I’ve had to declutter my Blog Reader. There were over 1000 blogs I was following. When I finally realized I couldn’t keep up with that many, and when I realized there were blogs I wanted to read more than others, I started culling.
I’m trying to get my Reader to 100 blogs. So far I’ve got it down to 363. At first it was a struggle to cut the blogs down so I put in place some guidelines to help me decide which blogs to keep following.
I thought I’d share my guidelines and hope it helps some bloggers out there. Just note that this is only my preference. The things I’m looking for might not be what you or other people are looking for.
- Font size – Anything with font that is too small or too large is out. Even if the content is good, I want the reading experience to be enjoyable. If I have to squint or scroll a lot, not fun.
- Paragraphs – Please break up your writing with paragraphs. Often a blog that meets all my guidelines will disappoint me if there’s just one large chunk of text. That’s way too much work to read. Separate paragraphs with a clean white line. Beautiful!
- Blog theme – Blog themes that aren’t aesthetically pleasing are out. I like clean and simple designs where the header and sidebars aren’t distracting me from reading the post. It’s a balance. Too much white space and I’m also put off. It’s all about the post, so help the reader focus on that.
Ideally, I like a header that doesn’t take up more than about a quarter of the page. It’s distracting when a half-page header follows the post as I scroll down. I’m thinking, ‘Let me see more of the post!’
I like a single sidebar so I can see other posts which will help me decide if the whole blog is something I’m interested in.
- Colour scheme – Anything jarring and I’m out of there. Bright backgrounds aren’t fun. E.g. Fluoro green background with bright orange font. And when the text colour blends into the background colour, not fun.
- Post length – I prefer blog posts between 100-1000 words. 500 words is usually my ideal length but it does depend on the post. If every post is 2000 words, I won’t follow the blog. Too much effort. But if every post is 50 words, I won’t follow the blog either. Not enough interest.
Exceptions: If I really really really like the content or have connected with the blogger beyond blogging, I’m willing to make the effort and follow their blog.