What Makes me Keep Reading a Post? + Tips on How to Implement those Things!

Congrats. You’ve gotten me to visit your blog and click on one of your blog posts. Now here’s how to make sure that I read your post until the very end! (Because I have limited time each day, and I’d rather spend it reading quality posts.)

Hello, I’m back with another how-to post! I love reading these kinds of posts, and I’ve tried my hand at writing some of my own. Am I completely unqualified to write them? Probably. But that’s not gonna stop me because they’re so fun to write, and this is my blog! Plus, maybe some people actually find them helpful or something.

Blog Aesthetic

Hello, I’m Caitlin, and I love pretty things! You know who else does? Basically everyone else in the entire world.

Image result for pretty gif

I think blog aesthetic is the number one thing that new book bloggers get wrong. I know that I certainly did. I never got to screenshot what my blog looked like in my first three or so months of book blogging, but it looked horrendous, I tell you.

Blog aesthetic is a nice way to drive people to your blog. But it’s also essential in keeping them interested in reading what you have to say. I almost never read posts using the WordPress Read*r. I respect everyone who does—it’s a great way to keep track of new posts from the blogs you follow. But I always visit the actual site, 1) because it’s better for the blog’s stats (Marie told me about this), and 2) because I love to see everyone’s blog aesthetic.

Did you upload a blog header? A blog background? Featured images? Congrats! Now make sure that they actually look good and coordinate with each other. There’s nothing that gets me to stop reading a post faster than an ugly blog design.

Another Book in the Wall

The list of things that go into a nice blog aesthetic is long, at least for me. But I think the most important thing to do is to think of a brand! It’s good to have an object that people associate with you (e.g. Kat @ Novels & Waffles ➣ waffles), but sticking to a theme and color palette is way more important. One person who I don’t associate an object with as opposed to a “vibe” and color palette is Kelly @ Another Book in the Wall.

Limiting the fonts, colors, etc. you use in designing your blog is so important because it helps you become more memorable. It also allows your aesthetic to appear way more neat and cohesive.

Also, please don’t make your font sizes too small!! I have no idea why you hate me and my eyesight so much.

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Blogging Voice

When I first started blogging, I had no idea what people were saying when they threw around terms like blogging voice and writing voice. “Doesn’t everyone write the same way?” I wondered. Well, no, people do not write the same way, past Caitlin. Sure, we may be recycling old topics and post ideas over and over again, but what makes them unique is our writing voices.

Having a blogging voice is an essential part of being a blogger. It’s what makes me feel like someone is talking to me through their writing. And any blogging voice is a great one if it allows a blogger’s personality to ~s h i n e.

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You only have to follow one piece of advice in order to have a good blogging voice: Be Yourself. This is an age-old piece of advice, but I’m telling you: It’s golden. You may constantly be reading posts from bloggers that crack witty jokes, use an excessive amount of exclamation points, etc., but if it’s not in your natural instinct to include these in your posts, don’t do it. I fell into this trap once, and it wasn’t fun. What makes a good blogging voice is not the amount of jokes a blogger makes, but how much their personality shines through in their writing.

Two book bloggers who have unbelievably genuine writing voices are Fadwa @ Word Wonders and CW @ The Quiet Pond. They don’t really incorporate jokes or wisecracks into their posts, but their blogging voices are still once of the best ones out there, because you can tell that they’re writing straight from the soul. Their personalities are so visible through their writing, and you really feel like you’re having a conversation with them.

Formatting

Ever read a blog post that was simply comprised of one big block of text? No, right? Who would want to read a post like that?

Essentials in formatting:

  1. Paragraphs/bullet-point lists
  2. Headings
  3. Dividers
  4. Bold/italicized/underlined/capitalized/resized/etc. text

A Mini Tutorial on Bold and Italicized Text

Using bold and italicize is such a great way to not only break your post up into readable bits, but also to keep your audience’s reading experience entertaining.

You can use resized/underlined/etc. text to highlight key points as well. I just use bold and italicized more!

Bold text

You really can’t go wrong with making the text bold. It’s the easiest way to highlight the key points of a paragraph. And bold words just hit different. Lemme show you:

Without bold text:

Today I took a test, and I feel like I failed. But it’s all right, I’ll do better next time.

With bold text:

Today I took a test, and I feel like I failed. But it’s all right, I’ll do better next time.

See? There’s a difference.


Italicized text

You know how in books, words are sometimes italicized? Do this with you blog posts as well!!

