When discovering a new blog, I like to have a look through at least a few pages of blog archives before adding them to my RSS feeds. I will also make an effort to go back and peruse most, if not all, a site’s contents at some point too.
But when a site’s blog feed is configured to to display the entire post contents, I find it extremely difficult and laborious to go through the authors content.
When I originally designed the theme for this site and moved back to WordPress, I designed it so the excerpt was displayed in the blog feed. However, I ultimately decided that the excerpt wasn’t adding much value, so removed it completely in the end.
Just having the post title and some meta data allows readers to quickly flick through my blog feed and get a feel for what content this site contains.
You may think that having an excerpt, or even the full content allows you to get a feel fore the post without clicking on the link. I get that, an excerpt can add a little context. But I find that I never read the excerpt, but instead just read the first couple paragraphs of the posts. If I like what I read, I’ll read the whole thing.
Having the entire content in the feed makes finding the start of a new post very difficult, as it all reads like one big stream of formatted text to me. There’s no quick way to thumb through posts to see what the site contains.
This is just a quick post to explain a) the reason why I removed excerpts from my homepage a few weeks ago and b) why I don’t personally like having the full post content in the blog feed.
What are you thoughts? Feel free to contact me and let me know.