Blog Prefect Goals for 2015

I was reading an article by Mi Muba from BeAMoneyBlogger.com on 11 guilt-free tips for writing a business plan for your blog and had a thought about whether I set decent goals for my blog. The easiest goal to set is just to outperform the quantity performed last time. But is that a sensible goal? I then got to thinking about my statistics that I perform regularly for my monthly traffic report.

I’ve been working on my KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) for Blog Prefect as I have more data to fully benchmark success and failure criteria in my monthly output. With this in mind I’ve gone back over 2014 to produce some key sets of data to monitor my future end of month reports in 2015.

Blog Prefect Goals for 2015

  • So where does my data come from?

WordPress stats form a small part of the data. I can only trust certain information.

Google Analytics provides a fair proportion of this information but is further filtered to my key dynamic filter which I refer to as GAF. The GAF filter is termed “ActualTraffic” in my saved filters, its purpose is to strain out Crawley, West Sussex, England and only count those who stay longer than 30 seconds. I count 30 seconds or more as a good sign that there is some interest even if it is only a very quick scan of the page.

Bounce Rate is unfiltered Google Analytics. The percentage figure gives me an overall depiction of gross follow through. That sounds horrible. Check your underpants people. Keep this clean, it’s a family show.

Starting with the Average:

Dashboard 2014 AVG

  • My average highest individual view for a post during a month rests at 16, that is shockingly low so I want to work on that. Bear in mind that the highest individual goes into that pot so to have an average of only 16 suggests that I have many posts that drag the outstanding numbers below the surface of the water.
  • Bounce rate has been below the danger zone of 80% but I want to work on trimming it down by at least 8%.
  • Page Views is also a low figure. I need to be hitting more per month than this consistently. If I were to go by Moore’s Law, I need to double that figure at least.
  • I would like to double Referrals at the very least but it is down to how well my social sharing is going, as ever that is why this falls in the uncontrollable bracket.
  • The visits vs visitors display is one of my newer adjustments to the KPIs but as you can see there is an error. A discrepancy exists between Visitors and Visits (visits in Google Analytics terminology is known as sessions). There is no way there can be 45 visitors and only 33 views so this data has been skewed somewhere.
  • ATOS (Average Time on Site) is okay at the moment but I’d like to get the numbers up to 10 minutes.

The next measuring jar for 2014 was the Minimum

Dashboard 2014 MIN

This is a highly useful weather vane for displaying the worst periods of the year. As you can tell from this information, February, March, April and August all suffered in 2014 to one degree or another. In particular April was a hard hit month. (Which I’ll explain in further detail in the environmental factors below)

If any of my stats for a month fall below this amount in 2015, I need a kick in the butt, literally.

What is particularly striking in these stats are ATOS and Referrals. These were particularly low in comparison to the rest of the year.

This tells me that I should be ready to brace myself in April to perform better or expect the same woeful results, but that I need to get my act together to follow through properly in February, March and April to avoid egg on my face. I know this is going to be hard as my Degree module will bite into this time as will the Holiday I have planned in March.

The final measuring jar is the inverse of this figure, the Maximum

Dashboard 2014 MAX

December was a particular key month in all of my meaningful stats rounding off the year. The bounce rate is almost as low as it was on the first month of the blog in 2013. I started out with 50% bounce rate in June 2013 which is the best the site has ever seen in GA stats (but Alexa has had me as low as 9%).

February was also a prominent month. September saw the peak of my referral traffic which had built steadily from May, increasing positively each month up to September before topping out.

My target in 2015 is to outperform all of these purple figures in at least 1 month.

Environmental factors to note:

February 2014 was an unusual “Experiment” month for Blog Prefect. It received some paid traffic that month which marred the figures considerably. This is why February shows in the purple months, yet would have been a pretty average month without this boost that occurred for 5 days.

In April I was reeling from a personal issue and so my site took a big hit in terms of quality during this period. This was one true month where I wasn’t performing at my optimum and the stats reflect that.

November saw some weird numbers, unusually high skew on WordPress stats which didn’t reflect in Google Analytics.

