Statistics present a systematic picture of the past that can inform the future. You can learn from the numbers, but any blogging statistics that I present to you are going to be out of date before I finish writing them down. In most cases they’re out of date before anyone sees them, so consider the following more of a “stake in the ground” than a set of “nail-it-to-the-mast” facts. The numbers don’t have to be completly up to date to be useful. We’re more interested in trends – statistics can still show us what works and what doesn’t work.
How many Blogs are there? How many people read Blogs?
There are 600 million blog sites and 77% of internet users read blogs. A thoughtful analysis of Blogging Statistics can help bloggers write a better blog post … if you listen to what they are telling you. There is a huge amount of statistical information available, learn to use it wisely.
If you’re interested in statistics about blogging, I have curated some statistics about blogging. They’re not a random mass of statistics – those are available everywhere. I am giving you selected statistics that will be useful to bloggers beginning to blog. Look at the trends, look at the statistics and use them to help you to write a better blog.
If you’re interested in blogging statistics for the sake of them being blogging statistics, there are plenty available. There is a list of statistical data references down at the bottom.
Statistically Better Blogging
Statistics show that including a selection of relevant statistics in a blog post adds credibility to the message, so here is a blog post about the value of adding statistics to a blog post … that includes statistics about blogs and blogging.
Some of the statistics you will come across relate to corporate marketers. They don’t apply directly to us beginners, but they do reinforce some of the points being made. Whatever the source and whatever the background, it’s always useful to be in possession of knowledge and sector intel.
Remember … Google is your friend. Google has a 92% market share of the search engine market. It’s a big number, Google’s closest competitor is Yahoo! Yahoo! comes in second with a market share of just under 3%.
The first page of the Google search results is significant to any blogger. That’s probably something of an understatement since the first page of any Google search result is probably the most valuable bit of real estate on the internet. Ranking at the top of the search engine results is important … because 95% of people never look any further than the first page.
Nearly half of all the clicks on Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs) go to one of the top three ranking results (not counting the paid listings).
Something to think about …
Even if you don’t consider Google to be your friend, the last thing you want to do is upset Google. There are tricks you can play, to enhance your image and improve your rankings, but they are tricks. With a 92% market share, you probably don’t want Google to be telling you … “No!”.
So … what is blogging?
Blogging is about sharing.
Blogging is about sharing information, knowledge and experience across the length and breadth of humanity, for the benefit of all.
We have been living in the Information Age since sometime around the 1970s. We are now well into the Information Age, and in 2020 we are generating about 1.7 megabytes of data per person … every second!!! We are storing that information, mostly in the cloud, and we are also sharing it and moving it around.
In 1994 we invented blogging and we now have a blogging ecosystem that enables vast quantities of information to be shared across the Internet.
The blogging ecosystem is about connecting people who are looking for answers with the people who have the answers. So … Google’s role in the blogging ecosystem is to connect people looking for answers with the answers they are looking for. Over time, this role has encompassed a set of responsibilities: Google has a responsibility for ensuring that the information presented is expertly written, authoritative and trustworthy – introducing the Google Algorithms and Google E.A.T.
A necessary responsibility since around 409 million people look at more than 20 billion blog post pages … every month.
How many Blogs are there?
Firstly, it would seem that there are more blogging statistics in this world than you can shake a stick at, and at the moment I am doing some stick shaking. It makes you think … the sheer volume of blogging data just goes to show how widespread blogging is, and I guess it also shows just how much people like to read statistics about blogging.
There are many opportunities to blog, and a huge pile of blogging niches to have a go at. Blogging is so popular, it would seem, that blogging about blogging has become a blogging niche in its own right. Who would have thought?
So, I have seen statistics telling me that there are 600 million blogs across the internet, but I have also seen statistics telling me that there are only 152 million with two new blog posts being published every second. I don’t think that we should be too troubled about the anomalies of scale as both numbers are quite big.
Big numbers tell us that there is competition, but they also point us in the direction of opportunity.
If a target is popular, it’s usually worth aiming for.
Look at the numbers.
- Upwards of 31 million bloggers US (growthbadger)
- 600 million blogs in the world, out of 1.7 billion websites (growthbadger)
- 152 million blogs in the world (99Firms)
- 77.8m blog posts per month on WordPress
- 6m blog posts published every day – 4000 per minute
However you might look at it, there are a lot of blogs and it doesn’t look like Blogging has peaked. It does not look like the world’s bloggers are going anywhere soon. The statistics are saying that blogging is popular and that there is competition, what they are not saying is that you shouldn’t try adding another blog to the gloabal blog total. There is room for you to have a go.
