How I Quadrupled My Blog Traffic in 2013

“I don’t want to go viral – I want to set hearts on fire!” – Coco J. Ginger When working on the web, having something you’ve created “go viral” is kind of like winning the lottery – most of it is luck, but you have more chances at getting lucky the more you play. And in 2013, I got lucky – An old post I’d written over a year before, explaining how I used the web to earn money from home after losing my job, went viral on Pinterest. {See it here: 10 Ways to Earn Money from Home.} I had no idea how powerful Pinterest could be until then, and have no idea still who pinned it to make it take off so well. But, while after 7 months of consistent pageviews, it’s settled back down again, it definitely showed me why it’s important to create good content – you never know what someone will find in your archives and fall in love with! So, as we roll into 2014, I took a hard look at my statistics in Google Analytics, to determine just what worked well this year, what didn’t, and how to hopefully double my traffic again in this new year!

How I quadrupled my blog pageviews this year!

You can take a peek at my stats for last year, 2012, in last year’s end of year recap: 2012 Blog Traffic Report: Analyzing Stats & What I Learned. There you’ll see that my total pageviews for 2012 were 495,526 for the year. In 2013, my total pageviews were 1,947,553. Um, quite an increase, right? And while I knew that my traffic had gone up quite a bit – there was the viral post, plus some new actions I took this year – even I hadn’t realized what a huge jump it had been! Super exciting to see. But, just knowing traffic went up isn’t enough. I wanted to know where those new pageviews were coming from, and what pages and posts they were viewing. That helps me as a business owner know what works and what doesn’t {to help create a better 2014 strategy} – and helps me know what my amazing readers like, so I can give them more of that. Here’s a break down…

How to increase blog traffic - analyze where your traffic comes from

Top 10 Traffic Referrers for the Year:

Analyzing the Results:

Obviously I knew that the post that had gone viral on Pinterest was going to ensure that Pinterest was my number one traffic referrer. But, Pinterest did amazing for me all the way around… most of my top posts for the year come from Pinterest traffic. What I like most about Pinterest is the longevity of your posts there – On Facebook or Twitter, your posts are quickly buried and gone after you share them. But Pinterest has a great way of bring up your old posts again, especially seasonal ones. I noticed that my Stumble traffic was down compared to last year, but surprisingly, not by too much. This is a surprise for a couple of reasons – StumbleUpon doesn’t seem to give those huge bursts of viral traffic that it used to give. And, due partly to that, I’ve used it much less. Seeing that I’m still getting good traffic there from mostly my old {year ago or more} posts makes me think I should give it a higher priority this year. I see a big opportunity when it comes to Twitter {which I’m finally using to actually talk to people, not just to share posts}, and Feedburner, which I should try to promote more. I also totally need to finally get a weekly email newsletter going too!

Online-Sweepstakes was my most-used site for promoting giveaways – but I also discovered how awesome Giveaway Promote is a few months ago, and know that one will be a big traffic driver in the new year. I love that a few brands and PR that I work with are now promoting posts on Crowdtap – my Lalaloopsy post did really well there when promoted by Glam! And – how cool is it that the only blog that made my top 10 traffic referrers is my all-time bestest bloggy friend, A Helicopter Mom?? :) Thanks Mickey!!

Top 10 Blog Posts of the Year:

Analyzing the Results:

It still amazes me that so many posts that are more than a year old are still getting traffic. Again, it shows me that creating less content, but GOOD content, is the way to go in the new year. And, I can see that my readers still love my frugal roots – this site started as a way to share how I was learning to get by on a tiny budget after losing my job, with a brand new baby as a first time mom, while being a full time college student. So, even as I transition into more of the DIY & crafty type content, I’ll keep it all within a frugal budget, obviously :) I also realized that my blogging tips posts were really popular – which is why I started MeaganPaullin.com {it’s a bare-bones, no content site as of today, but will be rockin within a couple of months} – to share my tips and advice there, in a more dedicated spot.

What about you?

If you’d like to take a peek behind the scenes of your own site, and share some of it with us, link up! It’s always really interesting for me both as a blogger, and a reader of blogs, to see where people get their traffic from, and discover which posts were most popular for them {so I can check out what I’ve missed!}.

For more bloggy tips, be sure to join the almost 10,000 people who follow my board on Pinterest: Blogging and Social Media Tips. And stay tuned for the launch of MeaganPaullin.com – coming soon!

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Comments

  1. That is very cool. My Google Analytics wasn’t working for the last few months but now that it’s working it is cool to see how things work. I had a friend repin a blog post on a HUGE pinterest board and it went crazy….it had over 50 repins at 2am! It’s now my most viewed post which was awesome and what I wanted.

  2. I never realized how awesome Pinterest was until I started looking at my page stats. Almost all of my referrals come from Pinterest. I’m still new to all this, but I haven’t entered the Twitter-sphere yet. Any suggestions on how to get a decent Twitter following?

  3. It’s funny what things bring traffic as you said, last year, a picture of Santa Claus in a cookie post brought a ton of traffic all year long and this year, our Legend of the Candy Cane Printable from LAST YEAR creeped up and brought in a ton of pageviews!

    I totally agree with the Power of Pinterest and focus much energy there as many of our pins (including ones from 2012) are still circulating strong!!

    Great job with your growth in 2013 and I wish you the best in 2014!

  4. Holy smokes…close to 1,000,000 page views on that one post, how awesome is that! I love Pinterest, it was also my top referring site, but my numbers did not look like yours!

  5. Wow, this is awesome. Congratulations Meagan!! I need to increase my blog traffic, thanks for always giving suggestions.

  6. I have to learn what everything means in my Google Analytics reports mean before I can do anything about them! I find that’s half the battle!!

  7. I love looking back and seeing how much you’ve improved since last year. It’s always neat to see which posts take off. I’m continuing to work on it this year.

  8. This is awesome and very helpful. My traffic went DOWN this year and it’s very depressing to me! Trying to learn from it and move on, but pouting for a while, too. ;)

  9. This is fabulous! Good for you!!

    And, thanks for sharing, so I know some things I can do as well!

  10. Congrats on the huge increase! Unfortunately my pageviews dropped by about 60% when I transferred to WordPress, which I don’t understand. They are at least steady now. Thanks for the inspiration!

  11. I love when old posts keep giving! It just goes to show that if you write quality content people will always want to read it!

    Great analysis. Thanks for sharing it!

  12. Love this post and well done on the influx of new visitors! Glad I found your site (from talking to you on Twitter funnily enough). I can’t wait to read some more posts.
    I’ve just started out on a blog challenge to make a five-figure blog post in a few months. There’s some great advice on here that I can definitely use. Thanks for a great post :)

  13. Thanks for posting!! this is awesome to read! Love that you published it. :)

  14. Was just reading your HOW I QUADRUPLED MY BLOG TRAFFIC IN 2013 article. Do you pay to promote giveaways on giveawaypromote?

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