How many read your blog today?

I was toying between that title or perhaps, Β ‘How not to increase traffic to your blog’. I’ve been blogging over two years and for the most part have enjoyed every day of it. However in the last month, due to life, holidays, my children annoying me and my husband expecting me to feed him, I’ve had less time to write, to read and to post here on wordpress. This has naturally meant my usually high stats, (not!) have nose dived, leading me to wonder, and wondering is not always a good thing!

For as I wondered I grew envious (and bitter). Why do I not have a following of thousands reading my blog? Am I not interesting? At times funny? At times inspirational? Ok perhaps not.

This week I read a couple of posts from bloggers who had big stats. They were kindly telling me, and everyone else, but I really felt they were speaking to me, that we needed to work our blogs better in order to expand our readership. This post on Dolly Dowsie was particularly helpful and clearly explained how she tripled her blog views in one month.

So having read the title I thought ‘Yes, I’m going to pay attention to this and make an effort’.photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/51293319@N08/10572925364">Social Media Night IMG_4505</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">(license)</a>

It began so promisingly, as she suggested Stumbleupon.She explained how it had greatly increased traffic to her site, but it took effort. Great I thought, I’ve already set up a stumbleupon account (two years ago) and I have ticked that box for wordpress to share it. Mmmm now where is it again? So off I went to visit and luckily I was still signed in since I last visited. I dusted off the cobwebs and looked at the site, then looked some more, then fiddled around with it, pressed ‘stumbleupon’ and arrows and whatever else I could press, but I couldn’t make head nor tail of it. #Fail number 1.

Next tip was for twitter. I admit I do enjoy twitter on occasions but I only post my post on it once. I struggle with the idea of promoting it more than once feeling I’m annoying people (crazy I know), as well as the fact I’m not on twitter often. Dolly Dowsie suggested adding a photo to my tweet, which I’ve yet to try, but I had heard others speak of tootsuite and scheduling posts on twitter, so off I went and downloaded it. I then managed to schedule two tweets ( I know that’s not exactly huge marketing but it’s a start). I was so proud of myself for figuring out how to do all that, then I sat back and waited for the masses to arrive to my blog… and I waited…and waited…

Two lonely souls clicked on the links in twenty four hours, one from each tweet! #Fail number 2.

Following on from such heady success I returned to her post to see what else I might use. Reddit. I’d never even heard of it and still hadn’t recovered from stumbleupon, so I moved on to the next suggestion, Pinterest. I felt my mind closing and my birth cert flashing in front of me. Not because I believe Pinterest is for young ones, but because it was dawning on me, I am not enthusiastic enough, nor do I have the energy or time to put the work into promoting my blog.

It’s a sad reality, but tonight I have faced facts, my blog is as popular as I make it. You get out of blogging what you put in and I have not had a personality change since school, many moons ago, when it was regularly reported to my parents that I was making minimal effort.

So there you have it, my thoughts on a page will never rule the blogging world. It will remain forever a tiny grain of sand on the wordpress beach. Am I happy with that? Probably not. Am I prepared to do something about it? Not at the moment, but that doesn’t mean I never will.

Good luck to the rest of you bloggers. I hope you appreciate my top tips on how not to get lots of traffic to your blog. However if you would like to give your blog a chance and get the return you deserve for your efforts read Dolly Dowsies excellent advice, and the best of luck to you.

Maybe when you are famous and successful you might see my little tweet some day and retweet it to your millions, after all I told you what not to do.

***** Dolly Dowsie did not ask me to write this, nor is she a family member, although she is Irish!

photo credit: Click Distribution via photopin (license)
photo credit: Social Media Night IMG_4505 via photopin (license)

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74 thoughts on “How many read your blog today?

    1. Thank you, and glad you found me. I think it is up to us to make of our blog what we can and while some may moan about their lack of success we can only blame ourselves. Pity, I’d love to be able to blame someone… an old teacher of mine or someone I dislike! πŸ™‚

  1. Yeah. I’ve noticed that my blog responds only to the effort I put into it. There aren’t any tricks. And there’s this hidden catch too…the bigger it gets, the more time it takes. Still figuring it out myself.

  2. 17 views, 8 visitors – the answer to your question. I share you lacklustre approach to promotion. Even the word gives me a rash. I’ll settle for being a speck of fluff on the rag-nail on the nail on the baby toe of the footnote of blogging history*

    *Tric didn’t pay me to try take the bad look off her. And I nodded my head willingly.

    1. Hahaha, I love your disclaimer. We can be like the inbetweeners, losers who band together, and have a good time in the process. For what it’s worth yours is one of the most enjoyable blogs I read. *I wasn’t paid for that either.

