Do People Still Read Blogs? | How Reading Habits of People Have Changed?

Harshit Verma Harshit Verma
Jan 27, 2022 12 min read
Do People Still Read Blogs? | How Reading Habits of People Have Changed?

How many times have you heard people say, “reading is a good habit”? A million times, probably more than that. You go to the internet and you see people reading books.  The top one percent of people in the world are all voracious readers. You see the internet brimming with bibliophiles saying ‘hey, I read 37 books this year. Your friends reference some blogs and you forget to read them later. I mean just have a look at your unread bookmarks, you will feel careless. This poses a question, do we still like to read?

It's 2022 and the world is digitalised. We are in a pandemic and probably the alone-est. Alone is not scary, lonely is. The past two years have been the time when people are rethinking everything, from hobbies to careers. Many are changing things, shifting jobs, and inculcating more habits. Many are looking towards reading as a new hobby. When everything is digitalised, books are too, packing their bags. Let us discuss digital reading and blogs, eventually, we will try to ascertain if people still like to read blogs.

Books and Reading
Why is Reading Good? (Benefits of Reading Books)
How Reading Changed From Books to Blogs in the 21st Century?
Why People Don't Like to Read Anymore?
Is Blogging Still a Thing?
How to Get People to Read Your Blogs?
FAQ

Anecdote

In February 2018, something awe-striking happened. Elon Musk’s rocket left the atmospheric layers of earth and got into space. It was loaded with a car (A cherry red Tesla). The driver was a mannequin, dressed in a spacesuit. Amazing right?

Not just the mannequin and the car were launched in space but there was one more interesting thing that went on a trip. In the glove box of the car, a copy of Isaac Asimov’s Foundation book series was placed. These were the series of books that ignited Elon’s curiosity in science and space travel.

Books and Reading

A pen might be mightier than a sword but a book is what I like to call the mightiest. With this being said, what is so cool about books and reading?

Well, in the past it was hard to make a book, as there was no printing press. Then came a smart human, Johannes Gutenberg, who invented the printing press. Books printing started to take off. People were shocked and in awe because that was the latest tech by that time.

A collection of pages, which had knowledge in them. Reading became a mass hit. It became a sign of intelligence too. It’s been more than five hundred years since the invention of the printing press, but books are still a hit, still, a sign of intelligence and still have a lot of ‘might’ left in them. However, other things have changed. We, human civilization, have found a gemstone of a thing.

We have advanced technology to an extent when books seem a little old. The world is hyper-connected via the internet and the surrounding technology. Now information travels much faster than light. The current generation doesn’t like slow things. We need things fast.

Why is Reading Good? (Benefits of Reading Books)

Why is there so much hype about reading? Why do people boast about the number of books that they have read in a year? These can be some of the questions that can occur in your mind. This part of the article targets that specifically. Let us see how reading is good and what can it add to someone’s life.

Reading is an amazing habit to build and can do wonders for multiple reasons. Reading is a great exercise for your brain, it is entertainment (Not joking), it improves vocabulary and then your understanding. There is even more, reading improves sleep quality (We have all been there), reading is motivational and reduces stress. Let us see some benefits that really cannot be ignored.

Brain Exercise

You go to a gym and you run on a treadmill and you do some other workouts. This is physical fitness. The brain needs fitness too, otherwise, it will not be able to balance out things for you. Reading is a mental exercise or a workout for the brain. It is very hard to read without thinking and when you think, that is what we call a mental exercise. It is running a mile in the fields of thoughts. Good for brain health. The habit has been shown to reduce stress, boost brain functioning and even improve empathy

Enhances vocabulary

Reading books in a language that you don’t understand (completely) is also beneficial. For Indians who know mostly Hindi, reading in their second language will make them more strong in vocabulary.

Not only in a secondary language, reading in any language makes you a more aware person. When you are good with words and vocabulary of many sorts, you will see one more upgrade to yourself.

You will begin explaining and expressing yourself a lot more easily. It becomes a path in thinking better. Anyone who has been a walker on the path to clear thinking has done marvellous things in life. Just saying, you could be the next.

“Read what you love, until you love to read” - Naval Ravikant.

A very smart person (Naval) once said that one should read what he/she loves until he/she loves to read. This is so profound that I probably will fail to explain it in my words. Naval is often seen acting as an advocate for reading books and he too reads voraciously. It is just about love and not social pressure. It is pure curiosity that drives someone to read about something.

