DonCharisma.com, Don Charisma, Count of Comments vs Days of week GMT

What is the best time of day to post on your blog?


I’ve just completed a statistical analysis on when people comment on my blog. To be more exact, what times of day and which days of the week. Obviously there are many factors that can skew these types of studies, so take this as information only.

Rationale: Since the beginning of July there are over 2000 comments on my blog, each has a GMT timestamp. My idea is that commenters will have times of the day when they are actively reading posts on my blog, and “participating”

How: Wordpress has the facility to extract all of the text out of a blog (Tools->Extract). This produces an XML file. The XML file I put into Notepad++, and removed everything except the GMT date/time and the email address for all comments. I then exported this into Excel 2010 and produced two charts. One a scatter chart to show times of the day, on different days of the week. The other a bar chart to show total number of comments on each day of the week. I’ve done this for GMT and also for New York City time (GMT -4Hrs), because the largest percentage of visitors are from USA, second UK, third Canada.

Skew: In order to try to remove my own personal patterns as a skew, I’ve removed all of my own comments from the analysis.

Notes: For the scatter charts I put the times next to the diamonds, not so you can see them, but this give a good idea of density at different times of the day, it’s very clear that way.

On to the charts –

Count of comments VS Days of Week – GMT / GMT -4Hrs for NYC

DonCharisma.com, Don Charisma, Count of Comments vs Days of week GMT
DonCharisma.com Count of Comments vs Days of week GMT
DonCharisma.com, Don Charisma, Count of Comments vs Days of week GMT-4Hrs
DonCharisma.com Count of Comments vs Days of week GMT-4Hrs

Summary

#1 Thursday – Highest number of comments

#2 Wednesday

#3 Friday (only just)

#4 & #5 Monday and Sunday are very close

#6 Saturday

#7 Tuesday

Time of Comments left on blog – GMT / GMT -4Hrs for NYC

DonCharisma.com, Don Charisma, Time of comments left on blog GMT
DonCharisma.com Time of comments left on blog GMT
DonCharisma.com, Don Charisma, Time of comments left on blog GMT 4hrs
DonCharisma.com Time of comments left on blog GMT 4hrs

Summary

Saturday and Sunday are steady days with comments being left all day, quite evenly.

Tuesday is the quietest with a peak morning 08:00-09:00 (NYC) and evening 18:30-21:00(NYC), steady during working hours.

Monday has a hotspot in early hours 02:00-04:00(NYC) and then gets really busy between 07:30-18:00(NYC) morning and working hours, then another block 21:00-23:00(NYC) nightime.

Wednesday just seem to get busier and busier from around 02:00(NYC) and a real heavy peak between 12:00-22:30(NYC)

Thursday as we know is the heaviest and Wednesday carries right into Thurday, with the whole of Thursday being busy, quietening down at 18:00(NYC) then quietening down more from around 21:00(NYC) into Friday.

Friday is steady from early hours, starts to peak into heavy commenting from around 07:00(NYC) till a short break at 16:00(NYC), then lighter but steady into Saturday.

Conclusion

There’s a days’s work gone into these charts, so those of you taking your blogs seriously I’d urge you to spend some time studying them and use them to help you time your posting more effectively.

Having said this stats are just a guide, so don’t take them too seriously, and some factors can skew stats. I don’t have any hidden agenda, other than trying to present the most accurate and truthful information for you (and I) to improve our blogging.

From my own observations, I’d experienced Monday and Tuesday to be slow days, so probably not the best days for prime content release.

It seems Wednesday and Thursday are the prime days for commenters, so I’d suggest looking to post in the gaps before the heavy spots on those days for prime content.

Weekends have generally been quieter, I reckon because there is a fair amount of professional bloggers that are commenting, and they tend to work during the week and weekend will be relaxing and bottles of wine etc. However they still do look at blogs, just less, Sunday being a steady day all day.

