Unfollowing blogs. It’s something many bloggers don’t like talking about and is something many fear.
However, unfollowing blogs is a great way to free up time. Your WordPress reader and email box (if you subscribe to new post notifications) become a little more uncluttered from stuff that no longer interests you, and you get back some time you’d have otherwise wasted.
Have you unfollowed or not followed a blog for any of these reasons?
1. No ‘About Me’ page or one that hasn’t been updated
Did you know that the ‘About Me’ page is one of the most visited pages of a blog? Go on, check your stats. You may be surprised by how many visits that page has had.
One of the first things I look for when visiting a new blog is an ‘About me’ page. If there isn’t one, it takes more than 30 seconds to find, or the contents of it are not interesting, then I won’t follow.
Likewise, if there is an ‘About Me’ page that hasn’t been updated for many years, I’ll also not follow.
Of course, if you don’t have an ‘about me’ page then you could be missing out on hundreds of new visitors and followers every month.
Don’t have an ‘About Me’ page or don’t know what to put on one?
From time to time, we all encounter problems with broken links on our blogs.
Broken links are no good to anyone and can spoil the enjoyment of reading blog posts and pages that contain them. The ‘404 – Page Not Found‘ message is one of the most frustrating messages readers come across.
If I find a broken link, I’ll notify the blog owner of it. If it doesn’t get fixed and there are many other broken links on the blog (including those in the email notifications I get from WordPress), I will unfollow the blog
Check the links on your blog’s home and ‘About Me’ pages at least every couple of months to ensure they’re still working. If they’re not, fix them immediately.
Don’t lose followers by not fixing broken links on your blog.
I’ve mentioned this many times before, but if somebody has taken the time to read any of your posts and leaves a comment, then how are they going to feel if you ignore them?
Would you ask somebody around for dinner and ignore everything they had to say? No!
So never ignore or take readers for granted.
If bloggers do not respond to comments, I will unfollow them or stop leaving comments if the content is still of interest.
4. Unfriendly and uninviting blogs
Would you shop on a website that’s not easy to use or navigate around? Probably not.
Do you find the layout of my blog or my blog posts messy? Are they not particularly nice to look at or hard to read? I hope not.
Now, ask yourself the same question about your blog. Does it look inviting and friendly? Is it easy to navigate around? Are all the links working? Is the menu too top-heavy and over-cluttered?
If my first impression of a blog is any of what I’ve mentioned in the above paragraph, then I’m not going to waste my time trying to find posts I may be interested in reading.
Likewise, if a blog I’m following becomes over-cluttered, unfriendly, no longer easy to get around or takes too long to download, then I’ll unfollow it.
So ensure you keep up with your blog’s housekeeping. Keep your blog an inviting and friendly place to hang out on and make all your blog posts engaging.
5. Out of sight, out of mind
One of the first things every blogger should decide is how often they are going to publish posts. If you choose to publish posts three times a week, then stick to that schedule. However, do not, without warning, change your posting schedule or not publish anything for a couple of months.
There’s nothing wrong with changing how often you publish blog posts and informing your readers why you’re doing it, but try and stick to the same schedule. If your readers expect a blog post once a week, they will probably not stick around if you don’t publish anything for months. Out of sight, out of mind.
Every six months, I check for blogs I follow who haven’t published any new content for at least six months. I’ll unfollow those blogs because it’s likely they’ve either abandoned their blog and will not publish any new posts.
If your readers expect a new blog post from you once a month and don’t get anything for six months, then you’re going to lose followers.
6. Uninteresting content
I’ve followed many blogs by mistake. In the early days, I fell into the trap of following every blogger who followed me. Have you fallen into that trap?
Then again, and this is something I think many bloggers don’t like talking about, I’ve unfollowed blogs because the content they are publishing no longer interests me.
Doesn’t it make sense to spend the precious time you have reading content that interests you rather than read content that doesn’t interest you simply because the blogger who publishes it follows you?
And I have no problem with people unfollowing me if my content no longer interests them. However, I take a different view of people unfollowing my blog simply because I don’t follow them.
I follow many bloggers who don’t follow me. Why? Because they publish engaging content I am interested in and which motivates me to leave comments.
Never be afraid to unfollow a blog you’re no longer interested in. It will free up valuable time, which you can put to better use, such as writing or reading and commenting on the remaining blogs you follow.
