Blogging & Business

Blogging Tips: Blog Statistics Are Your Friend!

This post is part of a series on blogging tips. This one is all about statistics and how to use them to your advantage. When I first started blogging, the advice I got from most people was: don’t look at your stats. Don’t read the statistics. Don’t worry about the statistics. Statistics are meaningless.

blogging-tips-statistics
 
 
I’m a bit of a geek, though; I like statistics. I like graphs and analysing data and knowing what’s going on. So I would carry on checking the stats on my blog, feeling like I was breaking the rules somehow.
 
Then I spoke to Mark, who blogs at Best Dad I Can Be (and has written a rather funny book). He was the first person to say to me that, if you want your blog to do well, you need to pay attention to the statistics.
 
If you’re just blogging for fun, and you’re not at all interested in how to get more readers or followers or improve your Tots 100 ranking or your Klout score or whatever else, then fine. Stop reading this post. It’s not for you.
 
If you are interested in how statistics can help you, read on.
Single Mother Ahoy Graph
 
 
  • Install Google Analytics or Stat Counter on your blog. You can use it to see useful things like how many unique visitors you have each day/week/month. You can compare this week with last week, and see loads of other things besides.
  • Look at how people are finding you. Which websites are your main sources of traffic? What words do people search on Google to get to your blog?
  • Use your statistics to see whether the links you post on Facebook or Twitter are bringing you any more traffic. Did that linky post you linked up with on a whim the other day actually bring you more traffic than all that Tweeting?
  • Which are your most popular posts? Look at what’s different about these, and why they might be more popular – do they have more useful information, more personal content, more controversial arguments? Perhaps they have better SEO?
  • If you have a Facebook page, look at the Insights at the top of the page to see which posts had the most interaction. Do posts made at a particular time of day get more interaction? Is it photos? Links to other pages? Random “I am picking my nose” TMI posts? Try and use this information to better time when and how you posts links to your blog. If you click “Insights” and then “posts” you will see a chart showing you the times of day your followers are online. I try to make sure I have a post scheduled for this time each day.
  • You can use sites like bit.ly to shorten your links – but they will also count how many times that link is clicked on. This can be useful if, for example, you use these links for specific posts only (at a certain time of day or in a certain place) – you can track exactly how much effect these actions are having.
  • I keep track of the number of visitors my blog has had in the last rolling month. As a rule you want this number to go up, or at least stay the same – if it starts to go down then you know you need to have a look at where you are losing readers.
  • If you are on WordPress, the App for your mobile/tablet has some great statistics tools that you can use to see more about your traffic.
So there is my list of ways you can use statistics to help with your blogging. Do you agree with these? Do you have any to add? Please do share your thoughts in the comments.

Vicky is a mother, a blogger, a podcaster and a social media trainer. She writes about life as a single mother, parenting and lifestyle type things.

20 Comments
  • DinoMama

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    A note on popular post, you have to take into considerations those clicks/comments from spammers. They added to the UV in your stats.

  • C.B. Peterson

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    Lots of useful info! I do have a question, though. What is "UV"?

  • Daft Mamma

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    I have a love/hate relationship with stats.. It stresses me out but I want my blog to be more successful because its something that I enjoy and I have made great friends through this. I also want to learn new things from other bloggers and its those who inspire me to keep going.

  • Suzanne W

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    This is a very interesting post. Since realising that blogger stats are totally inflated and a complete lie, I have tuned into Google Analytics a bit more but generally only looking at the number of 'unique visitors'. I do think that keeping an eye on it in terms of which is the best social media channel and also which posts are the most popular are important. However sometimes it can

  • Katie-Annie Haydock

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    So helpful. Thanks so much!

