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2 Blogging Myths: Traffic Measures Success and Content Is King

Posted By Guest Blogger 30th of April 2011 Miscellaneous Blog Tips 0 Comments

This guest post was written by Stephen Guise of Deep Existence.

Admit it. You think I’m crazy for dogging the two most commonly cited blogger goals—traffic and great content. Allow me to explain before you throw your mouse at the screen, please.

Busting the myths

Blog traffic is very important. With no traffic, how will anyone see your masterpiece on writing blindfolded for enhanced focus? Your blog needs traffic.

But traffic is not a valid measure of success. If traffic were a valid measure of success, every blogger starting out would be an instant failure for months, if not longer.

Success metrics must be applicable to people at all levels of experience. High traffic later on is a great indication that you have succeeded (like ProBlogger has), but it simply isn’t relevant to new bloggers who want to know how well they’re doing.

Traffic relative to experience and time online is also a moot statistic, because it has more to do with luck and/or marketing than anything else:

  • The better marketers will have better traffic—especially in the beginning.
  • I’ve seen horrendous blogs (messy layout, weak content, horrible grammar, etc.) with thousands of subscribers.
  • I’ve seen great blogs that are practically invisible online because they don’t know how to, or care to, gain exposure.
  • Time separates the wheat from the chaff (unless you never market your blog at all, in which case, good luck).

For a beginning blogger, it can be tough to see the big-time bloggers pull in thousands of visitors on a daily basis while you’re reaching for 50 on a good day. It takes time and effort to get your name out there so that you can get the chance to be fairly evaluated by web users. I know that many quality bloggers have simply quit because they equated low traffic with failure.

63,494 blogs were started in the last 24 hours (according to blogpulse.com at the time of writing) and many of those bloggers will quit in the first few months. The first few months are important.

We’ve all heard the classic “content is king” viewpoint as well as the opposing, “unseen content is useless” perspective. In reality, both have some truth—you need great content and you need to make sure people know about it.

However, saying that content is king gives the writer the wrong focus.

How to measure success at any level

So then, what is the best measure of success?

Success is measured by what readers think of your content.

I have only been blogging (on my website) for a month, and as such, my traffic is hilariously low. However, I am very hopeful for retaining and gaining new readers because of how I’ve been measuring my success.

When I read articles about content being king, I get the impression that we should write the best content we can create. The problem is that the writer’s opinion of “best content” doesn’t matter too much.

Content is not king, and neither is traffic: your readers are king!

Some might say that this is what “content is king” actually means, but that is up for interpretation. Saying that readers are king leaves no doubt.

Readers decide what they want to read, how much, and when. They determine which blogs soar to incredible popularity and which blogs bite the dust. They are king because they control the destiny of every blogger. So how do we cater to their interests? How do we know what they want?

  1. You want to shape your content to your readers. Okay, but how do you do that?
  2. You do that by listening to what your readers are telling you.
  3. You listen by measuring the number of tangible positive responses (Facebook likes, tweets, comments, new subscribers, etc.) relative to the number of people who viewed a post (individual post views can be seen with Google Analytics, but make sure you’re blocking your own IP address views to prevent skewing the stats).

This approach is primarily geared towards people starting out such as myself, but it is relevant to all bloggers.

When you’ve “made it” and are getting tons of traffic, the positive responses in relation to your traffic (and increased traffic itself via reader sharing) will be pretty obvious indicators of how your posts are received. You have a much bigger sample size in that case, and precise calculations aren’t necessary. But I’m sure you’ll do them anyways because of how much fun they are.

Low traffic … but high hopes

I believe that I am going to be a successful blogger. It isn’t because of my traffic—on Saturday I had a whopping six unique visitors (ouch, weekends).

My readers, not my traffic, have been foreshadowing my success by responding positively. In the first week, a couple I’m friends with told me my blog was changing their lives. I’ll take that over 1,000 visitors.

My last post was seen by only 22 unique visitors the day I posted it, but from that it received seven Facebook likes. My subscriber count doubled from seven to 14. About 32% of the readers liked it enough to share it with their Facebook friends.

If I were attracting 2,000 visitors a day and maintained that 32% sharing rate (unlikely, but interesting), it would translate to 640 Facebook likes on that post, which could obviously boost my traffic substantially.

I’ve had other posts that were seen by a much higher number of people with a much lower response—that is a huge statement by the readers. I would be a fool to ignore it and write whatever I want.

As a blogger, you need to have a willingness to adapt your vision and content to the marketplace. Let’s face it: blogging is a business. You have to promote your product (blog posts), network with other businesses (bloggers), and create value for your customers (readers).