As I have a global audience, my blogs are set to GMT. So I will use the GMT scatter chart to allocate timeslots for posting, in order that my readers are most likely to be able to read and be actively engaged in what I’m posting.

Final notes

For those of you that are smart asses or live in a different time zone or don’t like my time zones, I’ve attached the raw times for the comments so you can do your own charts:)

(1127 rows, times for my own comments have been removed, all personal details removed – just dates and times)

DonCharisma.com Commenter Times GMT

67 thoughts on “What is the best time of day to post on your blog?

  1. Hey, this is cool. Also, thanks for stopping by Part Time Monster! We used a report of peak Facebook activity times to generate opportune times for announcing our satellite site, the first in a pretty new set of blogs, The Writing Catalog; this will be a cool tool to use going forward.

    1. You are welcome, and my pleasure 🙂

      Use it as a guide, statistics can be off by factors that skew, I tried to make it unbiased as possible, but that’s just how statistics are … US is the largest audience so I mainly I try to cater timing wise for US/Canada/Europe, as much as that is possible.

      Thanks for the follow back

      Keep in touch

      Warm regards

      Don Charisma

      1. Oh, of course; I’m actually thinking now that despite the Facebook peak times that we used being for overall users, we might be better served doing an analysis of when our specific followers and friends tend to post in order to gauge when our specific audience is most active.

      2. I’ve started scheduling my posts as it’s difficult to keep up the pace … the schedule works around USA hours, as that’s where the bulk of visitors come from and bit of a crossover with Europe … I will schedule more important posts for known peak times, as per my stats …

        I did a test yesterday with 14 posts in one day (my most so far), not as yet had any complaints, and I had a little message saying that I’d had my maximum number of likes, 285 in one day … so trying to balance up regular content vs what is too much to post in one day … I think probably 14 posts is a bit more than I want to do everyday, so I changed the timeslots to be longer for less content … if that makes sense !

        Warm regards

        DC

  2. Don, I appreciated all the time and effort you put into organizing this info. I too had been wondering the best time to schedule my blog posts. I’m still new enough to the blogging world that I don’t know which postings will be more popular. I can spend hours on one entry and only get a few visits, and then a simple picture and some heartfelt words may generate a great deal of response. It is a bit of a learning curve! And thank you for choosing to follow me!

    1. Hey Joanne, you are most welcome. Initially I did the study for myself, but felt worth sharing and sharing helps me organise things and get them clearer in my mind.

      Photos I think get more likes because they require very little audience participation, you see the picture, if it’s cool press the like no effort required. If it’s a 3000 word post then might take some 30min-1hour to read, and a lot just won’t read it. So the equation is something like that, reading requires effort, photos not much.

      Getting an equation that is popular is an art and you’ll understand what people like more as you try out different topics and styles. However in all fairness a “blog” is meant to be for you, your “web log”, so writting for an audience doesn’t necessarily come into it !

      My most popular post to date is https://doncharisma.org/2013/08/30/virgins-guide-to-promoting-a-blog-or-website-on-google/

      Good luck, keep in touch,

      Warm regards

      Don Charisma

  3. That was a pretty impressive bit of technology magic and you obviously worked hard. You can see your reward for sharing it. My comments seem to come mostly in the evening Australian time no matter where the country of origin is. I rarely get comments at night and rarely during the day. Great post.

    1. As one of the commenters pointed out early on, it’ll depend to some extent on what your blog is about and who your target audience is. If you’re in Australia, and it’s mainly Austrialians reading your blog then would make sense they have free time to comment in the evenings !

      Cheers

      DC

  4. good blog mate, thanks.
    I would like to add that how people read/interact with your blog (anyone’s blog) is dependent to some extend on when your publish your blog i.e. day of the week, time of the day.

  5. wow, thats interesting to know. Even without using the method you used i have gotten to know that tuesday’s and wednesday’s are the busiest days. But i am still going to try your formular.

