How to Create a DIY Blog Traffic Report

DIY Blog Traffic Report - See a sample and learn how to create one yourself!

Have you ever done a traffic report for your blog? You can learn so much information by taking a look at your blog statistics over a month, year, or multiple years. I am going to share with you my 2013 blog traffic report for my blog Newlywed Survival so that you can get an idea of what you should look at, and what it can help you learn.

How to get your information

In order for you to gather the information needed, you will need to have Google Analytics or other website tracking on your site for the time period you are interested in analyzing. I use Google Analytics (GA) and will therefore show you how to gather the information using your GA account.

First you will need to set the time-frame in GA. I am going to look at all of 2013, so I set mine to January 1, 2013 – December 31, 2013.

Audience statistics

Click on “Audience – Overview” in the left-hand column menu. Here is what I found for Newlywed Survival:

2013-audience-info

It is a good idea to compare this to the previous year to see how your site audience has grown. Here are my stats for 2012:

2012-audience-info

What have I learned?

From these two charts I can see that the unique visitors to my site have doubled in one year from 33,540 to 67,919! Why is it helpful to know this? If your numbers are increasing, you are obviously on the right track! If they are decreasing, you need to figure out why and make some changes.

I am really excited that the blog is still growing even though I pretty much stopped giveaways on this blog to concentrate more on content. It seems that is working!

Traffic statistics

There are 3 main sources of traffic to your site:

  • Direct traffic (people who either have your site bookmarked or type in your url to get to your site)
  • Organic search traffic (people who use a search engine to get to your site)
  • Referral traffic (people who get to your site by clicking on a link on another website).
    This can be broken down further as follows:

    • Social referral traffic (people who get to your site via a link on social media – Twitter, Facebook, etc.)
    • Other referral traffic (people who get to your site from a website that is not a social media site)

It is important to know how your visitors are getting to your site so that you can determine where you should spend your time – working on SEO, getting backlinks, spreading the word via social media. Most likely, you need to do all of them, but you may need to concentrate on building one source up more than the others.

In GA, you can get detailed information about your traffic under the “Acquisition” tab on the left. Here is the breakdown of my traffic sources for Newlywed Survival for 2013:

traffic-type-charts

What have I learned?

From the charts above, I can see that over half of my traffic is referral traffic, and about a quarter of it is organic search traffic. If I look at the same charts for 2012, I see that my visits via referral have increased 116%! My visits via email & feed have gone way down (this is because I switched from feedburner to Mad Mimi* this year and GA tracks that differently).

Then I took a closer look at my referring traffic:

Top 10 referring social media sites

  1. Pinterest – 26,417
  2. Stumbleupon – 2,798
  3. Reddit – 2,353
  4. Facebook – 1,430
  5. t.co (or Twitter) – 947
  6. Google+ – 192
  7. Blogger – 71
  8. WordPress – 17
  9. LinkedIn – 4

What have I learned?

  • Pinterest is sending an awesome amount of traffic to my site – woo hoo! Lesson? In the future, I will continue to make sure that all of my new posts have Pinterest-friendly images in them. I also want to go back and add pinnable images to old posts.
  • Stumbleupon is my #2 referring site. I need to work on Stumbleupon more in the future since I didn’t really concentrate on it much this year and it did well.
  • I usually don’t use Reddit very much, but I had one post that went viral on there and it sent me a lot of traffic over a 2-day period. Lesson? It may be good to work on that site more.
  • As I am sure many bloggers have seen for their own site, my Facebook traffic went way down this year – it dropped 77% compared to last year. Lesson? I am going to start concentrating on Google+ more this year, and not worry so much about Facebook.

Top 10 other referring sites

  1. sewwoodsy.com – 2,064
  2. google.com – 584 (this represents visits via google image search and Google Reader)
  3. linkyimg.arvixededicated.com – 262 (this represents visits via Linky Tools linky)
  4. gluedtomycraftsblog.com – 240
  5. myblogguest.com – 155
  6. online-sweepstakes.com – 142
  7. blogfrogs.com – 136
  8. community.thenest.com – 114
  9. contestchest.com – 109
  10. bloglovin.com – 99

What have I learned?

  • Until October, I didn’t even look at Bloglovin. I haven’t really tried to build it up, and it is starting to send traffic. I want to concentrate on building this up in 2014.
  • The referrals from giveaway listing sites have dropped this year since I haven’t been posting them (1 or 2 exceptions).
  • My #1 referring site sewwoodsy.com is from a post I didn’t even know I was going to be linked in. I have gotten a good amount of traffic from that post for two years now! Lesson? Write good content that people can find, and the links will keep coming!
  • My #4 referring site gluedtomycraftsblog.com is from a round-up post. I submitted my link to be considered for a round-up on her blog in a Facebook group. She posted on November 23, so I got all of those visits in little more than a month. Lesson? Submit to be in more round-ups!
  • My #7 referring site blogfrogs.com is a site where you can submit your posts for people to see. You should check it out and try submitting some links to see how they do. I should try to do this more often in 2014. I submitted maybe 10-15 posts over the year.

Content

Finally, I like to look at what my top content is for the year. In GA, you can find this under “Behavior/Site Content”.

Top 10 posts visited in 2013

  1. 25 DIY Costumes for Couples – 10,854
  2. Ideas for Throwing an Adult Halloween Party – 4,622
  3. Easiest DIY Halloween Costumes for Couples – 3,432
  4. Black-Eyed Pea Salad – Healthy Recipe for Two – 3,177
  5. Moving Tips for Newlyweds – 2,382
  6. The 5 Most Common Marital Problems – 2,357
  7. Chicken Soft Tacos with Creamy Salsa Verde – 1,839
  8. Baked Shrimp Rangoon Recipe – 1,735
  9. DIY Photos in Mason Jars – 1,572
  10. 5 Best Ways to Save Money on a Road Trip – 1,405

What have I learned?

  • People like Halloween costumes! My 2 most visited pages had good pinnable images and did very well on Pinterest.
  • People like food! I have 3 recipe posts in the top 10. Again, they have nice pinnable images and did very well on Pinterest.
  • Lesson so far? I will make sure to include more Halloween and recipe posts in 2014. Also make sure they have pinnable images!
  • 5 of the top 10 posts are not from 2013! Lesson? Good content will keep providing traffic!

Overall, I am very happy with my statistics for 2013. I have some ideas of what I need to work on, so now I can fill in my Blog Goal Sheet for 2014. Check out the link and download a free copy for yourself.

Have you completed a traffic report for 2013? I’d love to know what you learned!


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Comments

  1. Andrew says

    Great guide, easy to follow. I need to do something like this but I don’t see it happening this year (haha). Glad to see Blog Frogs made it into one of your lists!

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