When I first started blogging, there was a lot of noise about the optimal blogging schedule, both for productivity and SEO. How often should you post exactly?
For SEO, Google has stated on the record numerous times that they don’t care how often you’re posting to your blog. Google doesn’t use posting frequency or consistency as a ranking factor (see video below).
That said, the more posts you write, the more posts you have. Giving you more posts that might rank in Google or generate backlinks for your website. More posts is always better then fewer posts.
This makes blogging productivity essential (particularly for new bloggers). I estimate it takes 100-400 posts to acquire the traffic needed to start earning six figures from your blog.
At one post a month, it’s possible you never reach your end goal. At the very least, it’ll take several years to be successful.
|Time to 100 Posts
|Time to 400 Posts
|Once a Month
|Every Other Week
|Once a Week
|Twice a week
|Three Times a Week
After writing your first few blog posts, you’ll realize writing is quite hard. How can you possibly crank out 100 of these things while you’re busy working a full-time job? Or worse, raising kids. Let’s find out!
Write 500 Words Every Day
Publishing a blog post three times per week feels like a lot of pressure. I initially struggled to publish a post a week despite dumping a few hours a day into writing. Publishing three posts in a single week felt impossible.
But, after a year or two of blogging, I finally had my Eureka! moment. I realized that I can easily write 500 good words in an hour if I’m interested in the subject. Even if the post requires a bit of research. The key is that I have to be focused on writing and engaged in the topic I’m writing about.
And as long as those 500 words were complete (meaning they didn’t require further editing), I just drastically increased my blogging speed! My blog posts average about 1500 words; with 500 words per day, I could publish roughly 10 posts per month. Wow!
Writing 500 words a day is hard, but it’s not THAT hard. Let’s go over how to fit this into your life in only an hour a day.
Your Writing Hour is Sacred!
You need to create a distraction-free hour for yourself.
If you’re being constantly interrupted, this won’t work! Turn off your phone, texts, and social media. Lock your kids and spouse in another room if you have to. Do whatever it takes so that you won’t be distracted during this hour. I work in a light-controlled room, wearing noise-canceling headphones, using a single large monitor to avoid distractions.
Do whatever it is you need to do to make this hour work for you. I have some productivity tips. But, to write these 500 words, you essentially just need to feel enthusiastic about your subject, have a distraction-free environment, and execute. Once a day, every day.
You’ll eventually find that 500 words per hour is very achievable. Even if your post requires moderate research, it’s still only 8 words per minute. Heck, this paragraph alone is 42 words. Almost there! 11 more paragraphs of this size, and you’re done.
Move All Your Post Ideas Into Draft
I used to put all of my blog post ideas into a Trello board and work on them one at a time from start to finish. This was a huge mistake!
Not only did I waste time and energy managing all the posts in Trello. The cause of my writer’s block was feeling like I needed to finish a post I lost interest in before starting the next post.
When all your post ideas are in draft, you can choose which one interests you the most during today’s writing hour. I find that’s what gets me to write the 500 words per day the fastest.
The dark side of this approach is if you’re constantly orphaning half-finished posts, you’ll fail at blogging. Sooner or later, you have to bite the bullet and publish the damn article.
I find that any productivity I lost through orphaned posts is made up for by the 500 words that get written each day. If you’re writing 15,000 words a month, you’re going to be publishing blog posts quickly (even if several posts get abandoned).
Why You Shouldn’t Use a Blog Schedule or Calendar
Some people seek out “accountability.” In college, they learned pulling an all-nighter the day before something was due was good enough. In adulthood, they continue to seek out that type of pressure to get things done.
This is a bad habit.
With blogging, more posts are always better. Meaning you will put that type of stress on your body every few days forever with the accountability strategy. I can’t think of a more obvious way to experience creator burnout.
I see new bloggers (and YouTubers) fall into this exact trap over and over again. They write 30 posts on a mental deadline, see no results (because you need 100-400 posts), then they quit forever. Stop doing this!
Simply clear an hour a day and attempt to write 500 words (and forgiving yourself if you fail). That’s so much healthier than creating an arbitrary schedule so that your body feels enough constant stress to get the work done.
You Can’t Be Successful Posting Once a Month
I sometimes get pushback when I tell people you need 100-400 blog posts to reach full-time income numbers while blogging in 2021. People will say, “But, Backlinko or Wait, But Why did it, they barely post once a month, and they’re successful.” To which I say…
- These Blogs started 10 years ago, back when Google was less saturated.
- These blogs accumulated outrageous numbers of backlinks.
- Backlinko and Wait, But Why? currently have 173 and 193 blog posts, respectively
- Brian Dean and Tim Urban have 116k and 342k Twitter followers, respectively. They’re effectively minor celebrities at this point. They can drive traffic to their websites in a way you can’t.
Will you be the outlier that generates a full-time income blogging with only 30 posts?
No, you won’t.
Luckily, if you can write 500 words per day, you don’t need to. You’ll generate 100+ posts in roughly a year if you can stick to that schedule. That’s pretty achievable, and in only an hour per day!