The previous month showed that traffic numbers had decreased when the holiday season was over. The traffic numbers continue in a downward trend throughout January, which put my target of 200,000 visitors per month by the end of the year in jeopardy.
Last month the numbers were much lower than the end of 2011, but the traffic numbers leveled off for most of the month, and then began to move upwards towards the end of the month. While there were fewer days in February, the numbers were still fairly low, but were higher than last year.
Traffic Leveled Off
This month I started to become more involved online to help stop the downward traffic spiral that occurred in January. At the same time, I also removed an ad unit that was at the top of all posts. This ad unit was placed beside another ad unit, and with Google’s recent change regarding ads above the fold, I wondered if my posts were being penalized. Google’s algorithm is always a secret, so finding definitive answers is always a best guess estimate.
The traffic started where January left off – lower than the previous months – but the downward trend had stopped. Traffic leveled off for a greater part of the month, and then began to increase slightly near the end. The graph below shows this trend.
It is encouraging to see the increase at the end, and I’m hoping to continue this increase over the next few months. In terms of overall visitors, the table below shows the comparison between February 2011 and February 2012.
|Metric||February 2011||February 2012||Change|
Comparing the year-over-year numbers you can see that, while traffic had dropped, there were still more visitors this year than last year. Unfortunately, the increase in both visitors and pageviews was the lowest since I started reporting traffic numbers, but I’ll take an increase over a decrease anytime.
My traffic sources remain similar with search engines still remaining my largest traffic source by far. Direct traffic was still second making referral traffic third. The largest decrease in my traffic numbers was by search engines which has dropped below 70,000 visitors for the first time in many months since hitting over 100,000 visitors a few months ago.
The sources of my traffic is shown in the following chart.
I will continue to try and be active online, and will look at ways of increasing both my referral and direct traffic to try and offset my search engine traffic. Of course, I will also look for ways to increase my search engine traffic going forward as well. Perhaps remove another ad unit from the top of my posts. Experimenting is all part of managing a blog.