Why do Bloggers Blog?
Blogging in 2020 is about sharing knowledge and increasing human access to that knowledge. That’s the philanthropic reasoning … bloggers also do blogging for self-improvement, and for money. Blogging can provide benefits for all, and Google helps democratise the process by setting algorithms that favour quality over trickery.
The three pillars of Blogging are complementary.
Statistics can provide valuable insights, providing they are not simply presented randomly and without analysis.
- 66% of people who blog give income as their main reason for blogging
- 69% of bloggers make no money
- only 2% of bloggers make more than $150k (£120k) per year
- 45% of bloggers earning more than $50k (£40k) are selling their own products
- 121,000 “How to start a blog” Google searches every month
There is very little information on the raw number of bloggers we share this world with … I’ve had a look. So, for the sake of this paragraph, let’s say that every blogger is working on two blogs – I don’t think that is too unreasonable. If there are 600 million blogs, that means that there are around 300 million bloggers. If we use the “alternative fact” telling us there are 152 million blogs, that gives us 76 million bloggers. If only 2% are making more than $150k per year, that means that there are between 1.5 and 6 million bloggers earning quite a lot of money.
When I began to research this question, I was thinking that bloggers were simply people who blogged. Now that I have looked and had time to think about it, it’s fairly obvious: it isn’t just people who blog, corporates blog too. Corporate blogs are still written by people but the people are blogging collectively as a corporate function.
So … there is what you might call individual blogging and then there is corporate blogging. Increasingly, companies are using corporate blogs to engage with their customers – content marketing has become big business.
Companies that engage with their customers through blogging get 97% more links to their websites. This number looks impressive, but I’m not sure what it means. I guess it’s trying to say that a company website that includes a blog will benefit from twice as many external links as one that doesn’t.
One area of blogging, which can be profitable, is Affiliate Marketing. It’s worth considering since 60% of people claim to have purchased a product after reading a post about it. To be fair, I can’t make out this statistic but Affiliate Marketing does seem to work.
There are numerous reasons for blogging, just as there are numerous reasons for doing anything – or for doing nothing.
Look at the statistics and think about it.
Apparently, according to ahrefs.com though I got hold of the data second hand, people across the planet are searching for “How to start a blog” 121,000 times per month, which is around 4000 times every day. Even if some of those people searching for blogging advice are hitting the search button more than once, which I know I do, that’s still quite a big number.
It’s worthwhile doing blogging – there are benfits, chose one of the three pillars.
Who are the Bloggers?
Again, don’t be taken in by the 12-yer old millionaires. The internet does not belong to the young, it belongs to everyone, even the Government and the Inland Revenue! Have a look – the statistics reveal the reality.
Blogging demographics are quite flat. Blogging is not dominated by youth, but then this makes sense if blogging is about helping people with advice, and providing answers to their questions. The ability to write as an expert, with authority that instils trust in the reader, comes with age and with experience.
Perhaps one of the side effects of the Google EAT principles is the recognition of the value of older people.
The demographics are fairly flat with a slight downturn at the youthful end of the spectrum and a slight elevation for those aged between 30-39. This makes sense and tells us that most people have something of substance to offer up to the storehouse of human wisdom.
Now, we are often advised that statistics can be misleading, but it’s more likely to be the interpretation of the statistics that misleads. On the webpage where I found the age group data, one of the headings is telling me that “Most bloggers are in the 30-39 age group”, which you could easily take to mean that blogging occupies the domain of younger people. It’s not! A slightly different interpretation reveals that 75% of bloggers are not in the 30-39 year age group.
The graph tells us something that is much more important than there is a slight bump at 31-39, it is actually telling us that there is no age barrier to blogging.
There may be little evidence of an age barrier, but there is evidence of a tendency for blogs to be written in English.
- 70 million new blog posts published on WordPress every month
- 32 million bloggers in the USA at the end of 2019
- 20% of people speak English
- 71% of WordPress sites are written in English
According to secondhand information originally from Babel Magazine, a magazine about languages, around 20% of the world’s population speak English. But … only 4.8% speak English as a first language. It is interesting to note that the majority of blogs are written in English. Maybe it’s because English is a means of reaching the widest audience – for the moment!