Do you have any annoying popups on your blog? Do they keep popping up because they don’t give readers the chance to say ‘no thank you’ to what you’re trying to offer them? Or do they not go away unless I do subscribe to your newsletter? What if I don’t want to subscribe? Will I keep seeing that annoying popup?
Then I’ve probably unfollowed your blog.
I don’t mind discrete popups that do not cover the post I’m reading, but when my reading is interrupted by the same popup every time I visit, then I’ll unfollow.
Get rid of annoying popups. If you do need them on your blog, chose a design that is discrete and one that does not interrupt the enjoyment of reading.
Do You Know How To Unfollow A Blog?
The simplest way to unfollow a blog is to click on the ‘Unsubscribe’ link at the bottom of the WordPress email notification you get when a new post is published.
WordPress.Com users and those choosing not to receive email notifications can use the following methods.
1. Click the ‘follow’ button that appears in the bottom righthand corner of a blog you’re following. It appears when scrolling up on the device you’re using.
The ‘following’ message will change to ‘follow‘ when you click it.
You’ve now unfollowed the blog.
2. Click the ‘Reader’ button (situated next to ‘My Sites’ in the top left corner of your blog).
A list of newly published blog posts from the blogs you follow will display.
If the blog you want to unfollow is listed, click on the toggle menu button next to the post.
To unfollow the blog, click on ‘Following Site’ in the new mini-window that opens.
You’ve now unfollowed the blog.
3. Click the ‘Manage’ button (situated near Followed Sites).
You’ll now see a new page that lists all the blogs you follow.
Find the blog you want to unfollow in the list and click the ‘following’ button next to it.
You’ve now unfollowed the blog.
Does WordPress notify bloggers you’ve unfollowed?
Of course, nobody wants anyone to unfollow their blog, but do consider unfollowing some of those blogs you never visit anymore. All they’re doing is cluttering up your WordPress Reader and email box.
Let’s wrap it up.
Unfollowing blogs you’re no longer interested in frees up your WordPress Reader, email box and time.
Rather than wasting time reading and following blogs you’re not interested in, use that time to write or read the blogs that motivate you to leave comments on.
It’s easy to unfollow blogs on WordPress. Follow my guide in this post.
WordPress does not notify any bloggers you’ve unfollowed.
Don’t want to lose followers? Then make sure your blog is inviting, easy to navigate around, has an updated ‘about me’ page and is a friendly place to hang out on.
Never ignore or take your readers for granted. Consider unfollowing bloggers that do not respond to your comments.
If you’re going to change your blogging schedule, inform your readers about it.
Don’t leave long gaps between publishing posts. Stick to your schedule. Once a month – great. Once a month, but don’t publish your next post for six months – not good. Out of sight, could mean out of mind.
Join the disussion
Do you unfollow blogs? If so, what are the main reasons why you unfollow them? If you’ve never unfollowed a blog, why not?
Layout, content, settings and format might differ on self-hosted blogs.
Are you reblogging correctly on WordPress?Check out my post for full details.
Now it might come as a surprise, but did you know that a blog’s ‘About me’ page is one of the most visited pages of any blog?
What is an ‘About me’ page?
Simply put, it’s a page where the owner of a blog gives some details about themselves and their blog. If done correctly, the ‘About me‘ page can be one of the main vehicles for building trust and connecting with your audience.
Take a look at the image below. It shows the stats (as on 24th May 2020) of the most viewed articles on my blog. I’ve highlighted my ‘About me’ page.
Now check how often the ‘About me’ page on your blog has been viewed.
Why having an ‘About me’ page matters.
I get really excited when I’m informed that my blog has a new follower. But don’t we all?
However, that feeling can sometimes come crashing down when I cannot find an ‘About Me’ page on a blog, especially when it’s a blog I’ve never visited before.
It doesn’t stop there, either. Sometimes when I have found an “About Me’ page and find a one-line statement on it such as “Does it matter?” or “coming soon”, it’s just as bad as not having an ‘About Me’ page at all.
I’ve even come across ‘About me’ pages that say, ‘This is a template for an about me page. Please fill in the information.”
Yes, having an “About Me’ page on your blog does matter. It deserves as much love and attention as one of your blog posts.
For starters, it will be the one, if not the first page on your blog, that a new visitor will visit. But what should you put on an ‘About Me’ page?
What to put on an ‘About me’ page.
Start off by introducing yourself and, most importantly, give your visitors at least your first name. If you don’t want to use your real first name, give a name you’d like to be known by.
After all, when introducing ourselves to people for the first time, we all give our name, don’t we?
