I’ve been looking forward to today. May is over and it’s time to check the web stats for my Photoblog site! Let’s see what we’ve got:
The final count of unique visitors for the month of May was 37. If you’ve been reading along, you’ll recall that April had just 21. Remember, too, that April’s numbers were essentially “unadvertised” hits (those that came off the links I semi-discreetly placed only on my own web pages), while May’s included a mini-campaign to tell my online contacts about the Photoblog (via this ‘blog, e-mail signature tags, and changing my contact name in MSN Messenger to “photoblog.arlomidgett.com”).
Looking over the details of my statistics, it’s interesting to note that the majority of referral hits came from the web log you’re reading right now. Those days where I wrote about the Photoblog site show definite spikes – 19 alone hits came from this ‘blog’s index page. The next biggest link referral came from www.arlomidgett.com, no surprise there.
Something I didn’t notice before were the number of return visitors. April had 60 visits from the 21 visitors, while May had 116 visits from 37. I can make a loose assumption that there are a fair number of people coming back to see more. That’s great!
Still a way to go towards fame and fortune. To compare, let’s look at a couple other sites I maintain:
Blog.arlomidgett.com (this site) scored 123 visitors / 275 visits in May (up from 87/138 for the prior month.) Why so much higher? I’d like to think it’s because I made an effort to post more often in the month of May, but I have a feeling it’s only because this ‘blog has been around for year. I’m sure it’s just that there are more people that are aware of it. Besides, there’s a lot more text for web crawling ‘bots to pick through – I get a lot more hits off of search engine results on this site.
Also, the ‘blog got a respectable amount of referral hits from www.52magic.com in May, though I have absolutely no idea why!
Continuing up the ladder, www.arlomidgett.com scores even higher on the hit list: 570/740 for May vs. 557/793 in April. There’s no mystery there. Besides the friends and family who have become accustomed to visiting, my humongous wedding page is a search engine magnet and pulls in quite a few hits. For the curious: “armpit,” “Galapagos,” and “porcupine” consistently top the list of search results. The latter I can understand, but “armpit?” Must be Boomstick.
Okay, back to the matter at hand. Buried down deep in the Photoblog stats is a small indication of a bummer – it looks like the ‘bots have found the site. It’s inevitable, I suppose, and not altogether bad, either. More visitors means more chances that someone will buy something, but I had expected the search engine angle would yield the biggest results and therefore wanted to save that experiment for a later month. It’s going to be more difficult to gauge the success of other stat-increasing strategies when the hits from search engines start to pile up.
So far, there have been only a few search engine referrals. Two searches for “sally lightfoot,” and one each for “sally lightfoot crab,” “sally lightfoot info,” and “arlo trinidad.” Hmmm. Looks like crab pictures are in high demand… though I don’t quite know what to make of the last one. Funny thing is, I was planning to post my favorite Trinidad photo this Thursday!
For what it’s worth, my stat tracker does sort the ‘bot hits out from the more important visitor statistics. I feel pretty good about the 37 total unique hits that the site tracked. Sure, sure. The total would drop a bit if you were to take into account visitors checking in from different computers, dynamic IP allocation issues, etc. But that could be said of the first month’s stats, too. Let’s just say it’s a 76% increase and call it good.
Despite the search engine setback, I think I’ll to stick with my original plan. For June, I’m going to publish a link to my Photoblog in every ‘blog index I can find. Yahoo’s directory seems like the logical place to start, but please let me know if you can think something better.