  • Adventures of a Novice Mum

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    Thanks for highlighting what blog stats can be used for in the development of one's blog. I'm still getting my head around it all. I think it's helpful not to stress about it though; it can be quite consuming and detrimental to one's mental health otherwise. Do you know where I can find out the average visit duration each month in wordpress? I didn't know it was possible to know this. #WeekendBlogHop Adventures of a Novice Mum recently posted...Where is Home?My Profile

  • Kate

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    Fab tips! I love keeping an eye on my stats, it's so interesting to see how certain tweets or hashtags can bring more traffic than others. I'm still in experimental mode at the moment, trying out different techniques and seeing how they effect my stats :) #WeekendBlogHop Kate recently posted...Mummy/Daddy ProblemsMy Profile

  • Autumn

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    I have to admit I was never fond of stats and things until I started blogging. Now I find myself talking about stats to my non-blogger friends and I think I bore them with it but I can't help it. I love looking at my stats and figuring out which social media outlet is best for my blog. Especially now that I have my own website. Great post! Autumn recently posted...Everyone’s birth story is different and that’s okayMy Profile

    1. Vicky Charles

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      Thanks Autumn. I love stats too - at my old job I was known as the graph girl.

  • Angela Seager

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    I absolutely love your work. Beautifully written, succinctly put, and great reads! I recently started trying to write about my experiences in Spain accompanied by photos, and I just can't see to put down on paper anything coherent! Yet I can talk for England when I chat to people about my travels and hold their attention...I think it's because I'm quite an animated person and I feel this helps to tell my stories, yet on paper I'm rubbish. Any suggestions? Kindest regards Angela Seager

    1. Vicky Charles

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      Hi Angela, have you tried vlogging or podcasting? That might help! If you really want to stick to the written word then all you can do is keep at it - and don't give up! If you think it sounds rubbish, leave it and come back the next day or something but keep going and you'll get there eventually. Practise makes perfect! x

  • Martin Ricky

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    You hit the nail right on the head. If you are only doing this for fun then yes stats don't really matter. But 90% of bloggers have that dream to make a living off being a blogger. And if you choose to ignore your stats and not analyze your numbers, you will fail. Google analytics and other stat counters are essential to improving your blog and sustaining long term success! Excellent post! Martin Ricky recently posted...10 Tips to Help Motivate You to WriteMy Profile

    1. Vicky Charles

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      Thanks Martin you're so right. If you want it to be more than just an online diary for you and your family, stats are important!

  • Elena Peters

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    I love statistics too. The thing I find the most helpful is the Google search terms that have brought people to my blog. I can see what people are interested in and what topics I need to cover more thoroughly. That's what it's all about isn't it? Giving the people what they need. Comment via #weekendbloghop

    1. Vicky Charles

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      Exactly! I find a lot of people find my blog through searching for reviews I've written - but it's useful to see what questions they ask about the item, and I can go back to my review and make sure I've included the things people are looking for.

  • Trish

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    I love statistics! LOVE them. It's a sickness I think. I do need to get the WP app, but I've been resisting. I have a schedule and I'm afraid if I get the app it'll be easier for me to slip up and start checking them 24/7... Trish recently posted...Mama Ain’t Perfect – Education Isn’t EverythingMy Profile

    1. Vicky Charles

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      haha I know what you mean. I have the WP app and sometimes in the morning I check my stats before getting out of bed - before realising none of my scheduled posts have even gone live yet, and all my readers are most probably still in bed!

  • Silly Mummy

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    Useful advice. I do have analytics installed, but I am a bit confused & overwhelmed by the statistics thing currently! Plus, they are a little depressing when you first start! I do intend to pay attention to all this though. #weekendbloghop Silly Mummy recently posted...‘Hello, Dave. Is Dave There?’ *My Profile

  • Ling

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    Thanks for the post - I agree that stats are great tools to help with a blog / site development too. But at the end of the day, it's gonna be the interest and passion for your chosen subject that really drives it forward! #weekendbloghop

    1. Vicky Charles

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      I agree entirely! If we spend too much time looking at stats and traffic, we won't have the time to write decent content that will pull people in!

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