I know that you got a preview of this earlier today, as a part of the 2012 In Review (and it is worth comparing that to the WordPress Generated: 2011 In Review), but I wanted to post a more thorough (less graphic-intensive entry). In my entry at the end of last year I delved into my statistics in a serious and fairly comprehensive way. I’m not sure if I’m up to that today, but we’ll see how it turns out. I guess to start out, we should look at the traffic.
I wanted to post the entire history since I have moved to WordPress so you could see the trajectory. One of the common themes in the monthly statistics entries this year – at least from August onwards – has been the drop in traffic this year (prior to August the difference was always about 1000 hits per month or less). Interestingly, when you look at the daily traffic it isn’t until October-November before the per day numbers start to see a dramatic difference.
I’ve been wondering all year why I have seen a study increase in traffic up until 2012, but then a steady decrease in traffic throughout 2012. I think one of the reasons may be due to the fact that I simply haven’t been posting as much original content as I used to (time being shorter than what it normally has been I suppose). I also wondering if simply the increased number of blogger talking about K-12 online learning has had an effect. Finally, over the past two years I have been more honest and blunt about the ideological undercurrents that we see in K-12 online learning – at least in the United States and with the main professional associations – and I wonder if people have stopped reading for that reason.
If you look at the top 20 entries of 2012, it is interesting to note that only two of them were actually posted in 2012.
Those two 2012 entries were Mobile Learning On The Interwebs and Guest Blogger: Examining Accelerated Christian Education, which may also speak to the decline in traffic.
Last year, search engines drove the majority of the traffic (over 7o,000 hits). This year search engines were responsible for ~59,000, and if you compare what people were searching for:
||university of florida (951)
||generational differences (595)
||blended learning (1,083)
||generational differences (654)
||blended learning (381)
||kaplan virtual education (216)
||susan aldridge (215)
||journal of computing in teacher education
||visible learning (205)
||virtual school meanderings
||rosetta stone (196)
||brick and mortar school
||mobile learning (138)
||westwood cyber high school
||school of tomorrow (125)
||susan c aldridge (114)
||virtual high school ontario review (106)
||westwood cyber school
||school of tomorrow curriculum (96)
||school of tomorrow philippines subjects
||virtual school (87)
||georgia cyber academy
||florida virtual school (86)
||virtual high school ontario review
* Last year I didn’t record these numbers, only to say that “All of the others were less than 500, with all items from #15 onwards having less than 100.”
One of the first things that I notice about these two lists is that the 2011 list of search terms is much more specific to K-12 online learning, while the 2012 lists has many more unrelated items. I don’t know as much about search engine optimization, but I suspect there is something that I am doing different on that front this past year that is affecting things.
Beyond the search engines, Twitter (1,914 in 2012 / 3,374 in 2011) and Facebook (1,582 in 2012 and 1,373 in 2011) are the two biggest referrers. Interestingly, in 2011 WordPress.com (2,160) / en.wordpress.com (498) were in the number two position. But in 2012 they fell to the tenth position with 176 and 116 – so I’m not sure what WordPress.com does differently this year, but that was 2,000 hits less. Further, last year flvs.net was responsible for driving 1,064 users my way, but this year they don’t even show up as sending any users to my blog.
Moving away from the WordPress statistics, the limited information from Google Reader indicates:
Which tells me that the number of subscribers has gone up (218 in 2011 to 261 in 2012), I post fewer entries per month (37.8/month in 2011, compared with only 29.4/month in 2012), and that this hasn’t affected traffic from Google Reader that much (1,072 in 2011 and 985 in 2012)
And Feedburner indicates (note that you can’t get a yearly breakdown – only daily, last seven days, last 30 days, or all time. Below is an edited version of the all-time graph):
Looking at the statistics Feedburner generates, I can say that I began 2012 with 225 subscribers and a reach of 47. I finished the year with 316 subscribers and a reach of 60. Interestingly, the highest number of subscribers I had was 331 on 13 December, and the highest reach I had was 83 – which occurred twice: 17 December and 20 December.
Well, that’s all for another year…