On my travels throughout the blogosphere in the past month or so, I’ve seen a few posts from bloggers talking about what makes them want to follow a blog, or what makes them unfollow a blog. Personally, it takes quite a lot to get me to unfollow a blog (in fact the one case where i felt almost pushed to unfollow someone was an extremely rare event) so instead of accentuating on the negative, I thought that today I would talk about what makes me want to follow a blog instead. Well, I say that I won’t accentuate the negative but I know how my brain works and unfortunately, I’m the kind of person who tends to go off on a tangent and have a mini-rant about something that bugs me. Oops. I can’t say that I didn’t try, though 🤷🏻♀️
A good variety of content
I’m one of those book bloggers who almost never reads reviews because about 99% of the time, the reviews I see in my readers and being tweeted out are of books that I either haven’t read or haven’t even heard of. Because of this, I like to see variety in the types of posts that a blog puts out there. I prefer to read discussion posts or recommendations, and even lists but that doesn’t mean that if a blog posts more reviews than other kinds of posts I won’t come back.
What won’t make me come back is when a blog posts nothing but promotional content. Blog tours, book blitzes, cover reveals, those kinds of posts. But what makes me even more disappointed than coming across a blog that seems to post only promotional content is when I come across a blog on Bloglovin, go to check out their feed and I’m greeted by a wall book covers that feature shirtless men. I like seeing washboard abs just as much as every other person who is attracted to men, but when it’s every post, I’m going to need a break. I’d rather satisfy my thirst by watching a Henry Cavill movie than reading a book blog. but that’s mainly because he’s one of the most beautiful men i’ve ever seen. ahem.
A lack of things popping up in my face
One of my favourite inventions of the internet age is the humble AdBlocker. Why? Because nothing gets on my nerves more than when I can’t read three words of a blog post without some sort of ad or subscription reminder thingy popping up into my face. It gets even worse when the pop-up takes up the whole screen and has the tiniest little ‘X’ to close it. If I can’t find it, I’m not coming back.
Obviously, this doesn’t happen on book blogs and I’m more likely to see it on larger blogs that focus on other topics (usually beauty or lifestyle on the odd occasion that I read them) or magazine sites. But when it does, you bet my jimmies are rustled.
Another issue I have with a lot of ads on one page is when those ads constantly refresh if they have the ability to. I sometimes browse the website TVTropes when I’m bored and their ads bug the crap out of me because they refresh so much. And when that happens, the page moves without me wanting to and I end up losing my place. Gah, it’s annoying.
This is so important to me. It sort of ties into my last point but if I cannot read your blog, I won’t come back. And by this, I don’t mean having a boring or bad design; those can be forgiven if I can actually read your posts. What Here’s what I mean by “accessibility” and being able to read, in a handy-dandy list:
- Text is just the right size. Not too big, not too small.
- Font is appropriate and readable. Handwriting style fonts may look cool on a banner, but I can’t read a whole blog post of it.
- Text colour doesn’t clash with the background colour. Seriously, neon green text on a black background (or any background) hurts my eyes.
- Blog is easy to navigate and all of the links work.
Okay, that last point is sort of basic housekeeping because nobody wants to visit a broken blog, but you get my drift.
Feel free to call me a hypocrite because I am 100% aware that I am one. My name is Louise, I like ice cream, and I am a hypocrite. I’m actually a little more lenient when it comes to how often a blog is updated because there are blogs in my reader that haven’t been updated in years and I haven’t unfollowed them because I’m sort of optimistic that they’ll come back.
I understand taking long blog hiatuses because I’ve done it quite a few times before. Or a lot of times, oops. But, if you are a more active blogger and you have weeks in between your posts I’m not going to be as likely to come back.
Again, call me a hypocrite because I’m not the most sociable of people, but hear me out on this one. I’m sure all of us get a little miffed when we spend so much time reading and commenting on other bloggers’ posts only for them to never reply to our comments. And no, I don’t mean that they get caught up in other things and reply to it later, when I say never, I mean never. No like, no reply, no nothing.
I used to be so guilty of this in the past and I think that I’m getting better at replying to comments and interacting with readers. When I comment on someone else’s post I don’t expect a comment back on my own post, but I do at least expect some sort of acknowledgement of my comment. It sounds harsh but that’s how I feel about it.