      1. *downs gun* Ah, thanks, Tric *whistles innocently* I’m well up for some inbetweener posterity, but given that you’ve already loadsa likes on this page, and a Mexican ovation from your many existing fans, I feel slightly betrayed that you broke rank and turned out to be popular already. Watch me huff *me huffing*

        1. I know I am blown away by the numbers who are commenting and liking. Maybe I’m a closet success? Maybe they will go check you out too. If you would tag and categorise your posts more would find you with no effort on your behalf at all. Your blog and writing deserves to be widely read.
          Now stop huffing and get us a drink. πŸ™‚

  3. Currently, very little traffic, when I write more, I get more but never a lot :). I started to read about what I should be doing to increase my visibility and traffic earlier this summer and I think it turned me off instead of set me on fire!!! Now, I need to do something but can’t quite decide what…! I might just do nothing and got back to writing… Just writing!

    1. I know exactly what you mean. It’s not for everyone, and at least we are enjoying the writing.
      I do hugely admire those who put great effort in, you can see them becoming successful, in terms of viewers over time.
      You keep writing and I’ll keep reading, That will be one view each anyway. πŸ™‚

    1. Birds of a feather Beth. Although you do get lots of likes. But well deserved as you are wonderfully supportive as I well know. You have always been there for me.

  4. Your posts always make me laugh, no matter the topic. I usually work on my pieces on the weekend then schedule them to post 3 times per week as I have little or no blocks of time to work on it otherwise. This has been the first week I’ve missed a scheduled post date and I didn’t feel the need to make myself crazy about it. After all it is Summer and I’m so long overdue for a vacation which will not be happening anytime soon, So I’ve given myself a break. I’m not posting to social media either as I don’t have the time to keep up with all that extra ‘hoopla’. Perhaps if I’m able to do writing fulltime then I can see the point of investing quality time into those venues but not now.

    And yes, as followers grow, there is additional work to read and respond to comments etc which I love to do as I so cherish the interaction I’ve found here.

    I don’t think you need to worry though, since inspiration ebbs and flows and I am predicting the performance of blogs will ebb and flow accordingly (mine does anyway). Enjoy the break, and when you return you’ll be knocking posts out of the park, bigger and better than ever!

    Just never lose that sense of humor, it certainly is a gift πŸ™‚

    A-

    1. Thank you. Enjoy your break. I’m off now for a few days, and like you I wont be stressing.
      As for my humour, I’m glad you appreciate it, as often my family don’t. πŸ™‚

      1. Oh, families! We love them because we have no choice or do we, hmmmm? Well anyway, laughter is good therapy for me, and anyone who’s succeeded in making me laugh on any given day has helped prevent me from going slightly insane at the hands of my 3 yr 0ld! So write away, I’ll be reading πŸ™‚

  5. Reading this post was like looking in a mirror. I’ve clicked on so many of those “How to boost your blog numbers into the stratosphere!” articles online, but the same old ideas come up every time and they never seem to work for me.

    I tried Twitter and hated it. Writing tweets is basically throwing pebbles into the ocean.

    Facebook is great way to connect with people. All you need is a computer, a Facebook account, and 250,000 friends you already know.

    Pinterest is okay, as long as you have nothing to do all day except attach pins to pictures.

    Stumbleupon? Yeah, right. None of the stumbling that goes on there ever seemed to be upon me.

    Unsurprisingly, my readership figures are… eh… Well, let’s just say my teacher at school would have written “Could do better” in my report card.

    The only part of building readership that I enjoy (and that has had the slightest success) is seeking out blogs that I like (like this one, of course) and writing comments. It takes ages, but at least it’s interesting.

    1. Actually with your humour I thought you’d enjoy Twitter. I love it, not for social media self pushing, but just to write nonsense such as ‘I’m so late going to bed if I don’t go soon I’ll need photo ID to prove I’m his wife’. I laugh alone mostly but I do enjoy it when I’m in the mood.
      I must admit I do love engaging with bloggers via comments and getting to know them by their posts. There are bloggers here who have reached out to me when life was so sad after a young friends boy died and really made a difference, some who have encouraged me so much to pursue my writing and many who have called by regularly and who I feel I ‘know’.
      So maybe that is my success.
      It’s what I love most about blogging, apart from actually writing. Maybe that’s the post I should be writing as an alternative to statistical success.

      1. I was probably just doing it wrong, but for me Twitter seemed like a place where everyone was shouting and no one was listening. It was a bit scary. (Also 148 characters is just me clearing my throat. Farewell all nuance.) The slower pace and genuine back-and-forth of blogging suits me better.

