Stats Appeal: My New Obsession

Hit me baby one more time …

I haven’t just been bitten by the blogging bug – I’ve been seduced by stats. That’s right, WordPress statistics. They’ve become addictive. I publish a post and then sit back to see who it will reach, using the stats that are built into WordPress. I love watching the column of the graph climb and climb from one hit to three, maybe four if I’m lucky!

I check it before I go to bed and then rush to boot up my laptop as I’m getting ready for work, hovering over my keyboard whilst spooning cereal into my mouth. Who’s been reading my blog while I’ve been sleeping? How many hits did I get overnight? Where are they from? Did anyone like me? Did anyone feel compelled enough to leave a comment or follow me? How did people find me: through WordPress, a link on someone else’s blog, after I’ve visited their blog and left a comment, or through a search engine? It’s all completely fascinating.

Now I get why it’s called the web

When I first started blogging two months ago, I likened this experience to being a drop of water in a very large ocean called the blogosphere. Now I feel more like a busy little spider, spinning a web. My tiny web gets a little bigger with each post, reaching out over the internet. I am connecting to others, busily spinning their own webs. We link to each other’s webs and so we help each other grow.

Flogging and Lost Mojo bring people to me

I get a kick out of the random search engine terms that bring people to my blog. It’s funny that at least one person a day is typing in ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ and ‘flogging’ which leads them to me. I really hope they aren’t too disappointed that my Fifty Shades of Grey post isn’t actually a ‘how-to’ guide. There are also quite a few people searching for their lost mojo which again brings them to this blog. Even a spammer told me that’s how they found me. I guess spammers can have mojo issues just like the rest of us.

Hey, do you think I just increased the likelihood of even more people who are googling ‘flogging’ and ‘mojo’ coming to my blog? I think my next book purchase will be Search Engine Optimization for Dummies

Blogging All Over the World

I love seeing which countries visitors are from: USA, Canada, Australia, India, Italy, UK, Turkey, the Philippines, France, Spain, Saudi Arabia, Ireland, Iceland, one lone hit from New Zealand etc… Words and books really can unite the world.

If you build it, followers will come …

I enjoy checking out the blogs of people who ‘like’ one of my posts. I’ve found some really cool blogs to follow this way. And it just feels nice that someone out there paused long enough to click the ‘like’ button. Hopefully, they read the post as well!

It’s also exciting to see my followers grow from 1 to over 60 in the past 2 months. Of those, only three of them actually know me in real life (hi sisters and dad). I get a real thrill when someone decides I am worthy enough to follow. I can only hope that they will come back now and then to say hello.

BTW, I always feel like a cult leader when I talk about ‘my followers’. Now if only I could get non-WordPress people to follow me as well …

But the way I measure my blogging success is not through followers, it’s through comments. Out of all the stats, comments are what give me the biggest high. I like it when someone has read the same book and feels compelled to respond to something I said. Or people just drop-in to say they liked a post or they share the same thoughts as I do on a particular subject. This two-way communication is really what it’s all about for me. I guess it also gives me a bit more confidence in my writing ability. Maybe one of these days I’ll actually call myself a ‘writer’ or a ‘blogger’ instead of a dabbler. But there’s still so much to learn …

Are you an avid stats watcher? What funny search engine terms bring people to your site? How do you measure your blogging success?