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Should I Stop Blogging? 20 Questions to Ask Yourself

“When Should You Give Up On a Blog?” – question from the Q&A sidebar widget.

While they won’t all apply to every blog – here’s a list of questions to consider when working out whether you should give up on a blog.

  1. What goals do I have for this blog? Are they being met? Am I getting closer to meeting them?
  2. Am I Interested in the Topic?
  3. Am I getting personal satisfaction from posting?
  4. How Many Posts Did I write in the Last Month?
  5. Do I have time to keep the blog running?
  6. Is anyone reading my blog?
  7. Have I given it enough time?
  8. Do I still see myself writing on this blog in 18 months time?
  9. Is the niche growing or dying?
  10. Is the blog earning anything?
  11. Is the blog growing my profile and perceived expertise?
  12. Are there any other benefits from this blog?
  13. Is the blog giving energy to or taking energy away from me?
  14. Is the Blog’s traffic and income growing or shrinking?
  15. Are readers engaging with the content?
  16. If readers are commenting – what are they saying?
  17. What are other bloggers writing about my blog?
  18. Do I have anything original and useful to say on my topic?
  19. What else could I do with the time that I spend on this blog
  20. What would the impact be of me not blogging? (on readers and me)
About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Rob Brydon says:

    Those are very valid questions.

    I believe that number 3 is the most important (Am I getting personal satisfaction from posting? ).

    You don’t need to be makinga lot of money or have a lot of readers to feel good about writing.

  2. kevin says:

    What happened to writing just to write and if people discover it and enjoy it then that is a bonus?

    Here are a few of the questions I have issue with:

    4. How Many Posts Did I write in the Last Month?
    9. Is the niche growing or dying?
    10. Is the blog earning anything?
    11. Is the blog growing my profile and perceived expertise?
    20. What would the impact be of me not blogging? (on readers and me)

    I started blogging for fun and enjoyment. Not because I had a money making niche. Not because I thought I was going to add to my income. (which I have)

    While I understand the drive to make money and using blogging as a tool it should first be fun and enjoyable.
    Half of the people that read this blog and are so focused on making a couple of bucks from blogging write garbage blogs. I see the plethora of people writing make money online blogs and people doing Pay Per Posts… most of them are horrible because they have no passion for what they are writing. The mindset of those answers back it up.

  3. Tony Kummer says:

    Great list. I know many friends who have stopped blogging for many of these reasons.

    Here is #21

    “Am I making new friends, or keeping in touch with people I like?”

  4. Have to agree with Rob on this one.

    Personal satisfaction is a HUGE factor IMO. I have yet to grow revenue from my various sites but I enjoy posting on each one…tiresome on days but internally rewarded nonetheless.

  5. John says:

    I think that given the niche of this site, number 10 is the most important – but I guess the importance factor is probably different for everyone.

    My site only keeps me entertained though the hordes of gorgeous women who leave comments with pictures in them.

  6. Moin says:

    Well its the last not the least we say.The same way i like the point 20.How are we going to make up our not being a blogger anymore.Are we going to satisfy ourself saying i have done enough,where the worlds top blogger(Problogger)himself has not given up after all these years. So theres no stopping of blogging.I hope theres only two kind of peolpe in the world.
    1.Bloggers(Great Knowledge,excellent future prediction skills and many more than a common man.)
    2.Non-Bloggers
    Who wants to be a non-blogger after all thy years of hardwork and struggle.Dear bloggers we are having a great example of “Never give up” in darren.When we are having any problems he is always helping us.So no giving up.Have a great day all.

  7. Good post Darren. All relevant questions.

    Why do we Blog?

  8. Ange Recchia says:

    Great questions Darren. I have been asking some of those lately and your list has presented more ideas… A little more analysis is due to keep things on track. Something to think about! Thanks.

    Have a great weekend.

  9. It is also important to think about what to do with your blog when you do quit. I quit my first blog a little too impulsively and deleted it off blogger. I regret that decision immensely. There were some very sad readers, but more upsetting someone signed up for the domain and posted a bunch of advertising using my old banner, site design and one of my articles. I’ve emailed Blogger about it repeatedly, since the banner image and content are my own, but nothing has been done.

    I would recommend leaving the blog up if it is on a free host with a message stating that posting has been discontinued. I’m not sure what I would do if I was paying for hosting and the domain.

    I know this sound obvious, but you should also make an archive of all of your old posts before you delete your blog. You spent a lot of time creating that content, it would be silly to irretrievably erase it forever.

  10. BurrasCraft says:

    Really good introspection for new bloggers. These questions will guide them to decide about their blogs and the topics to choose for blogging.
    Hope to see much more from Darren!

  11. Excellent list. It’s not always about the money. Blogging has many benefits, not the least of which is sharing info and helping others.

  12. Going through each question I realize that many of them can receive a negative answer in the first months of a blog. Even if the blogger has something good to say, and the blog itself has potential. I think that these questions need to be asked after taking some time to work on the blog, giving it enough time to evolve.

    Some see results after 3 months, others after 6 months, but definitely, if after a whole year of time and energy invested, there are no results, I guess the answer it’s pretty obvious. Well, some might continue even after that, if it’s only a way to escape the daily routine.

