I’m weighing the pros and cons for truncated blog posts and would love to hear your thoughts. Plus I have exciting news! After way too many years of forcing people to type “www.dans-le-townhouse.blogspot.com” – which really made no sense once we moved from the townhouse to the lakehouse – I finally, finally switched to my own domain.
It’s so much easier to type and remember – plus it looks pretty. Is it a sign that you’ve been blogging too long when you think a URL is pretty??
For you, nothing will change. All of the old links and the former URL redirect.
In other news, I’m experimenting with truncating my posts (which means including a photo and only part of the text before imploring you to click “read” more to see the rest, instead of leaving posts whole so you can land on the blog and just keep scrolling). Bloggers and blog readers often have strong opinions on the topic of truncated blog posts, so below is my reasoning – but then I’d love your input!
Reasons FOR Truncated Blog Posts
After I bought my new blog template, I realized that the mobile version defaulted to truncated blog posts and I immediately liked how chic the mobile version looked. I’ve even been considering a different template that is much more like a clickable Instagram feed with only images and post titles on the main page, because I really like how it looks.
As a voracious blog reader, I’ve started to prefer truncated blog posts because I can breeze through posts that aren’t my jam without having to slog through endless steps/photos/jibber-jabber about topics or projects that don’t interest me. Instead, I quickly skim content, open posts that seem interesting in new tabs, read them at leisure, pin my heart out, and move on. Truncated blog posts make pinning so much easier for me (and at 14,000+ pins, I’m a pretty enthusiastic pinner!).
Because I like truncated blog posts, I recently switched this website to a format with page breaks. I feel like the blog looks much tidier now and I enjoy that new readers can see so many posts at once and immediately get a feel for my aesthetic and content.
And, this might make me seem overly sensitive, but I feel inspired to blog more freely now. There’s so much pressure to create perfectly curated, pinnable content and to ensure that every photo is styled to perfection – even in-progress shots, which tend to be messy by nature. Sometimes this pressure is a creativity-squasher. I have actually decided not to post some projects because, although the “after” photo looked good, my progress photos didn’t turn out well (maybe too messy, poorly lit, etc), and I didn’t want to put those photos on the blog because anyone who landed on my blog would see them mixed in with better photos as they scrolled. I’ve been really struggling with wanting to share stories and make things with wild abandon, but then feeling this defeating pressure to constantly produce really amazing photos, every step of the way – and it’s difficult for me to take a magazine-worthy shot when I’m covered in dough or paint, or feverishly working on a project in the wee hours.
With this new layout, though, only my favorite photo shows to anyone skimming through so I feel like I can make a great “first impression” and, once someone is hooked (mwahaha) and starts delving deeper into posts, seeing some imperfect progress photos won’t ruin the overall aesthetic. I feel so much more motivated to make and share – which is a surprise! I really just wanted to make the blog prettier, but I think it might actually have a big impact on my creativity and passion for blogging. Maybe.
There are other, less emotionally-fueled reasons for the switch too: the site should load faster, an issue I’ve had because I always include a ton of huge photos and probably way too many meandering digressions. As well, truncated blog posts supposedly deter scraper sites that steal content, which is a good enough reason for me because it’s been disheartening to see so many of my posts stolen verbatim by these sites. I’m not writing Pulitzer-worthy material here, but I log a lot of hours on each post – no matter how mundane it seems.
Reasons AGAINST Truncated Blog Posts
Blogging experts have long advocated truncated blog posts for boosting pageviews, but because truncated posts can be off-putting for many readers, I wonder if that’s even accurate. Perhaps each person who lands on a blog will generate more coveted “clicks” for a blogger, but what if the overall number of regular readers shrinks as a result?
I don’t want to make visiting the Lakehouse less fun for anyone! I love chatting with you and hearing your input. I’m so grateful for your support and encouragement. In return, I hope I can make you laugh from time to time, or spark an idea for a creative project or budget-friendly room makeover.
I know that truncated blog posts can be cumbersome if you read a blog regularly, because you’re not scrolling through like a new reader – you just want to read the newest post, without having to click twice. Which totally makes sense! An extra click is frustrating when every single blog makes you do it – on top of annoying pop up adds and pop ups begging you to subscribe by email when you’ve barely made it two sentences into a post. It can slow down and make reading blogs so much less enjoyable for some. Ideally, I’d love for the first post to be regular and the others truncated, but I can’t figure out how to do that and although I found code to truncate all posts at once, and fiddled a bit with that for an evening, I’m not savvy enough to figure out any tweaks beyond that. I can’t even get the truncated posts to look exactly how I’d like (I’d prefer a full size image and the first few lines of text below, not to the right).
What is Your Take on Truncated Posts???
I’m not fully committed to this new format, although I do like it quite a bit, so while I noodle on it, please do chime in: do you love or hate the new truncated blog posts? Or perhaps you’re completely ambivalent and you just want more posts? Less jibber-jabber? Let me know!
First and foremost, I really want this blog to be easy to use and enjoy – because it’s nothing without you! – so please feel free let me know if there’s anything I can do (or should stop doing) to make your visit easier and more enjoyable.
(And if you want to be really honest and candid, you can always leave an anonymous comment and I’ll have no idea who you are. Seriously, I appreciate the feedback – big time!)
Thanks for reading!