Our Tool For Analyzing Page Views And Blog Traffic
The comparison game is strong in the blogging world. I’m not one to covet after another person’s blog, but I definitely can’t help but compare sometimes. Asking ourselves, “Why are they growing so quickly? How do they have so many comments on their blog?” Above all, I constantly felt myself wondering, “How many page views are they getting?”
I don’t know why, but page views stress me out. If we have an off day, I’m always wondering what happened and how can we get those page views up the next day? Honestly, we didn’t even know what normal was, especially as a new blog. Brandon and I constantly wondered what the “big blogs” were getting for their traffic and page views and wished we could compare with blogs that appeared to be close to our size.
I found Quantcast by reading The Four-Hour Work Week (more on that book later). Essentially, it’s a website that allows you to type in a URL and see the average monthly page views, traffic, and other stats. You can type in a blog that you’re curious about and see their average monthly page views. If they are registered with Quantcast, you can also see demographics, reader interests, and other interesting data. I quickly started typing in a few sites that I was curious about and was so enlightened by the results. I found that this really only worked with large, established blogs who have been around for quite some time.
For some blogs, I wasn’t surprised by their page views. Of course, they were through the moon and way past any level we were at. No surprise there! But, for others (even some that I had considered “big”), I found that their page views weren’t really that far off from ours. Sure, we have some growing to do, but it wasn’t an unobtainable number for us to get to and we were encouraged by this.
Keep in mind, this can be a dangerous tool if you consistently find yourself comparing; however, I found it to be helpful for us just to get a general idea of what page views should look like and what we should work towards. I’m a numbers person and understanding the data behind our blog has been extremely helpful for us in growth and goals. I’m not writing this post to try and make anyone feel like they need to go compare, but Brandon and I are big goal setters and this tool was helpful for us to set realistic goals that can be accomplished. Understanding the analytics behind a blog is valuable and for us, this has done the opposite of making us worry and compare: it’s helped us to stop worrying so much about page views because we’ve actually set a realistic target for us to reach in one year, month by month.
If you’re struggling with page views and what “normal” may be for your blog size, I definitely recommend trying Quantcast. Most importantly though, blogging should be fun and a hobby that brings joy, not stress. Remember to enjoy it!