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Thursday, 29 January 2015

Don't Give Away The Milk, If You Want People To Buy The Cow...

Reading A Blog Entry on Feedly

Recently several of my online compadres have been bemoaning a decline in visitors (or 'hits') on their blogs.

While some of this can be blamed on an across-the-board decline in people reading blogs (because people are stupid!), I believe a lot can also be attributed to an increasing number of people devouring blog content via RSS readers (such as Feedly) - as shown in the picture above.

For instance, while I might read an article in Feedly unless I actually 'click through' to the site in question - say, to leave a comment - then that won't register as a 'hit' on that site.

However, there are is a very straight-forward way to encourage people using readers to 'click through' - namely don't allow the reader to show your full page.

A lot of news sites do this; the reader will show the first paragraph or so but for the rest of the article you need to actually visit the website.

HeroPress does this.

And it's really easy to set up for your blog as well (if you're using Google/Blogger, I have no idea about other playforms, although I suspect it won't be a too dissimilar process).


Go your Dashboard (as shown above), and click Settings. Then click Other (see below) and over in the list of options on the right-hand side - under Site Feed -  select the drop-down menu by Allow Blog Feed and chose how you'd like your blog to appear in readers.


The options include: Full (which shows everything) and Short (which is what I use as that only gives away a smidgen of your post in the RSS feed).

There are other options, which you can play around with once you're confident, but selecting Short is probably the best option if you're looking to entice people to read posts on your blog.

Don't forget, when you've finished, to click the all-important orange SAVE SETTINGS button in the top, right-hand corner of the Dashboard.

Obviously, I can't guarantee that this will result in a sudden upsurge in 'hits', but it can't hurt. I'm not in the slightest bit tech savvy, but even I managed to navigate the Blogger Dashboard to achieve this neat little trick.

There's probably more things you can do to draw attention to your blog without giving away all your  goodies for 'free' (ie without earning a 'hit'), even though I have yet to find them, but that's a start.

10 comments:

  1. I have never payed much attention to that, now I'll go change it so It won't show all.
    Thanks for the info.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Do let me know if you notice any change in your traffic. I haven't exactly made a scientific study of this, the results are all anecdotal.

      Delete
  2. Glad you found something that works for you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It certainly hasn't caused me any problems that I know of, not that I'm really that fussed about 'hits' but it is nice when people take the time to comment :)

      Delete
  3. Maybe I will give this a try and see what happens.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can't guarantee it'll help, but I don't see that it can hurt. I did have a Facebook message from old friend though who said he used Feedly on his mobile as that made blogs easier to read and therefore he didn't 'click through'!

      Delete
  4. We just stopped being concerned with the drop in the number of views (we have many other things to worry over).... we more or less just post for the "fun of it"... and to share the things that we like with our viewers...
    .... Not going to allow this "trend" of much fewer views to depress us ( stay depressed enough as it is)...
    A Great Weekend to You and Yours good Sir...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. To be honest, that's the best attitude: blog for yourself and if anyone else happens to see it then that's just icing on the cake. First and foremost, as you say, it should be fun. When it stops being fun, find something else to do ;-)

      Here's hoping you have a good weekend - and certainly a better one than last weekend. Take care!

      Delete
  5. I hate abbreviated feeds in my RSS aggregator. I take them out because they annoy me. Feedly etc. exist because people don't have the time to individually visit each blog and attempts to manipulate the reader into visiting are very irritating. It's also much easier to read in an aggregator, than visiting a blog when you're Wireless Internet has slowed after you've used up your quota. I was very disappointed when Swords & Stitchery changed feeds - but I like it too much to take it out of my feedly.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for putting the 'other side' of this situation. I only came upon the concept of "abbreviated feeds" when I started using Feedly and the majority of the comic book and film new sites I followed were only showing me the headlines and first few paragraphs of stories.

      Delete

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