My Musings

Why are reviews unpopular as blog posts?? #BookBlogger #BookBloggers #Blogger #Bloggers #Blog

Why are reviews unpopular as blog posts--

Reviews at least for me are one of the hardest types of blog posts to write. Give me a reason or subject to rant about and I will type and type and type but when it comes time to write an actual book review I often stare at the screen drooling with a dumb, lost and vacant look on my face and no clue what to write!

Spongebob Squarepants Drooling GIF by Nickelodeon-source

One thing I have noticed is that on my blog, at least, that book reviews don’t do as well as other types of posts so, yes, the effort I put into attempting a halfway decent and coherent review is often left neglected, unloved and ignored by the masses.

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If we look at some of my recent posts and reviews and their stats the page views for original content was much higher (got to keep some mystery and I’m not sharing the actual page views though, if you show me yours I’ll show you mine).

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As of writing, this post my Reasons why a blogger declines your review request post has gained 155 likes and 135 comments. My Venting post has received 102 likes and 74 comments. And, my What blogging means to me post has received 100 likes and 62 comments

Now, for my two most recent reviews My Little Eye by Stephanie Marland and Devil’s Day by Andrew Michael Hurley. My Little Eye has received 73 likes and 14 comments and Devil’s Day has received 68 likes and 15 comments.

That’s fewer likes but also far fewer comments and it is akin to tumbleweeds rolling through the comments section!

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Why are reviews a less popular type of posts than original content, memes and tags?!?!

So, in list form, because I am lazy and because I have also read that lists are popular, well, we shall see about that so, let us call this list research.

Let’s look at some reasons why reviews are unpopular:

– You might only read reviews for books and genres that you are interested in reading yourself.

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– You might have read the authors previous work and know that you don’t like how they write and as such, you won’t bother with reading reviews of their new books.

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– The review might be for a later book in a trilogy or series that you are reading and yet to get up to and to avoid the chance of spoilers you won’t read any reviews for the book.

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– You might have read some other reviews for the book, know that it’s not for you or that you are going to buy it and don’t feel the need to read any more.

– You might be currently reading the book yourself and until you have finished it and written your own review you won’t read other reviews so as not to influence your own thoughts and opinion.

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– You might have never heard of the book or author and due to that bypass the review.

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– You might only read reviews with book covers that grab your attention.

– You might read the review and ‘like’ it but don’t leave a comment as you have nothing to say. There’s only so many times that you can write ‘great review’ or the equivalent in the comments section and you might be someone who unless they have something extra to add to the post just doesn’t comment.

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– Time, there is only so much time in the day and perhaps as much as we would like to read more reviews at times we just can’t. We have to spread out our blogging between reading reviews as well as a variety of blogs and other blog post types and when this is the case we will give priority to reviews of those books that we are interested in.


Thoughts?? Are your reviews less popular than other types of blog post?? Are all your posts about the same for traffic?? Do you have any reasons to add as to why you think reviews are unpopular as blog posts??


Now, I suck at commenting but I like reading reviews regardless of whether the book interests me or not and seeing people’s thoughts. I do think, however, that while we all have an opinion on bookish matters, the community and discussion posts in general that for book reviews and books we don’t always know what to comment, don’t have anything to say and honestly, for reviews, at times, they just aren’t as engaging as other types of posts.

For me, my reviews tend to be more on the normal side of posts where I tone down what I write with only the very occasional usage of swearing, sarcasm, innuendo and ranting.

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Whilst in discussion posts I can let rip with whatever I feel like writing in whatever way I feel fit, often with some dirty, nasty and filthy words thrown in, shocker right!

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And, dare I say it that perhaps my reviews are simply rather boring and that is why they receive less traffic than other post types on my blog.

So, what this shows me is this, when I write discussion type posts I get traffic and when I am bad I also get traffic, my deviant mind is telling me that this means, it is good to be bad! 

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And, no, contrary to the snowflakes who think that I have already been bad, trust me my little cupcakes you haven’t seen anything yet and there will be many more opportunities for you all to worship at the altar of awesomeness! 😉

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91 thoughts on “Why are reviews unpopular as blog posts?? #BookBlogger #BookBloggers #Blogger #Bloggers #Blog

  1. In these days of the longtail the truth is that most books are only going to be read by what amounts to a handful of people. That leaves a pretty small audience for reviews.