December, another feature to the purples, was an unusual month with some high sustained numbers of traffic acting like a targeted advert to the site. I had not triggered anything but I suspect that some link or inquiry inflated these figures unnaturally and I doubt that this same warmth will be seen in January 2015. (At time of editing, this appears true with lower numbers).

Goal setting

It is important to set yourself a goal and that is exactly what I’m going to do this year. I had some thoughts about this and first went with an incredibly heavy target. It was silly to do that because those targets would most definitely be unreachable.

Instead I would perform a 15% increase on the 2014 average. So what does that look like?

Dashboard 2015 GOAL 15 PERCENT

This is an achievable goal if I work hard each month to ensure that I don’t have any of the drought factors that will pull the average down.

  • Noting the blue triangle in the bottom right, this is to signify that the data has been altered to balance the stats. You cannot have less visits than you have visitors so there must be at least a ratio of 1:1.

Challenge

There is going to be a bit of challenge in this goal set. I don’t feel that I’ll be able to achieve the 15% on all areas. Some of the stats I know are difficult to put right quickly and will require attack. That’s all part of the fun though.

Bounce rate seems difficult. Sometimes I get the mix right, other times not so I feel this is the stat I’m most likely to fail on based on 2014’s ups and downs.

Over to you?

What kind of goals have you set yourself for 2015?

Just started out? If so, what do you envisage as a sensible number? You could strike it lucky and be popular off the bat. You might swing the other way and have a really limp reception to the world of blogging with small numbers. What are you prepared for?

Been going for a while? Prepared for great or a slip backwards? Is the post schedule you are working to really paying out? Is the place you pimp your links reaching enough clickers?

Been going for years? Got any spare gold? 🙂

And Finally….

I wanted to tie in this epic soundtrack from 1965 because I hope to have a year as funky as this. They don’t make TV series soundtracks quite as good as this any more.

Blogging Tips for Schedule Averse Bloggers

I’m a non-schedule sorta guy, possibly to my detriment, making schedules for all of these posts takes the joy out of the process for me. I like to flow with the ebb and take things off the cuff as they roll out and become an emerging discussion or I like to look back historically at something and see how that relates to the now.

Blogging Tips for Schedule Averse Bloggers

Blogging Tips for Schedule Averse Bloggers

The reason I am writing this article is because this week, which started 12/01/2014 and will end 19/01/2014, I have taken 2 days off work to devote to my existing blog (Blog Prefect) and my new blog (JackoWrites). I also have taken this time off to have a break from routine. At time of writing (because I’ve been writing this article predominantly on Sunday the 11th Jan) I have spent numerous weekends at the Gatwick Virgin Atlantic Airways Hangar working on my assignments for my degree. I’ve seen a lot of inside the building, too much actually.

I realised that in the later part of 2014, I had neglected the blog a fair bit, caught on a hot step from having to decide to take the earlier route to completing my degree. It wasn’t a great trade-off but the only one I could take at the time. It does mean that come June, my evenings are becoming free for quality (and washing my clothes, groan).

The crux of my issue

Because I’m not a schedule guy, I don’t run with a lot of content in the bank. I don’t have a lot of drafts ready to post. This week because I know that I have 48 hours (minus the sleep and other required functions) I wanted to get a bit ahead of the curve.

I wrote two articles to warm the cockles (hopefully) and I had a third one partially written but it ddidn’tseem to hit the spot in my own assessment, so is on the chopping block to be dismembered, fed to an angry alligator, and then re-written to be awesome.

Monday to Wednesday

In a way, I do try to stick to some kind of schedule. I know that the most efficient days of posting for my target audience fall within Monday to Wednesday. I need to get my posts published between those three days to be efficient. In any other day, other than pure fluke, I do not get the returns on viewing because people don’t view the same kind of material in the 2nd bigger half of the week.

I also think that 1 post a week is important and that a chain of posts can often be very profitable in terms of traffic intake.

I had a sustained burst of chained posts during the summer months last year. Some of those posts fell on their arse, others rose to the top. The ones that performed best were not always the ones I thought were going to do well. The key component seems to be perfect timing, perfect topic and simplicity in the core.