        1. I almost never use Twitter now except to send out a tweet when I’ve written something new. Some of the problems I found with Twitter stemmed from the fact that I’m vaguely left-wing and a bit of an agnostic. (I’m not very radical about it, though. I simply doubt there’s anyone up there watching me and I have some problems with parts of the Bible, but who knows? I could be wrong.)

          The trouble is, once you edge slightly in one direction on Twitter, you get caught up in a positive feedback loop and before I knew it I had 900 followers who were all mainly interested in talking about politics or hardcore atheism. I found myself being pushed to become much more strident about everything than I really am, and that’s where the lack of nuance became a problem.

          Having said all that, I did enjoy reading your tweets and you did invite people to try and join you, so if I can remember how to do it, I will. (I liked them all, but the one with your daughter asking about potential was my favorite. It is just so like children. My youngest used to do the same kind of thing.)

          I apologize if I’m a bit of a shadowy presence on Twitter, though. I hardly ever seem to tweet there these days since all my spare time at the moment seems to be going on my blog!

        2. Yep, I always felt like I should have a hard hat and an anti-aircraft gun whenever I went on Twitter in the past.

          It could be very funny sometimes, of course (there are some very witty people using it), but I disliked the fact that things disappear so quickly — blink and you miss some of the best comments.

          The biggest single problem I have with it is just that I hardly ever have a chance to look at it these days. Recently my blog has become a great big sponge of a hobby, soaking up every second of my free time!

  6. First of all, your blog is great!
    I started my blog 3 1/2 years ago and have not hit the 1,000 mark yet. Not sure if this is because I am not worthy or because I am not using any other methods besides WordPress to reach an audience. I have given much of my time to reading and commenting on the 200 blogs that I follow and probably reply to 90 percent that comment on mine. Pinterest, Stumbleupon and all that jazz requires more time that I just don’t have. I don’t link my blog to Facebook for the simple reason that I don’t always want to share some of my personal poetry and thoughts with the small group of “friends” I have on there.
    it is all a mystery to me! All I can do is keep moving forward, knowing I love to write and share my photos. If people don’t love to read it……….oh well.
    Keep on writing, Tric! You have done well. πŸ™‚

    1. I enjoy your blog. I did link facebook to my blog, but I don’t share every post on it, as some I don’t want all my friends reading.
      Like you it is via comments I get most interaction and I suppose that is what I know and understand.
      We’ll just have to be happy with our lot and I suppose when I think about it I am.

  7. The thing you don’t mention is that while some blogs have great stats, there’s no telling if those visitors are real readers who stay and enjoy your posts (as your readers clearly do) or just bots x

    1. Oh I hadn’t even thought of that.
      Yes I do appreciate that many and most who call here do so because they chose to and wanted to.
      Thanks for the encouragement.

  8. Aww Tric, thanks for the mentions. Laughing at your disclosure at the end! With StumbleUpon if you click on the circular picture (mine is my face) on the top right hand side a drop down toolbar with pop up and you click add a page, then add in your URL and tags. I’m beginning to become burnt out with the promoting at the moment, it takes a lot of effort and this week I’m feeling meh about it… how bold of me!

    1. Ms Dolly Dowsie you wrote great posts which were most helpful. I was a bit of a mess on stumbleupon, thanks for the explanation.
      You work so hard on your blog, some days I shake my head and wonder just how you get the energy. You deserve your stats and the shout here.
      I on the other hand have to understand I am different and comments and chat are what motivate me so I can’t moan when things don’t work differently for me.

  9. P.S. your blog is far better and more admired than mine will ever be and I will always be a reader. Keep doing what you’re doing because it’s great.

  10. wow based on the comments and likes on this post I think you don’t have anything to worry about. My advice is the same that I follow, write for you and from your soul, don’t let numbers rule. If one person reads and comments then look at as you have reached someone.

  11. I love your blog and you have lots of dedicated readers who come here to read your insightful and inspiring words (or your dry and witty humour) πŸ˜‰ If it was a race course (or how about a swimming gala?), you’d still be well across the pool while I’d still be sitting on the starters block. I try not to look at the stats (but fail miserably) but am too lazy or busy to do much more about it. Thankfully I know you will keep going even if only a few were reading because it is so obvious that it is in you and just bursting to get out… and we all love coming here to read your lovely words!