Would you rather read:

This is my favorite book of all time.

Or:

This is my favorite book of all time.


The difference between bold text and italicized text

Use bold if you want to highlight key points; use italicize if you want to put emphasis on a word. These two might seem the like same thing, but they’re not.

See what I did there? I italicized “they’re not.” Bold wouldn’t have worked for it because it’s not the key point of the paragraph. However, I italicized it because I still wanted to put weight on it.

Image result for gibberish gif
You probably have no idea what I’m saying.. It’s fine.

Enthusiasm

I always want to read posts wherein I can tell that the blogger is passionate about what they’re writing. If the blogger isn’t, then I’ll get bored easily.

If you love book blogging: Your enthusiasm will show. And it’s okay not to love it sometimes. Take a break! Also, write what you want to write. Nothing kills your passion more than forcing yourself to write something you don’t want to.

Someone who really nails enthusiasm is Sofi @ A Book. A Thought. She’s such a friendly soul, and it’s so clear that she loves book blogging and interacting with her audience.

Delete Unnececessary Words

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t write long posts. If so, then I’d have to delete my blog because I thrive on 1000+ word posts. But what I mean is proofread your posts after you finish writing them, and cut out all of the words that are unnecessary.

Did you state the obvious? Did you say the same thing in about five different ways? Did you use the word “just” about eighty times? Hello, I’m attacking myself. If so, cut those useless words out! All they do is bog down your post’s quality.

Also, don’t apologize too much! I clicked on your post to read about what you want to say, not the things you think you did wrong, because chances are, I don’t even notice them. There’s no need to apologize for the length of your post, or having an unpopular opinion, as long as you’re respectful of everyone.

And yes, I do apologize in my posts. I’m not saying you shouldn’t. But I try to keep my apologies at the bare minimum.

Image result for please accept my apology gif

Colors

Personally, I will never read a post that doesn’t have at least some pop of color in it. Posts are just… not fun without colors.

Ways to incorporate color into your posts:

  • Graphics! (Post headings, chat graphics, dividers, signatures, etc.)
  • Change the text colors and/or background colors of your headings and/or paragraphs!
  • Use emojis, gifs, book covers (if you’re a book blogger), and aesthetics!
Btw, ya’ll slept on my Muse of Nightmares review, and I’m mad

Gifs

Gifs are a great way to add color to your posts. But they also make them way more entertaining. A gif can speak a thousand words.

How I Include Gifs in my Posts

Of course, there is no right or wrong way to incorporate gifs into your posts. They’re just gifs after all. Add them to your posts however you’d like! I just think that these are great and creative ways to use gifs in your posts!

I use them as replacements for words

For example:

I just got home from a long day!

Image result for tired gif

I didn’t have to type out that I was tired anymore. The gif conveyed that message for me!


If I mentioned something in a paragraph, I add a gif of it below.

For example:

Hello, I’m Caitlin, and I love pretty things! You know who else does? Basically everyone else in the entire world.

Image result for pretty gif

As you can see, I added a gif of something pretty because I talked about pretty things!

And yes I used what I wrote above as an example. I was too tired to think of a new example, okay?


If a paragraph conveys a feeling of a sort, I add a gif that’s related to that feeling!

For example:

You are all so kind! Replying to your comments always brings a smile to my face!

Image result for hug gif

Phew, this post is done. Wow, did it take a long time to write. I hope it was at least a little helpful, and if not, that you had fun reading it. I’m definitely still working on following my own advice, so wish me luck!


Do the things that make me keep on reading a post apply to you as well? What makes you keep on reading a blog post?

52 thoughts on “What Makes me Keep Reading a Post? + Tips on How to Implement those Things!

  1. As a new blogger this is really helpful – thank you! I’m currently trying to find my “blogging voice”, but it’s hard because should I just type how I talk?? Will that even make sense to people??? I’m hoping it’s something that comes with time …

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ah, I’m so glad!
      Ohh, don’t worry, my blogging voice was one of the things I struggled with the most as a newbie blogger! It’s so hard to find it once you start, & I’m honestly still figuring it out!
      But don’t worry, it will make sense 💗 Just let loose & it’ll make a huge difference :))

      Like

  2. I loved reading this. I never really thought about what kept me reading a blogging post, but you nailed it so much. I find myself really drawn in if someone is really enthusiastic and if I can connect with the bolden points if I’m scrolling. Great post – and it definitely kept my attention, lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahh, I’m so glad! 💗 Yep, it’s so much harder for me to read a post if I can tell that a blogger doesn’t really care about what they’re writing. Also, I used to never bolden my words before, bc I thought it was unnecessary, & I couldn’t have been more wrong. For me, bold text is essential lmao

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Honestly, I agree with all of these. I love formatting, and I’m always so bummed when a blog doesn’t really use it, especially if they write longer posts. It’s so darn important, and it makes the text easier + faster to read, not to mention that it looks better and conveys your message better.

