Most Blogs Fail. Why?7 min read

At least once a year someone out there publishes a long article announcing the imminent demise of the blog. More bloggers than ever are giving up, content saturation is alienating a lot of readers, and the rise in popularity of different mediums will be the final nail in the coffin.

The truth?

It’s always been like this.

Out of all the bloggers I’ve networked with when I launched my first blog in 2012, only a dozen or so still publish regularly.

Out of all the bloggers that I’ve personally coached, only a dozen or so still publish regularly.

And out of all the people who decide to start a blog this year, only a small percentage of them will still publish new content regularly by the end of the year.

But why?

1. Blogging Is Easy To Learn, Difficult To Master

It’s a bit ironic, but the fundamentals of blogging are easy to learn. Blogging has become so popular precisely for this reason.

You can launch a blog within a couple of hours, with no prior skills and no upfront costs.

Even after that, understanding the elements of a blog post, the stages of writing a blog post, and even the fundamentals of email marketing, for instance, don’t require a lot of time and effort.

On the other hand, once you want to go beyond the ABCs of blogging, that’s when it gets kind of tricky.

For one, because it’s no longer about tactics (the actionable steps you can take to do something), but more about strategies and frameworks.

Secondly, because it’s no longer just about writing. In fact, the closer you get to reaching the highest level, the more you realize that a blog is simply a distribution channel, that you are effectively a creative entrepreneur who’s building a brand around a content creation strategy that also happens to include a blog.

But there’s a third reason as well, which leads me to my next point.

2. The Ecosystem Is Ultra-Competitive

The ones who prophesize the imminent death of blogging are too busy to notice the fact that the bottom is overcrowded and over-saturated with mediocre content.

On the other hand, there’s a thriving ecosystem of blogs at the top, the 0.1% that capture 99.9% of the traffic, engagement, and money.

Yes, anyone can blog, and almost anyone can easily master the fundamentals, but those aren’t enough to get you your first 1,000 readers, let alone allow you to earn an income blogging or even build a micro-monopoly in a relatively new niche.

Think about it.

Blogging is such a powerful distribution and marketing channel that companies invest millions and millions of dollars, hiring entire teams of people to produce high-quality content.

That’s why it’s important to go beyond the basics, to master your blog’s main topic, and to become part of the conversation that goes on within your niche.

3. The Dunning-Kruger Effect

There’s this frustrating trend I’ve noticed with most bloggers I’ve worked with.

Usually, it goes like this. I provide them with an initial feedback upon going through their blog, offer them some advice during our first one-on-one call, which they implement.

And then, they just decide they know better. They decide it is easy, and it’s usually when they really want to do something really petty that I advise against (like using white text on a black background for extremely long articles) that they decide blogging is really easy, I know nothing, and they’re better off doing their own thing.

And that’s how they fail.

Because, let’s be honest, the moment you think there’s nothing more to learn, that’s when everyone else begins to surpass you.

Believe me. I’ve been there. And this ecosystem is moving so fast (because it’s so competitive) that you’ll get run over if you decide to take it slow, let alone if, in your arrogance, you believe you’ve already reached the top.

You risk becoming irrelevant even if you were once the top authority within your niche, let alone if you’re some new blogger who’s become so seduced by the illusion of mastery that you stop trying to find ways to upgrade your skills.

4. Blogging Is Not Writing

Most people get in this game because they have a writer’s brain. They like to tell stories, they appreciate a clever wordplay, they want their own experiences to mean something to someone else.

And while writing is a core skill of blogging, the truth is that, especially in the long run, turning off that writer brain from time to time is one of the best things you can do.

I know this from firsthand experience.

First of all, I know for sure that writing isn’t the only skill required for blogging success. After all, here I am, crazy Romanian kid, having built some of the most successful blogs in the world, and English isn’t even my first language.

Secondly, in order to level up, I had to quiet my “writer brain” and shift my identity from that of a writer to that of a blogger, and then as I had to embrace skills outside of writing, I had to shift once again and call myself a creative entrepreneur.

