In my early days as a content marketing manager, I was asked a tough question: how often should you blog to see results?
As a newly minted manager, I felt obligated to offer an accurate and well-informed response.
But I simply didn’t have one at the time.
Fast forward to today, I’ve helped companies build powerful content marketing engines. Having learned from experts and from my own mistakes, I finally have a nuanced answer to this question.
Read this article to unpack my advice on how often you should post a blog.
Table of Contents
- How often should you blog?
- How often should you post a blog for a company vs. an individual?
- 3 Parameters to Set a Healthy Publishing Frequency
- How often should you update your blog?
How often should you blog?
After years of building powerful content marketing engines for several companies, I have realized that the actual answer to the question — how often should you blog — is it depends.
I admit this isn’t the most helpful advice for those who expected to find a plug-and-play strategy or a fixed number of articles to publish in a month, quarter, or year.
But, the truth is, scoring top search rankings isn’t nearly as easy as publishing [x] articles a month and calling it a day, considering search is your top priority.
Talking about search, there are many moving parts to a successful SEO strategy.
And it doesn’t work on a set-and-forget approach. The rules of the SEO game are constantly evolving with every algorithm update, and your strategy should change with it.
In fact, here’s a snapshot of Google’s 2023 updates showcasing how many times Google has updated its algorithm in 2023:
If you want to use your blog as an instrument to level up your SEO performance, here’s what you should consider to decide your publishing frequency:
- Blog maturity: A new website or blog will need a lot more content to get on Google’s radar and build topical authority. On the other hand, a more mature blog site will already start ranking for relevant topics and keywords, considering the fact that Google considers it credible and authoritative. After all, you can’t put junk content on your website and expect your blog posts to rank high on Google. That being said, if your blog isn’t at least a year old, you should aim to publish 6-8 posts a month around a few important and promising topic clusters aligned with your brand.
- Content depth: The complexity of your content is another huge factor to consider for finalizing your publishing frequency. If you’re writing for a complicated niche with more effort-intensive research, it’s best to prioritize quality over quantity. You should aim for 2-4 posts a month, focused around highly-relevant topic clusters and a strong distribution plan. If you can find a way to scale without compromising the quality, kudos to you!
- Available resources: Setting lofty goals without the bandwidth to implement your strategy can be counterproductive. You should first take stock of all available resources for your blogging setup, like writers, editors, graphic designers, publishers, SEO strategists, etc. Then, decide on a realistic number of blogs you can post regularly.
Coming back to what I mentioned earlier, the actual number of articles to publish each week/month for boosting SEO differs from case to case.
In general, you can decide on a good number based on the three criteria below.
How often should you post a blog for a company vs. an individual?
With tools like HubSpot’s blog maker, it’s easier than ever to start a personal blog. You don’t need any coding skills or design expertise. Just sign up for free, and you’re ready to roll.
However, running a company blog is significantly different from blogging as an individual.
The former usually includes a more flexible publishing schedule, and sharing personal insights. In fact, research suggests that every one in 10 bloggers has no regular cadence.
On the other hand, businesses use blogs to drive targeted traffic to their website and win potential leads. A company blog is more polished in design and often follows a fixed publishing calendar based on a detailed content strategy.
Whether you have a personal blog or you run a company blog, if your objective is to gain search traffic, your publishing frequency will depend on the three factors we discussed above.
But the answer to ‘how often should you blog’ will differ for companies and individuals depending on these three parameters.
As a company, ask yourself: what are our content marketing goals? Do we want to build brand awareness, generate leads, or increase customer engagement? Or do all of that?
Your blogging frequency (and topics) will rely on your goals.
For example, if you want to generate leads and drive sign-ups through content, then you should publish a few high-quality bottom-of-the-funnel (BoFU) articles each month initially.
However, for this to work, you also need to have a strong distribution plan. Otherwise, your audience will never find these articles.
The same applies to you if you’re an individual blogger.
Ask yourself: what are my goals? Do I have any? Am I doing this as a hobby? Or to document my experiences? Or do I have any revenue goals?
If you’re doing this as a side hobby and don’t really have any revenue expectations, then casual blogging with less emphasis on optimization and frequency might be sufficient.
However, if you have a revenue-driven goal, you need to follow the same approach as a business.
2. Level of Expertise
Companies and bloggers can’t afford to ignore this factor when deciding the number of blogs to publish each month.
Put simply, the number would ultimately boil down to your expertise. For example, consider this question: do you have enough expertise to publish value-packed content five times a month?
If your answer is yes, then you can experiment with this cadence. If your answer is no, it’s best to publish a lower number of posts, but make them your best work.
