It seems to be a sort of taboo in the book blogging community. You hear the word and you shiver, wonder, stress out about it all of a sudden. You don’t really talk about statistics when you’re a book blogger, or at least, I haven’t encountered a whole lot of people talking about them a lot.
I’m not sure what the reasoning is behind this. We’re nervous, we’re shy, we don’t feel like we are doing enough, or maybe a mix of all three. The truth is, you’ll rarely see people sharing their monthly, daily, weekly stats for a blog post or their blog overall. As of today, and I’ve been blogging for quite a long time now, I can count on one hand the number of posts I have read dealing with book bloggers’ stats.
If you ask me, I think we’re all a little too into numbers and what they tell us. (me included)
This day tells me that I haven’t been posting and therefore, that my views aren’t as high. This day tells me that I haven’t answered my pending comments and blog hopped and maybe people will forget about me. This day tells me I haven’t promoted anything over on twitter and therefore people most likely think I haven’t anything interesting to share today.
We can’t help but link numbers to success.
Reaching 10, 100, 1000 followers seems massive every single time. Getting one, ten, a billion comments on an article warms my heart like nothing else. Seeing that your blog is growing, view after view, day after day, this feels good. I’m not going to deny it. I’m also not in the business of telling you that statistics do not matter, because they do.
They help us feel like we’re growing. They help us receive ARCs, sometimes (though I wish I understood how and why and what stats really matter, for them). They help us feel like we’re not shouting into the void when we write a blog post, but that people actually come to read what we have to say and even better, want to react to what we have to say, too. They make us feel EXCITED too, let’s not deny it.
So yes. Statistics and numbers matter, in a way.
Statistics tell me what you like to read and see on the blog.
We book bloggers already heard of it multiple times and already noticed it on our own blogs, too. Reviews aren’t what works best and what draw people to book blogs the most. At least, for me.
If I’m taking my 2018 book blogging statistics out for you… on the entire year, the 10 first blog posts that drew more traffic were not book reviews. They were blog posts… about blogging and book recommendations posts. The very first review that drew the most traffic is in 17th position. 17.
🔎Related blog post: On book reviews: unpopularity, comments and other struggles
Thanks to my statistics, I found out that you all really like talking about book blogging and, from my early 2019 stats as well, are having fun with book recommendations kind of posts, too.
Honestly, this makes me thrilled and happy and I know I’m unbelievably lucky, because these kind of posts are some of my favorite to write and, seeing these numbers, I feel like it shows.
Yet, statistics also tell me things that sometimes, I don’t want to hear.
Like, if I posted more, I could get more views and therefore, more “success”. It’s only mathematical, really: on the days you have new blog posts, people are coming to visit your blog more. If you’re not posting for a week, stats plummet rapidly.
Like, if I used social media even more and even better, got a blog’s pinterest and an instagram along with my twitter, I could see numbers growing even more.
I don’t want to think about this, though it is always in the back of my mind. The truth is, I know I can’t do it. I know I’m already spending countless hours on this unpaid hobby because I adore it, but I can’t do more.
🔎 Related blog post: How to stay positive while book blogging.
I don’t want to create content for statistics. I want to create content that makes me happy, as often as I can and, if I need to take a break, it’s okay. Wednesday, for instance, is usually a posting day for me and, last week, I skipped it because I was on a train, because I was away from home, because I didn’t have time to prepare a proper blog post and did not want to deliver something I wasn’t entirely proud of. So I skipped it. My stats, as promised, were lower than usual on this day.
Does a tiny little part of me cares and feels sad and disappointed? Yes. Yet, another part of me knew I couldn’t do more than I already did without serious anxiety coming to me and, you know what? I think this matters more than anything else.
Statistics do not define me or my worth, at all.
Numbers change, grow, plummet down, grow again. People aren’t always there to read your blog, life gets busier and you can’t post, you just need a break because you’re tired.
Numbers and statistics are a great tool and, I know we’re all deep down spreadsheet and statistics nerds and that’s very cool, too.
I pay attention to the number of views I got on a certain day. I watch the kind of blog posts that work best, I pay attention to what makes you react whenever I post something new, watching nervously every time a blog post goes live. I care about comments, I care whether or not you enjoyed this or that.
Yet, I also know that it’s important to care about what I put out there, more than any kind of number. Statistics change and we sometimes can’t quite explain them well. I also don’t want to let them dictate the way I feel about my blog.
Honestly, I love writing book reviews. They aren’t the most viewed blog posts, or the most commented on, but I love sharing my thoughts on a particular book and promoting it that way. I love spreading the love for books and in the community, too, it is one of my favorite things to do, ever.
🔎 Related blog post: How to blog hop, why I do it and think you should, too
I love writing this kind of post and, when I hit the finish line, feeling proud of what I’ve wrote.
As soon as people find out we’re bloggers, in real life, their first question always is about statistics. How many followers do you have? How many pageviews per month? It’s okay to ask that, it’s only human to be curious about the numbers and I’m not really blaming them.
I just wish that, sometimes, they asked if you’re having a great time blogging instead. I know I am and that’s what makes me log onto my blog every day with a smile on my face.
🔎 If you’re looking to read more about book bloggers statistics, I recommend:
- Vicky @ Vicky Who Reads wrote a great transparency blog post a while ago sharing her statistics and ARCs statistics, too. Definitely worth a read!
- Brianna & Krysta @ Pages Unbound do almost every year a book blogger stats survey and gather the data into a very interesting blog post, in case you’re curious about book blogger stats overall.
Are you a statistics nerd? Do you enjoy looking at your stats, analyzing them and so on, or does this stress you out? Or a little bit of both?
Do you wish we talked about stats more openly? I would love to hear your thoughts in comments!
I’m also taking suggestions, if there is any blogging topic you’d like me to talk about or give advice on, please feel free to let me know!