Consider the variables

It is important to note that there are many other factors that come into play here—the time the post was published, the length of post, topic interest, marketing, statistical variations, the influential power of who shares your post, and so on.

It isn’t an exact science because of the variables involved, but it remains the best measure of success for a blogger at any level. This is why I recommend allowing comments on your posts, or at the very least adding social sharing options, to bloggers starting out. Disable comments because it looks bad to have no comments, and you’ll miss out on a chance to get valuable feedback.

Even at low traffic levels, I’ve found you can still get a good feel for your winners and losers. For example, the aforementioned post with fewer views had a much greater response than every other post with more views on my blog. The readers have spoken.

Keep in mind that different posts will have different reactions. The popular post I mentioned has zero comments, but people were sharing it and subscribing as a result of it.

Another post I wrote on deep thinking was shared less, but has more comments. Both posts were successful based on the number of views.

I’d love to hear from you about your experiences, and get your thoughts and feedback on this idea. After all, if you’re reading this, your feedback is king!

Written by Stephen Guise. See my website for more deep thoughts and follow me on twitter!

About Guest Blogger
This post was written by a guest contributor. Please see their details in the post above.
  1. Interesting post, interesting conclusions. If you work with a niche audience (yeah, I do), the numbers aren’t as important and the subscriptions. Big numbers don’t translate to big sales, either. For me (and my readers) content may not be king, but it is the heart and soul. I could probably get more readers by being snarky, controversial, or by cranking up the drama, but I’d lose my target audience. And my own respect for my life as a writer.

    • Nice to see that you do not want to get involve in any kind of modern marketing strategy …

      Would love to read your thoughts and your way to market your blog …

      • Does that really sound like I don’t want to use modern marketing strategy? I guess to you, it does. I get 60 percent of my clients from social media. Maybe I’m doing it wrong, and could get more clients if I did something else.

  2. Totally agree with you Stephen. First and foremost, I must feel good with my own posts or I cannot live with myself. If I truly like them, there must be other like-minded people out there that will also like them.Time will draw them to my work. Good luck to all those bloggers who persevere through the first discouraging months. Remember that the turtle wins the race.

    • That is a great point, Asaf. For the most part, our idea of great content will match the readers’ idea, but I’ve found that I’m so unique in some areas that some posts just don’t connect with people. Also, some topics are much more popular than others. I’m fine with that, but it is a high opportunity cost to write those when I could be writing things they enjoy more.

  3. Stephen,
    This was helpful as I too just started a blog a few months ago and was wondering if I would ever have any visitors . But slowly I am getting a few. I average about 15 people a day with a high of 29 this week! So after reading your numbers I won’t be discouraged. I even had my first critical commenter and we had a wonderful back and forth discussion. I must admit though all this does take a lot of time from one’s normal job. Writing the posts is time consuming enough but then dealing with analytics and comments is another matter. But I am enjoying the whole affair. Also from your post I learned I better check my google analytics to be sure my IP address is blocked. If I only knew how to do this. Ah, so much to learn

    • Haha, I’m glad I could set the bar low to help you feel better. :-D Blogging can easily be full-time+ with writing, analyzing, marketing, networking, etc. Just do what you can and enjoy the journey!

      To block your own page visits from being counted, you have to use Javascript and cookies or an IP addresss exception. This link has the answer for each – http://www.google.com/support/analytics/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=55481

      • Thanks for the help, Stephen. Sorry I didn’t get back sooner to your comment. I need a way to remember to check back to places where I have left comments. Again I am new to all this. I did manage to block my IP address by following google help. Thanks again

    • If you have a static IP address, then it’s pretty easy. Sorry I don’t have the instructions off hand. But google “google analytics block IP address” and it will return how. I have a non-static IP address, which means it changes every time I connect. I currently have to use my cell phone through AT&T for my internet connection, but on Monday I’m making the investment in satellite internet, which should provide me with a static IP.

  4. My favorite : “your reader are king”. I do believe the readers are king. No matter what your traffic is, if your readers don’t find your blog, they will show their disapproval through higher bounce rate and lower time on site. So the success matters on these metrics too.

    • That’s true, but I think the bounce rate metric can be pretty flawed depending on your layout. For example, if you have most of your content on your home page readily accessible without needing extra link clicks, the readers could visit and enjoy a lot of what your site offers and still count for a poor bounce rate.

      • In that case, I think, you should make sure that your visitors stay on your site for a while. You may have all the content on the home page and still your visitors leave as soon that they land. What does that mean? Their disapproval, of course.

        On my sites, my bounce rate hovers around 50. Average time spent on the site is about 2.5 minutes. I don’t know if that is good, but I would like to hear more on this from my fellow bloggers.

