How Do Blogs Work?

blog letters on a board

As blogs become more relevant and popular online, you may be asking yourself, "How do blogs work?" Blogs are basically simplified websites that just about anyone can create and publish.

What Is a Blog?

The term "blog" is short for "weblog," which refers to an online journal. Blogs began as personal mini sites that people used to record their opinions, stories, and other writings as well as photos and videos.

As the web has grown and changed, blogs have gained more recognition and merit. Nowadays, blogs can be for businesses, news, networking, and other professional means. There are still plenty of personal blogs out there, but overall blogs are being taken much more seriously.

Blogs Versus Websites

Websites are generally made up of many pages linked together through a home page. They are divided into logical sections, and visitors can navigate through the site in a systematic manner.

Blogs, on the other hand, are based on frequent and timely updates. Visitors often don't move through the blog past the main page, since subsequent pages become outdated quickly.

How Do Blogs Work?

Blogs consist of a series of posts made by one or more bloggers. The posts appear in reverse chronological order, with the most recent post at the top of the main page. All posts are archived, and are usually sorted into categories. Readers can browse these categories or page back through the blog to read older entries.

Blogs can focus on a single topic or contain a wide range of themes and ideas. Some of the most common blogs focus on things like:

  • Small businesses and their products
  • Various aspects of parenting
  • Food and cooking
  • Celebrity sightings and gossip
  • Professional sports and specific teams
  • Product reviews
  • Career advice

This is just a small sampling of blog topics. For almost every niche subject you can think of, there are likely several related blogs in existence.

Blogging for Fun

Most blogs are started by people who want to share their ideas and thoughts. They post updates about themselves, their jobs, their families, and any hobbies or interests they might have. These blogs usually have limited readership, since most people aren't interested in the day-to-day lives of strangers.

Niche blogs that focus on one specific topic have a wider range, and these can become very popular. Like-minded people with similar interests become regular readers, and sometimes small communities are formed this way.

Blogging for Profit

On the other hand, many blogs start up with the hope of making money. Advertisements are placed on the sidebars and posts, and bloggers are paid per page view or per click. While there are many successful bloggers out there making a hefty profit through blogging, the vast majority make mere pennies.

Some businesses also start blogs to promote their products. These companies generally try to make things lighthearted and fun, holding contests or getting potential customers involved.

Why People Blog

In answering the question "how do blogs work?" it's important to consider the reason why so many people are blogging now. The appeal of blogging is that anyone can do it. Anyone who is interested in sharing their words with the world can do so with a few clicks of a mouse and a keyboard.

Whether people have a message that they want to convey, a professional service that they're looking to sell, or a simple desire to have their words published for others to read, blogs can accomplish these goals simply and easily. Hundreds of new blogs are started each day, and while many of them are quickly abandoned, others persevere.

It's true that blogs don't yet carry the perceived authority of traditional news or literature services, but they are becoming more respected as more people embrace their simplicity and effectiveness.

How Do Blogs Work?