As someone who has been blogging for over 9 years now, I’ve seen a LOT of people – including some of my closest friends – start blogs and then give up on them after just a few weeks or months of blogging.
At first, when I see people stop blogging, and I ask them why they stopped they usually tell me it’s just temporary because they had something come up in their life and they’re just too busy to blog.
Pretty soon, however, their temporary absence from blogging turns into a permanent one and they never come back to it.
Months and in some cases years later I sometimes get the real truth as to why they stopped blogging.
They reveal to me that the real reason they stopped blogging is because they weren’t getting any traffic to their blog, nobody was reading, and nobody was leaving comments.
Usually when I probe a bit more and ask them how they knew that nobody was reading and that they weren’t getting any traffic they say “Well, because I wasn’t getting any comments!”
Have you ever thought that yourself?
Have you ever written and published a blog post that you thought was a phenomenal post, only to later find out that NOBODY left any comments…not even ONE single person?
Did it frustrate you and make you feel like you wanted to quit blogging?
I know I used to feel this way, especially when I was first getting started.
In this post I’m going to offer you a solution that will stop that frustration dead in it’s tracks.
The insight and advice I’m about to give you may very well save your blogging career.
Are you ready? Here it is…
DO NOT expect any comments on your Blog at all.
Here’s the truth…
WAY too many new bloggers spend their first year blogging riding the “Blog Comments Roller-Coaster!”
What’s the “Blog Comments Roller Coaster?”
Basically, what most new bloggers do is they write a blog post and they publish it and then they sit there WAITING to see if someone leaves a comment on their blog post.
And they interpret what happens next as follow…
If someone leaves a positive comment on their blog post, they think to themselves “YES! I’m awesome. I’m a great blogger. I love blogging. This is awesome…WOOOT!”
If nobody leaves a comment on their blog post, they think to themselves “OH NO! Why isn’t anyone commenting? Did my blog post suck? I bet it sucked. Maybe I’m not good at this… Maybe I should just give up.”
And if someone leaves a negative comment on their blog post, they usually think “OH NO! Someone hated my blog post. I *KNEW* I sucked at this! I just want to crawl up under a rock. I’m quitting blogging.”
What keeps most new bloggers going is the ADDICTION to the hope that they’ll get a positive comment on their blog post so that they can feel good about themselves and their confidence can go up.
And what knocks most bloggers out of the game is when a long enough period of time passes when they haven’t receive any comments on their latest posts or the comments they have received are negative.
Listen, I’m here to tell you that COMMENTS are a TERRIBLE way to measure the value of your blog posts!
In fact, I wouldn’t even be opposed to the idea of telling new bloggers to completely turn off blog comments on their blog for the first year because I think it would mean that more bloggers would actually pay attention to the RIGHT metrics they should be measuring instead of comments.
Comments are a useless measure for new blogs…
Well, firstly because of the flawed idea that if someone doesn’t leave a comment on your blog it must mean that they didn’t like your post or they didn’t find it valuable.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
You know what the truth is? The truth is that 99.99% of the people who will visit your site and get value from it will NOT leave a comment.
Because that is just how we are wired!
Let me give you an example. I went to a restaurant for lunch today and on my bill it said “If you enjoyed your service today or would like to leave feedback please fill out our survey.”
I ate my lunch. I enjoyed the food. It was delicious. The service was great as well. I got my bill, and I saw the request to leave a comment…
… did I leave a comment? NOPE!
In fact, 99% of the time when I’m out and about at stores and restaurants and constantly being asked to leave comments and take surveys I ignore them.
So does everyone else.
We’re just too busy to take the time to stop what we’re doing with our lives to leave comments.
VERY few people leave comments.
Once in a while I’ll fill out a survey, but more than 99% of the time I never do.
That doesn’t mean that I didn’t enjoy the service or the food or the product etc.
It just means I was too busy to leave a comment.
Your readers are BUSY TOO!
Don’t expect ANY comments.
Now, you might get some comments, but what I’m saying is that you shouldn’t expect any.
It doesn’t mean your blog post sucks.
It doesn’t mean you didn’t provide value.
It doesn’t mean anything about you or your blog post at all.
All it means is that the people who read your posts didn’t have time or the desire to leave a comment – and that’s okay!
A number of years ago I learned this lesson in person.
I was at an event in Chicago and I met someone there who thanked me for having a positive impact on her life through my Blog posts.
This person had been reading my blog for YEARS but never left any comments.
She loved my blog, and my posts and continued to read them and some of my posts had a very positive impact on her life, but she never left a single comment.