  5. I always think the true measure of success is the number of comments and social shares you have for your content (assuming you didn’t pay someone for diggs, tweets, etc.). But if your content has a lot of these things, it shows high engagement and therefore highly engaging content.

  6. Much better attitude to have over metrics. You’ll win over more true fans and create stronger tailored products.

    All the best,

    David Edwards

  7. Much better attitude to have over metrics. You’ll win over more true fans and create stronger tailored products.

  8. “I believe that I am going to be a successful blogger.” — now that’s the spirit!

    Thanks for writing this blog! This is an eye-opener.

    I have never realized that getting higher traffic should be the basis of having a successful website. I have been a content writer for quite sometime now and my colleagues often told me that content never really mattered and that getting more and more hits are the most important stuff in SEO. Yes, getting higher traffic is a plus but still the content of the article/post/site is much more important because that is what the readers are up to.

    I do hope you get higher traffic in the future – you write great stuff! Keep it up :)

    • Thank you for your kind words, Daryl!

      As has been written on Problogger before, it is a huge advantage when your followers are extremely loyal. Then they become invaluable marketing resources, for free! Search Engine traffic is nice just because of the huge potential for traffic it can bring in. Traffic is most everyone’s goal, but as I said, it should not be the ultimate measure of success (especially early on).

  9. If your blog goal is to build a loyal community, then your readers are King but if your goal is to get search engine traffic, traffic plus content is King.

    Stephen, I wish you all the best of luck on your new blog. Trust me, luck is very important in this tough business.

  10. Great article. I did think that the phrase ‘content is king’ was synonomous with the reader being king, but I understand why you differentiate. I think you definitely need to be patience and have a willingness to let your posts be directed by the feedback if your aim is to build up an engaged community of readers rather than be a blog broadcaster. I get excited any time there is one comment, as it only takes one person to have a conversation. If your blog inspires someone to want to talk (connect) with you because of something you wrote about that resonated with them then that is definitely my definition of success…if blogging is a business then like all solid businesses it is best build slowly one relationship at a time.

    • Great thoughts, Z. I do feel the need to differentiate because one term (readers are king) is more accurate and I’m a perfectionist. Why use an inferior phrase? “Content is king” does seem to put more focus on the writing, but when you think about a reader, their name-derived activity is reading content, and their opinion is the one that counts.

      The difference is small, but small differences can make a big difference in perspective sometimes.

  11. You are right Stephen. Every one usually write ‘Content is the king’ and ‘if you have remarkable content success will follow you’ i often heard it and my ears are drunk with it. But now you think on another way stating ‘Readers are the king’. I think that’s right.Thanks for the post.

    • My pleasure Chris,

      “Readers are king” is a much more accurate term. Saying that content is king leads to another question – “who decides the quality of the content?” The answer of course is readers!

  12. Spend 25% of your time writing amazing content, and 75% of your time promoting it.

    • I’ve probably done the exact opposite of this percentage, but I believe there is a lot of validity to it. Has this worked well for you, Kevin?

  13. Phew! Thanks for the inspiring post Stephen. Just when I was about to jump the blogging ship. Your fresh perspective – and optimistic outlook in the face of “hilariously low” stats – is just the thing I needed.


  14. I’m at that beginning stage right now and sometimes I feel like my blog is failing because I don’t have the same amount of traffic as other blogs do.

    I’ve learned that traffic doesn’t mean a thing – its writing quality content that my readers enjoy that gives me the most satisfaction.

    • We have to ask ourselves this question: How many readers will I be satisfied with serving and benefiting? That of course depends on your blogging goals. If your goal is just to help people, then maybe one loyal fan is all you need. Personally, I’d have to quit if only one person read my blog. :-P

  15. Thanks so much for this. So many people tend to get wrapped up in the standard metrics. I do have Google Analytics installed on my blogs, but always forget to check it. I pay very close attention to my sharing stats and comments, though, because what I want is interaction, after all.

    This post rocked. Please come back and write more!

    • Thanks Elizabeth! I am extremely analytical, so I enjoy Google Analytics more than is healthy, but I love your focus on social feedback. I do plan to come back and write more. In fact, I have another post just about finished that I plan to submit soon.

  16. Quality not quantity for the commenting and Facebook stuff — agreed.

  17. I too have “hilariously low” traffic. What’s even funnier is I haven’t blocked my IP in my analytics. I need that false sense of validation to keep me going.

    Since you somehow managed to use chloroform to render Darren unconscious and hack your way into a Guest blogger post, I’d say your onto something big. Keep up the good work.

