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Wednesday 14 May 2008

Hits and anniversaries

Dave Briggs posted something about his stats and Jeremy Gould missed his anniversary.

Dave also posted something along the lines of 'wail! Is anyone listening!'. I've now gone past my anniversary so they're both reminding me to cover this terrain ...

I actually started this because I was posting long thoughts elsewhere and I clipped a lot and passed that on - which can become annoying. I should have done this earlier but really the blog is primarily for me! I dig up ideas and clips all the time; it's an online dump for me, this blog.

I actually got a comment from someone on one of my Google Reader dumps complaining that I 'didn't know how to have a structured conversation'. Well, doh! Some posts definitely are worked up in that sense and others aren't. What's a 'my links' dump? Not a 'conversation', that's for sure.

Some posts are more about my trying to get attention for something - like my recent stuff on searches for suicide and trying to take on the BMJ. That's also how my Mehdi Kazemi work started. Doing this attention-seeking is hard work though - I know this from doing online work for Mehdi, hours of adding comments and sending out email (worked though - we won).

Mostly I'm not thinking that hard about getting attention, it's me working through an argument and stretching myself a bit or just following an interest - like the use of web in the US primaries. It definitely isn't some kind of service! If it was an extension of my business I'd pay more attention to promotion - but my work is on the other side of a Chinese Wall.

There's a lot of posts I've done I'm quite pleased/proud about and the blog's been extremely useful for networking and raising issues in my main area of interest - egov.

Some others I've done, like the Kenyan blogosphere posts, have given me a big smile when I've had feedback from people working in that area. Same happened with the BMJ stuff actually.

So, since last April I've done 616 posts. These have covered a lot of subjects because I have fairly wide interests though most have been web related in some way.

The web is something I've lived with now for thirteen years. I've a post which I'll finish (soon!) which is about how I first saw it in 1994 (wait, that's fourteen years ... ). And I've seen numerous times, first-hand, the power of it in changing lives of people and communities. I'm pretty much an evangelist on that score, both commercially and socially.

I've been and gone with looking too closely at stats or technorati authority. I do look sometimes to see if certain people have been (i.p. address tells you a lot), and to see if I have a new referrer. But doing this has been about learning how to understand stats more than anything. I now have three sources, so Google Analytics tels me only part of the picture. I now get some RSS numbers through Feedster for example. In a year I've had 21,000 vists but the best number is 3000 returning visitors. Must be doing something right.

Most of my traffic comes from Google search, so my top content has included:
All got hundreds of hits, a couple got over a thousand.

Which tells me a lot about the power of titles.

When I have had a major referrer this has blown out traffic. So
All also got hundreds. The BBC link still sends lots of clicks through but this also shows to some extent how viral happens because none were sought and some were from very odd referrers (there's been 724 in all)

Almost all of these pages are recent but some older content has also built up hundreds of hits, such as:
Hits in general have been going up and that's a reflection of Google, including Image Search, being my main referrer and positioning improving, as well as some other new or growing referrers like BBC, GoogleBlog and technorati.

What doesn't get huge numbers is egov posts, but I know this doesn't mean they don't get read.

I'm also not hugely bothered by getting comments or not. When I see something I just agree with, I rarely comment. So I'm often assuming that!

Enough. Not really one for too much self-analysis and this is plenty ;]

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