  • Perfect Timing
  • Perfect Topic
  • Simplicity in the Core

I would surmise that this is why my “guide” posts are always a hit. They are in need and the probability of a person consulting more than one guide for ‘safety’s sake’ highly likely.

Sustaining the burst

In order to sustain that big period of almost unbroken posting for a month or more, I had to develop inventive ways of creating both high quality and decent length posts coupled with high quality but short posts. It was hard but the 60 minute challenge I devised worked a treat.

60 minutes of writing on a topic. +30 minutes for getting the title and images right. Setting aside 90 minutes a day was easy and I was able to support my bigger value 1,500+ word posts with these 900 – 1,200 words posts.

The results were interesting because occasionally the short posts that I wrote, in the short-term, would outperform some of my word heavy posts. Eventually these word heavy posts would then take back the crown but for a time the shorties had dominion.

Writing these shorter entries gave me the ability to test out ideas with the audience. Where I received comment or +’s I knew it was strong, where it met with disinterest I knew it was weak.

To read more on the 60 minute challenge click here.

Bonuses from the experiments

A lot of my philosophical development ideas have been developed not from the months where I’ve spent longer on posts, but from that month of experiment. It forced me to think about a lot of what Bloggers face and helped me to deepen my philosophy. There were a lot of Launchpad disasters akin to those old black and white films where the helicopter ends up tearing itself apart before getting even a millimeter of fresh air under its feet. The saying is true, you learn far more from failure.

July 2014 was a particularly good time where I covered a lot of ground and I look to recapture that spirit this year so be prepared for all manner of experiments in July time which coincides with Blog Prefect’s 2nd Birthday.

Offshoots from July

One particular article that I wrote is helping me develop a .pdf guide for BlogPrefect that I think has not been covered in-depth like many over topics and I would like to fill that need.

There was also another particular topic that I covered which I am looking to write another guide on.

The importance of reaching out of the comfort zone

When we are comfortable we don’t strive for better, we don’t get the benefit of overcoming challenge, we don’t feel the reward of succeeding. We simply are. It is not a good place just to be comfortable, we should seek to get a little uncomfortable once in a while.

Whilst humans are creatures of habit, we also seek change in those things that become mundane, we seek a little bit less of the everyday to make our everyday a pinch more exciting.

As of 14th January 2015

I’ve left myself a bit of a difficult path. I missed the Monday Window and the Tuesday Window.

I missed the Monday Window because my Monday post was not ready to go. It was not ready because the images were not ready. I also had to go shopping at the supermarket and perform some much-needed ironing (all prep for Thursday – Friday)

I missed the Tuesday Window because I was out on part 1 of my 6 month celebratory date with my girlfriend. We went bowling and on a nice stroll. I bowled with my left arm this time and was fascinated to see that I actually have a natural ‘curl’ whereas I’m a very straight bowler with the right. It was an interesting experiment and I scored 84 on the first with 1 strike and 1 spare and 71 on the second, missing out on the spare 4 times in a row. I also had some great success on the air hockey table beating my lady-love 7 – 4, the only shame was two OGs (doh). Obviously my tasks had still not been completed.

I started out Wednesday well, got out of bed early which meant that I could leave work earlier owing to getting in earlier but this didn’t translate to a Wednesday post. They still weren’t ready.

As of 15th January

I sent out both posts with mixed results. My slightly shorter post did better, my bigger post did worse but I expect it to perform better as time passes.

I performed a load of other tasks like fixing a few things on both my sites, creating some new content which will appear later on, sharing some stuff from other people (because despite the reciprocity rule, sometimes some things do help me out.) and trying to get my Twitter moving a bit (@blogprefect by the way.)

Fast Forward to 19th January

The lack of momentum was a killer in the end although Thursday performed well with a double dose of posts and they are still performing after the fact. I can’t help but think that Friday output was a complete fail and that left me at a loss for the end of the week.

Having said that, I had plenty of time to think about new ideas and that was a benefit.

The two posts were:

Pune Effect: The accuracy of stats & The Rise of JackSepticEye: Like a Boss!

