Common wisdom across the Blogosphere is that you should be blogging. All the time. If you’re not creating reams of content regularly, then your readers are going to desert you, RSS subscribers will throw in the towel and the search engine spiders will retreat to less dusty corners of the web.
This is of course, rubbish. Because guess what? You really shouldn’t be blogging.
Why You Shouldn’t Be Blogging
Of course, I’m not suggesting that you shut down your blog, uninstall WordPress and sell your domain name. But blogging when you have good reason not to can do you more harm than good.
Content Isn’t King
Every single piece of SEO advice you’ve ever read has told you that content is king. Every single piece of SEO advice you’ve ever read has missed the point.
Not all content is created equal, and not all content has a claim to the throne. Good Quality Content is the key to your readers’ hearts, and what the search engines want to see. If you’re not providing that, then in all honesty, you probably shouldn’t bother.
There Is Such Thing As A Valid Excuse
You might not ever have admitted this to yourself. It might be a huge leap for you. But it’s OK. We’ll do it together. Deep breaths. Are you ready? On three. One…
Three. There will always be times when you just can’t face putting a post together, and that is not an issue.
See, that’s not so scary, is it? Whether you’re stressed out with paid work, have pressing family issues, or just want to curl up on the couch with a kitten and a glass of whisky, there are always things that’ll be more important than your blog. So do them. And once you’ve cleared your mind, you can approach your blog with fresh ideas. What you don’t want to do is try and power through…
Your Readers Deserve Better
… because your readers will notice. They’ll see that you’re not putting out work of your normal high standards. And then one of two things will happen.
If you’ve been using Twitter properly, then you’ll have a core of readers from your niche who’ll spot something’s not up and offer their advice and assistance. They might even send you a guest post or two to tide you over.
However, most of your readers – the ones who just read your efforts without getting involved – will decide that they’re bored. And if they’re bored, they won’t read.
And the search engines won’t be impressed either. Sure, so long as you’re not scraping and stealing, you won’t be hit with any penalties. But if you’re not producing good content, people won’t link to you. And that’s not doing your SEO any good.
So do yourself a favour. Know when you shouldn’t be blogging, and don’t blog. Take some time off, recharge your batteries, and come back strong. Just don’t draw attention to your hiatus with a post that’s a thinly veiled attempt to provide an excuse for your absence.
When Andy’s not making excuses for not updating UT in three weeks, he’s writing for The FirstFound Blog, procrastinating on Twitter or writing the odd guest post here and there. Share your best excuses in the comments thread.