My blog is doing well, for something that I don’t promote elsewhere or spend as much time as I would like to engaging with other bloggers. I started in 2016 and through the end of 2017 I had written just 31 posts and had only about 20 followers. Now I have written 173 more posts and have 313 followers. Naturally, publishing regularly has been helpful in making it more visible. So I’m grateful for the readers and support I have received, while also realizing there are lots of things I’m probably doing wrong or not at all that would help. Still, progress is good, so here’s a short post with the statistics of what’s been going on behind the curtain in A Dude Abikes land.
Views and News You Can Use
I think the thing that I’m most happy about with the blog is not the numbers, but the content. People say have good content and people will read your blog. So while sometimes I write about movies, politics, authors, and other things peripheral to bicycling (like stuff I see and do on bike rides). But for the most part, I’ve tried to focus on bike-related things. Many are “I did this ride, or these many miles this week” type posts. But some are the evergreen, “how to fix a flat” variety. Hopefully people will find those over time and they will still be useful and timely.
But since this is mostly about stats, here are a few screen captures detailing them:
As you can see, I’m getting up there in views and visitors. By itself, it doesn’t mean much, but tons of time and effort went into getting there. Again, given that I don’t promote myself on social media, and considering the nature of blogs in general (popular amongst millions of other bloggers, but with the general populace, not so much), and mine in particular (aging fathlete bicyclist), it’s not surprising I don’t have thousands more. Yet!
Keep in mind also that I generally post late on Monday, Wednesday and Friday nights. So someone searching on a certain day may not even see my blog. I’m uncertain if that really matters though, since searching for a keyword is not restricted by date. Speaking of, my highest keyword is still bici, the Spanish abbreviation for bicicleta. This tells me I should definitely be writing more in my second language, but I lack the technical know-how to install the plug-in that automatically translates, and it does take longer. So that’s an opportunity. Especially if I ever make it back to Latin America or Spain. And I really ought to focus more on categories; “uncategorized” is just plain lazy. So many posts cover multiple topics that I’m hard-pressed to pick just one or two.
Worms, Roseanne, Because of the Worms!
That’s a line from the 1987 Steve Martin and Daryl Hannah movie Roxanne. Speaking through a proxy because he has an unnaturally long nose, the stand-in for C.D. Bales (a modern version of the French soliloquist Cyrano de Bergerac) tells his beloved he was flustered because of worms. What he really said was WORDS. There’s not much tie-in except I liked that movie and words matter.
Anyway, for my blog, another key number is word count. At 981 average per post, I’m writing longer form pieces that may get lost with the shorter attention spans people have. There are millions of blogs and many more popular platforms: games, videos, pictures, social networking, and so on. Although many of my followers are not bicyclists, and I suspect some people like posts without reading them, those that do read are interested in what or how I write. That’s heartening, but without Google Analytics, and ways to really capture who’s looking at what and why, I can’t do much about it except be myself, write what I know, and trust that those who are meant to find it will. Writers write.
Who’s Reading A Dude Abikes?
Indians like A Dude even if not cyclists.
Well, I’m glad you asked. By far, the US is the leading country. Makes sense. Much of what I write is very American in viewpoint, cultural allusions, and language. But second is a surprise: India. Maybe it’s based on sheer population size, or a disproportionate number of bloggers, or just the luck of referrals. And those I’ve asked there often don’t ride a bike. So go figure!
Other countries make a little more sense: biking is pretty widespread in the UK, Spain, France and Germany; Canada too I suppose. Nigeria, Indonesia and New Zealand round out the top 10 and are an odd group, but no complaints. Surpringly missing from this list: Australia and Colombia, and maybe even Mexico. That could be due to language, lack of interest in blogs, and just not getting sufficient exposure in those places. I’m happy for readers any and everywhere, so no matter where you are, thank you for reading! Hop on your bike and tell a friend!
By the way, here are the top posts of the year to date. That Fairdale Weekender Archer bike raffle post sure is popular in basically the number one spot, not counting the home page! The second piece in that bike (of really just three total) is in seventh place. I don’t know what it is about that bike, but no complaints here. Although Fairdale the company and its founder weren’t interested in my promotion idea. They’re doing just fine without me, and I wish them well. It’s a great bike, and it didn’t hurt that I got it for basically free.
What It All Means
In the end, this little experiment has helped me have a focus for establishing and maintaining my daily writing habit. And that has been the launch pad for me to write a book, which is over half done (well, the first, very rough version). So to have even a small audience is amazing. For those of you who are frequent readers, thank you. If I name a few I will inevitably accidentally omit someone, and I don’t want to upset anyone. But you know who you are. Stay classy and keep reading!
I really do apologize for not engaging all the time, and yet, if I don’t write, no one else will do it for me. Someday when I become a successful, full-time author, maybe then. Nah, I’ll have people pretending to be me engaging with the little people. JUST KIDDING! I hope you’ll keep coming back, and if you ride a bike, will share your comments when you see a mistake or something worth chiming in on. And if you don’t ride a bike, but maybe you can, what are you waiting for? You’re missing out on great fun, at times tough but rewarding exercise (you decide how much), cheap transportation and a chance to be part of larger community and team. A Dude Abikes and his one-person Team Time In The Saddle (TITS) thanks you!
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