Which Blogging Platform?
It will come as no surprise that there are a lot of blogging platforms to chose from, but WordPress easily dominates the market. If you are at the point in your journey where you need to decide upon a platform, you should, first of all, sit back and have a think … what are your goals and what are you trying to achieve? Thinking about where you are going, before committing yourself to a platform, will save you time, money and heartache in the longer term.
|Blogging Platform||Market Share||Live Sites|
Again, the numbers are open to interpretation since the collecting and reporting of statistics by different bodies will usually be based on different collection and reporting principles. It’s probably best to focus on the relative differences and patterns rather than the raw numbers, after all, we are interested in the trends. In the table above, the patterns are clearly telling us that WordPress is quite popular, even if the numbers don’t align with some of the other numbers in this post.
According to WordPress.com, 37% of the web is built on WordPress, and around 70 million posts are published each month on the platform.
Blog Posts published on WordPress are viewed more than 20 billion times per month.
Keep in mind that blogging, both writing and reading, is popular!
How long is a Blog Post?
This is an interesting question. I’m glad you asked because there appears to be a bit of a contradiction. The accepted view is that longer blog posts do better than short ones, which I hope is correct as I find it difficult to write short blog posts. Even though longer blog posts do better than short ones, but most blog posts would appear to be shorter.
The average Blog Post, whatever “average Blog Post” means, is reported to be around 1050 – 1150 words long, which also represents a 42% increase in size over the last 5 years. It is becoming apparent that longer blog posts that offer a more in-depth analysis of the subject matter can perform up to 9x better in generating leads than shorter blog posts. Even so, only 18% of corporate blog posts contain more than 750 words.
Different statistical sources will produce slightly different results, by the very nature of the analysis. A different approach shows the average length of a blog post in 2019 is 1236 words, which is 53% longer than in 2014. The precise numbers are not particularly important; what is important is the trend. The trend is for blog posts to be getting longer and for longer posts to generate more interest.
More than half of all bloggers (55%) are writing blog posts of less than 1000 words – I’m not! A quarter of bloggers write between 1000 and 1500 words and the remaining 20% are writing Blog Posts of more than 1500 words – most of my posts are longer than 1500 words, and on top of that, they all include some pictures.
Longer blog posts are the future, but the question is … what is the optimum length?
Recent research indicates that the best length for a blog post is 2250-2500 words. Again, the detail will vary depending on the source so best to look at the trend rather than the numbers.
Fun Fact: the ratio of blog posts with less than 1000 words to those with more than 2000 words is 16:1.
How long is a Blog Headline?
Simple things – like the length of a blog headline – can make all the difference.
Research by The Guardian showed that titles containing eight words performed 21% better than the average.
Our research showed titles with eight words had the highest click-through rates, with these headers performing 21% better than average—so consider the length of your title if you want to get clicks.Outbrain Partner Zone – The Guardian
And … headlines with colons or hyphens perform 9% better than headlines without. Who would have thought?
How should I write a headline?
There are plenty of headline writing resources and training videos. The purpose of this section is to give you, the beginner, a flavour of what you should be considering as you write your first blogs … something to think about.
The average blog post takes around 3 hours and 30 minutes to write and is between 1100 and 1200 words long. I think my blog posts take me longer than 3 1/2 hours, so I must be writing more slowly than average or my blog posts must contain more words.
However you come up with the words, the writing exercise is a waste of time and effort unless you are attracting readers.
|Headline Type||Description||Reader Preference|
|List-based||usually with a title containing a number||36%|
|Reader Addressing||includes the word “you” somewhere||21%|
|How to||a tutorial blog post||17%|
|“Normal”||a title that doesn’t fit into any other category||15%|
|Question||the title is the question||11%|
List-based headlines are pretty effective. Apparently, list-based headlines are preferred by around 36% of readers, whilst around 17% of readers prefer “how-to” headlines … and having a colon, or hyphen, in the headline produces a 9% increase in click-through rates.
Some writers are known to spend as much as 50% of their time on crafting the headline. Time well spent?
Some Examples of “list-based” Headlines.
List-based headlines generally look like they are following a formula, and often include clickbait hooks. People still click them.
- 7 ways to write a better blog post, without trying too hard
- Take a Look: 15 examples of animals walking backwards
- Basingstoke stands out from the pack – see all the reasons why
- 19 Celebrity faux pas – number 17 will make you want to poke yourself in the eye
- 5 tips for writing better headline writing tips
Weird – maybe – but list-based headlines that use odd numbers perform 20% better than an equivalent even-numbered list-based headline.
