Learn How: Truncating Posts

Scissor caseWe recently had a Twitter chat about blog layout, and there were some Tweets exchanged on truncating posts.  I am a “post cutter-upper” (the official term), and I wanted to tell you why I do it in addition to HOW to do it.  If are already of the truncating persuasion, skip to the end of the post for instructions.  If you think truncating post is for people that suck, then please follow my reasoning. And guess what?  For those of you who won’t if you have to click “read more,” I’m not truncating this post.  That is how much I want you to know about this.  Here’s why I truncate my posts.

  1. I personally can’t stand scrolling. If you’ve already read my top entry and want to reach the entry below it, I don’t want you to have to scroll through several pictures to find the next entry.  Is it four scrolls down?  Or is it ten?  And Where’s Waldo on my page, because you’ll have to find him too.  I’m kidding, but really – the average person will only scroll three times before abandoning a page.  I want my readers to be able to scroll through quickly and choose what they want to read further.
  2. It makes for a cleaner page. Mod Podge Command Central is frequently disorganized, and so is my desk at work.  SOMETHING in my life needs to be cleaned up.  It’s really important to me that Mod Podge Rocks have a very clean look; I don’t want my front page to be cluttered with too many pictures.  It’s definitely personal preference, but mine is less information on the home page.
  3. Loading time affects your Google ranking. This is probably the most important reason to truncate.  Please read this article.  Your page load speed is factored into the Google algorithm that ranks your blog and poops it out into search results.  What significantly slows a page loading?  Tons of pictures from craft tutorials, especially big ones.  If you want to check your page speed, try YSlow.
  4. Page views increase. I added this in here because it’s a benefit, but to be honest, it hasn’t done anything for me.  I started truncating my posts for reasons one through three, and I’ve seen a meager page view increase.  Has it earned me more money?  Not really.  $2 a month doesn’t even buy me a latte.  I’m serious.  My e-mail subscriptions and RSS feeds are still full (not truncated), so when people click through it’s still one page view since they go directly to the post.  That is how most people reach me, so life hasn’t changed for them.  And like I said, I don’t care about page views, so this is fine with me.

Truncating posts is up to you, but I highly recommend it.  Are you sold?  If so, here’s how to do it.

See that red arrow?  That is pointing to the handy-dandy little “insert jump break” button.  This excerpt is from Blogger, but the same button exists in WordPress.  Simply press this button after the text right before where you want to truncate, and it will automatically add the break.

Like working in HTML better?  Add <!–more–> to your post wherever you would like the break.  The code is the same no matter your blogging platform.

What is your opinion on truncating?  I’d love to hear it. And if you don’t truncate, are you concerned about your ranking in search results?

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29 Responses to “Learn How: Truncating Posts”

  1. Stephanie says:

    Love it! I hate scrolling too!

  2. Felicity says:

    Helpful post. Thank you.

  3. Maggi says:

    I would love to truncate my posts but cannot ever get the code to work. Oh well, I’ll put this on my list of To Do’s when I move my blog to my own domain. lol

  4. Jackie says:

    I ummed and ahhed about it for a long time but recently I changed over to truncated. I definitely prefer it! I compare it to the “LinkedWithin” widget – I find that because my readers can see more posts they are staying longer and clicking on more projects.

  5. Rebecca says:

    I am so new to blogging and so I do not understand what truncating is. I’m sure my blog needs it.Any help would for ever appreciated!

    • amy says:

      Hi Rebecca – Truncating a post is when you split the post so that it must be clicked on to see the entire post. If you go to the Crafterminds home page ( and scroll down, you’ll see several posts have “Continue Reading” listed under the first paragraph. That is a truncated post. You have to click on the “Continue Reading” to see the rest of the entry. Thanks for asking!

  6. Well, now I know what it’s called. I just googled ‘read more for blogger’ and started in last week. Not for any of the reasons you mentioned, Amy, although I’m glad to know them. I’m just too dang wordy and have too much I want to share!

    It never dawned on me to do it with every post. I was doing a split post (windows LiveWriter) when I posted more than once a day. But now, it makes sense, especially since I usually post so many pics.

    And for those who use LiveWriter, split post works great too!

  7. wow! looks great here! Love the new look!

    So I use windows live writer and would love to get some input on how to truncate posts. I tried manualy adding the read more html but it doesn’t work???

  8. This is how my front page is set-up, also…I really like it because people can chose from about 5 or so posts and not have to scroll for 3 minutes…lol…it looks more professional in my opinion and the more people start clicking the more likely they are to click on an ad!!

    checkout my set-up if you’re interested…i’ll return the love if you want to comment and leave your link <3

  9. Hi, I tried doing it to some post that I already published. It didn’t show up with the page break. Is it something that has to be done just on post from here on out? I wonder what I am doing wrong? When I hit “preview” will it show it with the page break or since I am previewing it, it shows the entire post? I so wish I could figure this out. It makes a lot of sense to me. Thanks!

    • amy says:

      Hey Selina – Preview will show the entire post (without the truncating). So you can’t judge if it worked in preview mode. You also can’t tell if it worked within the blog entry. Truncating is only meant to work on the home page. Send me an e-mail if you continue to have problems. Thanks!

  10. Thanks for sharing this! However, I’ve just tried this and it won’t work. First of all I realised I needed to upgrade to the new editor, which I did. And that somehow wiped a draft blog post I spent two hours writing. *weeps* So anyway, I put together another post to replace it, just to see if I could get truncating to work, and well….it doesn’t. You can see a space where the code is though:

    Could it be my template that is causing problems? I hope not, as I have the fear about changing it.

    • Hi Kitty! I’m not sure what the issue is – because it should definitely work, especially if you use the jump break button. I would do a little research on the Blogger help groups 🙁

  11. I will investigate further. I will *not* be beaten by Blogger. Again… 😉

  12. Tina says:

    Thank you so much for the great advice. I’m a babe-in-the-woods newbie to blogging and still trying to figure it all out so your site is very much appreciated.

  13. Amy says:

    I really hadn’t thought to truncate my posts, but I will from now on. This was so helpful!

  14. CarlaSue says:

    I see most of the comments are from bloggers in support of truncated posts. As a reader, I find them seriously annoying. It`s like a story on the front page of the newspaper that suddenly cuts off and says “see page D4”. I don`t enjoy jumping around blogland to get the rest of the story. Please don`t be offended, just thought I`d add an opinion from the reader`s point of view.

    • heather says:

      Thanks for your opinion, Carla Sue. From a reader’s perspective, I am annoyed by posts that go on and on. I would rather see the headline & click on what I’m interested in than have to scroll down for a mile to get to the next article. I guess it’s just different for everyone! Thanks for taking the time to comment.

  15. Erika says:

    How can I change the size of the “read more” link so that it is more eye catching? Thanks.

  16. Linda says:

    Loved this post. I’m truncating my blog posts now, but I’d like to know (and can’t seem to find an answer anywhere) how to truncate the auto-EMAILS of each post I publish. Subscribers get the whole thing when it’s delivered via email. Arrghhhh!!!!!


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