Thursday, April 28, 2016

How to Dissuade People from Reading Your Blog

Every day, hundreds of new emails sit in my inbox, many of which provide links to blogs written by people who belong to various writing groups where I am a member. I cannot possibly read through all of them, though, and honestly, because I get so many of them, I fall behind to the point that at one time I had close to 60,000 unread emails in my inboxes (yes, I have more than one email). 

Over a period of several days, I managed to dwindle the number down to a comfortable few hundred and today as I write, because emails come so frequently, I’m at nearly 6,000 again. So when I get a chance to look through my emails, I search for the most interesting topics and I click the links.

The other day I found a blog that looked very interesting, but I was pestered with so many popups, I finally left the blog in exasperation. The last thing a reader wants after expecting to read what promises to be a fascinating blog is to get interrupted numerous times with popups. And what happened when I tried to leave the blog? Another popup!

I understand the need to monetize a blog, but if you’re more interested in making money than you are in enticing people to read your blog, why bother writing anything at all? Just slam your readers with a bunch of popups.

Another annoying advertising technique is to interrupt your readers with a video they can’t see. Your readers are already interested in your content, but a couple of sentences in, voices suddenly emanate from their computers and, instead of reading your blog, they are now searching your page to find out where the annoying interruption is located. Sometimes the video can’t be found or readers give up, because your page is packed with so many ads they can't locate the source. 

But the voice continues. A minute may not seem like a long time, but if you don’t believe how long a minute feels to the person who is trying to read your blog as they listen to the voice they can’t find, try this experiment: Click THIS CLOCK and sit for one full minute as you watch the second hand return to its original position.

Now imagine that every ten seconds, a popup explodes onto your screen. How attractive is that blog you want to read now? Does the blog persuade you in any way to continue reading or to revisit the blog?

I’ll never know what that blogger tried to convey. The topic lured me into her blog, but the popups were so annoying, they managed to distract me to the point of leaving her blog before I read anything beyond the first couple of sentences.

Bottom line: monetizing your blog is perfectly fine, but please don’t distract your readers with numerous popups or videos they can’t find unless you don’t want them ever again to visit your blog. One or two cute popups is fine, but too many and your readers may miss some amazing content.

Graphic provided by Classroom Clipart



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