There is also a saying about reading. It goes like “Reading can seriously damage your ignorance”. It is so true, reading a book is doing actions without doing actions. It is a path to the author’s mind. You can live someone else’s life for some time with this instrument.

It is, however, changing, as technology covers the whole world. Let us see how technology has affected reading and knowledge.

How Reading Changed From Books to Blogs in the 21st Century

What is that one word that can aptly describe the twenty-first century? Obviously, the word would be technology. It has made things faster and more convenient than ever. This is literally magic that we have created. Humans love it so much. It has definitely changed not just reading habits but overall everything.

With everything being so fast, it is super hard to concentrate. The reason is, that concentration requires patience, something that we have lost long. We are now a generation of TLDR, or “Too long didn’t read”. We don’t read enough, as it is slow and thus, hard. We now talk less, text more read less, speak more.

Books as a source of knowledge have become quite obsolete. It has now become more efficient with the help of the internet. The transfer has become smarter and it now comes with a wider spread. Knowledge has shifted to the online medium.

People can study everything that they ever wanted. There is literally almost nothing that they cannot read about online. There are blogs, articles like this one and a lot more. There are specific websites that make writing posting and publishing easy. There are endless possibilities and shapes that ‘writing’ online can take. One famous example of it is blogs.

Blogs can be a formal word for many but it is one of the most common things that we see. A blog is a collection of articles that aims to provide some information to the audience. Like this one, StartupTalky is a collection of a lot of articles. It has insights, personalities and much more to cater to a wide audience that wants to read and know about startups. This is just one small example but there can be a lot more attached to it. There can be blogs about recipes, fitness and nutrition, travel diaries and the possibilities reach near to infinity.

Why People Don't Like to Read Anymore?

We have had enough of talking about why reading is super cool and how it has changed over the years. There is still one more thing to know. It is probably the most important thing to discuss in this article. Here, we will see why people don’t read. Why is it hard to read books, and are people still reading blogs?

We live in a world of endless leverage. One has a lot of things that one can create and we as an audience have a lot of options to watch from. In fact, we have the most options ever in the history of humanity. Then why is it that, most are scared of reading and try to hide from long-form texts? Do we still read blogs and websites?

Reading is hard

In this world where everyone wants faster and faster Google results, reading is slow. It is not just slow, it is painfully slow. Taking into notice the mini attention spans that we all have, reading is super difficult.

We are mostly accustomed to getting faster results on Google, and texts and videos on the internet. According to a report, about 85 percent of the users on YouTube play videos at a speed of about 1.5 times the normal.

We want things fast and looking at that aspect of our behaviour, internet companies give us fast things. These fast solutions and entertainment makes it hard to look at reading and thus, makes it difficult to pursue.

Reading is slow

After we notice that our attention spans are less or tiny, we might think that they are the problem but that is not true. However, it is an issue in reading but there is another aspect that makes the problem look bigger.

Reading is a slow process. Not only that, reading is painfully slow. It hurts your patience if you try to read every word and every page of a book or a blog or just about anything. That pain is not bearable to most humans and thus they say, reading is hard. But as they say, nothing significant comes without pain and suffering, applies here too.

If given a choice on reading a book, or watching a lecture, most people would choose the latter one. The reason is simply that a lecture by a teacher or a video lesson on YouTube is much more intuitive than a book. The fact that there are multiple and many alternatives to reading, makes reading a book hard work. It is also seen on the grounds of efficiency. Reading a book or a blog is probably not the best way to learn, as there are many faster ways available out there.

In a time when the creator economy is flourishing and has reached an all-time high, there is a lot of content out there too. Now you can just watch a YouTube video, buy a course online which has video lectures and can learn faster than a book. This is more efficient in many aspects. Saves time and well, time is the most valuable asset.

Mention blogging in these times of mini attention spans and they will probably laugh at you. They will mention that “Bro, no one reads a blog”, it's an old sport. Go watch some YouTube. Those words can hurt you and this article will do a little harm too. There is no lie in the above statement but the statement has some sort of hidden statistics. And numbers don’t lie. Obviously, there are more views on YouTube than blogs. In fact, views on YouTube are probably a million times more than those on blogs.

