I don't think for a second that stats are the be all and end all.
Could I tell you the average time a reader spends on my blog per visit? Nope. Could I tell you the age demographic of my readers? Nope.
I know where to find this information, it's just not something I'm massively interested in at this point.
My interest lies in my reach.
I could tell you, give or take a few, the views on my best and worst posts last month.
I could tell you my average page view.
I hear bloggers saying they don't care about the numbers. I'm not going to lie, I do care about the numbers, and I find it hard to believe that others don't.
You've just spend an hour writing an amazing post, a further 20 minutes taking, editing and uploading the perfect picture, and you don't care if anyone sees it? That doesn't equate to me.
What I think people actually mean when they say they don't care about stats is they don't let it bother them to the point where they are analysing stats and posting certain content related to the findings. I certainly fall into this category. I know what will do well and what not so well, yet I still choose to post both, because I enjoy writing both. And sometimes, the posts I am most worried about posting are the ones that do the best!
Sometimes, I get a post idea, and it's something I've never done before. I go ahead and do it, without worrying that it might throw my stats off.
Anyway, I have gone totally off topic! What I want to talk about today is followers VS page views.
By followers, I mean people who specifically follow your blog rather than your social media accounts.
|How I feel when I see a sign up pop-up!|
In the beginning, I got very disheartened at how few followers I had. I read various articles on how to build followers, most of which advised a pop-up sign up feature. I can't bring myself to do this. It drives me crazy on other blogs, so it's not something I want to subject my readers to.
Instead, I choose to add an email sign up option and a Bloglovin widget in my sidebar, and a link to follow me on Bloglovin at the bottom of my posts.
I'll be honest - it is no where near as effective as a pop-up, but I also think it's less likely to get the eye roll I give when I see a pop-up, and worse, people closing your page altogether.
I decided to put the idea on the back burner for a week or two and come back to solving this problem with a fresh perspective.
Guess what - it's still on that back burner three months later!
Why? Because I realised page views are a more true representation of readership than followers are. It would still be nice to get more followers, but it's not on the top of my priority list - building actual readership is.
A lot of people will disagree with page views being more important than followers, but hear me out! Here's 4 reasons why I think page views are a more accurate representation of readership:
There's that word again! At the point of writing this post, I had 4 email followers, and 41 Bloglovin followers. Yet I had 50,049 page views. Clearly, these views are coming from somewhere!
When responding to my comments, I see the same people commenting on more than one post at different times. This means I do have repeat visitors who come back time and again, even if they haven't chosen to follow.
3. My habits
I can't think of a single blog I follow via email. Simply because when I check my email, I want to be able to see important emails quickly, and I don't want to miss any. To have lots of emails telling me someone has written a new post would just clog my inbox up, and to be honest, I would probably delete the emails. I do follow some of my favourite blogs on Bloglovin. I like being able to go on there and know I will find lots of posts I want to read, but I do sometimes forget to check if the blog is on there. My main way of following blogs is saving them to my favourites on my internet browser and obviously, this doesn't flag up for the blogger.
4. Follow for follow
How many bloggers do you see saying this hourly on Twitter? Yes, a lot! If you take them up on it and they follow back, how many of them do you think actually read your posts rather than just wanting to up their own numbers? Maybe there a few who do, but I suspect this figure is pretty low. So you might gain a hundred followers this way, but if only two or three of them read your posts, then that figure doesn't mean anything.
And that is why I put more importance on page views than followers. That's not to say I wouldn't still like to build up more followers, its just to say if you don't have a lot of followers, but you do have good page views, don't get disheartened!
Do you agree or disagree? Let me know in the comments :)
Please note the stats images in this post are stock photos and not in any way representative of my blog stats.