Monday, September 23, 2013

300 Posts + A Blog in Review and a Thank You

After coming up with my 300th post last week I started mulling over the stats on the blog.

Since I put this up for the first time in May of 2007 and took down a web page I had poorly maintained, I have seen huge growth. In July of 2007 I had a whopping 127 page views. So far in September of 2013 I have 5,028 and counting. Thank you! Hopefully this will not generate a comment similar to one Ray got from Fran about his increase in page views recently. I still chuckle about that vivid description but decorum prohibits me from reposting that.

So far I have broken the 50,000 page view mark (and am well on the way to 60,000 by this point).

There are now 103 followers of this blog (Thanks everyone for putting up with me).

What has changed? Well there is the whole Google Plus experience. Google plus is interesting. The +1 button allows someone to show they like a post without leaving any comments. Which is great as sometimes you just like something but don't really want to comment on it. Nice feature. Also it allows my page to be shared with other peoples circles. I am not a heavy user of it but it has led me to some great posts from some excellent bloggers.

The blog has gone from just my random ramblings to a venue for me to directly sell some of my scenario books. That has been an interesting experience. Lets look at the last three things offered.

1) The most recent with no time to really show for itself is the ACW Shareware scenario. When I last checked, it had 146 page views. Not bad for something that just occurred over the weekend (9/20/2013). It has 2 Google plus recommendations and 0 comments. The zero comments (and no PayPal love) have left me puzzled. Was it just junk and everyone has dumped it already? Unfortunately, with Google Drive it looks like I can't get a count on how many downloads.

2) The next in line is "In The Name of Roma." This was generated 597 page views so far. So far, so good. It has 31 comments on it making it in the top 2 all time commented on posts! It has six Google Plus recommendations. Again, that has to be in the top 3 of all of my posts. It has netted out 37 copies sold. That works out to about 6% that viewed it bought it. I can't tell if that is good, bad or unrelated.

3) Next up is "the Coming Thunder," which was my supplement for the American Civil War covering actions in Northern Virginia in 1861. This is my number 1 post on the blog. It has 1860 page views on it at the time I last looked. It only has 10 comments on it. It existed prior to my enrollment in Google Plus. (I think I did this in 2011 but I forgot to write that down). This one has sold about 79 copies. The first 50 coming in the first week of the release. The rest has trickled in (including one today - Thanks). That works out to about 4% of viewers to purchasers. Hmmm.... ITNOR is looking better in that light.

I also have released 2 air campaigns but they were harder to find the stats on. All in all, this has been personally satisfying but obviously has not changed my tax bracket at all. The core of this blog will remain my idle ramblings. It seems that any post that features an AAR of a game I played routinely breaks 100 and even 200 page views. Painting updates also rank right up there. So apparently if I put pictures in a post, it works out better. Of my top 5 all time posts, The Coming Thunder is the #1 post. The next 4 are 3 AARs and one painting update.

Traffic sources is also interesting. Should I be worried that the 2nd most page views on my site originated from: What on earth is that? I am scared to click it. :) The third most is Not sure what either is but thanks? Could this be links from other bloggers? I have no clue.

The number one is from one of the first bloggers that I began to follow: that is run by AD. He does fantastic work doing research on AWI battles. If you have ANY interest in the American Revolutionary War, please stop by. He probably has something that may be new to you. The research he puts into his posts in fantastic. Links from his site still drive a significant number of page views each month. Lately, The Miniature Page has been putting up some numbers here from posts I have made over there.

Who is looking? Well overwhelmingly the readership seems to be US based. The United Kingdom is in second place with just under half as many views. Russia is in third with 2700 page views. The country appearing in the list that I did not expect was Latvia. A warm Welcome to all my Latvian viewers. I wonder how many different countries are actually represented by my regular viewers. I guess I could install that spinney globe thing and check but I don't know where to put it. (No obvious and rude suggestions please) Actually, where are ya'll from?

