In the spirit of reading others posts about “how much they are blogging lately” I decided to look at my own statistics in this space. I will admit, in the past year or so I consciously decided to blog much more specific information to my job, programming, etc. and a lot less about personal stuff where as I decided to use other channels like Facebook to put more of my personal posts. One thing I have been consistently watching is “views per day”. I feel as long as I can keep a readership then that is good enough for me. I have also noticed a lot more hits from search engines and other sites mentioning my site in the past two years. With that approach, it clearly looks like less is more – if the quality is there. So now with the stats!
The first chart shows some monthly counts spanning the years my blog has kept stats. I had to put the views in thousands (K) so it wouldn’t skew the chart so much. As you can see, the average day pretty much reflects the number of posts in that month – so I guess if I did blog more the views would go up. However, if you look at the total views in K for each month it is pretty level at around 20K per month. I did notice that 2010 and 2011 were big years for views so it has actually skewed some of the numbers (see the annual chart) from reality.
The annual chart does show a steep decline from this year and the past two years, however, I still have 14 days left! Once again, notice how the number of posts have dropped considerably but the views in K and Average Views per day only dipped slightly. I think this is because of my first statement about getting more referrals and showing up in more searches.
I installed the Lightbox Plus WordPress plugin from here. Go ahead and check out the feature by clicking on the image below. I love how simple this plugin was to install and get up and running, very cool and easy to use feature!
Lightbox Plus implements ColorBox as a lightbox image overlay tool for WordPress. ColorBox was created by Jack Moore of Color Powered and is licensed under the MIT License.
One of the interesting things about the internet and writing on the internet is once you get some kind of solid foundation you realize some articles are actually read sometimes months or even years after they are posted. Google does a good job in relevancy finds but its only as good as your title, tags, and content. If you are lucky you may create enough articles that when someone searches on their favorite search engine they get directed to your masterpiece.
I try to tag/categorize every single post I can and have somewhat descriptive titles because those are the key words the search engines rank on most. Then of course the content is always king. The most clicks your posts generate on the search site the better chance your article will move up in the ranks.
As you can see from the chart below, I just took a random day where I had not posted in a few days to see what impact search engines and social sites have on my blog read counts.
The site actually got 190 hits that day and the previous post was actually four days prior spanning the weekend so the referrer count was pretty much narrowed down to searches and social sites.
On an average day where I do post I get about 350-700 visits on those days and still get an average of 100-200 visits from search engines and social sites. That means on average I am seeing one third of my traffic resulting from searches.
What is “chirr chirr chirr” you ask? It is suppose to be the sound of crickets, I actually found this to see how it is spelled.
When you create tutorial videos or live presentations of software you may want to have the viewer see where the mouse is at certain times throughout the video. Windows 7 has a pretty slick feature that you can enable in the Mouse dialog box. Enabling that option will then allow you to simply hit the CTRL key to get a visual indicator of where the pointer is. This is great for highlighting the pointer and also highlighting a button or a click option you will click.
Many video production software packages do something similar as this but if the one you are using doesn’t you can always use this as an option. This is what it would look like in the end video:
For the most part the hit counts on PlanetLotus mirror what my statistics say for my posts. There are however three that seem to be a little off. Check out the stats from my WordPress statistics and the click counts from PlanetLotus on these three posts:
Another interesting point is the Searchandizing with WebSphere Commerce post is also a YouTube video and that has 372 views, almost three times the number of hits as my blog but nowhere close to the PlanetLotus click count.
Smarter Commerce Blog! Ok, maybe it was not as grueling as I am stating. I want to thank the Smarter Commerce Blog editors for giving me a chance to contribute on their blog, hopefully I live up to the quality that has already been going on over there.
This morning, in lieu of the Facebook IPO, I posted my first blog entry entitled “Using Social to grow your customer base”. While Facebook and all of the big social networks play a big role in your online presence there are still a lot of things you need to do as a retailer to make sure your site provides for a solid community. I outline a few things in that post I think are very important and show a couple of use case examples of sites that are getting it right.
As many saw last week I Tweeted about upgrading to WordPress 3.3 and I found out I had to upgrade to MySQL 5. The good news is I have been using MySQL5 with Drupal and a couple of other sites for a while. The upgrade process was seamless, I simply used the Export content and then import content feature from the WordPress Export/Import plugin.
After I installed everything I decided to change the look and feel and just use an out of the box theme, the Twenty Eleven theme. I then carefully went through all of my own photos from around the world and used them instead of the canned photos that came with the theme. In case you don’t want to hit refresh of my home page a hundred times, here they are:
Old Forge, NY
China - Great Wall
China - Summer Palace
So I got some immediate attention about yesterdays post about placing free ads for business partner products on my blog. I gave it some more thought and tonight I designed a basic rotation system based on the hour of the day. Currently the ads will rotate every hour or every several hours – it just depends on how many ads I will be displaying. The more I get the more the algorithm will be enhanced to give everyone a fair share. So currently, if you sent me your ads you should see them at least once a day and possibly for several hours. I may even set up a nice little animated slide show (similar to my post slide show at the top of the site) of the ads so it rotates through the list and changing the order each hour, we will see.
Make sure you sing the title like the Pinocchio song…”I’ve got no strings on me”.
So for the last year I had tried ads on this blog. I figured hey, if I could get something for delivering content to my readers and get a following it may work out in the end to pay for the site fees. So what are the results? Well, with a daily average of almost 400 hits a day for the past year the net results were $8.64! I have found many of the ads offensive and not relevant to my site, even though I filled out profiles for each ad space there always seem to be that “Find a Sexy Russian” ad on the site.
So in short, I have removed all ads from this site. I think its a good thing and I am sure my readers would agree.
I started seeing a lot of hits coming from Codebix.com and I decided to check out their site. The site is very PlanetLotusesque with some additional interesting features. It is like they mixed some of the principles of PlanetLotus and IdeaJam together. The site is very clean looking and easy to follow. I am not sure how much will this catch on but I like some of the features and may include them on PlanetWebsphere. Check it out, would be interesting to hear others opinions.