Every once in a while I get asked the question, "Is it important for me to post to my blog frequently?" My answer: Yes, it is very important. And here's a perfect, real-world example of why it's so very important.
Posting to your blog on a frequent basis keeps your readers engaged and interested, which keeps them coming back for more. If there's one thing most people can't stand, it's going to a blog over and over again and seeing nothing but old content on it. Eventually, your readers may forget about you forever and never visit your blog again. And no one wants that!
But there's another reason why posting is so important...the search engines. Not updating your content frequently will lower your rankings in the search engines. The search engines look for updated content and take it into account when ranking sites. So you want to make sure that you're posting quality content to your blog as often as you can.
A Perfect Example
Now for that real-world example I was talking about. As most of you know, I was recently hit by lighting. OK, not me exactly; my high-speed modem was hit (I mentioned it here in this post). And that lightning strike kept me offline for about five days, which really took a toll on my blog traffic.
Lately, I've been averaging around 217 visitors per day. But since I was offline for many days, and unable to update this blog, my traffic had dipped significantly. And then, shortly after I was back online and had posted a few times, it made its climb back up again. Just take a look at my stats and you'll see what I mean.
As you can see in the bar graph below, the traffic levels are directly following my posting habits. No posts and they dip down. New posts and they climb back up. You can even see the direct result of my not having posted anything since Saturday. On Sunday and Monday the levels slowly began to creep down again.
Now, fluctuations are not always this severe. But here's real-world proof that they can be if you don't post frequently on your blog. And judging by my other stats, the majority of these fluctuations aren't due so much to the search engines themselves. They're mostly due to the many awesome subscribers I have to my FeedBurner site feed and Feedblitz. My readers know exactly when I have fresh, new content on here and that's when they swing by to read it! Of course, there are other variables as well (like Digg and such), but that's for another post.
So the moral of the story is simple. Keep those blogs alive and breathing folks! Post quality content and post it often!