Ads.... We all hate them. Yet, the whole AdSense temptation from Google is very tempting. The stats for my page go back to Jan 1 2010. It shows that in the past couple of months, I have had more Ad clicks than the whole life of the thing. Wow. Thank you for the mercy clicks. I honestly have no clue what stuff they are trying to schlepp off on my site. Probably something as useful as rotary nose hair trimmers and the like. Sorry for putting you through them but THANKS for clicking on them occasionally.

So, what to do with it going forward? Well, I think i will continue to use this as my place to think out loud for my various projects. No, those are not the flashiest of posts but they help me focus on what I am doing. Next, I will continue to post on the couple of games I get in each year. They are fun to write and it seems enough people keep viewing them too. The last thing is to try and figure out how to market the scenario better.

Anyway, Thanks again for dropping by and sticking with me.

EDIT - I just published this and there is already a +1 for the post. How does that happen? Is Google Plus giving me one for just publishing? Its not showing up that I clicked it when I view the page.


  1. Google+ shares your post as soon as you post now that your +1, great to see your blog going from strength to strength
    Peace James

    1. Thanks James. Good to know. That explains a good bit.

  2. I shouldn't be overly concerned with who reads what and where they're from. It's a quality blog and that's about all there is to it. I read it because I like it and that's pretty typical, I think.

    I've got one of those globe things and, to be honest, other than I think it's a nice little bit of filigree, it's not much use. I'm reasonably confident I haven't really got readers in Chile or the Republic of Korea. ;O)

    1. You never know. I still maintain that I have a Loyal Latvian Contingent. Actually, if I ever do a "fantasyish" campaign, I may make a faction called the Loyal Latvian Brigade.

      Thanks for the comments. I appreciate it.

  3. Interesting post Chris, I love looking at the stats on my blog, I just like to know who's looking and why, I've got readers from French Guiana, El Salvador and New Caledonia not even sure I know where new Caledonia is, I'll have to Google it. Keep up the great work and embed some links to your top three posts, so us bloggers can go check them out if we haven't before!

    1. Hmmm... Interesting. I will do that. There are a couple of gems hidden away. I have been meaning to do a giveaway for the 300th post. I may do one as a blog scavenger hunt. That could be interesting.

  4. Congratulations on everything Chris. The success is down to the content as Gary says.

    You can opt out of the automatic +1 to your circles if you want (but why would you). The adds are tailored to the viewers' browsing history. At the moment it's showing me something called 'World of Tanks'.

    I have the flag gizmo - today I've had visits from the UK, USWasington, New York and Virgina), The Netherlands, Australia, Austria, Portugal, the Czech Republic and Guernsey. Great fun if you're anal!

    Vampire stats exists to encourage people to click on them and end up at their ad site.

  5. Its a great site thats my reason for coming over. I rarely look in depth at my stats I just appreciate the readers must enjoy it or they would not visit. Enjoy the blogging and make use of the +1 on others blogs if nothing else it lets the blog owner see you have liked the post

    1. Thanks Andrew. I definitely make use of the +1 button when it is available.

  6. Congratulations for all the good things, Chris!

    Actually I haven't been understanding that Google+ stuff completely until now but anyway I recognized your blog by that. So it can't be that bad... ;-)


    1. Not at all. It is the integration with the blog that can get chancy.

  7. Do SMO(Social media Optimization) on your blog or website u can easily get 300+ on Google and 3000+ likes on Facebook
    Second Sun Lab

  8. Chris, a very interesting post. Your scenarios are truly exceptional. "The Coming Thunder" is such a great set of scenarios, focusing on a small geographical scale and some wonderful historical detail. (I love the gangs of unarmed motivated civilians milling around in the first scenario waiting for the Civil War proper to start!) I love coming and reading your posts because you produce great material, but also because its just fun listening to your ideas and watching your plans develop. Statistics on Blogger can drive you potty (Go Latvia for the win!)) I try and avoid over-analysing anything to do with wargaming, and blogging in particular! Just keep on the same track as I'm certainly listening and reading!