Not only does giving a first name help in letting people know who you are, but it also promotes you as a friendly person.
That in itself promotes your blog as being friendly, and all of us want to visit and become part of blogging communities where a host is a friendly person.
This leads me to what else you should include on your ‘About Me’ page.
Visitors are usually interested in the person behind the blog they follow, and I, for one, have built up some wonderful new friendships through it.
Tell your visitors where in the world you are located.
I go as far as to give the name of the city where I live. By doing this, I’ve got to know some local bloggers who I can sometimes meet up with for a coffee, so we chat about, amongst other things, blogging.
Inform people what they can expect to find on your blog. What interests you, and what ambitions do you have (e.g. publishing a book, winning a writing or photography competition).
Smile! You’re on camera.
Most importantly, I think you must include a photo of yourself or the area you live in.
Ok, some of you may be camera shy. However, I think it’s always nice to be able to put a face to a name, especially when we become part of all the blogging communities.
What are your interests?
One new feature I’ve added to my ‘About Me’ page is letting visitors know what blog posts I enjoy reading and what kinds of blogs I follow. I’ve invited bloggers to leave me a link to their blogs if they cover any of the subjects on my list.
Don’t forget about the comments.
Once you’ve published your ‘About Me’ page, you’ll soon start to get comments left on it (especially if you have it set as your blog’s home page). Whatever you do, always respond to those comments.
I’ve come across blogs that have an excellent ‘About Me’ page, but the author has not responded to any of the comments left on it. As I’ve often said, that’s like inviting somebody around for coffee and ignoring them.
When you reply to comments (and any other comments on your blog), try and use the person’s first name somewhere in your reply. That helps promotes you as being friendly.
Keep it updated.
The other important thing about your “About Me’ page is not to forget about it.
Once it’s published, ensure you keep it updated. As a rule, I update my ‘About Me’ page at least once every six months.
If, like me, you also include links to other blogs or posts, ensure they are still working. If you come across any broken links, fix or remove them immediately.
Likewise, if you find any broken links on a blog you visit, don’t forget to inform the blog owner that there is a problem. Bloggers are usually very grateful when you do this.
Mind the gap(s).
Your “About Me’ page should always look attractive and be easy to read.
Try to keep it brief and remember to ensure it is broken into neat paragraphs.
As with any blog post, try and steer clear of huge blocks of text. Spilt them up with some images or photos and always preview it before you push the publish button.
I’ve often been surprised how some of my posts seem to have large gaps in them when I preview what I have written.
Always ensure your ‘About Me’ page is easy to find. Don’t go and play ‘hide and seek’ by placing it somewhere where visitors will have to hunt for it.
If somebody cannot find your ‘About Me’ page within a few seconds of arriving on your blog, they’ll probably close the page, move on, and likely never return.
You’ll find the link to my ‘About Me’ page on the menu bar of my blog. That way, it’s easy to see and, therefore, easy to find.
I’ve also changed the name of my ‘About Me’ page to ‘Meet Hugh.’ I think this is more friendly to first-time visitors to my blog.
Click here if you’d like to check out my ‘Meet Hugh’ page. It may give you ideas on how to structure your blog’s ‘About Me’ page.
If you don’t already have an ‘About Me’ page on your blog, create one.
Remember that a blog’s ‘About Me’ page is one of the most visited pages of any blog.
Ensure that the ‘About Me’ page contains information you’d find interesting or useful.
At the very least, ensure the ‘About Me’ page includes your first name and an idea of where in the world you live.
Include a photo of yourself, but if you are camera shy, include some photos of the area you live.
Ensure your blog’s ‘About Me’ page is easy to find. If necessary, make it the home page of your blog.
Don’t use large blocks of text. Stick to each block being no more than a few sentences long.
Separating blocks of text with images or photos helps.
Ensure you update your blog’s ‘About Me’ page at least once every six months (or when any changes occur).
Fix any broken links on the ‘About Me’ page immediately.
What about you?
Do you always check out a blogger’s ‘About Me’ before deciding whether to follow or not?
Do you have an ‘About Me’ page?
If not, why not?
Is there anything I’ve not mentioned on your ‘About Me’ page?
How often do you update your ‘About Me’ page?
What’s the best example of an ‘About Me’ page you’ve seen?
Do you have any further questions about a blog’s ‘About me’ page?
Join the discussion by leaving a comment that I can respond to with more than just a ‘thank you.’