An In-Depth Look at The Science of Blog Timing

When it comes to the science of blog timing, the main thing people think about is when to publish a blog post. That is, of course, very important when it comes to blogging, but it’s not the only timing consideration you need to make.

With business blogging, you also have to think about the timing of:

  • How often you publish blog posts
  • When to promote them
  • How long to keep up with community engagement
  • When you can repurpose your content

In today’s post, we will be covering those specific blog timing issues and how to find the right timing for your blog content.

How Often to Post

The first timing question that arises when planning a content strategy for a business blog is how often to post. If you’re in social media and you follow blogs like Mashable, it’s easy to be immediately overwhelmed by the thought that you have to post multiple times daily. Most businesses will find it challenging to post even once weekly, let alone once daily.

The thing to remember is that your business doesn’t have to be a news organization – it is a product or service provider. Your customers will probably be happier that you are spending time developing your latest product and answering their questions over just pumping out content.

When it comes to determining the frequency at which you should publish blog posts, you can always start by taking a look at your competitor’s blogs. If you’re a small business, make sure you are looking at other small businesses in your industry, as opposed to medium to large businesses that may have more of a content budget than yours. You might find that in your industry, one post a week will do whereas other industries may need a couple of posts per week.

You should also look at your business’ blogging goals. Typically, blogs that publish often (daily or more) are looking to gain a massive amount of consistent traffic. But a successful business blog doesn’t have to have a huge amount of traffic – it just needs to attract traffic that is likely to convert. Hence, it’s not about frequency, but content. Take the time to:

  • Define your target audience / potential customers.
  • Think about the types of topics your target audience would be interested in.
  • Write posts on those topics.
  • Keyword optimize your posts (especially the titles) so your target audience can find them in search.
  • Add a call to action at the end of each post to encourage your audience to subscribe to your mailing list or check out your products / services.

If you follow the above tips when it comes to your blog content, posting at least once a week should give you great results.

When to Publish Posts

Check out this awesome infographic covering the timing of post publishing. All times are listed in EST unless otherwise noted.

science of social timing part 3 blogging

With any blog or industry, it boils down to being aware of where your target audience is located. If your business only targets people living in California, then you will want to publish your post during prime time West Coast hours. If your business targets people on the East Coast, then obviously prime your blog for East Coast hours.

For the most part, it’s about your goals (comments, social shares, links, subscribers, etc.) and experimenting to find the best times to achieve those goals. Try publishing at different times (right at midnight, early in the morning, for an East Coast morning audience vs. a West Coast morning audience, etc.) and measure your results. If your goal is to get a lot of mailing list subscribers, and you notice that posting at midnight helps you achieve that goal, then that is your best publishing time.

When to Share Posts on Social Media

The next timing issue that arises when it comes to publishing blog posts is when to share them on social networks. Fortunately with Twitter, you can actually share your new blog post more than once by varying the timing and the title of your post. But with other networks like Facebook, Google+, and others, you can only share once.

Again, this comes back to knowing your target audience and, of course, experimentation. Start by aiming for prime time hours for your target audience’s location. Then play around, posting at different times, and measuring the results. You can measure your results using a few different apps and platforms.

Measuring Tweet Performance with Buffer

buffer app for twitter timing

Buffer offers a simple Analytics dashboard that can help you determine what time is best for tweets by showing you the retweet, click, exposure, mentions, and favorites generated by tweets you have shared at a particular time during the day.

Measuring Update Performance with Insights

Facebook insights

If you go to your Facebook page’s Insights, you can see a section for Page Posts on the Overview screen. Here, you can hover over the dates of your status updates and see what times you posted them, then compare the times to the reach, engaged users, and other stats relating to that post.

Measuring Popularity with the Google+ Timestamp

google plus timestamp

Since Google+ doesn’t offer Analytics (yet), your best bet to see which posts were most successful on your Google+ feed is to simply hover over the date you published them, look at the time, and then look at the number of shares, +1′s, and comments. On the upside, you can take this same approach on your competitor’s Google+ profiles & pages to see when their most popular publishing time is and schedule yours accordingly to target similar audiences.

How Long to Respond to Comments

The next timing issue when it comes to blogging has to do with your community engagement, specifically blog comments. If you don’t get blog comments that often, then replying to them should be a piece of cake. But what if you get dozens of comments per post? Depending on how often you publish posts, you could be dealing with lots of comments on a daily basis. Hence, you might want to consider putting a time limit on responding to comment unless someone has a specific question.

Also, you may want to consider potentially closing blog comments. There are pros and cons of doing this. The pros of closing comments after a specific time period such as 30 to 60 days after the post is published is that you reduce the number of comments to respond to on a daily basis. It will also reduce the amount of comments you need to moderate and the amount of blog comment spam you receive.

The con of closing blog comments is that you might miss out on responses from readers who arrive to your post through search or other sites that link to your content. Those readers might get a bit frustrated when they can’t respond or ask questions about your content as well. So it really boils down to how much time your business has to devote to community management vs. creating fresh new content.