I cannot deny that I enjoyed my time off but I don’t thing I came out of the other side with what I had intended. I’d worked hard to clear the decks so that I had time to spend but I lost the cohesion and it didn’t end up the way I wanted it to come to pass.

Things to learn

There is an important concept when you are trying to pull off a strategy. Execution is important. You have to do the work to get the required item out on time. There are no two ways about it. Making excuses just makes you look weak in the scheme of things.

  • No amount of extra planning can make up for poor execution.

Having been in a planning department for years I can attest that on many occasions the plans that we have laboured over have been cast aside but we are better for making those plans. It is the execution where no plans are made, where it all goes to pot (and I’ve witnessed many occasions where that has been the case).

  • You can approach things wrong from the start.

That is to say that you can go into something with a great idea of where you want to end up but you actually need everybody else to play ball to get there.

  • Over production doesn’t relate to equal or sustained interest

Over production can often mean that you are just shaving off the gold from your more likely successor. This is why many bloggers, although tempted by shorter more often, stick to awesome less often, but aspire to awesome more often. To do the big pieces more often, you need more resources, sometimes even more people, to lend a hand.

  • You can fight against what you know is true but it will bite you in the bottom

The fact of the matter is, for Blog Prefect at any rate, it performs worse on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Doing things then will never be as efficient as hitting the prime zone, Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Releasing two posts on a Thursday was not efficient.

More food for thought

Now I pass over some wisdom from other bloggers who have written on this topic but they got the first page of Google results.

Starting first off with Marcus Sheridan from TheSalesLion.Com:

“Yep, that’s right, there is NO perfect blogging schedule. Actually, better stated, there is—the one that allows you to accomplish your goals and love every minute of this wonderful act we call blogging.”

He is right. There is no one size fits all. The truth is, you never know what can work for you until you start tinkering with the formula once in a while. More on that interesting article here.

Annabel Candy of Copyblogger.com strikes on another important nail:

“Successful bloggers know where they’re going. They have a master plan and they stick to it. Yes, they adapt based on feedback, but always in service of a vision.

To paraphrase Seth Godin’s recent book Linchpin, “Effective bloggers ship.” Top bloggers don’t waffle for months about the typeface on their upcoming ebook. They may tailor the angle, price, or format to better suit their market. But they don’t let themselves get derailed. They follow the plan.”

You need a plan Stan! This excerpt comes from a series of 8 important habits of highly effective bloggers found here.

But there is a problem making plans, you have to stick to them. Ann Smarty of InternetMarketingNinjas.com makes a good point when you’ve made your editorial calendar:

“The calendar is going to do you no good if you make it, then close the page and forget about it entirely. Make sure that you’re using your calendar, pulling it up daily or even multiple times a day to see what you should be working on. Also make sure that you’re regularly adding ideas to it, like those ones that hit you at 3am when you should be sleeping!”

You can read more about creating an effective editorial calendar here, 2am is more my time personally.

How would you spend 48 hours? What would you do?

No Reggie Hammond in the comments if you please. (You need to have seen the film 48 hours to get that, it was made in 1982, 1 year after my birth).

Pune Effect: The accuracy of stats

I’ve talked many times in my end of month traffic reports about the ‘Pune’ effect. I have no particular great intention of this post ranking but offer it as an explanation behind categorising for freak statistical events. There are good and bad events as you will soon see.

The explanation of the term ‘Pune’

Pune is a location in India and it was the first time I noticed some pretty unusual stats culminating in a spike in views which elevated one month far beyond others previously.

Pune Effect

Pune, Maharashtra, India

I drilled into the data to understand what was going on and discovered that one individual visitor had viewed 75 of my posts in the space of 3 hours. This happened only once this month and was generated off the back of commenting on a very high authority article.

I later saw these kinds of odd spikes from time to time and monitored them with interest. Uncharacteristic behaviour is the kind of data you stop and take note of.

Types of event

If you are a stat watcher like me, you desire to know whether the event was organic or synthetic.

Organic events with a spike are great. That means you’ve more than likely got an interested party checking out your stuff and putting their thumbs up (or at least viewing your work as copy worthy which normally means it’s a winner). You want winning posts and this is a good indication that you have them.