In fact until that moment when I met her in person, and she told me she has been a long timer reader of my blog, I didn’t even know she read my blog.
I’ve had hundreds of thousands of people across hundreds of different countries around the world visit and read my blog posts over the years, and you know what?
Only a very, very, very tiny fraction of one percent ever leave a comment.
Stop expecting to receive comments on your new blog!!!
Having that misguided expectation will kill your motivation to blog.
So why do so many people expect comments on their blogs?
Well, I think there are a few different reason for this.
First of all, most people who have never blogged before, have nothing to compare blogging to.
Most new bloggers struggle to understand blogging as a communication medium because it has to be treated differently from many other forms of communication.
For example, blogging is totally different from emailing your friends.
If you write an email to your friends and you send it to them, what happens next? You expect an answer, right??!
If they don’t answer, what happens? You get upset! You might phone them and ask them “What the heck…I emailed you…why are you ignoring me?”
Blogging is NOT like emailing your friends. You can’t treat it the same way.
The vast majority of people who will read your blog posts will read them, enjoy them, and then say NOTHING back. That is just how it is.
Blogging is NOT like texting your friends. You can’t treat it the same way either.
If you text someone a message, what do you expect? You expect them to reply, right???!
You’re not going to get that with Blogging! So stop expecting it to work that way.
But what about posting stuff on Facebook? That’s the same as blogging, right?
When you post a picture of your newborn son on Facebook – and all of your friends and family see it – OF COURSE they’re going to click the LIKE button and leave comments.
That’s to be expected.
On Facebook, most of the time you’re sharing important status updates from your personal life with people who are your personal friends and family. The likely-hood that they’re going to leave a comment is very high!
But blogging is different from Facebook.
Stop expecting it to be the same thing.
As a successful blogger, 99.9999% of your traffic will come from complete strangers…
… people you have never met and will most likely never meet – BUT you may completely transform their lives with your content!
Of course that’s only if you stick with blogging and don’t give up, and of course that is NOT going to happen if you base your blogging self esteem on how many comments your blog posts are getting.
“But Paul, what about the successful bloggers who are getting comments!???”
Yeah, some successful bloggers get lots of comments on their blogs, but that is because they are getting MILLIONS of visitors on their sites.
And even then, if you follow them for a while you’ll notice that even for them, it’s the same 5 or 10 or 20 people who leave comments every time.
From MILLIONS of people who read their content and benefit from it – only about 5-20 people represent the majority of the comments that they get.
That is just how it is.
And that’s okay.
You don’t need people to comment on your blog posts in order for those blog posts to be valuable to people.
In fact some of your best blog posts might never get any comments.
And that’s okay…
… because you can reach every blogging goal you can dream of without worrying about how many comments you get at all.
… you can provide a tonne of value and have a massive positive impact on the planet even if your blog never gets a single comment!
Of course if you DO get comments, that’s cool too… but don’t allow that metric to be the deciding factor for you as to whether you think your content is helping people or not.
So what metrics CAN you track?
Personally, I would recommend tracking your total visitors per week or month, and your average visitor length of stay.
Google Analytics tracks all that for you automatically. Set it up on your Blog.
For example, if you get 2,000 visitors to your blog this month and they stay on average for 1.5 minutes each, that’s over 3,000 minutes or 50 HOURS worth of attention your readership has given your blog.
That is a huge milestone.
Imagine having an auditorium full of 2,000 people and you go up on stage and give a short, inspirational 1.5 minute speech to the audience who claps for you.
Wouldn’t that be awesome? And what if they all got value from your speech, but none of them left any comments. They just applied what you taught and changed their lives.
Well, having 2,000 visitors to your blog is almost the same thing. You’re helping 2,000 people with your content!
If you get 10 visitors, then that’s awesome too.
If you get 100,000 visitors, then that’s awesome too.
Tracking visitors and working on growing your visitors matters…
Comments don’t matter!
Don’t give up and rob this planet of a chance to hear your story, and learn from your wisdom just because at some point in your blogging career you created the limiting belief that comments are the indicator of a successful blog.
They’re not. You can have an ultra successful blog and have very little to no comments at all… especially when you’re first starting out.
And you know what the funny thing is?
Once you stop chasing the thrill of getting a comment and just start blogging regardless how many people are commenting on your posts… guess what happens?
You start getting way more comments – LOL.
That’s just how it works.
By the way… if you found this blog post valuable… leave a comment!
Even though I know that 99.9% of you won’t. 🙂
And that’s okay too.