Writing & Blogging

January Blog Traffic Report: The Month Things Changed

Not to be too dramatic with the title, but … This month, I learned that my web hosting statistics and Google Analytics statistics don’t match up. Aka, the place that houses my site says something different. Like, 10x more traffic. Obviously I want the place saying I get more traffic to be right, but I also trust the place that hosts my site more than somewhere else. But let’s get into the data.

All blog traffic reports

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This month, Boston blogger Kate the (Almost) Great discovered that Google Analytics might not be as accurate as everyone assumes it is. Here's what she did to grow her traffic in January, as well as the differences in data.

January Blog Traffic Report

Let’s start with Google Analytics. These are where my statistics usually come from.

Pageviews: 17971 (+102.4% from December, +59% from last year)

Bounce Rate: 18.8% (+39.5% from December, +30.4% from last year)

Sessions: 8700 (+118.4% from December, +56.7% from last year)

Users: 7957 (+129.5% from December, +77% from last year)

Bloglovin: 1862 (+3.7% from last year)

Email Subscribers: 612 (+2.3% from December, +73.9% from last year)

How I keep my bounce rate so low

Statistics from My Web Host

I use webhostinghub.com to host my site. These statistics come from their records.

This a screenshot of my blog statistics from the last year, looking at the SSL site. February 2018 is when I activated my SSL certificate because of changes to browsers, which is why February is so low.

Pageviews: 296172 (+1548% from Google Analytics)

Sessions: 25427 (+192.2% from Google Analytics)

Users: 7125 (-11% from Google Analytics)

Social Media

Facebook: 1042 (-0.1% from December, +5.9% from last year)

Twitter: 3322 (-0.1% from December, +5.6% from last year)

Instagram: 2569 (-0.8% from December, -0.3% from last year)

Pinterest: 7528 (+3.3% from December, +32.8% from last year)

Tumblr: 3913 (+0.1% from December, +1.7% from last year)

Top Posts

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Is Google Analytics actually accurate? What bloggers need to know. Click To Tweet

Top Sources

  • Pinterest (79.07%): Pinterest is one of my biggest sources of traffic and has been ever since I started treating it like a search engine last year. It makes a huge difference! If you’re not on Pinterest, you’re losing out on traffic.
  • Facebook (4.59%): I’m a member of multiple Facebook groups for bloggers, but I’m not sure if that’s where my traffic is coming from or if it’s from my Facebook page. (Google Analytics is not showing me that information.)
  • Google (2.15%): I would like this to be higher, as I do optimize most posts for search engines, but I’m okay with it because of how much traffic I’m getting from Pinterest.
  • Twitter (0.88%): I’m very active on Twitter, but individual tweets have a very short shelf life. As a whole, I get more benefits from connecting with others on Twitter than I do blog traffic.

This does not include direct traffic.

How to use Pinterest for blogging | How to use SEO to stand out

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Traffic Analysis

What I Did

9 reasons why Tailwind is worth the money

I Haven’t Seen Results From

What I Can Learn This Month

  • Pinning manually as well as scheduling pins can get more eyes on your pins – I’ve been hearing for a little while that Pinterest rewards those who manually pin (and not just schedule pins through an outside service, like Tailwind) with more exposure. Given that I got more traffic from Pinterest than I usually do this month – despite having fewer blog posts – I have to think that this is true. I’m just spending 5 minutes a day manually pinning, and often what I do is alternate between manually pinning and scheduling to Tailwind.
  • Google Analytics isn’t the end-all-be-all that it seems to be – Of course, brands need to believe this, but I now have proof that Google Analytics isn’t necessarily the end-all-be-all. If you’re self-hosted, I strongly suggest checking your host’s records of your data and seeing if it’s different than what Google says.

I didn’t make any January goals, so let’s skip right to February!

February Goals

  • 15,000 pageviews in Google Analytics
  • 5,000 users
  • 6-10 posts

I’m setting low goals because I can’t guarantee that in February I’ll make a blog post as popular as the one about The Fiasco.

Have you found a discrepancy between your analytics?

Like this post? Check out:

All blog traffic reports, 11 Blogging Tools To Try in 2019, What Do Bloggers Do?, 8 Ways To Blog Better,

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