Archive for the ‘Blogging’ Category

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2020 blog statistics

January 1, 2021

Yes, it’s that time of the year again, and what a year it’s been! I’ve compiled my blog statistics for 2020, and I’m curious to see what effect, if any, COVID-19 and working from home without usual means of support (co-workers, IT people etc.) has had on those stats.

In late May 2020, this blog hit 15 million views then 16 million in the last week of December. This is the total since I started blogging very late in 2007. Some 1.55 million views occurred just in 2020 (surprisingly, about the same as 2019). These figures don’t include any visits I made to my own blog (yes, I use my own blog for stuff I can’t remember—I consider it my memory bank).

16,016,840 views to 31 December 2020

I only wrote 57 blog posts in 2020, so many of these visits were to posts I’ve written in previous years. I’ve written 1917 posts since 2008, with an average word count per post of between 400 and 500 words.

Despite those large numbers of views, only about 850 people subscribe to this blog (you can subscribe by clicking the ‘Sign me up!’ button on the right sidebar and entering your email address to receive an email alert each time I post a new article), and I have just over 920 Twitter followers for @cybertext. From these figures, I have to assume most readers are ‘hit and run’ readers—those who have a problem with Word or whatever, find one of my posts via Google etc., read the post, get what they came for (or not), and leave without checking out anything else.

Where do these readers come from? Not surprisingly for an English language blog, most of my visitors in 2020 were from English-speaking countries, with a heavy dominance from the US (>505,000), followed by the UK, India, Australia, and Canada (all between 96,000 and 150,000). Since WordPress started recording this information (not necessarily when I started blogging in 2008), most visitors have come from the US (nearly 6 million), followed by the UK. Australia, and Canada (about 3.5 million combined). The first map shows country of origin visits for 2020; the second, for all time. NOTE: These stats represent where WordPress thinks these readers are located based on their IP addresses—anyone using a VPN to mask their location would be listed under the country that they chose in their VPN settings. (Click on images to view them full size)

Map and list of top 10 countries where readers came from in 2020

Map and list of top 10 countries where readers came from in 2020

Map and list of top 10 countries where readers came from: all time

Map and list of top 10 countries where readers came from: all time

Below are some graphs and tables of the 2020 statistics for this blog, as well as some comparative ones for ‘all time’ (‘all time’ is actually 2008 to 2020 — I started this blog very late in 2007, but didn’t really start posting until January 2008, so the 2007 statistics are too low to be significant).

Total views by month/year

Table listing total number of views by month for each year from 2007 to 2020

Total number of views by month for each year from 2007 to 2020

Column graph showing total number of views for each year from 2008 to 2020

Total number of views for each year from 2008 to 2020

Average daily views

Graph showing average number of views per day over each year from 2008 to 2020. The highest was about 5500 in 2015, and about 4000 per day in 2020

Average number of views per day for each year from 2008 to 2020

The average views per day decreased a little in 2020 (about 4000 per day) compared to 2019 (4280 per day). The graphs above and below are for the full seven days per week, though most views occur during the five business days of the working week, probably reflecting the need to find answers to Word questions and the like when people are stuck with a problem at work. Weekends and major public holidays (particularly in the US) see a noticeable drop in views, as does the December/January holiday period and the northern hemisphere summer (July).

In 2020, I had to look for any possible influence of COVID-19 affecting the results, and there was. Compared to the 2019 graph for average views per day by month, there was a noticeable change in the shape of the curve from May onwards (see the graph below). There was a small dip in July and August (northern hemisphere summer months), but instead of declining between September and November, as in previous years, the numbers were high and steady over those months. I suspect the stats from May onwards may have been the influence of working from home and having to figure out how to solve problems without help from colleagues who previously were in the same work location.

Graph showing average number of views per day for 2020. The highest months were May, June, September, October, and November (all over 4500, with some over 5000)

Average number of views per day in 2020, by month

Top 20 posts

Table listing the top 20 posts of all time and the top 20 for 2020. Posts that are in both lists are highlighted in blue.

Top 20 posts of all time compared to the top 20 for 2020.

Some posts are just more popular than others! Those highlighted in blue appear in both lists — the top 20 posts of all time (2008–20209) on the left, and 2020-only on the right. Those without highlighting only appear in one of the top 20 lists. The numbers to the right of each title are the number of total views for that post in the time period.

Long tail

As expected, there’s a significant ‘long tail’ for this blog’s views. The top 20 posts (each has more than 19,100 views) in 2020 garnered the most views, with the top 6 clearly ahead of the others (>45,000 views). Everything else was a poor cousin to these top posts.

