Why People Unsubscribe From Your Blog

by Gary on March 12, 2007 · 1 comment

in Blogging

There could be countless reasons why people unsubscribe from you blog — that means remove your RSS link from their feed reader — but recently Darren on Problogger listed 34 reasons why readers unsubscribe from your blog. I’m not going to list all the reasons but there are a few that caught my fancy and I’d like to share my thoughts on them.

  • Too many posts. This could be overwhelming for a reader if your posts are very long. Well, this could also send a message that you don’t have a life ;-). Jokes apart, too many posts, say 5-6 everyday are good if they are tiny snippets, say a hundred words per post. Or if they are small programming tips presented in a linear manner. But if you are explaining entire programming concepts that are 4 pages long, or if you write posts that are more than 500 words, then better restrict your posts to 1 or 2 per day, and there too, give a gap of a few hours between both the posts. And this doesn’t need a survey to gauge. After all, both you and your readers have many other jobs to do.
  • Too few posts. Personally, I don’t think people unsubscribe due to infrequent posting, say once or twice a week. In fact, if what you write is important and useful, even if you post once-a-month people wait for your posts. The problem arises when you are neither regular nor publish anything worth-reading. Then you needlessly crowd the feeds list.
  • Nothing unique. If you simply regurgitate content present — in a far better manner — on other blogs and websites then your subscribers have no motivation to keep getting your feed updates. It wastes their time to click the link and find something they’ve already read.
  • Lack of focus. People mostly subscribe to your feed because they want to read about a specific subject matter, whether it’s technology, literature, philosophy, science, sex, sewing or black magic for that matter. So one day if you write on biometrics and on the next you write about occultism and then on the next you write about stamp collection you’ll soon lose your subscribers because they’ll mostly be getting feed updates they are not interested in. It seems like an intrusion to them. In our feed readers we want to see only the things we want to read, after all.
  • No comments. Blogging is an interactive medium. People who come to your blog and read your posts sooner or later would like to converse with you. If you have disabled commenting on your blog it means you just want to blow your own horn and are not interested in the views of your readers. This can be a great put off for the majority of your subscribers.

These are I think the most important reasons people may unsubscribe from your blog. The rest of the reasons mentioned differ from person to person.

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Lee March 30, 2007 at 9:30 pm

Interesting stuff. I have actually been wondering this. I’m fairly new to this. One day I had my subscribers double…a few days later they were lower than before the double. I had not been doing anything different than usual. I had actually considered a couple of things you mentioned above may be the problem.