Here we are dividing timelines into three different categories. It is the bingeing of the internet spread. With internet speed all over the world, blogs became a very cool trend. Then came the time of faster internet and social media, which hurt blog reading and views. The third phase is the current phase, which you probably know more than us. Let us use this analogy to get to know about blogs. Specifically the beginning of blogs.


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Is Blogging Still a Thing?

In the past, there were a lot of people waiting online and typing more for their blogs than texting with random strangers. There were famous personal blogs in history. Not long ago but considering the speed of the internet, It was probably in the times of 2G. When YouTube used to buffer and reading was a lucrative option. That was the time when blogging at a personal scale used to be some hot thing. People used to look at it as a personal online diary. Note that, people mostly feel safe online than offline in terms of sharing emotions. It was the golden era of the blogging industry.

Then came the social media era when people started using them a lot. Social media added the benefits of a personal diary with friends and family. It was an instant hit. This marked quite the beginning of short-form content which spread like wildfire.

Buffering became history and 3G covered the world. It was the time of faster internet, faster results and the beginning of the short form and easy readings, Blogs were definitely hurt.

Then was another hit in the tech world. The fourth generation of the internet has hit the world. This was fast, speedy and could cover long areas, and even the world. The word spread, the 4G spread.

YouTube buffering vanished, social media upgraded with never seen before gear. Social media was now more capable than ever to hold more attention than ever. Short-form content took over the whole world and amassed the most number of views. Made some YouTubers super-rich. Blogs were traumatised.

In a sense, that second-generation (part) of bloggers still exists, but most lifestyle bloggers are realising that they need to step up their game. That is the only way they can convince their readers to stay interested.

Most people would not want to spend their time reading through a big blog that is full of “what I did today” type content. So personal blogs are becoming less of a thing every day. They have to see through the demands and that is how they can see where they are standing in the readability line. This will fetch them more views and can even offer better retention. But, and I say the BUT in capitals. There is hope and light here too.

While people are realising that their attention spans are deteriorating, they are swiping right at the idea of reading. Reading blogs, books and anything that intrigues them on the internet.


How to Create Quality Content that Ranks & bring Quality Traffic
Creating High quality content is a challenging task. These are the factors which affects the quality of your content and the best ways to use them in your favour.

How to Get People to Read Your Blogs?

Yes, it is true that people don’t generally get excited to open their phones and read about their bookmarked blogs. But it is not 100% true either. Retention of a blog can be the worst if not managed well. It can get lost in a heavy stream of information that is flowing online.  

To make people read your blogs, one can do a lot of things on his/her blogs. You can create YouTube videos that will help aid and air your blog. You can start multiple social media accounts to have some sort of diversification in your online journey.

You might think that Facebook (Now Meta)is old and gone, then you are wrong. It is one of the biggest social media ever created and thus, can help you garner an audience. You can do ads, or online shows and join or create some Facebook group that can help find further potential readers.

The next point is a very easy looking thing to do. It is hard by the way. The advice is to write skiable content. You can write to the point answers and avoid beating around the bushes. This will help most retention and even quench the thirst for quick readers which will eventually multiply your user base.

The one word to the question do people still read blogs is simply a yes. Yes, people do read blogs and they even read many blogs multiple times a day. You just have to create that blog that people read. Be more reader focussed than writer focused. Ranking matters a lot, as it increases visibility. With increased visibility, viewers and readers can increase extensively and invariably.

Conclusion

As we discussed, blogging as a daily soap has been reduced to a very less scale. It is not even scalable. Lifestyle bloggers have been hit the most. It is however not true that people don’t read blogs. They do and they even read that multiple times a day. This might be a shocking fact but it is true even in this generation of readers. However, to run a successful blog, a blogger has to look out for many factors.

If one format is not working or is not fetching many views, then it's time to upgrade, update or whatever it takes to improve retention. Most people don’t really search for a specific blog and read it, most of the readers stumble upon some blogs and they continue to read or not.

If they do, it is because the readability of the blog is excellent. There are multiple options to entertain ourselves today, why should one choose a blog. That is a lesson in there, improve readability to improve readability. True for people, true for blogs.

FAQ

What has replaced blogging?

Social media, short video and streaming platforms have replaced blogging.

Why do most bloggers fail?

Most bloggers fail to create content that engages the bloggers to read more as the attention spans of people are deteriorating.

Do personal blogs make money?

If you provide your readers with quality content that they won't find on any other blogs and run ads on your blog you can earn a decent amount of money from blogging.

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