    My experience is that book reviews don’t get big numbers as they are posted but they have more “staying power.” Much of my growth in blog views comes from people finding old reviews. Lots of old reviews means lots of old reviews for people to find.

    Liked by 5 people

  2. I don’t post reviews on my blog, I do link to my Goodreads reviews in my monthly wrap-up posts thought. I link to my reviews so that if people haven’t read the book yet they won’t be spoiled. There is nothing worse than being spoiled for a book.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. My review posts get the least traffic as well, which is sad because that is my main focus. But speaking as someone visiting other sites and reading reviews, I get it. I don’t usually read reviews of genres I’m not interested in. Romance, middle grade, contemporary anything, I don’t even bother. I just don’t have anything to contribute to those types of reviews.

    Liked by 5 people

  4. I very rarely comment on reviews unless I’ve read the book also or I really want to read it! I read most reviews when I have time and also like/share on twitter etc, just rarely comment!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Ha, I think this goes for pretty much everybody. I feel like YA books get 2000% more traffic on a blog too since that target audience/those readers are MUCH more numerous on WordPress. Also feel like that the blogger’s writing style/length of their reviews might have something to do with a person’s desire to read through it all too hahah Then again, I’m okay with low levels of likes and comments as long as people who ARE interested actually DO read through what I want to share with them. 🤣 Great post, sir. Here’s to another 100 likes-100 comments post. 😏

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Yeah, we are all fighting a losing battle against the YA books and the subsequent fangirling over them. They kill it regardless of what blog they are on but it’s the genre, so popular.

      Yeah, very true, as long as people who are interested in the review and book read it through its all good.👌

      Liked by 1 person

  6. LOL, I actually did share all my blog stats in a post once because book bloggers seem so mysterious about all of this. The general gist seemed to be that the “average” book blog was getting 75 views a day but people assumed other blogs had way more views than they did. (Obviously there are blogs with far more, but I think people overestimated that “everyone else” has 5 million views and they are pathetic in comparison or something).

    Anyway, I post about YA among other things. YA does get more hits than middle grade reviews, but I don’t notice it necessarily gets more hits than reviews of adult books or classics. I think the problem is just that people tend to read books of reviews they’ve read or are already interested in reading, so you’re just not getting as much traffic as for a discussion that “applies to everyone.” I also agree with your point about having read 6 reviews of the book already; at that point, I get it. I don’t need to read a total of 30 reviews of the same thing.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Whispers quietly so as not to offend any bloggers but I think that at least some of the time bloggers assume that other bloggers get lots of page views is down to those bloggers as they make out that they have thousands of views, etc. Because, ya know, it has to be so competitive with some and as you say, bloggers are mysterious about stats which I guess I was as I didn’t include my views.😂

      Yeah, that’s totally true, a discussion applies to everyone and reviews you mainly read them for books you’ve read, are interested in, etc.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No, I totally agree! The way people talk, I’d assume they all have 10 zillion followers and page views too! :p Kind of the way I always thought these bloggers were running successful side ventures like Etsy shops and such. Then occasionally someone drops that they actually make like one sale a month…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I don’t know much about the Etsy shops but from a few posts I’ve seen, definitely not all but a few some do make out that they are millionaire entrepreneurs.😂

        Yeah, I have to say it’d be nice to actually know what their page views, etc are when they make out they are so high. Most of the time I have no idea if my views are good or not or even what a good amount of views over a few days is for a post. Then, if I were to mention it I could imagine that I’d be accused of bragging by some and that others would, of course, have far higher figures which of course, some could but some also just have to have more and be more popular than others, sigh.

        Like

  7. Ironic have t yes, I seldom comment in reviews for exactly the reasons you mention plus, if I am honest, there are times I simply haven’t written my review and want only my thoughts and my voice in my head when I do. I will read review posts after but seldom comment. Time is another factor. I simply don’t have enough of it. If only we had more four day weekends.