    The blogging voice is something I really struggle with, haha. There are so many incredible bloggers who have the best voice, (yours is really great and recognizable too!) and I always feel like that’s my weakest point. Either way, yes, the blogging voice IS very important.

    Great post, Caitlin! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Headings, different plays on text, etc. make such a huge difference! Oh, don’t worry, I struggled with my blogging voice a lot when I started & I still do today. I always think that it’s not good enough, & I hate that I can’t really change it without being a fake, if that makes sense. So the fact that you like mine makes me so happy 😭💖💖 My only advice is to keep on being yourself, & be unafraid of people thinking that you’re too enthusiastic, weird, etc. 💓 You can do this!

      Thank you!!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This is a really great list, Caitlin!! I feel like this would be so helpful for any new bloggers to read and as a not-new blogger, it was a great reminder for me to continue doing a lot of these things in order to make my posts the best they can be.🤗

    It took me forever (literally more than three years of blogging) to figure out even the slightest bit of formatting, but now I’m so thankful for formatting and blog aesthetics and GIFS. (By the way, I loved the Friends gifs, they were adorable.)

    Oh yeah, I’ve heard before that if you read a post in the Reader it doesn’t count as a view for the blogger? I’m not 100% sure if that’s true, but if so, that’s so sad because I feel like it should still count for a view. I always open the post in a new tab from the Reader, read it on the site, and comment on the Reader version so I can go back and forth and write my comment as I read the post. Otherwise I’ll forget everything I wanted to say, haha.

    Lovely post!! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. OLIVIA!! Thank you 😭💗💗💗💗💗

      Big same. As a newbie blogger, I didn’t have any knowledge whatsoever about formatting, blog hopping, etc., but I’m so glad that I kinda do now. And thank you! I naturally gravitate toward Friends gifs, even though I watched the show years ago. The show just carries so much impact!

      Yes!! It’s also really sad that the Reader messes up the formatting I work so hard on. And I do that too! I always click visit in order to read the post, but it’s way easier to comment on the Reader, so I comment there

      Liked by 1 person

  5. omg can i just say…YAAAAASSSS!!! i LOVED this post so much, and i think it’s honestly an important read for everyone. blog aesthetics can do so much for a reader, and i’m definitely just like you where i never read posts in wordpress reader (like why would you ever). i’m really in love with your new blog aesthetic, and even though you weren’t the biggest fan of your old one, it’s amazing to see the difference!!

    once i started using bold, italics, and different sized words…i couldn’t go back, and you can honestly see such a big difference in terms of writing and voice…overall, just making the post easier to read. it’s also super important imo to have aesthetics that are very unique to YOU!!

    amazing post!! ❤ ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. THANK YOU, TIFFANY 😭💗💗 I honestly think that blog aesthetic is in the top two most important things for a blogger to get right. It can do so much for you! Haha, it’s amazing to see the difference for me too! Im so glad that I found the right look for myself!

      So true!! (Also I love how you incorporate bold, italic, etc. text into your posts 💗) I used to think that they weren’t needed, but I couldn’t be more wrong! They make a hugee difference. I also used to wonder why I had to make my own dividers, a post sign-off, etc., but they are super important in building a cohesive brand for yourself that people can remember you by!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I LOVE LOVE LOVED THIS POST CAITLIN!! Loved all your tips, I totally fall into the ugly early blog category because big yikes.. I think I’ve gotten better at it now, I still have a couple graphics I want to redesign and make prettier. But yes I just CAN’T read huge chunks of text blogs without any graphics or titles so that is definitely a game-changer for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. THANK YOU RUBY 😭💗💗 Haha, “big yikes” perfectly sums up how I feel about my old blog aesthetic. But don’t worry—your blog looks amazing!