This simple criterion debunks the more popularly followed practice of publishing every week.
Benji Hyam, the co-founder of a content marketing agency Grow and Convert, demonstrates why this isn’t true. He shows conclusive proof of the results generated from his schedule of publishing once every 1-2 months.
However, it’s important to note that Benji is a well-known content leader in the SaaS space, with various podcasts, webinars, and articles under his name.
So, the results of his 1-post per month strategy could also be coming through his thought leadership and credibility in the market.
3. Expected Return on Investment
Since most companies follow a more formalized content strategy, they often pursue measurable results like a % increase in traffic, conversion rates, sign-ups, referral traffic, etc. That essentially means their blogging ROI can be quantified.
You can use these metrics to determine your publishing frequency and run a few experiments.
For example, if a few blogs are reporting high conversion rates, you can quickly publish more blogs around similar topics to tap into this growing demand.
On the other hand, individual bloggers don’t usually have a clearly defined ROI.
They can publish new blogs for self-fulfillment or audience engagement. In this case, the publishing velocity entirely depends on personal preferences.
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3 Parameters I Consider to Set a Healthy Publishing Frequency
As a content manager, I consider three factors to decide the right publishing frequency for any brand. These factors are a part of my content audit process when working with a new client.
Let me explain each factor in detail.
1. New vs. Old Content
The proportion of new and old content gives me a clear indication of what I should do first: publish more articles or refresh existing pieces. I conduct a thorough audit to see what kind of content already exists and how it’s performing.
Up until now, if the company had a low publishing cadence, my focus would be on putting out more articles on relevant topics.
However, if the company already has a lot of old content, I ask myself: should we refresh these pieces?
If there are articles with a significant drop in rankings or traffic lately, I focus on optimizing these pieces to align with the current search intent.
The focus is less on creating net-new content and more on giving older pieces a facelift to win back those rankings.
I also unpublish or delete old content that isn’t relevant and can’t help me achieve my long-term goals.
2. Competitor Authority
Another factor I consider when deciding how often to post a blog is the authority and content maturity of competing brands.
If only a few competitors have higher authority and hundreds of published articles, I’ll gradually build momentum to create a steady publishing cadence.
However, if several of my competitors have massive content libraries and strong SEO performance, I aim to publish more frequently to reach the same level as these brands.
3. Budget and Bandwidth
Lastly, I can never overlook a company’s budget and bandwidth for publishing new blogs.
If it’s a small team with no external/freelance support, then publishing blogs for SEO success will be an uphill battle. So, I shift my focus to creating more insightful, expert-backed content to establish thought leadership.
But if given a good budget and enough resources, I go for a range of 5-10 articles every month, targeting buyers in the middle and bottom of the marketing funnel.
How often should you update your blog?
The pattern is clear.
You can publish new content at a high velocity or publish new content less frequently along with updating existing articles.
Remember that even the best-performing articles sitting on the top of search results for months can dip in rankings and lose their impact.
The result? No visibility, no traffic.
There’s a hidden opportunity in these old, decayed articles.
You can refresh the content and tune it to your audience’s pain points/aspirations for better results.
From my experience, this revamp can be a completely new look with hardly any traces of the old content, or it can be a mix of new and old content supporting the topic.
Recently, I have been helping the content marketing team at Scribe, an AI-powered documentation tool, refresh their old articles to improve their search engine rankings and increase conversion rates — as well as write new content.
This balanced approach has brought in excellent results —higher traffic coming from updated posts and more real estate on organic search with new articles.
Lauren Funaro, the Head of Content at Scribe, was kind enough to share results from our August refresh projects:
Besides this revamp, you can also optimize articles that are almost hitting your goals.
For example, an article ranking at #11 is an opportunity for getting to the first page. You can update this content to make it more competitive and value-packed than other results.
Essentially, I believe the answer to ‘how often should you update your blog’ comes down to your content performance.
If high-ranking articles are performing poorly or any content needs a little push to rank higher, you can update the blog for better results.
It’s a continuous process of evaluating performance and finding opportunities rather than a fixed number/range.
Don’t Restrict Yourself to a Rigid Blogging Frequency
The bottom line is, there’s no one-size-fits-all formula to succeed with a blog.
Whether you’re at a company or blogging personally, the number of posts to publish every month depends on several factors—we covered the most critical ones in this article.
Remember to consider these factors in line with your business objectives and make an informed decision. Besides, the key to setting a good publishing cadence is constantly testing your blog performance.
So, get ready to audit, strategize, and publish your best content.