Graph showing the 'long tail' of the top 20 posts in 2020. The top 6 of these had as many views as the other top 14 combined

Long tail of the top 20 posts in 2020. The top 6 had as many views as the other top 14 combined

When I extracted out the views just for the top posts for 2008–2020 (using 50,000 views as the lower limit), the long tail was very evident. The top 10 posts for all time garnered the most views, with posts 10 to 76 tailing off and flattening out. Remember, I’ve written some 1917 posts, and this graph only represents the 76 posts that have had more than 50,000 views since 2008—most posts have far fewer than that and aren’t represented in this graph. (For perspective, the least-viewed posts have had about 1,100 views, while the single most-viewed post has had nearly 1 million views.)

Graph of the long tail of the 76 posts with more than 50,000 views, over all time. The top 5 posts have had between 300,00 and 1 million views.

Long tail of posts over all time (only those with more than 50,000 views are graphed). The top 5 posts have had between 300,00 and 1 million views.

So, there you have it. Thirteen years of blogging, 1917 blog posts published, and just over 16 million views (with 1.55 million of those in the past 12 months).

I guess I must be doing something right, even though the monetary return is close to zero. I pay an annual fee to WordPress to NOT show advertisements on this blog (I wouldn’t get any return from these even if I allowed them), and I refuse to try to ‘monetize’ my blog posts by hosting them elsewhere and running ads—I don’t like ads cluttering up and getting in the way of good content and potentially trapping readers into clicking on them, and I suspect my readers don’t like them either. Instead of ads, I have an option for readers to donate to this blog’s expenses if anything I’ve written has got them out of a bind, saved them time (and therefore money), or helped them be more efficient. In 2020 I received perhaps the equivalent of one week’s worth of groceries in donations. I use that money to pay my annual bill to WordPress to keep this blog free of ads and to have the convenience of adjusting the style (CSS) of this blog.

As for what happens in 2021, I’ll continue to write posts sporadically—I still have a day job that I’m committed to, and paid work always comes before unpaid work. Stay safe, and remember the three Ws: wear a mask, wash your hands, and watch your distance.

See also:

[Links last checked January 2021]

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WordPress.com: Classic editor

November 23, 2020

NOTE 1: The method below no longer works. As at the end of March 2021, it seems WordPress.com has forced us all into using the (hated by me) block editor, and I can’t see an easy way to get the Classic Editor back. However, I found out how to set up WordPress to allow you to follow the instructions below. You need to go to your profile, then change and save the dashboard appearance setting. Once you’ve done that, the information below should work. See https://wordpress.com/support/classic-editor-guide/ for further details.  

NOTE 2: Another method is to start a new post, then add ?classic-editor after the URL in the browser’s address line for the new post and press Enter. So, instead of https://YourBlogsName.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post-new.php, you get https://YourBlogsName.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post-new.php?classic-editor. (I found this tip at https://anihilistabroad.com/2021/02/22/quickly-force-wordpress-classic-editor-permanently-prevent-block-editor/)

This blog and my personal blog are hosted on WordPress.com. Recently they forced everyone to use their new Block Editor for writing and editing posts. I (along with many others) HATED it. It prevented you from, you know, actually writing! Trying to figure out how to add a bullet list was an exercise in frustration, to put it mildly. Or even how to switch to HTML and write with tags. They added a Classic Editor plug-in/add-in, but you had to set it every time you wanted to write a post. It was clunky at best.

The negative reaction from users must have been so bad that they seem to have had a change of heart. Yes, the Block Editor is still the default when you select to add a new post from the dashboard, but if you go another way, you can select the Classic Editor and get the familiar interface you’ve used for years.

How to create a new post with the Classic Editor:

  1. From the Dashboard, hover over Posts and select All Posts. Do NOT select Add Post otherwise you get the Block Editor. You have to select All Posts.
    Select ALL Posts from the Posts options on the dashboard
  2. In the All Post view, click the drop-down arrow next to Add New (at the top), and choose Classic Editor.
    Select Classic Editor from the Add New drop-down list

How to edit a post with the Classic Editor:

  1. From the Dashboard, hover over Posts and select All Posts.
  2. Find the post you want to edit.
  3. Hover over its title to display the editing options.
  4. Click Classic Editor.
    Select Classic Editor from the editing options displayed when you hover over the post's title
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Another milestone: 15 million views

June 3, 2020

Sometime in the past few days, this blog hit 15 million views. As at today (3 June 2020) it had had 15,011,177 views, so based on 5000–6000 views per day on average, I expect the 15 million mark ticked over around 1 June.

