It seems incredible, but we’ve been blogging now for 3 months. Incredible because whilst it only seems like yesterday that we launched the blog, we’ve also covered an incredible amount of ground.
To mark this 1st quarter of blogging, and in the spirit of openness that should characterise any such enterprise, we’ve decided to share our traffic data with you, as well as what we’ve learned from the blog so far.
The Main Stats: April 16th – July 16th:
Total page impressions: 12,527
Total unique visitors: 5,421
Total visits: 6,626
Traffic Sources As % Of Visits:
Search Engines: 50.51%
Referred From Other Sites: 30.10%
Direct Traffic: 18.38%%
Most Popular Content (excl. blog home):
- Typo Squatters and the Madeleine McCann Search
- Berries & Cream, Berries & Cream – Who Said The Catchphrase Was Dead?
- 180 Solutions Have Lost The Plot By Suing PC Tools
- Download WordPress With Themes And Plugins Preinstalled
- Who Is Big Brother?
Highest Traffic Keywords (excl. our brand terms & duplicates):
- berries and cream
- madeleine mccann
- song tank
Top Referrers Engines & Sites:
Google Webmaster Tools: 402
Yahoo! Site Explorer: 675
Technorati Blog Reactions: 125
So, what have we learned from all of this?
First, that no matter what Mr Nielsen might say, writing a blog is definitely worth it for our business. In conjunction with some selective networking, it has built our profile within this sector incredibly.
Secondly, and something we already knew, useful or engaging content is essential. The post with the lowest bounce rate (i.e. the post that fewest people came in, looked at, and left) was the post where James offered people his WordPress plug-in. Needless to say, I will be twisting James’ arm to get him to create more of these pretty soon.
Thirdly, that you don’t just have to write about your sector: write about how it impacts on the wider world. 3 of our 5 most popular articles were about current events or popular culture. And in the case of our most viewed story to date, on how people were trying to profit from people searching online for information on Madeleine McCann, it will hopefully have driven a few more people to the official site where donations can be made.
Fourth, that people do actually read this stuff. We’ve had 73 comments across 87 posts, which is a pretty impressive ratio for such a new site. And it’s also amazing the caliber of reader you can attracts. My personal highlight was probably receiving a comment on the post I wrote about the Guardian redesign – from the Head of Editorial Development at Guardian Unlimited. We’ve also had over 1,000 spam comments – thank goodness for Askimet).
Fifth – whilst it is essential to be on the 1st page of search results (or on Google News, which has driven a very large proportion of our traffic), people do still plough through pages of results when they really want to find something. We’ve had visitors who have found our posts on pages 4, 5, even 10 of the results.
Finally, that it is essential to be an active participant in a wider online community. Our three biggest referring sites are all ones which James & I had been active on for some time before the launch of the blog. It was therefore natural for us to promote the blog, in a sensitive manner, on these sites; if we had just launched the blog and then tried to hijack these communities, we would have been quickly shown the metaphorical door.
We hope that you have enjoyed reading the blog as much as we have writing it, and hope you stick around for the next 3 months at least. We’ll finally be moving to our new home soon, where you can expect to see lots of improvements to the way that the content is presented, but hopefully no drop-off in the quality of the content itself.