      They really are game-changers!! I used to think that they weren’t necessary, but they make a huge, huge difference!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. The biggest thing that makes me continue reading a post is definitely how it’s broken down. If the paragraphs are way too long then I will absolutely lose interest and stop reading. This is actually something I’ve really struggled with too. I tend to make my paragraphs WAY TOO LONG and I’ve had to learn how to break them up. AND YES PLEASE ADD GRAPHICS OF SOME SORT. Give my brain something visually fun to focus on or else all the words will start running together. Books are fine without pictures but for some reason when I’m reading on a screen I need more visually.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ll absolutely stop reading too! There has to be some kind of formatting involved, or else I’ll lose interest. I try my best not to make my paragraphs too long. I add a line break everywhere I can 😂 But don’t worry—yours are the perfect length! Yeah, I wonder why I can read 500 page books with no pictures whatsoever, & I still be fine. But when a blog post is like that? No thank you. I used to wonder why I needed graphics that were unique to me, but they are actually so important in building a brand for yourself & letting people remember you better! Plus, they improve the reading experience so much!

      Like

  8. Ahh… this was such a wonderful post!! It was so well written and I 100% agree with all the advice!!
    Blog aesthetic is really important as an attractive blog makes people want to stay and arguable more important come back. I’ve actually been thinking about redesigning my blog which means it might happen within 2 years, haha but I’m excited about creating a new theme!!
    I’m also trying to visit the actual sites more as well because I love seeing people’s blog!! If I’m on my phone I probably more likely to use reader but now I know it affect stats I will make an effort to visit actual sites!
    You are so right about being yourself creates the best blogging voice!!
    I agree I do love long posts and I always write long posts but that isn’t bad, you just have to write it in the best way and try not to include unnecessary words.
    This was a wonderful post!! ❤ Also this is a mood– "I’m definitely still working on following my own advice",after I write an advice post I always realise I need to follow my own advice more!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you 😭💗💗💗💗 For me, blog aesthetic is in one of the top two things you have to get right as a blogger. It is so, so important!!

      “Which means it might happen within 2 years”— ME 😂 honestly, the only reason I’ve been able to design my blog so much is because I procrastinate on doing important things *by* designing it! I’m excited for your redesign if you actually do push through with it! (But how your blog looks right now is amazing)

      Ah, don’t worry about that!! The Reader is way easier to comment on, so do whatever suits you ❤️

      Hehe, I’m still working on realizing that being myself is good enough. Tbh, super jealous of people who naturally have a good blogging voice though 😭 I just.. can’t imagine writing a post that’s under 1k. I have a problem!!
      I always feel like such a hypocrite when I give advice, because I definitely don’t follow all of my advice 😂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. This post is amazing Caitlin!! I’ve been kind of itching to re-design (I am doing my best to resist this urge…but I may be failing) or at least redo some of my graphics, so I’m going to use some these tips! I feel like my current graphics are not very…good or at least not the best that they can be. Not sure. Anyway! I love your post because all your tips are so true, and they are really helpful, and also because anything you write is amazing and humorous to read. Even as someone who’s been blogging for nearly a year, it’s great to read advice posts like this one to remind myself how to make my writing better. I especially love the ones about what makes people want to continue reading. So thank you for writing this and for all the tips lovely 💖

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Rukky!! 💚💚
      Ah, I get that itch! I used to have it all the time, because my past blog aesthetics didn’t suit me right, & I knew it in my bones that I had to change them. Don’t be like me—I procrastinated on homework by designing my blog 😭😂 but I wish you all the luck with your blog redesign if you follow through with it!
      RUKKY, THAT IS THE BEST COMPLIMENT EVER—thank you!! 😭💖💖 I’m so glad that I helped! (Though our blogs are about the same age, haha, so we’ll see if I’m qualified to give advice 😅)

      Liked by 1 person

  10. This was a wonderful post, Caitlin! I mostly stick around if the blog is pretty and the content attracts me (I’m super basic lol). I’ve tried making my posts more pleasant to read by adding pictures and gifs and sometimes I think I do it nicely, but most times I’m just lazy xD

