Why Do So Many Blogs Fail? How To Sustain a Blog Successfully

You find a new blog and love the posts. But next time you check in, no new posts are there…

Why do many perfectly good blogs fail?

Today, fellow Ghanablogger Oluniyi David Ajao posts his answer to the question and adds:

I am wondering if the art of blogging is a calling for a special set of people who can afford to give it all the time it requires.

I am not sure it is a calling….Although I agree with him on the basic argument of what is needed for a successful blog: getting the principles of blogging, finding new ideas, and making the time to post regularly, I think two aspects that he do not touch upon are that successful blogs also are often “reborn” and linked to the rest of the Internet. Let me expand:
1. Virtually all successful amateur blogs (that is to say not company or pro-blogs) I follow have in one point or another revived its style, focus and sometimes even launched on a new URL. I think inherent in the format is a constant need for invention and novelty.

I am not sure my own blog is very successful (for instance reader numbers have been dwindling lately), but as an illustration I recently felt compelled to change the focus of my blog and at the same time moved from Blogger to WordPress and chose a new template. I both felt more inspired and got more readers.

2. Successful bloggers read other blogs! And comment on other people’s posts and mention not just blogs, but also other social media and links extensively to web resources in their own posts. For blogging to say fun and rewarding, I think being part of the blogging community is vital.

Afrigator and other aggregators is a good start. Every day commenting on at least one other blog is another step.

Are you a blogger? Join the discussion.

What do you do to keep your blog alive?

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  1. Just to agree with you. Most of my visitors have come from the ghanablogging aggregator and then from other blogs where I had left comments.After that come search engines. The most popular search terms that have led people to my site are, bizarrely, “piss” and “rabbit sex”!

  2. Blogging I believe is not an art of calling, it is much as any work that demands strict discipline. The fact that most bloggers are unsupervised and blog within their own time is the key element that fetches their failure. You have all the freedom to do all that it takes, but discipline is needed to work with absolute freedom…

    You are your own boss, writer and editor, therefore you are not pressured to write or edit… This means that you do all you want in your own time. And since we are human beings, the more we have, the more we take for granted and push forward (procrastinate)… Most bloggers have excessive time on their hands to do nothing and that is what causes their failure…

    I have a successful blog which I have turned into a group blog( with about 4 active bloggers).. This is GhanaCelebrities.Com , its traffic has been good but without discipline to constantly post and update, these traffic will decline in time….

    I have also started a personal blog ( Screwlife.com ) and I have realized that as young as it is, the little traffic I am getting is coming from other blogs that i visit and leave comments… It shows the importance to read other people’s blog and leave a comment with your link if you desire to be successful with your own blog…

    Blogging just needs discipline and passion.. without one, the other will not live…

  3. maybe the issue too is how you define success – money? readership?(number diversity) standard of posts? Maybe an interesting topic for a future meeting.

  4. Hi Fiona,
    I think in this instance we meant “success” as is just keeping the blog alive, but I do agree with you one could have higher standards than this and if not go for money, maybe fame, readership and being quoted by others…
    Thanks for your comment and yes, lets discuss this in a ghanablogging meet-up!

  5. Hi Chris-Vincent,

    thanks for reading my blog and leaving a long comment! I think you have a point in that you have to pressure yourself to post often, otherwise noone else will! I have seen ghanacelebrities.com and was curious to who was behind it. If you are in Ghana, you should come to one of our Ghanablogging meet-ups to share your experiences. Ill inbox you the details.


  6. Haha, maybe a search engine poetry post could be coming up? (see my post from last week) – sounds like you’d win the bizarre competition 🙂

  7. As I commented on David’s post, blogging is a calling. You must have both the unbridled passion for something and the need to talk about it online, constantly. These two traits are not always in the same person, but a person must have both to succeed in blogging. Yet, your topic of passion can change over time.

    I started blogging in 1996 on my personal travels in Russia and now I’m paid to write about ICT in Africa. Wildly different topics, but through it all there are two constant themes that made me succeed:

    1. I have great passion for the topics I write on. I live and breathe them on- and off-line.

    2. I am driven to share my ideas online. I think of my life events as blog posts, and yearn to write them.

    To disagree with Chris, these two drivers cannot be taught, nor can they be bought. You can improve your effectiveness with discipline, of course, but you either have the passion, or you read about it on a blog.

  8. Kajsa, a note about your blog reader stats. I’m a subscriber, but I find your posts to be all over the place – from Africa-centric to “Best Home Decor Links”. This lack of topical focus may be a reason for lower subscriber numbers.

  9. Hi Nana, Thanks for reading my blog, please email me info on your blog, especially how it relates to Ghana. I will then forward the information on Ghanablogging’s emailing list and we’ll get back to you with a decision.

    Blogs that wish to join our network has to be approved by a Ghanablogging meeting. What we will look out for is

    1. Connection to Ghana
    2. Good presentation
    3. A blog that has been in existence for at least 1 month and is updated regularly

  10. Hi Wayan, thanks for reading my blog, even subscribing to it! ( Your comments were listed as spam, so sorry for approving them late.)
    I think you are right that my posts are “all over the place”, but I am not sure that is what is keeping subscribers down. I think it has more to do with not being listed in the right forums or not having time to push them on Twitter and other social networking sites. Personally, I like blogs which give me things I didn’t know I wanted.

    However, I am thinking about using twitter more for fav. links and zooming in on a few topics – for time reasons – they will still be quite disparate, though…

    Thank you for your comment.

  11. Ok, I see your point, only I am thinking most people who go through the hazzle of setting up a blog and posting more than 10 times would have those two? (evidently, most blogs have only one post…*I read somewhere*) Then I am thinking the only way to keep yourself passionate IS to change topics?

  12. hello Kajsa, took me sometimes to become back here… Actually, I am running GhanaCelebrities.Com as a group blog now to give a platform to enthusiastic ghanaian entertainment writers so have about 3 other people working on it with it…

    We have one rep in Ghana doing most of the underground work… Anyway, how can GhanaCelebrities.Com become a member of ghanablogging and what are the benefits if any…

    About the Subscription thing, I feel it is not about the lack of niche with your blog but it is because of your readership location ( if they are coming from Africa alot, where blogging seems to be a new concept), then you will surely have less people subscribing to your post….