Otherwise? I would have struggled to earn a full-time income blogging.

Now, here’s how I think about writing. It’s one of many skills that one has to acquire on the journey to the blogging stratosphere.

And writing, even brilliant writing, won’t get you readers or get you paid.

Why?

Because without taking advantage of distribution channels, without knowing who your target audience is, where to find them, and how to attract them, you’re effectively writing in a void. And more content (or even better content) won’t help you.

And about getting paid… unless you understand that blogs don’t make money, but rather the businesses behind them, you’ll be forced to rely on 3 of the worst performing monetization channels available (ads, affiliate marketing, and sponsored content.) And that’s only if you’re lucky enough to be in a niche that enables affiliate marketing, otherwise, you’ll be forced to recommend vaguely relevant books from Amazon.

Early on, writing is the skill that needs to be developed, yes. And improving your writing skills or adapting to better suit the medium will require a lot of your time and energy.

But after that?

Writing becomes one skill, just like any other.

Right now, I’m more frustrated with my copywriting and with my inability to speak clearly in front of a camera than I am focused on improving my writing.


These are the four main reasons why most blogs fail.

Most blogs fail because of self-imposed limitations, wrong assumptions, and the belief that becoming a successful blogger is somehow easy.


If you’re just starting out as a blogger, I highly recommend that you download our growth kit.

I’ve put together this set of five unconventional resources that will help you on your journey towards the blogging stratosphere, and you can download them for free by clicking the button below.

Default image
Cristian Mihai
Became Internet famous by the age of 23. Never recovered. I write short author bios all over the web. I’m an acquired taste. Don’t like me? Acquire some taste.
Articles: 141

40 Comments

  1. I’ve stated by blog almost 3 years ago and I post every day. But hardly any improvement in metrics.

    • 1. You’re in one of the most competitive niches out there. Everyone, from banks to fintechs to entrepreneurs, blogs about finance, wealth, and success.
      2. Most of the articles I went through are just quotes taken from somewhere. They barely work on Instagram anymore, let alone on a proper blog.
      3. The articles I did find, are rather short (and nothing spectacular about them), and they wouldn’t have worked to build an audience a decade ago, let alone today.
      4. The theme can use some improvements.

      That’s about it! Of course, I have no idea of how you distribute and promote your blog, whether you use email marketing, social media marketing, and if/how you network and engage others within your niche, so those are also factors to consider.

      Hope this helps!

  2. My blog has failed multiple times but I come back to try again. This time, I will not fail and that’s because I’ve learned from my mistakes, and I will not falter. I have also decided to make podcasts alongside my blog posts to give myself an edge over other bloggers. It gives my posts a voice to the writer which I think people will really love.

    • Podcasts are tricky. Been trying to make one for a long time. I have the equipment, I have the software. I just don’t have the skill and the inner confidence, so it’s difficult to gain enough momentum to actually be consistent.

      In ofher words, it kind of feels like a waste of time, because I could be writing an entire article in the time it takes me to record and (try to) edit a podcast.

      • I get that, and podcasting isn’t for everyone because it’s very much like creating videos. Although videos are easier to track because of YouTube and podcasts are in a weird stage where it’s not easy to “discover”.

        Mine are usually no longer than 10 minutes because the 9-minute mark is the magic sauce for podcast episodes. I barely edit mine because I like to give it that “raw” vibe but I understand that most people want something more polished. Much like blogging, it’s a learning curve and you should start it because you enjoy doing it. I know my wife is always listening to my episodes and I’m always recording for her. If anyone else listens, then that’s a bonus.

      • I know I shouldn’t edit an episode like crazy, and that I should work on my skill to just talk without sounding like I am brain dead every 12 seconds, but still… even so, I do add some filters, noise reduction, that kind of stuff. Not an awful lot of time, but still.

        Will keep in mind the 10 minute mark though.