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2019 blog statistics

December 31, 2019

In January 2019, this blog hit 13 million views then 14 million some months ago, and had just over 14.5 million views by 31 Dec 2019 (30 Dec US time when I wrote this). This is the total since I started blogging very late in 2007. Some 1.56 million views occurred just in 2019 (about 300,000 less than in 2018). These figures don’t include any visits I made to my own blog (yes, I use my own blog for stuff I can’t remember—I consider it my memory bank).

I only wrote 60 blog posts in 2019, so many of these visits were to posts I’ve written in previous years. I’ve written 1860 posts since 2008, with an average word count per post of 540.

Despite those large numbers of views, only about 740 people subscribe to this blog (you can subscribe by clicking the ‘Sign me up!’ button on the right sidebar and entering your email address to receive an email alert each time I post a new article), and I have 915 Twitter followers for @cybertext. From these figures, I have to assume most readers are ‘hit and run’ readers — those who have a problem with Word or whatever, find one of my posts via Google etc., read the post, get what they came for (or not), and leave without checking out anything else.

Where do these readers come from? Not surprisingly, because this is an English language blog, most of my visitors are from English-speaking countries, with a heavy dominance from the US (>566,000), followed by the UK, India, Australia, and Canada (all between 100,000 and 170,000). (Data and map is from WordPress-generated statistics, and based on all years they have been recording this information, not necessarily since 2008.)

Frequency map of countries and the readers from them

Below are some graphs and tables for the 2019 statistics for this blog, as well as some comparative ones for ‘all time’ (‘all time’ is actually 2008 to 2019 — I started this blog very late in 2007, but didn’t really start posting until January 2008, so the 2007 statistics are too low to be significant).

Total views by month/year

Table of total view by months and years, with totals for each year (rows) and month (columns), and a grand total

Total views for all years from 2008 to 2019, charted as a bar graph with each year represented by a bar

Average daily views

Bar graph of average number of view per day for all years from 2008 to 2019

The average views per day decreased in 2019 (4280 per day) compared to 2018 (5164 per day). The graphs above and below are for the full seven days per week, though most views occur during the five business days of the working week, probably reflecting the need to find answers to Word questions and the like when people are stuck with a problem at work. Weekends and major public holidays (particularly in the US) see a noticeable drop in views, as does the December/January holiday period and the northern hemisphere summer (July).

Bar graph of the average view per day, by month, for 2019

Top 20 posts

List of 20 most-viewed posts of all time compared to the 20 most-viewed posts in 2019. 14 posts are listed in both columns (all time, and 2019)

Some posts are just more popular than others! Those highlighted in blue appear in both lists — the top 20 posts of all time (2008–2019) on the left, and 2019-only on the right. Those without highlighting only appear in one of the top 20 lists. The numbers to the right of each title are the number of total views for that post in the time period.

Long tail

As expected, there’s a significant ‘long tail’ for this blog’s views. The top 20 posts (each has more than 21,000 views) in 2019 garnered the most views, with the top 6 clearly ahead of the others (>50,000 views). Everything else was a poor cousin to these top posts.

Line graph of the top 20 posts for 2019 (based on number of times viewed)

When I extracted out the views just for the top posts for 2008–2019 (using 50,000 views as the lower limit), the long tail was very evident. The top 10 posts for all time garnered the most views, with posts 10 to 69 tailing off and flattening out. Remember, I’ve written some 1860 posts, and this graph only represents the 69 posts that have had more than 50,000 views since 2008—most posts have far fewer than that and aren’t represented in this graph. (For perspective, the least-viewed posts have had about 850 views, while the single most-viewed post has had nearly 900,000 views.)

Line graph showing the number of views received by the top 69 posts (all those with more than 50,000 views between 2008 and 2019)

So, there you have it. Twelve years of blogging, 1860 blog posts published, and almost 14.5 million views (with 1.56 million of those in the past 12 months).

I guess I must be doing something right, even though the monetary return is close to zero. I pay an annual fee to WordPress to NOT show advertisements on this blog (I wouldn’t get any return from these even if I allowed them), and I refuse to try to ‘monetize’ my blog posts by hosting them elsewhere and running ads—I don’t like ads cluttering up and getting in the way of good content and potentially trapping readers into clicking on them, and I suspect my readers don’t like them either. Instead of ads, I have an option for readers to donate to this blog’s expenses if anything I’ve written has got them out of a bind, saved them time (and therefore money), or helped them be more efficient. In 2019 I received perhaps the equivalent of one week’s worth of groceries in donations… I use that money to pay my annual bill to WordPress to keep this blog free of ads and to have the convenience of adjusting the style (CSS) of this blog.

