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Light or Dark Blog Backgrounds? [POLL RESULTS]

Our last poll asked readers whether they preferred light or dark backgrounds in blog design. The results were:

blog-backgrounds-poll-results.png

The majority like ‘Light’ backgrounds but a fair chunk of readers think it depends upon the blog design.

What Blog Platform Do You Use Most?

This is a poll I run two years ago – I’ll be interested to see how (and if) the results differ. I’ve removed the least popular categories from last time and added an ‘other’ option. If you’ choose ‘other’ please let us know what blog platform you run in comments below.

If you have more than one blog and more than one platform running them choose your most used platform.

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What Blog Platform Do You Use Most?
View Results


Looking forward to seeing what your responses are.

Do you prefer Light or Dark Backgrounds on Blogs?

Over the last few days we’ve run this poll in our sidebar.

Do you prefer Light or Dark Backgrounds on Blogs?
View Results


Feel free to share your reasons for your answer in comments below.

Blogging Debates – There are Many Ways to Build a Successful Blog

Debates in blogging circles have raged for years now on many topics.

  • Should a blog have full feeds or partial feeds?
  • Is a blog a blog if it doesn’t have comments?
  • Frequency of Posting – Should a blog post once a week, once a day or 20 times a day?
  • Should you self host your blog or use a free blogging platform?

There are many questions and issues that bloggers tend to debate when it comes to blogging and each time I ask one of these questions as a reader question it is amazing to see the diversity of opinions that bloggers have and decisions that they’ve made about how to run their blogs.

Here are some of the topics I’ve seen debated regularly over the years:

  • RSS Feeds - Full vs Partial Feeds
  • Comment Sections – Comments vs No Comments
  • Post Frequency – Post More vs Post Less
  • Domain Names – long vs short, hyphens vs non hypens, .com vs other extensions (like .net, .org), local vs global domain extensions
  • Hosting – hosted vs self hosted
  • Titles – descriptive vs keywords
  • Content – Link content vs Original content
  • Design – Professional Design vs Templates
  • Ownership – Use Social Media vs Build Your own properties
  • Topic – Niche vs Broad Topics
  • Dating Posts – Dates on Posts vs Non Dated
  • Anonymous blogging vs Using Your Name
  • SEO – Writing for Search Engines vs Writing for Humans
  • Personal Blogging – Sticking to Topic vs Injecting Personality and Personal details

I’m sure if we were to go through each topic in turn (and I intend to tackle each going forward into the next month) that there would be a little heat in some of the discussions because many of them are things that bloggers have quite strongly held opinions on.

However – the reality is that there are many ways to build a successful blog and in almost every debate that bloggers have there are bloggers who manage to take almost diametrically opposed approaches to blogging yet who build successful blogs.

For me it comes down to being willing to enter into building blogs that are shaped more by the topic you’re writing about, the audience you’re attempting to reach and in a way that fits with your style, personality and situation. Out of all that will emerge a way of blogging that is unique.

What other blog debates do you see happening?

Would you Prefer More Blog Readers or Twitter Followers?

I’m running this poll over at TwiTip but thought it’d be interesting to run it here on ProBlogger too as the topic is relevant to both audiences and I was curious to see if there would be any difference in the responses on the two blogs (given their topics cover the two options.

Which do you value and prefer most – Blog Readers or Twitter followers? And why?

Would You Prefer More Blog Readers or Twitter Followers?
View Results


Looking forward to hearing your thoughts.

Do You Attract Readers to Your Blog that Are Like You?

A couple of months ago we ran a reader survey over at my Photography site that asked readers a few demographical questions, a few questions about their photography and a few questions about how they’d like to see the site develop. We had thousands of responses which meant we had a good sample of data to work with which gave us both insight into our readership and how we could serve them better.

Last night I published a post on DPS that gave a few results from the survey (mainly the demographical information). As I was about to hit publish on the post something hit me that I’d not realized at any point over the last two years of developing the site:

“the audience of DPS is…. well remarkably like…. me”

On each section of the survey that asked about people’s demographics or photography habits the most common response was the response I would have given if I’d completed the survey.

Of course there were a lot of people who answered differently – but if I had to describe my readers they’d be people a lot like me.

I’m still processing what this means (if anything) – Neil in the comments on that post suggested that it’s like pet owners and their pets looking like each other – perhaps that’s true.

Perhaps it is also a bit of a learning lesson – develop a blog for yourself, or people like you.

  • meet your own needs (or needs you’ve had)
  • write about things that interest you
  • write about questions that you’ve asked
  • share experiences you’ve had and lessons you’ve learned

Do these kinds of things and you’ll attract people in a similar situation.

I’m going to ponder that some more – but in the mean time I’m interested to hear what other peoples experiences are – have you attracted readers to your blog that are ‘like you’?

What Do You Spend Most Time Doing on Your Blog?

Here’s a question for a little discussion over the weekend:

“What Do You Spend Most Time Doing on Your Blog?”

Running a blog calls for all kinds of skills and activities. Writing content is probably the most obvious of these – but as I talk to different bloggers I often find that they each have their own activity that they tend to be drawn to spend more time than others. In addition to writing content – these activities might include:

  • Blog Design
  • Search Engine Optimization
  • Guest Posting on Other Blogs
  • Editing Guest Posts on Your Own Blogs
  • Moderating Comments and Interacting with Readers
  • Networking and Promotion to Other Bloggers
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Monetization
  • Reading Other Blogs in your Niche
  • Reading about Blogging
  • Watching Statistics/Metrics

I’m sure there are more – but that list should get you started.

What do you find yourself focusing upon in your blogging at the moment? I find that I go through stages where different activities get more focus than others. For me at the moment I’ve just moved out of a phase of redesigning one of my blogs and am focusing more upon generating content (writing it myself but also editing posts of others).

Interested to hear what you’ve been focusing upon.

Have You Ever Guest Posted on Someone Else’s Blog? [POLL]

As a followup to yesterdays post on Guest Posting as a method to promote your blog I thought I’d ask how many readers have tried the technique?

Have You Ever Guest Posted on Someone Else's Blog?
Total Votes: 3027 Started: 2/1/2009 Back to Vote Screen



Feel free to add a comment below to tells us more about your answer – I’m particularly interested to hear from those who have guest posted about how you found the experience.

PS: thanks to all my Twitter followers for suggesting poll topics and for @rustylshelton who inspired this one.

Have You Used Video on Your Blog?

Time for another Reader Poll – Have You Used Video on Your Blog?

With services like YouTube (and many others) that make it easy to share videos on your blog I’m keen to hear how many bloggers have used video as a way of engaging readers.

This poll simply asks if you’ve used video and if so – have you made it yourself and/or used other peoples?

Have You Used Video on Your Blog?
View Results


I’m looking forward to seeing the results and I am interested to hear from you as to what impact you feel video has had upon your blogging and readers levels of engagement?