When to Repurpose Your Blog Posts

Last, but not least, you will need to consider when you can successfully repurpose your blog’s content. For example, some businesses will publish a series of blog posts, then compile that series into a free eBook used to incentivize new subscribers to a mailing list. Another example is businesses that take their blog content and recreate it in the form of podcasts or video.

The best part about repurposing is that you can do it anytime without hurting your blog content. As a matter of fact, the sooner you repurpose it, the better your audience’s response will be because they are already interested in the repurposed content’s topics thanks to your blog posts. The only thing you have to watch out for is digging too far back into your archives and repurposing out-of-date content without updating it first!

In Conclusion…

When it comes to timing and your blog, you’ll always discover the best posting frequency, times of day to publish, times to share, length of engagement, and opportunity to repurpose if you follow the following tips.

  • Research your competitors to see how they are successfully timing their blog posts and promotion.
  • Set goals for your blog – do you want your posts to receive lots of traffic, comments, social shares, or lead generation subscriptions?
  • Experiment with different posting frequency, publishing times, and promotion times then measure your results to see which timing is best to achieve your goals.

About the Author: Kristi Hines is a freelance writer, professional blogger, and social media enthusiast. Her blog Kikolani focuses on blog marketing for personal, professional, and business bloggers. You can follow her on , Twitter, and Facebook.

  1. Hey Kristi, I really like this post and want to apply some of these tricks to my blog. I just have a question. What are the best times for me to post on Twitter and Facebook if I have a 50/50 readers in AUS and US? this might be a silly one but this gets me as I have been posting 2-3 times a day and buffering messages 5x a day between 8-5 pm EST but my analytic aren’t so good. At night time when I sometimes check my account I see tweets saying goodmorning and it stuns me. should I perhaps be posting 24/7?
    lol
    Thanks, Sheena

    • Hi Sheena! Twitter is nice because you can repeat updates – just schedule your post twice at times best suited for your US visitors (usually EST) and AUS visitors with the original title and a variation of the title. Facebook, you might want to aim for the readers who are most likely to share your content socially as they can help spread the word about it through more timezones. :)

  2. Very practical and understandable stuff. Thanks, Kristi!

  3. Such an amazing article – thank you! I post about twice a week and usually around 5am. As for social media, I post as many times on Twitter as I can without being spammy. Facebook and LinkedIn, I post at different times using Facebook scheduling and Hootsuite for LinkedIn profile and groups. I also really LOVE, LOVE Buffer. I find that using a combination of posting/automation tools like this is the best way to get the most bang for your buck on your blog.

    • Definitely – Buffer is a life saver when it comes to curating good content on your social accounts without having to think about manually scheduling each piece!

  4. Thanks for a super post that covers all aspects of posting. I post a lot of website tutorials. Even though Monday is a high read/engage day, it’s usually not a good day for folks to actually do the things in the tutorial. I’m thinking about switching my editorial calendar to focus on more strategy/info posts early in the week and leaving tutorial posts for later in the week, like Thursday. Then, perhaps doing a wrap up short post on Saturday so folks can be reminded to return to the tutorials and actually do them across the weekend. I also have found that posting on social media in the early evenings and Saturday mornings gets a lot more engagement, especially from women.

    So, while the stats in the infographics are nice to know, I’d like to see the subject matter of the blogs from which the information was collected and whether it is close to the type of audience I have and topics I post about most.

    • Topic can make a big difference when it comes to when you post. My husband notices a good bit more traffic on weekends for his photography than I do for my blogging stuff, and I would guess it’s because people are more likely to casually browse hobbies on their free time vs. at work. I think the infographic is geared more towards those targeting a business audience with topics that audience would read about at work. Working on tutorials is probably done on off hours for the working group, so maybe that’s why right before a weekend kicks them off better! Again, it’s all down to trial, error, and finding the rhythm best suited for your audience! :)

  5. It is like going back to school, and having to learn the basics before going ahead to more advanced tasks… Social timing is indeed a science! I had never realised that the habits/psychology/behaviour of the readers is such a major factor when posting a blog, it almost seem obvious now after reading this article! Trust me, it was not obvious before.

  6. Wow, this is a fundamental research. I cannot say how helpful that will be. Thank you very much, I am adding this page to favorites and will analyze it over the weekend. Thank you.

  7. Now thats something serious and all those who are related to above profession please kindly spend some time on it. As same almost same things i have been telling to my students and it really helps alot , end of the day you get rewarded as well

  8. Absolutely right!You might find that in your industry,one post a week will do wheres other industries may need a couple of post,so you must try to post daily,for your blog ,for much traffic.
    Thanks you lot.

  9. Great post. These are exactly the blogging stats I’ve been looking for… and it’s great to have them in pics as I hate reading. :-p But honestly, this is awesome information!
    However, not to be negative ned – but maybe a little controversial (I’m told that gets views)… But this talk about watching your competition, well, im not a fan of it. Be you and do that well. AB test you. Remarkable products standout (purple cows right?), not 100 version of the same thing.
    Or maybe we should design a program that sends out a tweet right after a competitors blog tweets. :-p “Spotlight thief.” Plus then we don’t have to think about when we tweet. If someone builds that let me know…

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