  6. Wow you worked really hard gathering all that information! Thanks very much for sharing it, I’m not a serious blogger by any means and it’s useful for me so for others it will be invaluable. Great post! 🙂 x

  7. Wow amazing amount of work you did!! Thank you so much, as a new blogger I was just wondering when to send out a post into the vast unknown. With a bit of study from what you posted I might be able to answer that. Thanks again!!!

    1. Thanks:) I think it’ll vary slightly down to each individual blog and what they are writing about, but I think I’ve got a reasonable size sample, so hopefully will guide you as to busier and quitter times:) Cheers DC

  8. Interesting. I’m not knowledgeable in the tech & stats areas of WordPress yet. But am really trying to build my traffic so guess I better look into some of this info. You make it a lot less foreboding! Thanks.

    1. You are welcome. The tech & stats are foreboding, even for me Don Charisma LOL just the nature of new things. I am still finding things in my stats that I didn’t see before and discovering features of Webmaster tools that I didn’t know about. I tackled hootsuite today, eventually found how to remove a “social network” but took me a good 30 minutes ! Just need to keep at it, it gets easier with time, rome wasn’t built in a day nor was/is google conquered:)

  9. Great info! 🙂 I was very thankful for my work schedule which allowed me to gain a large European and Asian following. This accounts for the 24/7 traffic, but there are always “best” times to post. Very informative. -OM

  10. Is this comment going to be part of your next chart? Just kidding! Thanks for the info. I am still learning about WordPress & blogging so this is very helpful. Have a great week!

    1. Yes my anecdotal “feelings” of when my blog is busy are confirmed by this. I hadn’t thought to do a days of the month study, would like to have more data for that, maybe 9-12 months. I’ll keep an eye on that trend, thanks for pointing it out:)

    1. Thanks:) Yes I really wanted to find out when my blog was most active so I could time my posting better, seems that Wed & Thurs good for prime content. Another commenter pointed out that this may very for other blogs, depending on who the audience is.

    1. It’s stats at the end of the day, so not “the truth”, but it’s an indicator. I’ll personally use the patterns as I’m getting more organised at times to post … Did you notice any patterns yourself on your blog ?

    1. Anther commenter suggested that different blogs may have different peak times due to audience. For instance a site for kids, might be busy after school into early evening and at weekends.

      Thursday I knew was busiest day, but couldn’t really fathom, getting in black and white like this is really useful:)

    1. Thanks:) … not sure if my stats will pass the scrutiny of an expert, but I have included a couple of disclaimers that stats aren’t “the truth”, so hopefully he’ll go easy on me… would be nice to know his feedback, anything I can learn for next time I’m doing charts, stats etc always helpful !

  11. Hey, that’s really interesting! Here in France I’m about to go to bed, but I’ll have a closer look at your charts tomorrow.

    And by the way, thanks for the like on the open letter post. That one goes back a few months. Tell me – did you pick a random post?

    Best
    roger

    1. Thanks:) I’d already gone to bed, quite a few hours ahead where I am. The charts are really interesting, especially the scatter charts. GMT will be quite close to the time in France.

      I often find it difficult to navigate a blog, on the top bar there is a “Random Post” link, that brings me up a random post or three:) Also could do http://DonCharisma.org/?random (ie add a /?random) at the end of any blog name. Matt the creator of WordPress added it quite a few years ago, it’s a much underused feature of wordpress.

      Cheers

      DC

  12. Thank you, really interesting. May depend quite a lot on the target readership so different stats would apply to other people’s blogs.

    1. My pleasure. You are quite right, for a blog that’s say children’s stories, aimed at kids and main readers in US, then might be more evenings and weekends US time, and not so many 4am readers. Obviously during school holidays this might vary, as kids at home weekdays.

      My study did confirm what I already knew from “gut-feeling” about when my readers comment, and when blog is busiest and nice to have it in black and white so I can schedule more effectively:)

      I’m interested to find out what other blogger’s experiences are, as they may enhance what I’ve already learnt.

      Cheers

      DC

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