Best Time to Post

[tweetmeme source=”equalman” only_single=false times it’s not what you post, but when you post.  The most important thing is to still post great content, however you can severly hamper your great content by posting at the wrong time.

General guidelines:

  • Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday are your best days
  • Saturday is the worst day
  • Holidays are slow traffic days (except commerce sites)
  • 10 am – 11:30 am and 1 – 3:30 pm are best times to post
  • Stagger posts based on time zones

A recent study by Virtue specific to Facebook also shows that Social Media may follow similar patterns to the rest of the traditional Web.

  • The three biggest usage spikes tend to occur on weekdays at 11:00 a.m., 3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. ET.
  • The biggest spike occurs at 3:00 p.m. ET on weekdays.
  • Weekday usage is pretty steady, however Wednesday at 3:00 pm ET is consistently the busiest period.

Fans are less active on Sunday compared to all other days of the week; most sites slowest traffic day is Saturday, followed by Sunday.

This is interesting since so many schools and companies block Facebook from 9 – 5 pm.  Tough to block mobile devices though.

There are exceptions to the above rules, depending on what you are posting, but these are good general guides for most sites, social media activity and blogs. I’ve been fortunate to have access to statistics to hundreds of different sites/blogs during my sixteen year career and roughly 90% of the time the above holds true.

When I was the Head of Marketing at Travelzoo our production team always sent out the Top 20 e-mail list to the 21 million subscribers on Wednesday at roughly 11 am.  Why?  This gave it the best chance to be read.  You should do the same thing when you post.  If you have an incredible Tweet you need to get out, but it’s 2 a.m. on a Saturday, use a tool like hootsuite to schedule for the tweet to go out when more potential readers might read it.

Ironically, this post may not be picked up as much as it could since I’m posting it in the afternoon on a Monday following a holiday.

Other good posts on this topic: YouTube Traffic PattersBest Time to Send E-Mail, When are Facebook Users Most Active?Conversion Volume by Day

By Erik Qualman

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6 responses to “Best Time to Post

  1. This is great to know. Since a lot of my writing is done at night or on weekends, the temptation is to send right when their done. I will do my best to change that to maximize readership!

  2. I actually think that the hypothesis that you should follow that guide when posting is wrong for one simple reason: noise. Although there are the most conversations happening at those times as your graph points out, it is also the time when the most people are posting, thus giving your Facebook status update the shortest shelf life (the time it takes to get pushed far down the stream). Because of that, I often find that weekend posts and posts at odd-times actually get the highest level of feedback because you are not fighting with so many other people and pages that are posting.

  3. Hi Erick
    These are very interesting facts and something I will keep in mind when I am doing my next post.

    But why Wednesday is so popular? Is it because it is mid week, the worse two days of the week (Monday and Tuesday) are behind and that people we more relax as the weekend is just two days away?
    Or it is because a lot of people have caught up with all the important emails received over the weekend, Monday and Tuesday and have more time to read not so important one?

    Whatever, thanks for the tips.


  4. If you’re just posting once or twice a week, how would you staggger these in relation to time zones?

  5. Hi Erick, i write for a blog with digital medias contents, so could i translate these infografics to portuguese and post it?

  6. Great post, fabulous video! Very funny :))
    Creating, distributing and posting content is a critical step in any social media campaign and this article points out how important timing is. Here’s one of my favourite quotes “Strategy and timing are the Himalayas of marketing. Everything else is the Catskills.” Al Ries

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