Because we’re setting up a new online (and eventually print) magazine here, I thought some people might be interested in some stats on how things are going. Our first post was on Feb 5 2014. We currently have seven reviewers and essayists contributing pieces and so far at least, we’ve managed to post on Monday, Wednesday and Friday as per the initial plan. The posts gradually increase to daily and eventually maybe even two or three posts on some or all days (very far down the track).
We haven’t done any advertising yet (or really any promotion at all), so at this stage I was really expecting the hits to be fairly quiet. We had only a few hits (less than 10) each day for the first two months. In late March we had a spike of 40 hits, which settled down to about 20 hits per day. This is the usual pattern you expect to see. Spikes usually result in about half the traffic sticking around for a few days to see if they like the place.
Then, on April 29 2014 we had a spike of 600 hits. I don’t know where the traffic has come from. No amount of searching or Google Analytics has turned up any clues or mentions of the The Melbourne Review of Books anywhere else, and the spike was almost entirely direct traffic. That suggests we might have been mentioned on a podcast or video-cast or something…? And actually if you are being directed here some somewhere out there, we’d love to know where you are coming from and why.
The hits per day have been ranging from about 300 to 700 per day since the 600 hits spike. There is quite a high bounce rate associated with these visits, suggesting that people are either reading posts very quickly or they are not finding what they are hoping to be finding and leaving right-away.
Finally, by far and away the most popular contributor so far is Andy Smith, and the most popular post is currently Three Tone Tan with 3,334 page views. The least read post is currently the first post of the Becoming A Writer Reread by yours truly, with just 16 hits. Although the Becoming A Writer Reread was posted only 4 days ago, for comparison, Andy Smith’s Phantom der Nacht was posted yesterday and has garnered 429 hits already. So, yes, Andy Smith’s posts are very definitely the popular ones.
I realise that 600 to 700 hits a day is still very small fry in the world of online stuff in general, but I think we’re all pretty happy with how things are going so far, especially considering there is very little (read: no) promotion.