Some Examples of “reader-address” Headlines
Most reader-address headlines are variations on “how-to” headlines, but they possibly reflect the way people actually ask questions.
- How do you test for uniqueness?
- How do you write a small business plan?
- What should you do if your inflatable swan starts to sink?
- How do you know if you’re heading in the wrong direction?
- Should you upgrade your DAB radio to DAB+?
How do you want to play this one?
Some Examples of “how-to” Headlines
The “how-to” headline is more of a statment than a question. If it were presented as a question, it would probably include the word “you”, as above.
- How to find the best bed and breakfast deals in Chelmsford and Basildon
- How to use the tailgate on your car to the best advantage for your passengers
- How to optimise your use of the TV remote controls – tips for July
- How to build a fish tank capable of storing unrefined honeycombs
- How to buy a tank at auction
The “how-to” headline is describibg a blog post tutorial where the reader will learn how to do something.
Some Examples of “normal” Headlines
A “normal” headline is essentially a headline that doesn’t fall into one of the other headline categrories – I don’t make the rules!
- Find yourself a better way of eating: improve your diet now
- Fire and Fury: the analysis of a downward trend
- They laughed when I sat down at the piano
- The pros and cons of Blogging Platforms
- Mobile artisan services to call on around Hertford
Normal headline titles can support a wider blog theme, giving substance to a thread or subject trend. The headline may not be the preferred answer to a web search, but the article adds gravitas to the site.
Some Examples of “question” headlines
Any question can be presented as a headline. All you then need to do is write a blog post that aswers the question in accordance with Google’s algorithms and the E.A.T. principles.
- How many countries are members of NATO?
- What will happen when the Queen dies?
- What’s the point of asking questions?
- What happens to a country in a recession?
- How can I tell if my dog has fleas?
Headlines are important. They are the key to the door of your readership.
Before you write a headline for your hard-won prose, consider what you are trying to achieve, and then get creative on the headline. Write different headlines, read them out loud … and listen!
What goes into a Blog Post?
Blog posts that mainly rely on text generally don’t do as well as those that include graphics and other visuals. A blog post with images is likely to get as many as 94% more views than the same blog post without visuals, and 71% of bloggers report visuals as being an integral part of their marketing strategy.
Most blog posts will contain 2-3 images, and there is a strong correlation between the visual content of a blog and its success. The bar chart above shows the distribution of images across blog posts. It does not reflect the success rate. The 3% of bloggers who include more than 10 images in their blog posts are 2.5x more likely to see a significant response than the average.
Follow the trends, they are more important than the raw data.
Most blog posts include two or three images but it seems that the more pictures that you can add to your post, the better it’s likely to perform. According to research by Hubspot, Blog Posts that feature an image every 75-100 words get 2x more shares than those that don’t.
Blog posts can be re-used and re-purposed across a variety of platforms, with a little bit of tweaking. Nearly 60% of blog posts are re-written, re-purposes or re-used between 2 and 5 times.
Who Reads Blogs?
People looking for information and answers to questions read blogs. Half of all search queries are four words or longer, which suggests that most people – when they are using search engines – are usually looking for something in particular. This implies that at least 50% of all searches are for something specific.
Generally speaking, intelligent people will read your blogs. We can sort of assume that they are intelligent because they are looking for answers rather than inferring them from conversations they have misheard in a bar. If people are asking intelligent questions, they deserve intelligent answers, and this is where Google, and you come in.
But it isn’t just about questions and answers. Your readers are intelligent enough to know that there is value in your content.
The median average time spent by a reader, reading a blog post is 37 seconds – just enough time to take in the headings and the first couple of sentences. People reading blog posts are not being purposefully dismissive, they are responding to the huge amount of information that is being made available to them – they don’t have the luxury of time. It’s the blogger’s job to make sure that the headline grabs the attention and then that the headings tell a story. The reader needs to be able to identify the bit of the blog post that’s relevant. They may then go back and read the rest.
- It takes 3.5 hours, on average, to write a blog post of around 1200 words
- 44% of bloggers publish new content between 3 and 6 times per month
- 43% of readers skim blog posts
- Statistics show that the average reader spends 37 seconds reading a blog post.