  13. All are good points to consider. I agree with Rob that #3 is most important. I would also consider asking if I’m adding any value for potential readers, whether it be financial or emotional. If so, readership will go up over time as those who appreciate that value find your blog. From what I’ve learned so far, the most successful bloggers have been blogging for quite some time. It takes persistence to build readership.

  14. GettyCash says:

    These are good questions. I have asked myself those questions before. I won’t give up.

  15. Johnny says:

    These are all good questions to continually ask oneself. I can’t speak for anyone else but the answers for me might be both Yes and No, depending on the day.

    Everyone wants there blog to be a sucess, but hey let’s face it, there can only be so many winners.

    BTW, just got your book in the mail from Amazon, going to spend some time reading it this weekend…

  16. Killer Picke says:

    After answering all these questions I really considered giving up. But at this point I have nothing to lose so why not keep going

  17. Ulla says:

    Thanks for the questions, Darren. I personally think #13 is the most important question for me, as I do my blogging in my free time. Up to now it doesn’t take energy from me, but gives me some. It helps me a lot to keep up taking photos regularly – and in the process of taking them I am already thinking of the text that will go with them.

  18. Blogging seems to be one of those things that have you thinking one day, this is great I want to keep doing it, and the next day thinking, this is horrible why am I still doing it.

    Keep plugging on….

    Live From Las Vegas
    The Masked Millionaire

  19. No matter what, I would not give up if you ask me. Always have faith in what you do. We all know its a long term approach. If you are strong, try to keep it or alter it for the better.

  20. Yeah I definitely agree, a friend of mine has been running his blog for awhile and he’s told me on multiple occasions that he’s not having any fun with it, he just likes that extra $5 a day in his Adsense account LOL

  21. Blogging can own you if you let it. I’ve been through it on both ends, but the bottom line is that if I stop, I know I’ll be sorry. Its also damn good therapy if you don’t b.s. your audience that is

  22. I think the most important point revealed

    >> Am I getting personal satisfaction from posting? <<

    Honestly, it really all comes down to that. You are the heart and soul behind your blog – nobody else.

    I have blogs to which I post because they make me money (World of Warcraft, Second Life, HDTVs, etc.) and then I have blogs to which I post because they’re *me* (my entrepreneurial blog, my mom blog, my metablog blog). Most likely, the *me* blogs will outlast my other blogs, simply because more of my heart and soul shine out from them.

    Data points,

    Barbara

    Data points,

    Barbara

  23. Zeeshan says:

    Great questions, although they can be quite the downer if you have just recently started blogging. I can’t imagine answering any of the “results-focused” questions (traffic, earnings, linkbacks, etc.) in a positive manner in the first 1-3 months.

  24. Ann says:

    What are reasonable expectations in terms of traffic and income?

    I have absolutely no frame of reference for this, so it’s hard to set goals or measure my success – or failure!

  25. This is a great list. I especially like #3 and #19
    Am I getting personal satisfaction from posting? – Also, what are the readers getting from your posts? It is important to blog for them as well…

    What else could I do with the time that I spend on this blog? This one is really key… are you using up precious time that could be spent on something else, or is this time you spend on blogging somehow helping others?

    -Talking Books Librarian at http://talkingbookslibrarian.blogspot.com

  26. Awesome post! I am going to print these out (with full accreditation of course!) for some of my clients that I think may not be meeting their objectives by blogging. Thank You!

  27. Nate Nead says:

    wow, yeah I hope you don’t mind if I post this to my blog as well. Again, with full accreditation of course :)

  28. Farfield says:

    Very good questions! I’ve been blogging for less than two months though so it’s definitely too early for me to ask myself those questions.

    But I think there are a lot of blogs out there that really don’t show a lot of passion for the subject, and I think people who don’t have to say anything should just quit blogging. After asking themselve these questions of course!

  29. I really appreciate this list. I love writing my blog, but I can’t really figure out how to increase comments. I get notes from people about how much they enjoy it, but the comments on most posts remain at zero.

  30. Marija says:

    Phew, I should definitely not stop blogging. Wow, I’m actually a happy blogger. Cool. Not that I didn’t know that before, but your Q&A encouraged me.

  31. Michael says:

    Great questions, I’ve been considering stopping one of my blogs because I don’t feel I have been putting as much time into as it would need to stay alive. I’m going to go down the list of questions and see what I need to do.

  32. Sandra says:

    Good list. I dropped one because I was wasn’t motivated to post enough even though it had more viewers than the others. I would rather stay with something I’m passionate about and work on growing it.

  33. Muscle Post says:

    I have a question for anyone who will answer. How much time do you think one should dedicate to a blog before giving up on it, if you aren’t seeing the results you are looking for? For example, if you aren’t getting enough readers or making enough money, how much time should you wait? 3 months? 6 months? 1 year?

  34. Otto says:

    Important questions!

    Blogging can be challenging and downright hard at times…

    Q3. Is good, if your not getting personal satisfaction why Blog?

