff!!!
    Good Luck to you!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I thought it was just me who felt totally driven up the wall when I cant find the comment section on a blog I was particularly keen on leaving my tangle of words….
      sometimes I email the blogger to enquire if there’s a reason they are all caged up… and sometimes you find you have no way of contacting them…… sigh

      sometimes the internet is just weird like that

      Renard is definitely a Guru at this blogging thing I am always in awe and stay learning
      ~B

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I have brought it up to a few bloggers when I’ve noticed that their comment sections blip out…
        They had it one moment, and the next, POOF! Gone.
        They don’t even know unless you bring it up to them.
        Then there are others who really just want you to hit (like) all the time. Ah, Nope. ot gonna happen.
        I prefer the interaction! LOL!

        Liked by 2 people

      2. 🙂 Thank you for the kind sentiment, Beaton.

        In regards to the comment sections of blogs, there was a glitch that caused them to be disabled (Thankfully, I have never experienced that sort of glitch).

        Before pressing the “Publish” button, a blogger should check to see if comments have been enabled or disabled.

        Also, some bloggers are quite horrible at responding to emails.

        Like

  15. I pretty much agree with all the reasons you narrated. I will be honest thst in my initial months, comments had become sort of a validation which i was always CRAVING for. To the extent that it was impacting my writing. I had to make a conscious effort in not putting too much stock in them. I have gone back to just enjoying the process for now. But it surely does feel good when I do. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s human nature to want recognition for the work you do 😊
      We can pretend all like but I think its a basic need; as you mentioned though you need to draw a limit and not let that be your focus and lose why you do what you do…. Enjoy the process

      Stay writing
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  16. I blog because I enjoy it. I do want success like anyone else does but I make sure I enjoy what I’m doing. This way, no matter what happens, I can look back and know I had fun. Great, eye-opening post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes that’s the spirit of blogging, it’s supposed to be a fun and therapeutic experience to you first and foremost, everything else is really just a bonus and you know what I have noticed that you can tell when you read a blog that’s handled by someone who loves what they do, it feels like home and you will want to keep going back 😉

      Thanks
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Beaton – Always a joy reading your words. You’re questions are the same as mine. The people who read our blogs can be a mystery, can’t they.

    I had to make a tough decision about a month ago. I had to step away from my blog. I post occasionally but not as much as before. I’m working on my second novel and I discovered it’s hard to do both. I tend to throw myself in to things and I could tell I wasn’t giving my blog the effort it deserved. Once the first draft is complete I hope to return.

    Good to see you again.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Bryan…

      One of the first lessons blogging teaches is you is you are a unique snowflake just like everyone else 😂

      Also blogging is quite demanding its not something you do as an after thought, after everything else, it’s something you Do… If it means having to wait till your schedule is clear from looming deadlines then so be it..

      Its a pleasure running into you on these streets

      ~B

      Like

  18. Renard, thanks for having Beaton as your guest host. He is a treasure to the blogging world!
    Beaton, great post as always. Very good thoughts. I know we go way back to the early days of the Twitter Friday Phrases, and I’ve enjoyed many, many of your blog posts. I believe you bring so much to the blogging community around the world, as well as your own area, by going to and speaking at seminars. Continue shining your light so all may in some way come together in knowledge, friendship, and peace. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Wow, we do go waaaaay back, looking back it reminds how all this doesn’t start in a day.
      I picked up a lesson or two in my journey and I decided to be the person I wished I had met when I was starting..
      Thanks for the support
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  19. I blog because I love to write – can’t seem to stop. And it is encouraging when someone tells me my post made them laugh or think or encourage them. But comments or not, I simply need to write. Beaton, thank you for your thoughts on this subject. I have not read your blog, but am going there now to check it out.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I live for moments like that when someone tells me how my posts made them feel apparently my posts seem to make people laugh or feel better….

      But with or without any feedback I would still write otherwise how else would I know what I am thinking unless I write it down then read it ^_^

      Well I do hope you will find my blog musing 😊
      Thank you
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

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