- 77% of internet users regularly read Blog Posts
More importantly, if a blog post looks the part, a lot of people will share it. Remarkable, but 59% of people will share an article without actually reading it.
Blogging Trends – a “normal” heading
The current trend is for longer blogging articles, blog posts of more than 2000 words are becoming increasingly common and these are the posts that return the best results. Google is essentially promoting quality blog posts that provide added value to the reader.
Social Media is a key blogging resource: 96% of bloggers promote their blogs using social media and 69% of bloggers use social media share buttons on their blogs.
But … it’s apparently becoming more difficult to drive blog traffic from Facebook, and that’s because Facebook would rather keep visitors on-site – more chance of selling stuff. Over the last couple of years, more than 50% of bloggers have reported that it’s now harder to drive blog traffic from Facebook, which is a little concerning as I am about to have a go.
The use of infographics has increased dramatically over the years, growing 800% between 2010 and 2012, which was a long time ago. That’s the thing with statistics – sometimes they are quite old. If they are not tracked back to the original source or they are taken out of context, they can be misleading. Here, the underlying point is still valid: infographics are important. Infographics are shared 3x more on social media than any other type of content.
It probably isn’t going to be surprising that 46% of blogging marketers cite photography as a critical element of their content marketing strategy. Hmmm! If it’s important to these corporate guys then it is probably something that we should also be considering. Images on a blog are important and using real people in real photographs, rather than stock photos, can result in a 35% increase in conversion rates.
How is my Blog performing?
For a blogger, checking analytics and social media statistics is a top priority. More than half of all bloggers check their statistics often, but I am not sure what “often” means in this context. I have to admit to checking my stats several times a day, but that’s because the novelty hasn’t worn off yet. I’m pretty sure that my obsession won’t last forever.
The most popular blogging metrics are page views, shares and likes, and time spent on each of the pages. I am interested in Google Analytics and the Google Search Console.
The problem is that it takes time to check the stats.
I have built a Twitter Follower counter using a dot matrix display and an ESP8266, and when I have the time – assuming I am not wasting it by checking the stats – I’ll build a Raspberry Pi Kiosk to do the rest for me. It won’t stop me checking, but at least it will save me the time it takes to check.
Speed, or rather the lack of speed, is important. If a page is loading slowly, which generally means that it is taking longer than 3 seconds, as many as 50% of visitors will leave your site.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is fundamental to the performance of a blog post. The better the SEO, the better the blog post will perform and the hight it will rank in the Google Search Engine Results Page (SERP).
The highest-ranking blog post on Google’s SERP generally receives around a third (33%) of all clicks associated with that search.
Blogging Statistics references …
For this page, I have extracted some of the key Blogging Statistics, as I see them, from a broad source of references. I am assuming that the broad source of references that I have used also extracted their Blogging Statistics from a broad source of references. I keep seeing the same old data re-hashed and re-delivered as fresh.
I have not been digging around in the original source data for the benefit of creating this page, because whilst the information is interesting, it’s not critical.
Got an idea?
Do the stats support it?
My intention has been to show trends and to provide food for thought for blogging beginners. There is lots to consider … you could even write a blog about blogging statistics.
I have, however, provided the source pages (and links) that I have used, should you wish to explore further.
- The Guardian: outbrain partner zone
- Impact: 28 little known Blogging Statistics
- optinmonster: blogging statistics
- codeless: 101 Blogging Statistics for 2020
- Orbit Media Studios: 5 years of Blogging Statistics
- Oberlo: Blogging Statistics
- 99FIRMS: Blogging Statistics
- growthbadger: How many Blogs are there?
What have we learned?
The first blog began in 1994, and now 409 million people view 20 billion blog post pages … every month.
It doesn’t look like blogging has peaked – there may be competition but there’s still room for you!
There are around 600 million blogs on the internet, out of 1.7 billion websites – probably!
Blogging is about sharing infiormation to benefit others, but if you can make money …
Take raw blogging statistics with a pinch of salt, look more closely at the trends.
People search for “how to start a blog” around 4000 times every day!
Google has a 92% market share of the Search Engine market.
Everyone has someting to offer … you can start a blog.
6 million bloggers earn quite a lot of money.
[su_divider top=”no” text=”Back to top” divider_color=”#354649″]
Let us tell you what’s happening.
[hubspot type=form portal=7532960 id=8bcec115-ed18-46c4-9058-9d588db10e53]
[su_divider top=”no” text=”Back to top” divider_color=”#354649″]