Synthetic events are the kind of issue you want to avoid. This is because you know that there is a correlation between artificial trawls and increased bounce rates and low time on site.

Bots – Automated crawlers

Bots are okay in the background. It is true that most of the time many big stat collectors know to filter out this kind of background traffic. If you ever look at stats on the server side such as AWstats or Webalizer (stats common to hosted sites normally found on the cPanel), you will see lots of additional bot traffic happening in the background. These unusual events begin to be a problem when they start bleeding into your normal stats.

Obviously, you want your site to be listed and crawled by various stat bots, but you don’t want that data to leak into your stats and create harm that you will be penalised for by Google and other search engines.

Punishment

Chapeltown_Stocks

High bounce rate constitutes as a red flag for Google & Co.

You have the uncontrollable events of visitors who may stay for a few seconds but be so underwhelmed that they leave. This is organic loss. You can stand a chance of repairing this by making sure people who need the information find it and those that don’t steer clear. It takes a bit of knowhow but can be done.

  • Remove 404 page navigation errors
  • Make sure the site doesn’t take too long to load
  • Improve your proofing (spelling, grammar, readability)
  • Be relevant
  • Don’t use traffic shortcuts

On the other side you may be targeted by bots from rather shady corners of the web. In some cases you can use a bit of data knowledge to block these activities.

One such company I tackled in 2014 were Ukrainian Semalt.com. Unfortunately this company uses a rather invasive method of pinging your site which results in a daily number of high bounce rate views. I used a method of blocking to aid me in this and then created a guide, I didn’t expect such a big take up but was surprised at how many other site owners and stat fans are suffering the same problem. Of course, a semalt.com community manager via Twitter very quickly provided a seed removal tool link, but a guy was quickly on her back about Semalt.com’s less than ethical methods of market research.

If you are interested in the more brutal solution, click this paragraph link to find out how to remove Semalt from affecting your stats permanently.

The search engine will mark you down and drop your SERPs potential (Search Engine Results Page). It is a known fact that very few people look deeper than the 3rd results page. If you are already facing harsh competition, these synthetic detractors will not help your cause.

Synthetic Violation

It sounds a bit wrong doesn’t it! It doesn’t involve being tied to a bed by a robot however (thankfully). Jests aside, synthetic violation is a problem and one that we as a community, have to band together to fight.

There are two main types of synthetic event:

  • Indirect
  • Targeted

Indirect violations

Indirect events are normally of short duration and just come across as a blip on the radar. Normally you can isolate these events quite easily and they don’t do a great deal of harm in the long-term. Sometimes they can come about as a change in algorithms or some new services that have started up and look to crawl the net. In isolated events these are okay, in numbers, these events can be a problem. Often there is not a whole lot you can do after the event, you just have to ride the storm and make sure your site and stat collection can be filtered effectively.

In statistics there are always some odd numbers that don’t fit a pattern.

Targeted violations

This is the worst violation because someone has actively targeted your site. Such triggers can be site optimisers who trawl your site synthetically with their bots then mail you suggesting what needs work. They do this especially on hosted sites because they know that you might have money you can invest in such work. There are many operators with similar modus operandi, crawling your site to try to co-opt you to spend money.

Let me just say that this is bad market practice. Cold calling is not the best way to drive sales. Reputation has a much higher value.

If I want something doing, I’ll go and find a solution provider that looks good, I might even ask someone who has needed that service who they went with and whether they got a good service/value for money.

Putting that in simpler terms:

I don’t like it when someone runs a finger across my dirty car and then knocks on the door with a bucket, soapy water and a sponge in expectation. (not that this happens).

I don’t mind receiving a leaflet through my door saying that there is a friendly car washer working in the area. (this is the norm). There is a chance I might take up this offer if I can see other cars washed well.

Targeted violations can occur by command or through systematic deduction. Sayeth what?

By command

The violator may isolate a set of prospects through automatic means (aggregation) then manually give the go code. This means that a trigger man (or woman) is involved on a personal level when processing the eventual response.

