Yes, people still read blogs today (in record numbers) and will almost certainly continue reading blogs for many years to come. In fact, an overwhelming 77% of Internet users report regularly reading blog posts according to the latest blogging statistics. However, despite a consistent increase in the number of people reading blogs, how we read them is changing quite a lot.
The average reader only spends 37 seconds reading a blog post today, which makes clear that most people are unlikely to read an entire blog post from start to finish—and instead scan for the information they’re looking for.
While the evidence is clear that people do still read blogs in record numbers today, it’s never been more important to create a great scannable content experience for your readers—so that they can quickly locate the answers they’re seeking and move on with their busy lives. Having worked as a blogger, business owner, writer and content marketer myself, that’s something I have a lot of experience with.
Over the years, I’ve been teaching 500,000 monthly readers how to start a blog on the right foot—and one of the most important aspects of that process has become choosing a blog layout and design that delivers a great experience for your readers… thus encouraging them to come back for more.
So with that goal in mind, let’s talk a little more about how to make sure people still read your blog.
Do People Still Read Blogs? (Is Blogging Finally Dead in 2021?)
- Do People Still Read Blogs?
- Why People Read Blogs (Today)
- Best Practices for Designing a Blog People Will Read
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links and at no additional cost to you, I’ll earn a commission. When you make a purchase using my one of my affiliate links, the company compensates me, which helps me run this blog and keep my content free of charge to you. Know that I also only recommend products I personally stand behind.
Alright, now let’s dig a little deeper into the question of do people still read blogs? and examine whether or not blogging is finally dead in 2021. After it’s all said and done, I think you’ll agree when I say blogging has had both a rich history and still has massive potential for countless applications as we head into the future.
Why People Read Blogs (Today)
In order to fully understand why people read blogs today, it helps to have a basic grasp on the history of blogging.
Here’s a brief timeline and overview of the journey blogging has gone on since it began in 1993:
- 1993: Blogging officially begins as web browsers are still young
- 1994: Justin Hall begins personal blogging
- 1997: The term “Weblog” is coined and soon shortened to “blog”
- 1998: The first blogging platform (Open Diary) launches
- 1999: Blogger and LiveJournal launch (with Xanga soon following)
- 2003: WordPress and TypePad are created
- 2003: Google buys Blogger and launches AdSense
- 2004: “Blog” becomes the dictionary word of the year
- 2005: Vlogging (video blogging) emerges as YouTube launches
- 2006: HuffPo and Buzzfeed combine news and blogging
- 2007: Microblogging becomes a trend (short-form content)
- 2012: Medium is founded (as a free blogging site)
- 2016: WordPress launches the .blog domain extension
- 2021: There are now over 31.7 million bloggers in the U.S. alone
The reasons why people read blogs have been varied throughout the entire history of blogging. Ultimately though, at the end of the day, people read blogs because they’re looking for solutions to the problems they have… and a blog is often one of the best formats to provide those kinds of solutions to people online—whether through written content, video or audio.
A blog can accommodate any content format, and it can be used to educate, inform, advocate (for your own point of view), sell a product or service, provide support and so much more…
Here are just a few of the reasons why people still read blogs today:
- To find the answers to quick questions they have
- To learn a new skill by following along with an in-depth guide
- To watch a video tutorial that walks through completing a particular task
- To follow along with the teachings of an expert or influencer within a particular niche
- To solicit advice on a forum or in the comments section of a relevant blog
- To get relevant news, information or updates on local happenings
- To connect with other like-minded individuals and participate in an online community
- To decide whether or not they should buy a product or service they’re considering
- To better understand how a new product or service they recently purchased works
If there’s something you can teach, tell or explain to an already existing audience of readers, then a blog is the one of the easiest vehicles to do it.
And it’s because of just how easy it is to start a blog today, that there are millions of people entering the world of blogging each year (and teaching their valuable skills & expertise to others online). Blogs can be high quality sources of reliable information and educational resources to people located anywhere the world with an Internet connection… and for that reason, blogs will be here to stay for a very long time.
Best Practices for Designing a Blog People Will Read
With well over 4 Billion people now using the Internet today, there’s also an unprecedented level of competition to grab the attention of those readers (and provide solutions to them).
There’s truly a race to the top of the mountain when it comes to providing increasingly useful, valuable, accessible content to people around the world—and a large part of that equation is delivering content in a format that readers want to consume it in.
Take note from this screenshot of my guide about blog layout best practices, where I have a very clear blog headline that describes what my readers will get from the article, and then a scrolling table of contents menu that moves along with them throughout the length of the article (making it easier for them to jump around and find the answers they’re looking for) to name just two reader-focused design elements:
Aside from the essential foundation of making sure you always write a blog post that serves a clear purpose and somehow delivers value to your audience, be sure to follow these best practices (as pulled directly from my guide about designing a blog layout, which includes a dozen real life examples to learn from too):
- Choose Fonts You Can Read
- Organize Your Layout for Easier Access
- Design Your Blog Posts to Be Easily Scannable
- Utilize High-Quality Images (or Graphics)
- Consider Page Load Time
- Include Compelling CTAs (Calls to Action)
- The Fine Line Between Creative and Cluttered
- Encourage Engagement
- Brand Your Layout
- Make Your Layout Relate to Your Audience
And that’s a wrap for today!
Do people still read blogs? The answer is an overwhelming yes.
But you’ll still need to put in the work to make sure you’ve created useful content & have a design that’s user-friendly enough that readers will care to stick around.
Have a Question About the Accessibility of Your Blog?
Ask away in the comments section below (share a link to your blog) and I’ll weigh in with my advice on how to make sure your blog is designed so that people will still want to read it 🙂