I am taking part in a free online course to improve my writing and blogging skills. Today’s writing prompt is Google Analytics.

I don’t use Google Analytics. I removed that code from my blog a while ago. In fact I divorced myself from many Google Services. I shut down my YouTube account. I stopped using Google Calendar and Google Drive. I removed Chrome from my computer. I still have a Gmail account that gets a lot of use but I am attempting to move people over to my hosted email. I do use Google+ but only for public posting of public content. I use it as a long form version of Twitter. It seems to me that with Google Services, once they are all connected, Google gets more benefit from the arrangement than I do. So, good riddance.

For the last year I have used the WordPress.com analytics provided via the JetPack plugin. It may not be as feature rich as Google Analytics but it get the job done. One of the lessor known features of JetPack is that each user gets a customized Year in Review annual report each year. Go check out my 2014 Annual Report.

How did this blog do in 2014?, Screenshot 2015 01 12 07.01.11

My top three posts in 2014 were articles I wrote in 2012. That’s pathetic. Really. That tells me that I have some evergreen content but it might also mean that I need to write more. Or it might also mean that most of my content in 2014 wasn’t very good. Something to think about.

How did this blog do in 2014?, Screenshot 2015 01 12 07.05.07

Most of the traffic coming to my blog was via a photo blogging site by David Hunt and social media, especially Google+. David Hunt has an article about one of his Raspberry Pi projects that links to my top post. The one above that got 73 comments. Speaking of comment, the most commented on post in 2014 was Insulin pumps may not be the best thing for me.

As for my readership demographics? It’s all over the map but mostly US, Germany and the U.K. I’m really not sure how to use these number to help me improve my blogging. This sort of data analytics isn’t my forte.

Yesterday, I installed Piwik, an open source web analytics platform. The software was easy to install and configure but with only one day of data there isn’t much I can say about it as yet.