By systematic deduction

This is very much like the above but entirely automatic, removing the humanity from the loop altogether. Depending on where your domain sits in terms of niche and what letter the domain name starts with will determine how soon you get hit with this violation. Everything will be dealt with automatically including your interaction with the company in most cases.

In conclusion

Such violations as mentioned above don’t happen often but when they do, they can be a source of pain if you are an avid stat-watcher. They can give you a false sense of how well you are doing. The issue we have is the gullibility of some site owners saying ‘yes’ to bad practice. This makes it bad for everyone because, spurred on by success; these amoral companies will amp up bad marketing practices. The reality is that for every dodgy bit of marketing that drops through your inbox, there is a very high probability that someone has been a mug and said ‘yes’.

The Pune Effect is just a fun name I use to attach to unusual events. It is when those events become the norm (i.e. an uplift in quality traffic and time on site) that I smile.

What are your Pune effects?

End of Month Traffic Report December 2014

Traffic December 2014

Last of 2014

Well people, if you are new to the End of Month Traffic Report then you came on a great month!

Initially I had low expectations for December 2014 because December 2013 performed so poorly that I was expecting the same seasonal drought that I’d experienced last year. Thankfully that didn’t happen.

What did happen?!

I was worried for December because it had come on the back of some pretty heavy months of non-blogging work. I have been engaged in a very taxing module of study for my final year of degree and had not been able to crank much out in the way of material so I was concerned that things would dip but if anything the opposite has happened.

I’ve had a purple month!

No, I didn’t put the armbands on too tight!

Purple in terms of setting new records in every key performance indicator except referrals!

I started hitting these purples as early as the 18th December when I performed a data check of my stats so I knew I was on to a winner.

What is this all attributable to?

There are a number of factors I can draw on.

One obvious one is the penetration factor. This isn’t some nasty term for something that happens in the bedroom, more an ability to reach a deeper audience than I had been able to access before. And let me tell you, it takes a long time to get a quality audience!

I have been trying to play it smarter. I’ve had less time to do things so I’ve had to economise my efforts and do more with less time without compromising on quality. It’s been tough not to be able to throw more time into things but it hasn’t hurt the quality where I’ve had to sit down and get it all down. Many of my posts have benefitted from some “sitting” time where I’ve finished them 90% but have had time to refine the last 10%.

I think a lot of this is also attributable to some pretty awesome community members. I have been working on ways to better rewards people for the assists they give me and hopefully that is starting to reflect in the work that I generate. I recently had some success with fusion posts where I fuse pieces of my own philosophy with information generated by others, I find this rewarding and I also find that my fellow writers are much more likely to share this kind of content which helps me greatly.

A Shout Out

I always look forward to this section and it is the third shout out for the traffic report.

Mi Muba! Thanks as always for your comments, warmth and cheer. Thanks also for letting me create the most successful short term grossing post in what has been a stellar month! Mi Muba’s blog Beamoneyblogger.com can be found here.

Nathaniel Kidd! Thanks for your inaugural comment! 🙂 Nathaniel’s blog can be found here

Larry Frank! Thank you also for your very first comment good sir! Larry’s Tech blog can be found here.

Harleena Singh! An indirect but much appreciated thank you to Harleena Singh who has inadvertently directed some traffic my way. Harleena’s hub can be found here at Aha!Now. Cheers! Congrats on your 4 years of blogging!

Minhazur Rahman! Thanks for your Twitter share buddy! Follow Minhazur on Twitter

Post listing

* This Wash up post was released on the 31st December, a quite quiet period on the calendar.

PostEFFDEC14

I took a break with tradition this month and didn’t post the traditional End of Month Report for the prior month, this month. I instead published November’s report on the last day of November.

The Dashboard

Dashboard Dec14 vs Nov14

The dashboard is the star of the show this month with a massive improvement over last. You will literally drown in the purple hue this month. Even though referrals have not outperformed a peak seen in September, they are still impressive compared to where I’ve been.

A batch of purple means I’m performing well across the board. This means that what I’m doing is on the right track, I just need to keep on delivering and exceeding that performance to start driving the right goals.