        I’ve seen a lot of podcasts that are quite long (40+ minutes) and I kept wondering how on earth folks can talk for that long.

        Also, another thing that kind of hinders me is the fact that the most interesting podcasts I’ve listened to are either narrated by folks who are incredibly good at it (you could listen to them curse you, and you’d be okay with it) or interviews.

  3. I just arrived to this world and trying to learn as much as possible. I hope with consistency I’ll keep up with the flow!

    Love your blogs and advices. Thanks for it.

    Márk

  4. I didn’t know that the “I know that” syndrome had a name. Good to know, and proof that I don’t know everything. Gave that up ages ago. So much learn!

  5. Great information for a new blogger and presented in a benign way! Thank you so much:)

  6. A new blogger here. Not really understanding the basics, Stats vary everyday and I don’t know the cause.
    For few days now, the traffic I get on my blog page reduced a lot. Please can you check on my blog, maybe I have a problem I haven’t noticed

  7. I am so thankful for the tips and tricks that you offer. Perhaps even more than the tips and tricks, which are great, I am thankful that you offer an honest perspective about blogging. Like so many others, I decided to put up a blog and was blissfully unaware of the competition and the vastness of the blogosphere. This article, in particular, has helped me redefine and define goals and objectives for my blog. Perhaps I will pick up some money from it, but likely not. At least I am not expecting people to subscribe for access to articles that I write that they can find elsewhere for free. Everyone’s voice is important and I should add mine to my communities. Thank you, though, for helping me grasp reality.

    • Hi Bob,

      Thank you! I also offered you some feedback in a reply to a previous comment of yours. Not sure if you’ve read that one.

      In any case. You seem a bit… demoralized. Making money from a blog is the last step. The very last. It’s so down the list that, after one and a half years of putting together online courses, I have yet to create one on blogging monetization.

      Work on your content, work on your branding, learn everything there is to know about content creation, marketing, distributing and promoting your content, guest blogging, writing a compelling about page, designing a visually appealing blog, email marketing…

      Once you grow your audience, and you have about 1,000 engaged followers, then you can begin to think about monetizing your blog.

  8. Hi Cristian,
    Do you do consultations to give people feedback on their blogs? I could use this. No one I know uses WordPress, and I don’t use social media either, so I’m in an unusual situation.

    • Only as part of the 0 to 5,000 Readers course, which you can find here: https://www.thebloggingacademy.xyz/from-0-to-5-000-readers-in-6-months

      I offer a written feedback as part of that and a 60 minute virtual call on the topic of growing one’s audience, mostly, because that’s what the course is about.

      I’m curious though. If they don’t use WordPress, what are they using? Not a lot of alternatives out there, And none that’s as beginner-friendly as WordPress.

      As for social media, I can tell you this: if you genuinely hate it, and don’t even use personal profiles and to procrastinate, it;s going to feel like un uphill battle. But it’s not a must-have. Seriously. Social media is just a bunch of distribution channels, and they’re all channels you rent. You don’t own the followers, subscribers, you don’t have access to their email addresses, so…

      If the distribution channels you own are strong (think in terms of blog + email newsletter), then that’s fantastic. Other than that… for promotion… guest blogging still works, and it can be a great substitute for social media platforms. You can also try different content aggregators and online forums, Quora, Reddit, stuff like that, even though networking and promoting there is a bit of a subtle art and might take a while for you to get the hang of it.

      I hope this helps!

      • Thank you! Yes this helps. I used to use social media, but it has been a few years now, and that was before I had thought about blogging. I like how you mentioned Quora. That’s a good idea. I’ll look into your class, too, and see if I have the time to do it. I appreciate your help.

  9. Hi, My blog shows my Self-Publishing updates, hikes, stories and poems. I’m in the process of giving the website a fresh look in the next couple of weeks (it looks a bit tired). Sometimes I feel I put my heart and soul into what I write and I only get a few views. I’ve experimented with different post lengths, posting a few times a week or just once. I’m going to keep persevering as I think that’s important. I love reaching out and sharing with others.

