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 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 that with Google Services, once they are all connected, Google gets more benefit from the arrangement than I do. So, good riddance.
Last year I used the WordPress.com analytics provided via the JetPack plugin. It may not be as feature-rich as Google Analytics, but it does the job. One of the lesser-known features of JetPack is that each user gets a customised Year in Review annual report each year. Go check out my 2014 Annual Report.
My top three posts in 2014 were articles I wrote in 2012. That's pathetic. Really. That tells me I have some evergreen content, but it might also mean 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.
Most of the traffic 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 the US, Germany and the U.K. I'm unsure how to use these numbers 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 there isn't much I can say about it with only one day of data.