As for 2020, I’ll continue to write posts sporadically—I still have a day job that I’m committed to, and paid work always comes before unpaid work.

See also:

[Links last checked December 2019]

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13 million visits

January 24, 2019

Approximately 4:30 am (Australian Western Standard Time) on 24 January 2019, this blog hit another milestone—13 million visits! It clicked over to 12 million on 20 June 2018, so that’s a million visits in just six months.

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2018 blog statistics

January 9, 2019

In June 2018, this blog hit 12 million views since I started blogging in 2008, and by late December it had had almost 13 million views. Some 1.84 million views occurred just in 2018 (about 500 more than in 2017). These figures don’t include any visits I made to my own blog (yes, I use my own blog for stuff I can’t remember!).

I didn’t write many blog posts in 2018 (just 50), so many of these visits were to posts I’ve written in previous years. I’ve written 1799 blog posts since 2008, with an average word count per post of 400.

Despite those large numbers of views, about 700 people have subscribed to my blog (you can subscribe by clicking the ‘Sign me up!’ button on the right sidebar and entering your email address to receive an email alert each time I post a new article), and I have 880 Twitter followers for @cybertext. From these figures, I have to assume most readers are ‘hit and run’ readers — those who have a problem with Word or whatever, find one of my posts via Google etc., read the post, get what they came for (or not), and leave without checking out anything else.

Here are some graphs and tables for the 2018 statistics for this blog, as well as some comparative ones for ‘all time’ (‘all time’ is actually 2008 to 2017 — I started this blog very late in 2007, but didn’t really start posting until January 2008, so the 2007 statistics are too low to be significant).

Total views by month/year

Average daily views

The average views per day increased marginally in 2018 (5164 per day) compared to 2017 (5053 per day), but were still a little behind the peak recorded in 2015 (5533 per day). The graphs above and below are for the full seven days per week, though most views occur during the five business days of the working week, probably reflecting the need to find answers to Word questions and the like when people are stuck with a problem at work. Weekends and major public holidays (particularly in the US) see a noticeable drop in views, as does the December/January holiday period and the northern hemisphere summer (July).

 

Top 20 posts

Some posts are just more popular than others! Those highlighted in blue appear in both lists — the top 20 posts of all time (2008–2018) on the left, and 2018-only on the right. Those without highlighting only appear in one of the top 20 lists. The numbers to the right of each title are the number of total views for that post in the time period.

Long tail

As expected, there’s a significant ‘long tail’ for this blog’s views. The top 20 posts (all have 20,000 views or more) in 2018 garnered the most views, with the top 6 clearly ahead of the others. Everything else was a poor cousin to these top posts.


When I extracted out the views just for the top posts for 2008–2018 (i.e. >20,000 views each), the long tail was very evident. The top 10 posts for all time garnered the most views, with posts 10 to 122 tailing off and flattening out. Remember, I’ve written some 1800 posts, and this graph only represents the 122 posts that have had more than 20,000 views since 2008 — most posts have far fewer than that and aren’t represented in this graph.

So, there you have it. Eleven years of blogging, 1799 blog posts published, and almost 13 million views (with 1.84 million of those in the past 12 months).

I guess I must be doing something right, even though the monetary return is close to zero. I pay an annual fee to WordPress to NOT show advertisements on this blog (I wouldn’t get any return from these even if I allowed them), and I refuse to try to ‘monetize’ my blog posts by hosting them elsewhere and running ads — I don’t like ads cluttering up and getting in the way of good content and potentially trapping readers into clicking on them, and I suspect my readers don’t like them either. Instead of ads, I have an option for readers to donate to this blog’s expenses if anything I’ve written has got them out of a bind, saved them time (and therefore money), or helped them be more efficient. In 2018 I received perhaps the equivalent of one week’s worth of groceries in donations… I use that money to pay my annual bill to WordPress to keep this blog free of ads and to have the convenience of adjusting the style (CSS) of this blog.

As for 2018, I’ll be writing posts sporadically in 2019 — I still have a day job that I’m committed to, and paid work always comes before unpaid work.

See also:

[Links last checked January 2019]

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Some people’s words just make you smile

August 30, 2018

I got this delightful email from a reader in the UK—I like the way she writes :-)

I’ve only just discovered your lovely, informative WordPress blog, courtesy of an extremely boring temp job where I thankfully and gleefully had internet access. I might not have made it through those days without you. I love the techy stuff anyway, but I was like a dog with two tails when I discovered the ‘freewheeling through the ribbon with the mouse scroll’, and the ‘shakey shakey’ technique to drop the other windows. Strangers who passed me in the street on the way home now know of these two joys.