    1. Oh wow it was worth writing this post for your comment alone. Thanks so much Naomi, how kind of you.
      As you know I do love your blog, but you are also doing so much in ‘real life’ no wonder you can’t devote 24/7 to it.
      We’ll just muddle on and at least our blogging allows us be part of the IPB group. πŸ™‚

  12. Oh Tric I feel your pain! I have fairly low stats on my blog and usually it doesn’t bother me too much. Then I see someone post that they have 10,000 hits in one day or some ridiculous figure like that and I’m left scratching my head wondering what I’m doing wrong.
    Funnily enough I read both of Fiona’s posts yesterday on Dolly Dowsie and I went and opened Reddit and Stumbleupon accounts. That’s as far as I got! Like you, I don’t like posting my blog links on my Twitter account too often, I’m afraid of boring people. I just realised I’m just not very good at self promotion and either I make more of an effort or get over it. Which will inevitably mean I’ll get over it and do nothing πŸ™‚
    I love your blog and you always have something interesting to say. I find a lot of blogs that have high traffic very dull so I think quality is far more important than quantity. Don’t get disheartened, your blog is great!

    1. Oh I think your blog could do very well on pinterest and those other sites. I liked Dolly Dowsies posts as I thought they offered a little more than others on what to do, the only problem was I just can’t do it.
      But maybe I’ll do it a little.
      Best of luck if you do decide to take her advice.

  13. This is so me. I want a blog with big readership but I can’t cope with all the social media/re-posting/effort involved! I honestly don’t know how bloggers (especially parent-working bloggers) have the time and energy to do it! I am however making more of an effort to be involved in Irish parenting Bloggers Facebook because I always read but never post and I kinda wanna join the little gang!

    1. I’m lucky my ‘little ones’ are little no more, but I still have no time.
      Oh do join in with the craic on IPB facebook. Sometimes it looks like there are groups or friends who know each other well, but that’s not true at all. Pipe up and join in you will enjoy it.

  14. Tric, I think it is all in what and how you blog. My DH started his blog about 2 months ago and posts something new just about every day. He has a huge following (over 1000 in 2 months). I, on the other hand, started my blog several years ago and I’m just plugging along. I do good to have a few readers a month. But then I am not as dedicated either and my topics tend to be so random that you never know what is coming next. I love your blog, you bring words to life on your blog by including all areas of emotion. Thanks for sharing your little piece of the world with us.

    1. Thanks Charlene. What is your DH blog? I do think the number of times you blog etc has a bearing on numbers, but like you I just do as I please. Don’t forget you are so creative in your drawings also and when you do write I really enjoy reading.
      I do love my blog. It’s more than just my writing. It’s like my shed in the back of the garden, my own space. It’s where I am me and where I like to entertain those who call to visit.
      Even if that is not quite as many as i would like.

  15. Wait……people read blogs??????? πŸ˜‰ I’ve tried Stumble but that was it. Didn’t do me much good. Sigh. I’ll tweet your blog if you tweet mine. But, uhm, you’ll have to tell me how to tweet first. πŸ™‚

    1. Hahahaha. I love twitter, but only for my own amusement, not really for sharing. You miss Colleen have great interaction on your blog, and as you know yours is one blog I rarely stay out of contact with for any length.
      Us dinosaurs must stick together. πŸ™‚

  16. Does it help to know that I am an even smaller grain of sand than you? Seriously, I think the vast majority of bloggers are in the same boat, in that we will never have tens of thousands of followers visiting regularly, hanging on our every witty/inspirational/inventive word. And, like you, for me that’s okay – for now and maybe forever. But remember, unlike most of us, that you are award-winning! I still think that is super cool!

    Funnily enough, I have been (uncharacterically) writing a couple of posts dealing with views, stats, and followers over the past couple of days. I am closing in on 500 followers and am preparing a post on that milestone to have ready when I get there – in a few days/weeks. πŸ˜‰ Stay tuned!

    1. Oh well done, nearly 500. Are you on facebook?
      I really agree, the vast majority are in the many less than thousands readers, but as long as we have enough interaction and a growing following we are mostly happy. I just called by and wanted to read your post on stats but my laptop died. I’ll have to call by again.
      Good luck and enjoy your blogging.

      1. I am on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/topofjcsmind. I admit it is hard to deal with the FB algorithms to get people to see your posts. Of course, I refuse to pay to promote posts. I don’t blog to make money, so I don’t want to spend money either. It’s funny, but I’m now a bit further away from 500. I just noticed I went from 495 to 494. Oh, well!