The purple figure also drives an expectation on quality, on innovation and originality. I can’t rest on my laurels.

One change I have made to my KPIs this month is the Visits vs Visitors dimension. The “Visits” measure has not been displayed correctly for a long time and has caused confusion, therefore I am amending the measure permanently, hence the yellow dash around this box. My EOMTR report is all about evolution so I plan to improve the view when I see valuable changes.

 

Alexa Stats

Alexa stats have dipped hugely this month. This is mostly due to my much lower posting frequency. The only way to improve this is to up the frequency and I know that will lead to degradation in quality due to how thinly my time is spread at the moment.

AlexaRankDec14

The Bounce Rate is creeping back to its much more amenable and cheerful percentage on Alexa, I am always pleased when seeing this figure.

AlexaRankSEDec14

11.10% is a good amount for search traffic. This was a very low factor when I started this blog in June 2013 and it appears to be growing nicely. Because BlogPrefect is below the 100,000 mark in terms of rank, these terms are less accurate than you might think. This data doesn’t update very frequently so remains static.

 

End of Month Traffic Report November 2014 – Core Statistics

EoMTR GAF

ATOS – Average Time on Site, GAF – Provided by Google Analytics

16 minutes 3 seconds or 963 seconds, inverse 96.93%

Truly excellent because it follows on from a big gain last month too, the average user over 30 seconds on average is reading for 16 minutes. Awesome. 🙂

Bounce Rate – Actual Traffic data, not filtered – Provided by Google Analytics

61.19% adverse -22.14%

An Epic drop from last month displaying much better engagement than many previous months.

Page Views – Provided by GAF and WordPress stats

WordPress:  1406 inverse 45.40%

GAF: 432 inverse 544.78%

I stated last month that WordPress stats had gone nuts but this is a new kind of nuts. 544.78% increase is colossal on last month.

Visits (Now known as sessions) – Provided by GAF and WordPress Stats

WordPress: 434 inverse 14.67%

GAF: 104 inverse 395.24%

An epic boost this month and I’m pretty sure I know exactly the post that did it.

Visits per Visitor

3.33 but……… …..there was some odd goings on this month. For the second month in a row!

Referrals – Provided by WordPress

DecemberREF2014

This month has been quite a bit different to some months and I believe it is Aha-now.com that I have to thank for some super huge numbers at one point during this month. It is the only ‘green’ statistic in my dashboard and I could have performed better but at the moment my publicising window is smaller than I would like it. I will have to work on that.

So What!

All stats are reflective of improvement this month which should signal that things are getting better, that I’m reaching the right people, that they are finding the right quality in my writing and that what I am providing is helpful. That’s my exact mission.

But, there’s always room for improvement because I can be providing more value, and in turn, more people can benefit from my help.

I’m still learning. There are a vast array of things I still don’t get right that need to be tightened up like a leaky faucet. My targeting laser needs to be aligned better.

My power base needs to grow. At the moment the number of subscribers I have is diminutive; the number of social followers who are engaged like fanatical acolytes can be counted on one hand. This needs to change to do it “like a boss”.

But….

There was a bit of a ‘Pune effect’ this month which casts a little bit of doubt on all of those purples. I noticed a very heavy traffic stream similar to the one last month which saw my views rise astronomically. It was almost as if an advert was running on the site.

AplacecalledPune

Pune-tang

I performed a bit of analysis on what was occurring and was seeing a lot of American traffic but something that didn’t tie up was the large amount of Russian location. I always get a little nervous when .RU is involved because it normally indicates something a bit iffy. That is not to cast any negative to good-natured Russians, just to point out that there a lot of morally corrupt ones.

To pour some warm water into the bath, Google Analytics backed up the data this time so it seems there was a higher level of sustained legitimate readers. This is why I run two levels of analytics against each other to be a bit more scientific.

To add to this, as noted in my previous month’s conclusion, I had expected there to be a seasonal drop this year like last. I did notice during the last week of 2014 that numbers dropped to almost nothing but that is indicative of not posting so it is not conclusive.

Onwards and upwards!!

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