This third month of blogging has been rather interesting all circumstances considered…
Not surprisingly, I have slowed my posting cadence. The pressure was not sustainable, and I remembered my everyday life is my real life. That of play with my son, work to make money, love to make me whole, drive like a maniac to keep me completely honest.
I coined a term for the extreme blogging behavior I experienced for the first 2 months. Bloggimia. Read more here: The Bulimic Blogger.
My emphasis this month was definitely on quality connections vs. quantity. I am so thankful for the few good friends I’ve already met. And for your time, dear reader. Thank you for supporting my blog.
Let’s dive into the numbers, in a new format this time, so we can look at trends. Numbers are so much fun, aren’t they?
Oh and I don’t like the term “visitors”. I’d rather call them “pedestrians”. You may not ask why, because I don’t know the answer.
Here are my notes:
1- The number of visits this month has not soared like I saw in month 2. That’s a direct consequence of my “sustainable blogging” approach. (Read: not posting every day, not promoting every post and being more low-key in general).
2- Number of pages per visit is down from the second month, but not as bad a dip as the second month saw. I believe this is due to the fact that most of my visitors are now repeat pedestrians, they have seen many of my prior posts, are familiar with my blog and the average is now between 2 and 3 pages per visit. This also explains why less time is spent on my site.
3- The bounce rate is going slightly up, and I’m willing to bet it’s due to the diversification of traffic sources — with search engine visits growing steadily.
Bounce rate is the percentage of single-page visits or visits in which the person left your site from the entrance (landing) page. Use this metric to measure visit quality – a high bounce rate generally indicates that site entrance pages aren’t relevant to your visitors.
I’ve read a bit about bounce rates; the lower the better, we’re told. I believe for blogs, no more than 50% is best. But for high frequency updates, that does not make sense ; the very essence of such site is to offer new content on a single page each day (or so) — if your loyal reader gets just what s/he needs, then why would she/he not exit on the page s/he got done reading and move on with his/her day?
4- Just added Google Friends Connect (GFC) but don’t ask me (yet) how to easily review the blogs I’m following (they’re supposed to appear in my Reader… Hmm, that did not happen), I have not really used it myself, but it’s a popular option for others to follow your blog. So it’s now on my blog by popular demand! If you have not yet joined, please do so now! (Look left)
5- This month I also created my Facebook page, which you should like. Please. Will you?
Click to the left of this post (if reading this post on the blog) or go here. 46 people are liking me. It’s wonderful to be “liked”. But if you don’t “like” me, I will get over it. I think.
Facebook is a great tool because it allows for easier conversations, in particular polling (if your “liking” friends reply of course) than on Twitter. I have not used it a lot yet, but I’m finding it’s another good method to expand my reach. And to catch other bloggers’ posts I may have missed otherwise. I am already “liking” 60 other Facebook pages, essentially from bloggers.
6- Alexa rank is way up. I think this is not really based on traffic though. There is no way my blog is amongst the top 446K sites in traffic. Or is there? Well, a girl can dream, but there is something to be said about the Alexa toolbar raising your rank. I will let you Google that and draw your own conclusions.
7- Referring sites is a fascinating subject. At the beginning a new site relies on a handful of friends, therefore it’s very common to see the main traffic source be “direct traffic”, i.e. people who know of your page and type the URL in their browser or use a bookmark.
Over time, things change. Search engine traffic starts to pick up. I’ve seen a steady growth from referring sites (these are sites that lead to your URL, such as Facebook, Twitter, but also discussion boards you may be active with). Though last month was a bit down from the prior month, again, a factor of me not promoting as much. I cannot spend 3 hours a night on Twitter, Facebook and The Blog Frog. I’d like to at times. But it’s not necessarily the best idea…
8- No surprise in posting frequency, closer to 4 a week vs. 7 post a week originally. That’s a conscious choice of a grown woman with a job and a baby
9- Yay for guest posts! I had the opportunity to publish several guest posts of varied subject matters this month, and I thoroughly enjoyed it! Let me take a moment to say “Thank You” to Jackie, Cate, Expat Explorer and Nichole. I am very honored they accepted to host my words.
10- Getting money through my blog (“monetizing”) is not a goal. I’m just playing around with AdSense, trying to understand it better. Learning by doing. I doubt advertising will ever pay for my hosting, but again, that’s not the point. The point is, mommy ain’t blogging for the money…
How did I do?
Did any of these stats help you understand the performance of your own blog?