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Marta!! Dw, I’m basic too. But humans are naturally drawn to pretty things, so don’t feel too bad 😂 you do it super nicely, Marta! But same on the laziness part. For something that takes a few minutes to read, a blog posts takes *so long* to write!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Totally agree with everything you mentioned in this post Caitlin! I’ve visited some blogs in the past where the colour scheme just…clashes and hurts my eyes. My blogs gone through several redesigns in its time already but I’m so happy with how it is currently, the colours. I use dividers in my posts to add colour like you said, as well as bringing the reader some relief from not having to constantly read tons of text without a breaker. I don’t use GIFs though in my posts, I’ve never been big on GIFs but who knows, maybe that’ll change soon haha.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Clo!! 💗 Oof, same. I honestly think that my old aesthetic hurt people’s eyes—it was so bad. I’ve redesigned my blog so many times as well. But same with you, I’m happy with how it looks now & I’m glad that I went through the trouble to find the right look for me.
      Dividers are super important! They break the text up, and add color to the post. Plus, they help you build your brand!
      Ahh it’s fine. Gifs aren’t for everyone 😂 There are so many other ways to make your posts more entertaining!

      Like

  12. HI CAITLIN I’VE MISSED YOUR POSTS.
    I haven’t been on a WordPress for like two months which is so bad because school likes to steal all my time <3<3
    This post was definitely a useful reminder on blogging haha and honestly you do all these things SO well.
    Now to go and catch up on the posts I’ve missed, but I’m glad to be back and to get posting again!!
    & ALSO I READ SIX OF CROWS FINALLY AND AHHHHHHH

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Love this post! I’ve mostly been using the tips and tricks you taled about except the bold and italics because I keep forgetting to do the bold part, ugh. But thank you for explaining the difference between the two, it’s super helpful and I really am going to start doing that form my next post.

    Oh, and I recently made a whole new aesthetic for my blog and if you aren’t too busy maybe you could waddle over and give me your wise advise on how it looks? Thank you so much ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Charvi!! Ah, don’t worry! I don’t think *all* of these are necessary in order to have a super readable post! I’m so glad that you liked my explanation! I thought it was stupid that I was trying to explain the difference between bold and italic text, haha

      Ahh, I’m so sad that I’ve been too busy lately to blog hop 😦 I just visited it, and I *love* the colors! A little constructive criticism though—I don’t.. really like the theme you use? I’m really sorry! I just feel like it doesn’t suit your graphics, but everything else is perfect. Plus, you definitely don’t have to follow my advice because I’m just one person ❤

      Like

      1. Thank you! Ah yes I spent ages looking for a theme that I might like. I’m doing the free WordPress plan so this is what suited me best. But maybe sometime in the future I might invest in my blog…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I hate the fact that free WordPress offers such shitty themes :(( I’m making do with Toujours, and I don’t think I’m gonna invest in my blog any time soon, but if I did go self hosted, the thing I’d appreciate the most would probably be the ability to choose whichever theme I wanted for my blog!

        Like

  14. This post is AMAZING! I use most of these, although I could use more italics and gifs to spice up my posts, so thank you for the tip on that!
    I do have a small pet peeve when it comes to book recommendations lists. If a book list doesn’t have the covers and it is just a bullet point list of titles and writers, I will probably close it before even reading 🙈

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much ❤ ❤ Everyone writes posts differently, and yours are already perfect, so definitely don't be in a rush<3
      SAME, omg. Like, you had the perfect opportunity to break up your post and add color to it by adding the book covers?? Such a wasted opportunity! Those posts aren't fun to read, and I don't ever finish reading those posts as well 😅

      Like

  15. Ah this is such a great post, you’re the QUEEN of how-to blog posts, really, I loved this so much. ❤ I agree that a blog's aesthetic plays a big role in whether or not I'll continue on the blog and will get started on reading a blog post, too. Then, of course, my eyes need the words bolded and some paragraphs, pictures and just, I don't know, things to make the blog post readable and pretty and…. make me want to stay and read more, too, that's for sure. Also yes yes to the blogging voice! It's so hard to really nail what it is and to understand how to make that happen, but really…. all it takes is time, and it will come. Time to write a lot of blog posts, practice and practice until it slowly emerges 🙂
    This is a wonderful post ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. How could you say that? *You’re* totally the queen of how-to posts 😭💖 I’m so glad that you agree! I can’t believe I used to not bold or do anything to my text before, bc now I can’t read a post if it doesn’t have those things 😅 I feel like you’ve helped me a lot in my journey to find my blogging voice, so this means a lot ❤️❤️ (And I love yours so much)
      Thank you so much, Marie!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. NOT at all ahh, you are. I adore all of your posts so much, you’re amazing ❤ ❤
        And same here!! I used to somehow pay less attention to these kind of things when I first started and I'm glad I do now 😀

        Liked by 1 person

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