According to BlogPulse, there are close to 200 million blogs currently live on the web with over 50,000 new blogs created every day. But despite this astronomical growth, the world of blogging and bloggers has primarily stayed the same. Demographics since 2004 and provided by Technorati have consistently shown that bloggers have typically been well-educated males ages 18-44, with the majority being from the United States. But this year saw a change in the landscape that sees more people from more countries, such as Japan, creating blogs.
With that in mind here are some of the current major trends that are expected to carry over into the future of blogging.
MORE OVERALL BLOGS
According to Shani Higgins, CEO of Technorati, there has been a huge spike in blogs over the last few years, with more and more people in the 18-44 age demographic creating and maintaining both personal and professional blogs. There has even been a sharp spike in woman bloggers, who now make up well over 50% of the blogosphere. Also, 2011 statistics showed that the average blogger had two blogs while in 2012 statistics show that the average blogger manages three blogs.
A MOVE TO TUMBLR
The concept of “miniblogging” first gained steam with the advent of Tumblr, a social networking site geared towards bloggers that deftly combines the best bits of Facebook and Twitter. In fact, many top bloggers have already abandoned the WordPress ship in favor for the simplicity and huge audience base Tumblr offers. In fact, look for blogging to continue to move away from single web pages and further into the realm of social media as corporations continue to integrate their brands into social networks as well.
MORE BRAND INTEREST IN BLOGGING
Even as recently as four years ago many brands were wary of throwing their hats in the ring with user generated content. Many brands viewed the blogosphere as the Wild West of cyberspace, a sort-of unregulated landscape where they would have little control. But over the last few years the thinking of major brands has evolved to the point they now recognize the sheer size and scope of blogging’s sphere of influence. Many blogs directly affect many brands’ target consumer bases, so it’s only natural for these organizations to take full advantage of this fact of Internet reality.
PAID POSTS/SPONSORED POSTS
With the average salary for a blogger topping out at around $24,000 annually, there isn’t as much of a talent pool as there could be. That’s because most bloggers, at best, can only use the money they generate from their posts as supplementary income to their full-time jobs. One major trend that is occurring is for brands to offer incentives to bloggers in the form of paid and sponsored posts, which allow bloggers to interact with brands in a more profitable way.
QUALITY OVER QUANTITY
Statistics show that in 2011 many bloggers wrote less often but produced longer content. Major changes in search engine algorithms, such as Google’s much-ballyhooed Panda update, is leading to a reversal of this trend. Look for more newer, shorter blogs to show up in the higher-tier of page ranks.
While these are a sampling of the major trends driving the blogosphere, there are certainly other considerations to take into account when looking at where blogging is headed. With more and more people accessing the Internet through media, it’s highly likely that we’ll see even shorter blog posts in the future than are the current trend. That means shorter posts with more text decoration designed for consumption on the smaller screens of handheld devices.
And after this, who knows what the future holds for the marriage of technology and blogging.