  17. Well, I just wanted to let you know that you probably have about . . . well, I don’t feel like doing the math, but you have way more followers than me. And I read every issue you write, and I think you are quite funny! πŸ˜›

    1. Thanks Karen. It’s funny but having read the comments and written the post I have reached an easy decision. I love my followers. They are loyal, caring and funny. They mostly come because they want to read what I write and even if the numbers are not in their thousands, I’m lucky. I count you among my ‘online’ friends.

  18. Hi Tric. JC sent me. Your post made me feel better. I enjoy blogging most of the time, when I have time, and time is the critical element for me. I don’t know anyone, personally (who I’ve met in the flesh) who has time to devote to building a big following. It seems like it could get to be a full time job. I wonder how many people with big followings have other jobs. I got excited to pass 300 followers! I need to honor my life outside of blogging.

    1. Hi, JoAnne! I’m so glad you came over and discovered Tric’s blog! I think that you are right. Most of us spend most of our time on people and tasks beyond our blogs and are happy for the smaller following that we do manage to attract.

    2. Welcome JoAnne. Thanks to JC for sending you over.
      I agree unless your blog is your job it doesn’t make sense to kill yourself trying to make it big and well read. Still it is a dream we have to be popular I suppose, just not to put in all the extra effort.

  19. I think you’re doing great, Tric, and I did enjoy your humor as you wrote this! I’m happy with my blog after four years and I’m grateful for my friends who come back again and again, for those who like and/or comment. I only wish there was more time in a day to read everyone’s blog who I follow. I would imagine we all share this same problem. πŸ™‚

    1. How I can identify with you on the lack of time. I was away for a couple of days and by the time I post and return comments hours have passed, and I’ve yet to read anyones. We can’t do everything I suppose, only try our best and hope we don’t let it take over.
      I enjoy your posts immensely. I tend to see them more often on FB, but I don’t always get time to let you know I did.

  20. Hello Tric. Found my way here from JC’s post too, and I’m glad I did! To me, it looks like you have a huge following! πŸ™‚ From what I can see so far, you have a great space already, but I applaud your efforts to extend your wings. I totally agree with all you’ve written in this post! I’m a social media failure for the most part πŸ™‚ I love WP, I love writing on my blog and reading as many others as I can, and making comments too. As a lifelong introvert I am used to small circles of friends, and small groups, in all the parts of my life, and as exciting as it would be to see lots of followers, I am pleased when even one person leaves a note letting me know they’ve read the things I write. I enjoyed this post very much!

    1. Thank you, and thanks to JC.
      You would be surprised to note that I don’t actually have that many readers but I those who do are great to comment and get involved. That is my favourite part of blogging and after two years I would consider many who call by ‘friends’ in the online sense, and valued ones at that.
      Great to see you.

  21. I agree with everything. My attempts at social media have very closely mimicked yours. But you seem to do much better than I with the comments and other stuff. Loved this post!!!

    1. Thank you. I suppose this blog has been going for two years and looking back is very much about interaction with those who read, and I know that many read regularly. That is probably my favourite part of blogging, but it doesn’t stop me wishing occasionally that I’d a lot more readers.

      1. It is fascinating how you really start feeling like the people you follow and those that follow you are really good friends. That’s what I really love about blogging – and there are amazing writers out there with differing perspectives. Really interesting stuff!!!

  22. Hi Tric, many thanks for your post. Like most of us who have posted, I’m always looking to find ways to increase traffic. Two weeks I wrote and posted a silly 5 line poem which took less than 5 minutes to write. This post generated more hits, likes and comments than I have ever had. The same day I posted a blog which took considerable research, knowledge and time. This post virtually received no hits. I became angry and berated my followers by actually re-tweeting the post with the fore-ward: ‘C’mon you can’t be serious – this post deserves more than 8 hits!’
    It generated another 2 hits! I scratch and shake my head. I think I will post more silly 5 line poems.

    1. Oh dear, I too scratch my head and smile reading your comment as it sums up exactly what blogging is all about.
      You never know. One of my most liked posts also took mere moments to write, although I must admit none of my posts rely on research. That would be hard to swallow.
      I suppose we should keep doing what we want, but yes sometimes blogging is not fair.
      I read a blog once and the blogger published three lines and nothing else in error and he got 50 likes! I kid you not.

  23. Here’s a little gentle advice: connect to the amazing and gifted woman you naturally are, and to the hell with the rest of the world. People who are successful are the ones who write for their own enjoyment, and their not held to stats.
    I write because I find it therapeutic, and I write maybe once or twice every couple of months. It doesn’t matter who or how many see it, what matters is that I find enjoyment in it, or there’s no point in doing it.
    Write for the sake of you, and get lost in that. Happiness is contagious don’t you know.
    Blessings…

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