Thursday, April 13, 2006

How to increase traffic to your blog

I got 175 hits yesterday, way over my average of about 45/day. Why?

Well, Tuesday night I put up this post, about a fun timewaster of a site where you can vote on bands. When I put up the post it was late and I was tired, plus my friend Chris A. is a better writer than I am anyway, so I asked for and obtained his permission to reprint his email as a post. In the post/email he listed some of the funny pairings in the current bracket, as well as some of the contenders.

Including Clay Aiken.

I got 122 hits yesterday from a Clay Aiken fan site, which has my post listed prominently near the top.

Ravings on the budget? The deceptions in Hamilton? Central Jersey life and news? Nope. A cursory reference to an American Idol runner-up? That'll do it.


DBK said...

Tell me about it. A few weeks back I noticed that the name "Tammy" and the abbreviation "NYP" (which stood for Nang Yang Polytechnic, or something like that) were at the top of the list for Technorati searches. As a joke, I put them into a paragraph at the end of a serious posting about the Bush administration or Hurricane Katrina cleanup or Republican corruption...I don't even remember what it was about and I had very little idea what Tammy NYP was about. Turns out some coed in Singapore had her cell phone stolen. She had a sexy video of herself and a boyfriend saved on the phone and the thief posted it to the internet. Consequently, tens of thousands of pimply Singapore teenaged boys were desperately searching the internet for the chance of looking at this girl.

My traffic jumped to over 300 visits a day for close to a week, and 70 percent of the visits were from searches for "Tammy NYP".

Do lengthy (or short) think pieces on the state of the environment, House ethics, Republican corruption, NJ politics, or the Italian election draw any attention? Not much. Does a random line about a phrase I don't even understand that turns out to be all about a piece of amateur pornography get much attention? You betcha.

I'm in the wrong business.

Bob said...

I feel your pain.

Does that mean we are likely to see a rundown of this year's finalists? ;)

Sharon GR said...


I don't do American Idol. I just can't. Sorry.

I even had to look it up to see if Aiken won or lost, I had no idea. 'Course, it was easy to find sources, now that I'm linked to by all these fan sites.

Bob said...

My great blog day was when I posted a link to a story about a giant extinct water scorpion. For some reason, my site got bumped up to near the top of google for that.

Janet said...

Isn't it crazy the things you get hits from? I once mentioned some comedian's name indirectly called Gillian Vigman and I STILL get hits from it. Boy must those people be disappointed when they find no Gillian Vigman fans among them.:)

Chris A. said...

(I'm assuming that the comments, since they don't appear on the main page, will not contribute to further skewing of your demo... if wrong, I apologize in advance.)

Remind me again why I don't have my own blog? Oh yeah...

Wow... talk about unintended (and unanticipated) consequences. I didn't go looking for Mr. Aiken in the brackets anywhere, and am mildly surprised he wasn't included (given some of the far more obscure entries). I only mentioned him ironically as a contemporary example of someone with a rabid fan base that might pull votes away from someone more deserving. And the next thing you know...

Hell, forget the many pithy and worthy topics any of you fine bloggers regularly tackle. Even just sticking with the astonishingly trivial site that started this discussion... if I'd stayed on that topic, but mentioned some genuine and current talents (Death Cab for Cutie, Fountains of Wayne, Arcade Fire, etc.), I don't think your traffic would have increased that much. Partly because people interested in those artists are smart enough to figure out where to go without Googling for them... and even if they did, they could figure out which Google results to click. Whereas it appears that Mr. Aiken's fanbase is somewhat less discerning... possibly in many respects. (My opinion is not based on direct exposure to that #%#$%# TV show or his music... but I'm willing to live with the fact that I'm letting my bias close my ears to all he has to offer.)

In any case, if you really do want to get the world's attention in a hurry (be it for petitions, etc.), it's useful to know that you could just put "Paris Hilton, Tomkat and Brangelina join American Idol contestants for sneak preview of Snakes on a Plane" and get a wide audience. Maybe not the one you want, but...

P.S. Sharon, thanks for your kind words about my writing, but your blog is full of superb stuff. AND you're a freakin' great cook. So there.

P.S. II Back at bandmadness, Round 3 kicked off today, and The Cardigans (who had one fine ear-candy single a decade ago) are currently beating Todd Rundgren (who had two decades of good stuff... at this point, well over a decade ago). I'd say some of the Claymates might have made it to that site... which brings us back to unintended consequences.

Rob S. said...

Yeah, every time I mention Neil Bush I feel obligated to use the phrase "underage Thai prostitute," for the sake of accuracy and for the sake of boosting my hits. Doesn't work, so I have to say the Prez's brother still beats me on the value-for-money scale (dare I say bang for the buck?).

Sharon GR said...

233 hits yesterday. That's even more than when I hosted the carinval right after the NY Times article about it.

I have hits from Singapore and Iceland, too. THIS POST has been added to the Clay's Daily Double blog. I've gotten hits from and Google on Aiken's name.

Rabid fan base, indeed. Maybe, just maybe, I'll get some folks who live in Jersey who stick around to read about state politics and Life here in the Center of NJ.