    Chocolate – that has always been the key to a successful blog post for me. Chocolate and ranting. Winning formula. Ranting about chocolate- not so much.
    Happy Easter

    Liked by 3 people

  8. I believe the main reason why original ideas may be more popular than book reviews is because people tend to read reviews for really hyped books or generally books they’d be interested in reading.
    For me, my book reviews are somewhere in the middle, as some of them are being shared on Facebook and Twitter, while others, from less popular books and authors may be ignored.
    Who knows? 🤷🏻‍♀️

    Liked by 3 people

      1. For me, Twitter and Facebook are the platforms where I have the biggest amount of followers and friends, so it’s actually really helpful!
        But then again, there are tons of different book post ideas, so if reviews don’t work, we can always skip to something different!

        Liked by 1 person

  9. I look at it the other way than you. It isn’t that my reviews aren’t popular, it is that my non-review posts are just SUPER POPULAR! 😉
    I usually count on my non-review posts to garner about twice the views, likes and thrice the comments of a review post. I’ve had to make my peace with that fact and simply accept it. It is like death and taxes, it simply a part of the blogging experience.

    I also think that my review posts are more “me” oriented (ie, for myself in 10 years if I want to see what I thought of a book) while my non-review posts are almost exclusively for those who follow me. Even if it is just a little bit, people like to feel like they are the center of attention 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

  10. Very interesting post and I’ve noticed the same thing happening with my blog recently. I also find reviews hard to write that’s why I always try and comment but like you say sometimes there isn’t enough time or I said great review lots of times already. Very interesting comment above about how YA blogs get more comments, we’re obviously doing the wrong genres for blogging! 😉

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Eurgh, YA, I’ll stick with being unpopular.😱😂 I think they have such a huge community that regardless of the post type they are always mega popular.

      I’ll tell you know, Warhammer! Review that on the blog and your stats and comments will sky rocket!😱😂😉

      Liked by 1 person

  11. My views don’t much change from reviews to other posts, but my reviews do tend to get more likes than most of my other posts. To be fair, my stats are pretty small, so it’s probably just other bloggers being nice, lol.

    But for me I really am not particularly interested in reading a review for a book I’ve never heard of. So many bloggers I follow write their reviews in a way that seems to assume I’ve read the book, so they’re a bunch of nonsense to me really. So I’ve started avoiding reviews for books I’m unfamiliar with unless something about the book grabs my attention.

    But general posts, on the other hand, anyone can relate to. You, for example, mostly review books out of my usual genre, so I don’t read as many of your reviews, but I always open a post like this one when I see it in my feed because I know you’ll have something good to say.

    Liked by 3 people

  12. I also find it depends upon the format of review. Reviewers have their own way of doing things; gifs, straight-forward text, spoilers, spoiler-free, so on and so forth. Some prefer one way, whilst others prefer another. For instance, people may find my reviews boring to read, whilst others may like it.

    Liked by 3 people

  13. I think you covered a lot of the points really well!! To be honest, I often find I run out of things to say a lot of the time and don’t really fancy commenting if I have nothing to say. And for a lot of books I have to read a fair number of reviews before it properly grips my attention these days. I do love your reviews though!

    Liked by 4 people

      1. Yeah that happens to me all the time! Especially cos I read a lot of posts quite late at night (when I probably should be sleeping lol) and it gets to a cut off point when I no longer have anything coherent to say 😂

        Liked by 1 person

  14. I notice the same trend on my blog. I’ve been sort of short on time lately and haven’t been really engaging with other types of posts than reviews lately, so my stats have taken a hit this year. I just sort of shrug it off. I think people are less likely to engage with reviews because not every review speaks to people that follow a blog. Oftentimes, I sort of feel like my reviews are as much for me as they are for my followers. I like to be able to look back on my older reviews to recall what I thought about a book.

    Liked by 4 people

  15. I have noticed on mine as well that the tags and TBRs and wrap-ups get a lot more attention and comments than most of my reviews as well. I have a theory (entirely unproven) that the online community is saturated with reviews. You can’t throw a virtual rock without hitting a review that generally says mostly what other reviews say for that book. I think other forms of blog posts get more responses because they tend to maybe show a little bit more of the person behind the post, they are a little more personal.

    Liked by 3 people

  16. …but that’s all I post. 😦

    Hah, oh well. I enjoy the small amount of interaction my posts generate, but I love having a log of what I’ve read. I have the worst memory, and quickly reading an old review really brings back all of my thoughts on a book, even those not actually written down. I think I’d still keep it up offline if I stopped blogging.