Glad I could help, Tessa!

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Hitting 12 million

June 20, 2018

Sometime this morning (20 June 2018), this blog hit 12 million views. That’s 1 million more than when I last looked some 6 months ago (see https://cybertext.wordpress.com/2018/01/01/2017-blog-statistics/).

I’ll do a full round-up of this blog’s statistics at the end of the year.

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2017 blog statistics

January 1, 2018

Sometime in December 2017, this blog hit 11 million views since I started blogging in 2008! Some 1.84 million views occurred just in 2017, and it ticked over to 10 million views in mid-June. These figures don’t include any visits I made to my own blog (yes, I use my own blog for stuff I can’t remember!).

I wrote far fewer blog posts in 2017 (less than 40), so many of these visits were to posts I’ve written in previous years. I’ve written 1749 blog posts since 2008.

Surprisingly, I only have 607 subscribers (you can subscribe by clicking the ‘Sign me up!’ button on the right sidebar and entering your email address) who have signed up to receive email alerts each time I post a new article (and 819 Twitter followers for @cybertext), so I have to assume most readers are ‘hit and run’ readers — those who have a problem with Word or whatever, find one of my posts via Google etc., read the post, get what they came for (or not), and leave without checking out anything else.

Here are some graphs and tables for the 2017 statistics for this blog, as well as some comparative ones for ‘all time’ (‘all time’ is actually 2008 to 2017 — I started this blog very late in 2007, but didn’t really start posting until January 2008, so the 2007 statistics are too low to be significant).

Total views by month/year

Average daily views

The average views per day increased in 2016 (5053 per day) compared to 2016 (4777 per day), but were still a little behind the peak recorded in 2015 (5533 per day). The graphs above and below are for the full seven days per week, though most views occur during the five business days of the working week, probably reflecting the need to find answers to Word questions and the like when people are stuck with a problem at work. Weekends and major public holidays (particularly in the US) see a noticeable drop in views, as does the December/January holiday period and the northern hemisphere summer (July).

Top 20 posts

 

Some posts are just more popular than others! Those highlighted in blue appear in both lists — the top 20 posts of all time (2008-2017) on the left, and 2017 only on the right. Those without highlighting only appear in one of the top 20 lists. The numbers to the right of each title are the number of total views for that post in the time period.

Long tail

As expected, there’s a significant ‘long tail’ for this blog’s views. The top 20 posts (all have 20,000 views or more) garnered the most views. Everything else was a poor cousin to these top posts.

When I extracted out the views just for the top posts for 2008-2017 (i.e. >20,000 views each) and the top 20 for 2017 only (both below), the long tail was very evident. Again, the top 10 posts for all time garnered the most views, with posts 10 to 110 tailing off and flattening out. And for the 2017 view, the top six posts garnered the most views, then tapered off significantly after that.

So, there you have it. Ten years of blogging, 1749 blog posts published, and just over almost 11 million views (with 1.84 million of those in the past 12 months).

I guess I must be doing something right, even though the monetary return is close to zero. I pay an annual fee to WordPress to NOT show advertisements on this blog (I wouldn’t get any return from these even if I allowed them), and I refuse to try to ‘monetize’ my blog posts by hosting them elsewhere and running ads — I don’t like ads cluttering up and getting in the way of good content and potentially trapping readers into clicking on them, and I suspect my readers don’t like them either. Instead of ads, I have an option for readers to donate to this blog’s expenses if anything I’ve written has got them out of a bind, saved them time (and therefore money), or helped them be more efficient. In 2017 I received perhaps the equivalent of one hour’s paid work in donations… I use that money to pay my annual bill to WordPress to keep this blog free of ads and to have the convenience of adjusting the style (CSS) of this blog.

As in 2017, I’ll be writing posts sporadically in 2018 — I still have a day job that I’m committed to, and paid work always comes before unpaid work.

See also:

[Links last checked January 2018]

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Getting close…

June 9, 2017

My blog stats as at this morning (Friday 9 June 2017). I predict it’ll tip over the 10 million mark by Monday. Wow.

Sunday 11 June 2017, 11:15am. Nearly there:

blog_10m_02.png

Monday 12 June 2017, 9:30am. Almost…:

blog_10m_03.png

As predicted, the counter ticked over to 10 million sometime on Monday 12 June 2017, between 4:30pm and 8:30pm. Stats as at Tuesday 13 June 2017, 6:20am:

blog_10m_04.png