    I think the worst thing I did was to set up a goal to generate some revenue from my blog. I have satisfied all my goals except this one. Luckily, I do not blog for money but it would be nice as some compensation for the many hours spent weekly on it.

    Incidentally, I notice that this blog is, “a Blog that helps bloggers to add income streams to their blogs…” Am here to tell you, it is far easier said than done…. And text link ads are not, as the ads suggest, the easiest money ever…Signed up, (that part was easy) many months ago and only one ad sold to date with no guarantee that they will sell more…that’s what they said…And their affiliate banner does not display on blogger sites…am suspicious about this ……. Luckily, I just enjoy blogging about …the subject matter of my site…. If it were only about setting up an income stream, I would have given it away long ago…

  35. BuSy says:

    Twenty nice questions to any blogger. Of course, blogging has got both direct and indirect benefits. I feel blogger can improve his/her language skills.

  36. Tracy says:

    I am new to blogging and am still in the early stages of learning the process. I’m sure it will come easier and the readership will grow eventually, but there is still inertia to overcome. I picked a subject that I am the most familiar with, however, I am not a particularly vocal person and the words don’t come easily.

    At this stage, if I truthfully answered this list of questions, I’d fold up and go read a book in my spare time. They are all valid questions, but they should be addressed after a blog has had some time to mature, perhaps after a year or so. Even if you did all the recommended groundwork before starting your blog, it takes time to establish yourself, to find and refine your routine of generating post subjects and to develop your internet writing style.

    Keep the questions in mind, make minor changes to address some of the weaker areas you find, but give yourself and your blog a chance before you make the ‘hard’ decisions.

  37. david cheong says:

    Blogging is now part of my daily life job, and i think i can’t stop blogging, unless someone offer me higher than my blogging income :)

    The best part is not from the list, which is also mentioned by Tony Kummer, is actually gaining more friends, friends that is from different country and different race, and thats the best part of all.

  38. Alex D says:

    Personally I think that you should never give up! Never ever give up!
    Everything can be done, you just need to be ambitious and have a brain.

  39. Jim says:

    All of the questions are very good. I have been blogging for about 3 months and at least half of the questions have come to mind during that time. It is always good to ask yourself why – why am I doing this. Thanks

  40. Zerolove says:

    Great questions to ask ones self, but personally I am blogging because it is an outlet for me. No one reads my blog at all, and to be honest I don’t care. If it was to “hit” all the sudden and people started reading it… I still don’t care. I don’t do it for them or for the money I do it for myself. Now if someone did read it, I wouldn’t be hateful or anything to them, I’m just not blogging for that reason. I blog about being a System Engineer and the things in my life I deal with on a daily basis.

    So with that 3 is the most important of all the questions.

  41. These are good questions, Darren. I think #1 is the most important one: if you’re writing for fun and *having* fun, then none of the rest (money, fame etc.) matters.

    Conversely I see a lot of people, especially small business owners, starting blogs because they’re told it’s a good idea. They don’t know how to write, they don’t know what to write, and the whole thing becomes an albatross around their neck.

  42. Blogging is dead. Sorry to say this!

  43. Jessica Bond says:

    Given the level of commitment required to make a successful blog, one must love the art of blogging.

  44. Jessica Bond says:

    Given the level of commitment and work required to achieve a successful blog, one must be passionate about their subject and continuously improve their blogging skills. It never hurts to re-evaluate your purpose in a blog and whether or not it is a success based on how you measure success.

  45. Hello!

    I think that those are interesting questions. However, I do want to mention the following: isn’t a successful blogger more about wanting to write about something that one is passionate about? I think that blogging today has been more of trying to make a quick buck rather than blogging about something that he/she is interested in.

    My opinion is simply that if you have something interesting to write about, the success would naturally come your way.

    VentureBlogster

  46. I don’t make my money from blogging. While I do throw some ads on it, I do it for the love of just writing. I love to write about travel, business, art, writing, music, and what ever else falls out of my ears.
    As for when to quit, you ignore all the rules and ask yourself, “What is my goal for this blog?” If you are reaching your goal in the time frame you set or have already reached you goal then stay with it. If you dread writing in your blog and looking back know you will never reach your goals then you should re-evaluate what you are doing.
    It comes down to if you are happy or not. Success isn’t measured in money.

  47. messiphone says:

    yes you’re right, but nonetheless we must never stop writing

  48. reddknight says:

    One thing I struggle with in blogging (aside from the usual writer’s ailment) is not letting it take time away from my non-blog website development.

  49. Kim McGinnis says:

    Great Questions. It reminds me of why people like lists so much. We are all so busy these days and it is easy to take information in this way. It is nice to have shorter lists sometimes with a little more meat. But the longer ones are cool too.

    I have 3 blogs, and I would love to keep them all going, each has importance & relevance in my life for different reasons.

    Question #4..How many posts should be written in a month, and how long should they be? Is just a couple of paragraphs okay if it’s done consistently 5 days a week, with a couple of longer ones thrown in once in a while?

    Thanks for all the tips and ideas.
    Kim

  50. Ed says:

    Great questions but at the end I would write “No matter what don’t give up”.