    I’ve been meaning to branch out a bit, though, so maybe it’ll be good for the blog to do so.

    Liked by 3 people

  17. I love reviews! Admittedly, if it’s about a romance or erotica book i will likely give it a miss, but otherwise i enjoy checking out reviews even if i read the book myself, or it’s a review I’ve seen on most blogs already. I can’t always comment on them, especially if i haven’t read the book yet, but reviews are one of my fave posts to read

    Liked by 1 person

  18. My following is too small to realy take part in this conversation. I started blogging for only two people realy, if they like and comment that makes my day, if more people like it thats a bonus. I find my Metal mondays and words wednesday are a bit lacking and have concidered canceling it. Then again, I dont schedule posts, i type them when i am in the right mood for them… it does suck having a larger amount of “followers”, but only seeing so few likes and comments. You are one of the bloggers I look up too, your blog is great, your content is amazing.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I don’t consider myself a blogger. I have a blog, but mainly for keeping up with what I have read. So, I’ll comment as strictly a reader, because I follow a lot of book blogs. I don’t interact with review posts because a lot of bloggers include too many spoilers without warning, or the review is about as long as the book being reviewed; like you said, time’s too short and I don’t want to be spoiled. Another reason I don’t interact with review posts is, unless the blogger has a witty way about writing reviews, it tends to become repetitive. Popular books come out, or are about to be released, and EVERY blogger is reviewing said book. I don’t want to read a 100 different reviews of the same book. But. mostly, for me, I think it comes down to whether it’s a book I’m interested in, even then, I don’t want to be spoiled. Just my take as a ‘Reader of Blogs’ 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Very valid for all points. Totally agree about the length and spoilers, I’ve seen so many reviews recently that include spoilers and don’t mention them at the beginning. There’s also more and more elaborate reviews around, not spoilers but that go into so much detail about the book that it leaves nothing to the imagination.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Great post, Drew. You really made me think about my own traffic and how it shakes out. I just did an analysis of the traffic for year-to-date, which presented some surprises, and decided to take it a step further by creating a poll to see what will get readers more engaged.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Great post Drew, I do enjoy reading reviews but I do only read those ones that appeal to me, that’s true. I agree with you on the commenting, I try to do it as much as I can but there is only so many times you can say “Great review” without sounding like a broken record. 😕

    Liked by 1 person

  22. I think reviews are less popular on pretty much all blogs! Indeed mostly for the fact that it’s harder to relate to… I’m only going to want to read reviews of books I’m either interested in because I’ve heard them before, or books I’ve read. And there are so many books! That’s why the percentage of the ones I know will be so small, the odds of actually seeing one on someone’s blog are quite minuscule. Even if it’s a genre I like, it’s hard to relate because you have to have seen a book several times to be interested. But I always think that the reviews are more useful to people who are not your regular readers – rather, just random people who google stuff and are making buying decisions, and those don’t ever comment – they are the silent readers 🙂 so the lack of comments isn’t always as bad. The smaller number of views would also come from this – the number of random googlers is usually smaller than the number of visits from your regulars – apart from maybe a few really well known, huge book blogs.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. Sometimes I think it’s just because we all have too many books on our TBRs already… so that combined with some of your other reasons (not my usual genre, don’t like the cover, already know I’m not interested, not into that author’s work)… I certainly skip some reviews because I’m like I ALREADY HAVE MORE THAN I CAN READ IN A LIFETIME, JUST MOVE ALONG.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. A lot of the time when I don’t read a review it’s because I’m such a mood reader so if I’m not in the mood for a horror book, for example, then I won’t be in the mood for review about a horror book either. But I will admit I am lazy so when I read review I like the short ones that’s for sure.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. I mostly read the reviews, but alot of times the books aren’t on overdrive. Or they are and I put them on my list. My list on there is very long and I have decided to dwindle it down recently. But it takes time and plus I’m still journeying through the Dark Tower book series by Stephen King. Which is taking forever. So I don’t comment often. Overdrive is a program through my local library.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. I don’t think you are alone here with book reviews receiving lower traffic than other posts. I think this is very common for book bloggers. I think all the reasons you list are all valid. For me personally, I only read book reviews of books I’ve read (to compare my thoughts with theirs) or books I am interested in reading. As a book blogger, time is definitely a big factor too. I try to follow & blog hop as much as I can, but there are only so many hours in a day.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Great post Drew, chalked full of valid points to consider. I have noticed that my reviews may not receive as many comments, shares, and likes but actually bring in more views than my other posts. I think maybe because there is a wider audience involved that stretches beyond bloggers and social media. I have a ton of search engine hits on reviews also. So maybe it is not that they are less popular, but they are finding a different audience that is less likely to share or comment. They are readers browsing specifically for book info?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. A ton of?! Damn, mega popular.😂👍👌 I’d have thought that too but for me it’s not the case. A few, yeah, on occasion but with me the views for the original and controversial stuff is generally way higher than reviews. Though, I have no idea what constitutes decent daily blog views and weekly views for individual posts, etc, no clue.😂

