Sometimes you don't need statistics. Sometimes you don't need retrospectives. Sometimes you don't need superlatives.
Yes! I've made it to my 100th blog post, in just over four months. Who would have thought that, after my very first entry into the realm of blogging, I would make it this far?
I've learned that meta-blogging is incredibly boring. However, I hope you will forgive me for celebrating this personal milestone by inviting you to give me your feedback on the following subjects: my topics and my statistics.
Top 3 Posts
These are the posts that generated the most traffic to my blog:
The Virtue of Junk Code
The Perfect Job Interview Question
Lesson Learned: Automate Project Evaluations
With The Virtue of Junk Code I already suspected it would be generating some buzz while writing it, but the popularity of the other two posts were a complete surprise to me. As far as I can tell, the similarities between these three articles are a line of thinking that goes against established practices, and a compelling way of voicing my opinion. In other words: it pays to be an obnoxious intrigant.
Am I right? Do you want me to write more articles like these?
It's very hard to predict the popularity of blog posts. There have been several posts of which I thought they would generate some traffic. But they drew as much attention as Hillary Clinton on a trip to Bosnia. These are some of my personal favorites:
Why Managing Small Projects is Harder
Specialization is Good
Make It Simple vs. Do It Simple
I did get a number of compliments for posts like these. But they drew less traffic than Twitter in a blackout period. However, I'm really passionate about topics like these. And I would hate to spend hours on a brilliant post that only draws three new visitors, one compliment and popularity ratings the size of Ron Paul's presidential campaign.
Tell me, what should I write about? What kind of topics are best?
In All Seriousness
Then there were a couple of tongue-in-cheek posts that I wrote just to have a bit of fun. They succeeded in drawing some attention, but not in very large numbers. Like these:
Thank You, Stupid Americans (a guest post for Codesqueeze)
Why I Would Never Hire Steve Yegge (a reply to a post by Steve Yegge)
…and some very serious posts involving the French.
Are these posts a waste of time? Shall I switch and start making fun of Germans?
Less is More
Some of you might have noticed that I reduced the number of posts from six to three (sometimes four) per week. I must stress that this is not because Max Pool kept insisting that I would exhaust myself. One of the main reasons was simply that I was running a little short on my time for other stuff, like reading, socializing and brushing my teeth. The other important reason is that too many posts is the #1 reason for people to unsubscribe from their RSS feeds.
Am I posting too much? Too little? How often would be good enough for you?
Page View Statistics
Alright, I am going to really open and honest with you. Here are the page view statistics of my blog from the last 30 days:
As you can see, apart from an occasional peak due to traffic from Reddit, StumbleUpon or DZone, this not something to brag about. With an average of 126 page views in 30 days I might as well start running my own presidential campaign. The chance of getting some exposure would be significantly higher.
RSS Feed Statistics
However… these are the feed statistics of the last 30 days:
The feed count stands at an average of 240, climbing steadily, with a peak of 299 this Tuesday. It appears that most readers are following me via the feed, not on the blog! When checking out other blogs I noticed that the ratio of page views vs. feed subscribers is often quite different. But I don't know if there's a "normal" ratio, and what it would be.
Does this mean I have a strong reader-to-subscriber conversion? I will need to find out.
The Speed of Growth
One other thing that's interesting to find out is whether the growth of readership is in line with what other authors have experienced. I started from level zero just four months ago. This week my Google Rank has finally increased to 2. (Ah, at last… I hated that number 0!) And my Technorati Rank has climbed to 516,960, with an authority level of 19. Now, that sounds mighty nice and awfully interesting, but I've read stories of some other blogs growing much faster. However, those usually involve either Britney Spears or naked body parts. Or a combination of both.
Is Noop.nl growing fast enough? Can I do better?
I'm afraid I don't have the answers to any of these questions. Yet. But maybe you have some, and I'd like to hear them! In any case, I will return to blogging as usual this weekend, and you can expect a return to meta-blogging in a couple of months, at blog post #200.