Sunday, May 27, 2012

Reality Check!

Over the past few months I've watched my blog grow.  I've worked hard on producing good content, tutorials and useful and interesting posts.
Checking my blog stats on blogger has given me lots of encouragement as I see more and more visitors coming through.
Here's what my overall pageviews look like on my blogger stats:

I've been excited to see that it looks like in May, I could go over the 50,000 pageviews in a month mark!

I think over the last couple of months, I've also settled into a bit of a routine with my blog - with my posts and sewing and how I'm organising my work and my time.

Now as a mum, over the years, I've found myself now and again settling into a kind of routine like this with my kids - finding what is working with them for our lives to run smoothly.
Then just when I think I've got it all figured out..

I suddenly realise things aren't running quite as smoothly as I thought - and it's time to reassess and look again at what I'm doing and how I'm doing it!

So the same goes for my blog!
I've just had a ...


Since the new blogger came into play a couple of months ago, I haven't looked at google analytics, I've just been relying on my blogger stats.
When I decided to look at my analytics stats this week - I got a rude shock!

From what I understand and have read on various other sites, Google analytics is a more accurate representation of your site's statistics.

So for the past month according to Blogger stats, I've had:

52,337 page views

but according to Google analytics, 
for the same period I've had:

34,692 page views

Now that's a big difference!
and my reality check! 

Time get out of my rut routine and try something different and work a bit harder.

I've noticed small things over the past few months have changed. Each time I post a new tutorial, I link it up to lots of linky parties through the week, and I also submit it to some of the large craft and sewing sites, which often feature my tutorials bringing me more traffic and new readers.

Some of those sites used to feature my work regularly, but now don't even respond at all to my (almost) weekly new tutorials.
Are they just fed up with me?
Or don't they like my tutorials anymore?

Whatever the reason, once again - my little routine, and list of places to submit my tutorials to, has become stale and needs revamping!

Blogs are very much fluid things - they need to be constantly growing and coming up with new material to keep people interested.

So my thinking cap is going on.

In some ways I also find blogging like teaching .
I am a teacher of English as a foreign language and always loved the challenge of making my lessons interesting, fun, pitched at just the right level for the students - not too easy, not too difficult - and most of all rewarding, so the students felt they acheived something during the lessons.

Once again, with teaching - you can find a formula that works with a class - and run with that for a while - but soon the magic wears off and you have to find new ways to present things to keep the students interested and happy.

So now my challenge is to find new inspiration for my blog - to brighten it up and find more ways to keep my current readers interested and happy - and to entice new readers in!

I'm going to be setting aside more time for reading other blogs - both sewing/crafting ones and also ones about blogging itself - like Problogger , Entrepreneur's Journey and The Traffic Generation Cafe..

I'm also going to try to learn to make more use of facebook, twitter and google+, to build up a better network.

AND, I'm going to make a concerted effort with my photos to learn to take better ones! After all - a picture tells a thousand words - and can draw in a lot of new readers if it's really good!!

So how about you and your blog?  Do you check your stats?  Is there a big discrepancy between your Blogger stats and Google analytics?  Or if you use a different platform like Wordpress - are your stats encouraging you to blog more?

Are you now in a comfortable routine or rut that you need to get out of to make progress?

Leave me a comment here if you are - maybe we can encourage, motivate and help each other!


  1. An interesting read Jill....I think you put in lots of hard work for a wonderful blog. I so relate to the Wham with the kids even as older teenagers my two do this to me. I get comfortable, love the routine and then wham. Good luck with your stats.

    1. Thanks Merry! Sounds like kids always keep us guessing no matter how old they are!! :)

  2. I have noticed a huge difference between Google Analytics and Blogger and even Lijit and Alexa.... no two show the same numbers.

    I think something that has caused a huge issue with leaving comments is not just the sheer volume of blogs now but word captcha. I know I've cut back drastically on leaving comments because I hate taking the time to write a comment and then realize the person has word captcha on and I have to fight that... especially since word captcha has gotten more and more difficult to decipher.

    1. Interesting to hear Alexa and Lijit vary in their stats too! Who knows what is "real"!
      I agree too about the captcha - some are really hard to decipher! I took mine off a while ago and haven't noticed any difference in commenting or spam! I don't think it's necessary!

  3. I agree with you about the photos, I think they can make a huge difference. The same item can look 100% more appealing to readers if photographed correctly. That is something I am working on too.
    Seriously though, congrats on almost 35,000 views per month, that is fantastic work Jill. I haven't even had that many views in my all time stats, so I'm impressed!!
    Keep up the great work!

  4. interesting post :) I still have a lot to learn about blogging, tweeting, being on Facebook..Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this subject and I wish you the best of luck on increasing your blog traffic. :D

    1. Thank you! There is so much to learn about all this - and more being added all the time - hard to keep up with it all!!

  5. I've had the same harsh reality check too, thinking I've had 2000 views in a day, when it's really a thirdif that in GA (which I too have heard is the more accurate one) oh well. At SNAP I heard even 'big bloggers' say page views are down.

    1. In some ways Steph - I think we should all just go on the best number we get -since all the methods of measuring the stats seem to give different results - how do we know what to believe?
      Let's all be optimistic and go with our best numbers!!

  6. I've found that the quality of my photos makes a huge difference... something I'm improving, but still need to work on. The actual fabric I use on a project has also made a huge difference. I did two projects with only small differences. One project photographed better because of the fabric and it was also a better fabric combination... it has generated WAY more traffic than the other. I'm sure you already know about Freeneedle... I get a lot of traffic from there. I've also had less response from 'One Pretty Thing' and 'CraftGossip'. I must investigate Google Analytics...

    1. I certainly agree about the fabric Pam - bold and bright seems to work best - and get projects noticed more! So the combination of great fabric and a great photo seems to be what to go for (obvious really I guess but it's taken me a while to figure out!!)

  7. Jill, really enjoyed reading this post. You have a way of drawing me in. I am not so concerned about growing my blog as you know but it was still helpful and I always want to be improving and making good goals. This was a good reminder. Thank you for your honest posts, i love em.

  8. Oh yes... Google Analytics... Switching to WordPress can be a bit traumatic if you've only watched your stats in Blogger. But I agree, you just have to pick one and go with it. The stats on my hosting server are more like Blogger, so I check there occasionally just to feel better, ya know?

  9. Thanks Gwen! I'm trying to be realistic and look at Google analytics, but can't help a sneak peak at Bloggers stats each day to make me smile!


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