    • Hi Wayne,

      First of all, buy a domain name. It’s like $15 or something. It shows people you’re here to stay. It’s a must have.

      Secondly, like I said in the article, writing is but a small part of blogging.

      After all, there are bestselling authors who never sold anything during their lives, so…

      The quality of the writing is relative, subjective, and ultimately, experimenting with it for the sake of attracting readers will only frustrate you.

      What I recommend is this:
      1. Try to figure out who you want to attract. Who is your ideal reader? Who has the most to benefit from your blog?
      2. Find blogs that have that kind of audience. In your case, I reckon popular self publishers and writers and such.
      3. Analyze their blogs.
      4. What can you do better? What can you do different? What parts are boring and you can make entertaining?

      That will surey give you a head start. Also, if you download our growth kit, you can find a competitor analysis framework there, which you can use to better understand your competition.

      One more thing. Not sure how much time you spend actively promoting your blog, but it should be at least 30-40% of the time you spend working on your blog. The rest is for content creation.

      • Hi Cristian, Thanks loads for all the advice. I’ve been following up on this and researching how to make my site better in the last few days. So much to do as a new author in terms of the website, Twitter, Facebook etc. But I see that things are slowly coming together and it’s all worth it 😊

  10. Cristian, this is a great post! Very relevant. I’ve been humor blogging since 2016 and have watched some of my favorite bloggers just stop. They write a book then no more blog. How can you just stop blogging and leave the fans dry? Sorry, I digress. But you are completely right when you say getting started and the basics are the easy part. Thinking you know it all after that is fake news. We all have to keep learning and reading. You are one of the first blogs I check on the daily! Thanks!

    • Thank you so much for reading and for fhe compliment!

      Funny thing, this post is written mostly from first hand experience. I thought there was nothing more to learn. Terrible mistake.

      So, yeah, learned the hard way that there’s no top of the mountain, and just how competitive everything is.

      Just as an example. So I am in a pretty simple niche. Blogging advice. Lots of blogs about that.

      But attracting the best customers, so to speak, are actually big marketing blogs from some of the world’s most powerful companies. They attract most of the traffic.

      That’s why I try to do my thing, nurture relationships, and jusf treat this blog as nothing more than a side-project.

  11. Excellent post again, Cristian! Always look forward to your posts. Very insightful.

    I like your focus on how writing really isn’t the focus for a blog. Sure, it’s important to have great content that’s well-written, but if you don’t spread your blog out onto the internet – none of it matters.

    I’m still learning this (started about three months ago), but hoping to continue to increase my followers and readers with the help of your advice. Would love to take your course, just not an option right now financially-speaking. Maybe in the future.

    Keep up the good work as always!

  12. Amazing incites!
    I started my blog in May but I have been having trouble with keeping consistent because of equipment issues. Ever since it got harder to keep posting, there’s been a drop in the stats and I would really want to keep them up even with a few posts. How can I create high value content ?
    Thankyou.

  13. I love the page, this is all super informative and I can’t wait to read through everything. We’re just getting started on our blog and we’re trying to match that up with our Instagram and YouTube. I definitely appreciate you coming over and liking our post!

  14. I love this post! I really needed to hear this. I’m new to blogging. One of the many reasons I stayed away from it was the thought of writing into a void. I’m going to use some of your pointers. Thanks for sharing!

  15. Brilliant. Why do you think a dark background is not suitable for long texts?

    • It hurts the eyes. I know dark mode is all the rage, but it’s not as easy as changing your blog’s background to black and your font to white.

      Most bloggers who do this…the contrast is too abrupt.

      Even so, if by chance (and there’s a big chance) someone reads your article on something other than an OLED screen, it’s still going to hurt their eyes after a while.

      Either enable dark mode as an option, and let folks choose, or select a different background.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: