I don’t normally post about stats…

blog stats

But when I do, I include a ginormous image of them and proceed to go on and on and on with my theories about everything in the universe.

My stats follow a predictable pattern, with some days lighter and other days more popular, but generally staying between 100-200 visitors per day. Yet on May 3, I had a big spike up. Why? Well, I’ll tell you! It’s because on May 3 I posted my “scavenger hunt” results from the April A-Z challenge. I linked about 25 blogs on that post and many if not all of those bloggers popped in to see why I tagged them. Not many commented though, and none followed me or returned to read anything else.

What does that tell us? A few things. First, linking other random blogs is a bunch of work with little benefit. Sure, it was “fun” for my OCD to get nearly a perfect score, but there is nothing to celebrate about a one-time spike in hits if those visitors aren’t actually interested in anything you have to say. It’s a vanity spike, in both directions. I get to feel smug about a wild swing upward; they get to feel smug about being seen. That’s the end of the relationship though.

Second, all those award posts operate on the same principle. It’s actually akin to an MLM scheme. You spend time answering questions, composing questions, and tagging friends. The award creator gets to sit back and watch his hit count rise ~ assuming you link back, which many do. He’s made one post, but he’s now getting zillions of views, for doing practically nothing. YOU are doing the work; he is getting a few bucks from the ads on his page. Nice, huh?

I am starting to feel the same about blogs that post only prompts and no content. In fact, I’m going to quit following them. I never see “Nox,” for example, ever liking or commenting on my posts, even though I’ve linked his blog, The Daily Spur, many, many times. What’s the point of that exactly? It’s of no benefit to me. There are others in this category I will be unfollowing as well.

Third, some of you are not on Facebook or Twitter, so you can ignore this section (assuming anyone has read this far!). But for those who do participate in those media, you may have noticed lately, as I have, an absolute barrage of questions from public pages, such as radio stations and celebrity accounts. I block them all at the source on FB, but it’s a never-ending task, as more pop up daily. (I mostly ignore Twitter except for a few tweeps I like and search out specifically. The feed is impossible to deal with.)

I have asked FB friends WHY they continue to answer these stupid, pointless questions… and no one can really explain. The person who posed the question does not give one speck of a crap what your favorite childhood toy was or which band you liked in high school. Plot twist! They are only trying to ramp up interaction on their posts for MONEY. They’re businesses. Would you stop in the street and take random polls from strangers asking what color underwear you have on? No? Then why answer online? I just don’t get the motivation here. Just bad habits? But the public pages have found this to be a winning format and churn out more meaningless garbage on the daily.

Facebook won’t allow you to block all public pages or limit your feed to friends only. That’s because they are also making money via your engagement with this nonsense. (So is Twitter.) The longer your eyeballs stay on the sites, the better for Mark and Scott. Participating on public pages doesn’t increase interaction with your own friends either. Only individual posts do that. But what it can lead to is (1) a more comprehensive profile of you for advertisers to exploit, and/or (2) a nice big flamewar over a political disagreement, which could result in you getting banned for a month for calling someone stupid. Yay victory.

Blogging is still vastly superior to both FB and Twitter due to that fact that you can curate your feed. That’s one of the biggest draws for me ~ seeing posts from those I’ve followed ONLY, with no trash sandwiched in between. Oh, they try! WP puts suggested post snippets after your followed ones (when you’re not using the app), but it’s easy to ignore them. Most importantly, the whole post doesn’t get shoved in my face a la FB.

What was my main point? Basically a reminder to self: don’t get sucked into contests and other linkypoo crap that is a waste of time and neither helps my writing nor generates sales thereof.



Image is mine.

©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon. Thank you.

30 responses to “I don’t normally post about stats…

  1. Unfortunately Stalkerbook queries regarding your favourite childhood toy or high school band can be phishing attempts to help identify potential passwords…so best avoided. As someone with a passing interest in statistics…I have a degree in maths….there’s nowt wrong with an occassional stats post 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I enjoyed your post. I agree about those contest that seem to be a time zap. There is also another reason not to answer those questions. They can be mined for passwords and security questions by people who are out to steal your identity.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. For the people who do the link back to the original creator thing, even if not many people are following the links, all those backlinks are search engine gold, because Google and others see that everyone and their dog is linking to Okoto Enigma or Vincent Ehindero or whoever.

    Caramel really posted a message she got from WordPress that they’re trialling a new thing where they plunk a sponsored post onto blogs that have a free plan, so there may be some of those coming soon to a WordPress Reader near you.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. There is a lot of good information in this post Paula, but I am not sure what to do with it.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I agree 100 percent with everything you’ve said Paula!

    I've noticed a decrease in likes lately, wonder why that is? Some of the regulars seem to have disappeared. Xx

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi
    I enjoyed your outlook on this – and recently heard seen say they felt like they were in high school again with trying to build a following – yawn

    I really hope that WP does not change its format because what you described (how WP puts suggested post snippets after your followed ones) is why I have found a home here (and not at FB and Tw) – and I actually check on some of the ones they suggest because a) it is so managbel with two suggestions and b) it often relates to something I am interested in and I have read many a good posts through those suggestions (when I have time that is) – but I also do not always choose to follow those suggested blogs – but find that i was the better for having the skim

    anyhow my top takeaway from this post was your genuine side and not being jacked up on numbers – and how it is connecting that matters
    I do not mind of folks posting only prompts – or a single photo – because we all have different modes and approaches – but they do limit the way they connect – eh?

    Liked by 1 person

  7. “Would you stop in the street and take random polls from strangers asking what color underwear you have on? No?”

    Oh, well, that would explain why I get the crap slapped out of me a couple of times a day. Point taken. As opening gambits go, this one is now on my “No, Don’t Use That” list. I always learn something new from your blog.

    As to stats, I haven’t got any to speak of. In statistical terms, my blog’s visitor count is in the “random noise” category. For what it’s worth, I NEVER post questions, link lists, or “prompts” of any kind, and am virtually never tempted by any I run across. So, yay me, I guess.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. blindzanygirl

    Well said Paula. Though I don’t use Facebook any more. You pointed out some things though that I hadn’t realised about WP blogs so I will heed that!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I don’t look at stats.  I have a blog to say what I want and that’s it.

    Sent from Yahoo Mail for iPhone

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I thought this was a beer commercial at first😂
    Kinda rude of the Linky Peeps not to at least say “thanks”, but maybe they didn’t get an increase in traffic or follows either.🤷🏼‍♀️

    Social Media seems to be a giant science experiment. Get enough clicks and you get your rat crack pellet… top rat wins🙄 Not very social.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Hmmmm…. good point here Paula.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I have found that if I get a big spike it is something to do with the content of the post. I had one recently about a Canadian dressage rider who was taking her horse to the US to compete in order to get scores to qualify for the Canadian Olympic team for Tokyo. She was refused entry although she had letters from both the Canadian and US equestrian federations explaining hers was an “essential ” trip. The numbers went WAY up and most of the readers came from Facebook. As for FB and the quiz questions I avoid those like the plague! My son works in digital marketing and he tells me that the answers are sold to quants working in companies who squish the answers and come up with algorithms !


  13. I look at stats way too often and I still can’t figure out why they go up and down so much from one day to the next. Oh well. It is what it is. I’m not on Facebook or Twitter, so I don’t have to deal with a barrage of stupid questions.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Fascinating post and thread, Paula. You’ve got some great engagement going on. WP is my fav place to interact with writers and readers, and to have a bit of blogging fun with prompts. No quizzes and no awards though.

    Liked by 1 person

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