Doug’s Blog launched last April on my church’s website, and last fall I moved the blog to my own WordPress site with a domain name all my own (dougsblog.org) – plus a clean, crisp look I received from a blog designer in Australia, of all places. Thanks again to Mike at Blog Designers! (I hope you’ve noticed “my favourite blogs” along the right side of the page. That spelling is my Aussie influence, which I haven’t wanted to change.)
Aside from the two weeks I spent in Africa last November, when I was out of Internet contact for much of the time, blog readership has grown steadily. In fact, I’m amazed and surprised by it – and wanted to share this news with you.
WordPress, my host and the host for thousands of other blogs (the largest open-source blogging system on the Internet), supplies me with lots of statistics about you, my readers, and so I always know where my readers are coming from – and often where they go when they leave my site. I know how much time they linger at the blog – and what other pages they open while they’re there. It’s really an astonishing amount of information.
Here are some interesting examples: Almost all of my readers now come from Facebook referrals. Virtually no one clicks from the church’s weekly email newsletter called “the E-pistle” or from the church’s website. That, plus other evidence, suggests that the majority of my readers are not my current church members. That’s fine, though a bit surprising since I started at least in part to speak with my own congregation. I plan to meet with the Communications Committee in the next few weeks to discuss how I can engage more church members with the blog.
The exciting news is that I now have several dozen subscribers, a list that continues to grow each week. (You can subscribe by supplying your email address along the right side of the page. I don’t sell the subscriber list – or do much of anything with it – so this is a good way to stay current with all of my blog posts. When I publish a new post, you automatically receive it in email form.)
I continue to average 60-70 unique “views” per day, with the greatest number of “views” – not surprisingly – coming on the days when I actually publish a new post. The largest day ever was the day my daughters “guest blogged” for me. I reached 223 “views” that day, with more than a hundred in the first few hours after the post. Currently, new posts receive 180-200 views on the day they’re posted.
That’s terrific – and very gratifying. I enjoy doing this, am having fun with it, and I’m grateful for your support. As always, your comments and responses are very much appreciated. (I loved the one which showed my blog as it would appear on a billboard.) Keep ’em coming.