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Sad that author interviews got such a low vote! It’s different for every blog I guess. Some said in comments that reviews are just as popular as other post types while others seemed to agree with me. I could only go on my blog and the differences in posts but as I have no idea what constitutes decent daily blog views or post views I was just musing on what I’d seen mentioned around.

      Liked by 2 people

  28. I have a post about this topic scheduled to go up later this week. I’m even going to reveal my secret blog stats. The review situation on my blog is really sad. My reviews take forever to write, and they barely get any views. Especially my reviews of short story collections. Nobody looks at those. I think it’s because not every book appeals to every reader. The memes and “general interest” posts are about broader topics and appeal to more people.

    Liked by 2 people

  29. Oh my, secret blog stats! Definitely be interested to see that. I don’t even know what decent stats are for a post.

    Mine take ages to write too. I can rant easily but for a review, even a shortish one it seems to take me ages to put into words what I want to say about the book.

    That’s true, not every book does appeal to everyone and others types of post appeal to more.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. I think your last two are spot on and probably encapsulate the largest two reasons. If only there were more time in the day. Even I, who loves to write and read books, tend to be more interested in the people blogging about books than the reviews of books. It’s interesting to think about the psychology of it. Maybe it’s the writer in me who loves to understand people…who knows, maybe everyone just likes the personal aspects more. It makes us feel closer to one another. I love both types of posts though and I like the diversity of personal posts / opinions and having reviews. Anyway, interesting blog! Never really thought about it before…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks. I’ve seen it mentioned before but I hadn’t really thought about it either until I wrote a couple of discussion posts and reviews in the same week and it was clear there was a difference in likes and comments so many more comments on the discussion posts but also views too so I turned it into a post.

      I’m not sure it’s true for everyone’s blogs but for mine and others it’s how it is. Lots of factors too though, genre of book, is it hyped, etc all make reviews more popular.

      Liked by 2 people

  31. Yup I agree with this post. As someone who only really does book reviews on me site, I tend to see very low page views. Not that I care. It’s me blog and I will write what I want to. Though I have skipped reviews on other blogs and some point or other for all the reasons ye mention. Very thoughtful post. Arrr!
    x The Captain

    Liked by 2 people

  32. If I haven’t already seen a review for a certain book, my go-to review sites are Goodreads and Amazon. I don’t tend to search for blogs while I’m at the store, trying to decide if I want to read a book. Very thoughtful post, but that’s my reason for not always looking at book reviews on blogs.

    Liked by 1 person

  33. As others have said, I think reviews represent a tricky convergence of interests.
    First, is the story being reviewed of interest to the audience.
    Second, is the reviewer’s style of interest to the audience.
    Unless you like both, you may not be inclined to read their review, and if you do, you may have no idea what to say.

    There are also so many stories available these days. I find that my most popular reviews are of very well established stories, and many audiences, I think, are approaching reviews the same way I do, a chance to discuss and compare ideas, rather than a way to decide whether or not to read something.

    But I also think book reviews are a good exercise for writers, analyzing and learning from the story, and crafting a concise but well written evaluation of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  34. I’m new to blogging, so I don’t have comments at all 😅 I have crumbs in terms of a following. I never really took any of what was on that list into consideration before reading this. I feel like I don’t know how to put into words what I’m trying to say, and half the time end up rambling and throwing myself absurdly off-topic. I guess all I can do is grimace as I slap the publish button violently 🤷🏼‍♀️

    Liked by 1 person

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