Discussion Post – Do Blog Stats Matter?
Hello everyone! Today’s blog post is potentially a bit of a controversial topic, because I want to talk about blog stats, and how much they matter.
Obviously they matter to a certain extent. Here on Reviewsfeed I take part in blog tours, as well as share book reviews and other bookish content. Particularly for the review side of things, it’s beneficial for the authors of the books I feature to actually reach an audience… so in that sense it matters.
From what I have seen, bloggers tend to be polar opposites on their stance on stats. They either monitor excessively… or not at all. I confess I fall into the latter category; I hardly ever look at them to be perfectly honest with you. That’s not to say things go unnoticed, however. If I get a notification to say someone has liked my post, or followed my blog, then yes I get a little excited. But do I continuously monitor each blog post’s page views and compare them to each other? Am I filled with self doubt if post doesn’t get as much ‘love’ as I think it should?
That’s fundamentally not what I blog for. When I started my blog, it was to have a place to share my thoughts on the books I read. I had in my head the idea that if I could inspire even just one person to pick up a book, then I would be happy. In the grand scheme of things, that is a very low target, but that’s all I wanted to do. I would like to hope that I achieved it by now, but at the same time it’s not the end of the world if I haven’t either. I’ve had fun along the way – that’s what counts!
When you first start out, you definitely have to make a lot more effort into your blog’s growth. Your blog doesn’t come up in searches so easily, so you have to go out there and get the attention for yourself. Of course I did this in the beginning. But I don’t now, and granted, I haven’t really have much in the way of ‘growth’ lately. I don’t necessarily gain any followers, but I do get page views with no effort at all.
When you tell someone how many followers you have, your first reaction would be “Wow!”… or “Well done!”. But what if I told you it stands for very little? I have hovered at just over 1000 followers for quite some time. Sounds like a reasonable following, right? What if I told you that my average page views per day in 2021 was just 11-12? That is nowhere near as impressive, is it. But that is the reality. Just because somebody ‘follows’ my blog, it doesn’t necessarily mean they read or interact with it at all. So that number becomes hollow; it doesn’t mean anything. If anything, it is the page views that are most likely to matter.
But even a page view count isn’t a true reflection. What if someone clicked on your blog by accident? They immediately click the back button take them back to wherever they were before. You have a page view, but the person didn’t actually read what you’ve shared! Equally, what if someone clicked on your post and just skim-read it? Have they actually taken any of your content in? Even if we assume a best case scenario; that everyone who has read your blog has done so on purpose and taken as much as they can out of your content – then great… but what now? There is a small sense of achievement to gain from that, but what impact does that have on your life ultimately? Do you continue to chase for the extra view, that extra push? Is it worth making your entire identity about who you are online?
For me, the answer is most definitely, no.
Personally, I just don’t get the hype and obsession with counting stats. If I’m entirely honest with myself, comparing myself to some of the other bloggers out there by following or number of views is unrealistic. I don’t read the types of books that target the current majority of the book blogging demographic (YA, I’m looking at you) so my content doesn’t appeal either. And you know what? That’s okay. I’m not going to change my reading tastes to try and appeal to the mass market.
What I say next might not sit well with some. I am a twenty-something-year-old woman and I despair at how many people in my generation (and the younger ones) rely on social media and the Internet in general for validation and self-worth. It’s sad that people think they are defined by their online presence. You’re not. The Internet is a fickle place, and whether you find a place within it or not, it will move on without you. What matters is whether you let that bother you or not.
It may sound hypocritical of me to be talking to you about this, given that my entire hobby is based around posting content on the Internet. I’ve been doing so for the last four years. However, I hope I’ve made it very clear that my ‘place’ on the web, and how much traffic I get, matters very little to me. I love my blog, and I love sharing my thoughts on it. As to how many people see it or take anything from it, anything goes. I set up my blog for me and that has been my objective from day one.
So, I’ve made my opinion very clear. Do you agree with me or do you disagree? I’d like to hear your views on the subject, so let me know in the comments!