Welcome to this weeks edition of the ‘Blogging Behind The Scenes’ series. Throughout the ‘Blogging Behind The Scenes’ series both myself and a group of bloggers will be sharing our experiences and advice upon a range of blogging related topics, this week we are discussing statistics and whether they matter diddly squat or if they may just matter quite a lot.
Do Stats Matter To Me?
When I first began blogging stats meant very little to me as in all honesty I was more than aware barely anybody other than my personal friends and possibly family read my blog. I wasn’t writing it for anybody other than myself and therefore stats mattered very little to me.
It was only when I began building a serious readership that I become aware of stats and began looking at them every now and then. It’s far too easy though to become obsessed by numbers and constantly refer to your stats before considering even writing a blog post never mind publishing one. I try to avoid looking at my stats too closely as whilst they vary so does my mood and my attitude towards blogging.
I wish to remain a blogger for the foreseeable future and whilst stats may affect some of my work (such as sponsored or review based posts) I try not to let it affect my personal writing as much like marmite readers either love or hate posts dependent upon whether they themselves relate to my writing and this can vary widely.
I have however noticed particular posts becoming rather popular over time, funnily enough they seem to be those written whilst half-cooked after a bottle of vino but never the less, they tend to be the more honest, brash and brutal posts which address real life issues without a filter as such.
Whilst there are blog stats to consider which may be collected through either your blogging platform, google or other counter based plugins, there are also social media stats which are a whole other ball game. I must really start paying attention to which posts are perhaps popular and consider aiming my work towards these. However, once again I find myself pondering as to whether this would become a personal downfall as despite humans naturally wishing to be liked, loved and so on I don’t want to have to tick people’s boxes simply to raise my numbers in terms of readers or followers.
Keeping It Real
You might like some of my posts, you may well hate some of my posts either way they were never written for numbers nor popularity. I wish to remain writing from a personal perspective without the influence of stats steering my posts and due to this I will always take stats with a pinch of salt and a good glug of wine.
Having spoken to numerous other bloggers regarding how they view stats, here are a few of their responses:
“Stats are important to me. Whilst they are not the end all and be all, they give me a good idea of how well a post is going and helps me to see what content my audience enjoy reading. It’s also useful to me when working with brands. I don’t check them every minute or even daily but keeping an eye on my blog statistics is important and helps me stay focussed.”
“They matter to me as I like to see which posts perform best and learn what my followers enjoy reading about. I also set myself annual targets in terms of views and social followers. It’s easy to get obsessed though so I try not to check them too regularly!”
“They matter to me as I can see which posts are more engaging and write more material that my followers will be interested in. I started my blog as a hobby but seeing my stats increase month on month has spurred me on to give it a real go and switch to being self-hosted next month. I think you shouldn’t get too hung up on them but if you use them as motivation or guidance they can be really useful”
“I can honestly say that stats mean nothing at all to me. I never check them unless a brand asks me for them, I pay very little attention to them and I think having that attitude makes me a better blogger as I write for myself, regardless of who is reading or how “successful” my posts.”
“They matter because those metrics are directly linked to how much I can earn from my blog in terms of charging companies.”
“I check most of my stats once a month. If you’re already working as hard as you can, or you want to, then why stress?”
“Stats don’t really mean much to me in a typical sense. I never check them because my audience is so niche I’m sure my stats would look terrible on paper. In reality the engagement and feedback I get from my small but loyal and engaged audience is far more important than any statistics could be.”
“I wish they didn’t to me, but I get very caught up in them. Rather than my stats reflecting my attitude to blogging that month, my blogging has become a direct reflection of my stats. If I’m having a bad month, then I lose heart and stop trying, if I’m having a good month I’m motivated to push on. It’s a sad cycle, especially given that I write for myself, and for no one else.”<
“Stats matter to me – though I wish they didn’t!! I only launched as a proper blog in December so I use those stats to (dare I say it) compare myself to other bloggers I admire. I know where I want to be and stats help me see how I’m getting on and progressing each month. Now I just need to figure out how to get there!”
“They matter to me because my blog is my business – It’s important to me to keep growing and to see what’s working.”
“Stats don’t matter to me because my blog isn’t my business, I blog because I enjoy it and anything else is an extra. I haven’t always felt this way and I did get a bit stats obsessed at one point but I hated that feeling so I deleted google analytics from my phone, withdrew from blogging charts and anything else that focused on stats of any kind for a good six months or so. I weaned myself of my constant stay checking ?and now I’m ok with it all again. Stats are important if you’re blogging to earn money but if you blog because you enjoy it then they shouldn’t matter.”
“I wish they didn’t matter, as to me blogging was always about just writing, so I had an ongoing portfolio but they do. If you have good stats then you get paid more. End of, however annoying it is.”
“I earn my only income from blogging now and better stats has allowed me to give up teaching entirely and stay at home with my children. That is priceless and so I work very hard to make sure I keep growing. I do not think it affects the posts that I write for me as I always write those from the heart.”
“I look at the stats from time to time but it doesn’t have an impact on my earnings or my motivation to work if I’m honest. I would be pleased if a million people read my blog, but that’s definitely not what drives me. I have pretty rubbish stats compared to most and it doesn’t bother me one bit!”
“I care about my stats because I’m competitive with myself. But what really gives me satisfaction is when I get a comment that says that a post has meant something or helped an individual”
“I only really care about them because they indicate to me how well or not I’m doing. I just like following them. I don’t stress over them though.”
“Having good stats is the only way I have been able to make good money from my blog. I love seeing the numbers increase each month and getting incredibly grumpy if I have a bad month!”
“I’m obsessed with stats. It’s really bad but I’m always checking and I hate when they go down! I make a living from my blog and (rightly or wrongly) I think that I need good stats to continue to do so.”
“I’ve been blogging since Jan so am pretty stats obsessed at the moment as I want to try to monetize my blog. I get so nervous when moz etc updates!”
Should you fancy being part of the series and sharing some of your own ideas or expertise then please feel free to join the ‘Blogging Behind The Scenes’ Facebook group’, we’d love to hear from you! Alternatively you can get in touch via email, drop me a message via social media or add your comments below.