    • Oh man, I didn’t find out until a couple of weeks in that I was my biggest fan. Needless to say my traffic took a big hit when I stopped counting my own visits. I think that false hope actually did motivate me in the very beginning though, haha.

      It works every time. It could have something to do with me spending 5x as long thinking/writing/researching/editing my posts than the typical blogger (my last post took 15 hours), but chloroform seems like the better fit. I’ll get you in contact with my chloroform supplier right away.

    • LOL! I pretend that I’m not related to more than half of my subscribers. I just pretend they’re anonymous e-mail addresses instead of relatives. :)

  18. Nice post! I totally agree with this post… Thanks for sharing your thoughts…

  19. I can say only one thing – CONTENT IS DA KING ! :D

  20. Interesting perspective Stephen, and congratulations on your first big guest post!

    I really like what you’re saying here, for the most part. I have a small audience of 330 subscribers, but it’s a tight, solid group of people who love leaving comments (you, for example!).

    Keep up the good work, and I look forward to watching you grow.

    • Thanks Martyn,

      How dare you not agree with me 100%! Just kidding, I enjoy opposing viewpoints as they help to expand the mind. It’s been interesting to see you guest posting all over the place on the big blogs! You’ve been on a roll the past month. I’m sure you’ll keep it up.

  21. I like the way you tackled the myths here. And it’s true that traffic will be low when just starting out and will be sure to increase as people get to know about it.

    I think a critical point alot of bloggers miss is the issue of promotion. I have seen mediocre content get a lot of hype and traffic and amazing content receiving no attention. That’s not fair but it shows the role promotions play.

    Lovely article!


    • I appreciate that, Tosin. I have also seen this phenomenon of promotion and presentation of which you speak. Promotion is a key element of building traffic. Sometimes I think about trying to create a viral youtube video. That’d be fun if it worked.

  22. My blog doesn’t get a lot of visitors yet, about 50 a day right now, but the comments I’ve received are very kind and they mean very much to me. I was always a little bit worried about the low amount of visitors, but your post made me feel better about my blog! Thanks Stephen!

    • That’s why I wrote this. I’d say if in 2 years in you’re only getting 50 visitors a day then maybe you should be discouraged. Too many bloggers don’t give themselves a chance because of the difficulty of working so hard for a limited audience early on. Think long term. I know I am.

  23. Thanks for the encouragement. Great points about measuring traffic and focusing on readers.

    I need to get the Facebook “like” button for my blog. Smart thinking.

  24. This is a good point, that you can’t really use the same standards for a new blog that you do for a big, established blog. I try to think of blogging like acting. There are huge movie stars, but for every one of those, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of actors, not famous, not making huge amounts of money, but doing what they love and doing it well enough to make a living at it.
    It’s probably not a good sign that I don’t know this :) but how do you know if someone liked your post on Facebook?

    • Hi Amy,

      Great insight!

      You can use the standard Facebook like button (or FB share or the 3rd party share.me button that I use) on your website that tallies the number for each post. I see on your website you just have a Facebook button for sharing with no counter and it isn’t for each post (most people use a FB button in that location for a fanpage link). There are dozens of wordpress plugins for facebook and twitter sharing options, so I’d just search for “share” and you’ll see many options. I’m currently using a plugin called “socialize” on my blog and you can see it counts the number of tweets and shares for every post.

      • Thank you! :) Sad that I hadn’t figured that out on my own, but thank you! I just went to your blog (and subscribed). I love it!

  25. I would thing that returning visitors is a good indication of success. It’s nice if someone stumbles upon your blog and reads a post or two but a true measure of your success is getting that visitor to bookmark your site and come back on their own.

    • I agree. That is perhaps the strongest statement of reader enjoyment, so it should be taken into consideration with the other feedback.

  26. Stephen,
    Keep it up! I’m a new blogger myself. I seem to get decet traffic on the weekends. Still trying to figure outmy audience’s needs/likes.

    • Thomas,

      Thank you, I’m still trying to figure it out too. I’m certainly much further along in understanding what my readers like and don’t care for using the methods I shared in this post. Like with many things in blogging, it will take some time to hone in on what readers in our respective niches want to read about. Patience is key!

  27. Guest posting is King is seems, since thanks to this guest post, many people now know or visited your blog/site.

  28. I’m looking for the ‘one’ visitor. That’s the one visitor who could really make or break my blog.

  29. “Low Traffic…but high hopes” I LOVE that you pointed this out. I’ve been blogging for about 3 months. I’ve had some weeks better than others, I’ve had days with 2 page views. Those days are frustrating, but I’ve gotten some great comments that really meant a lot to me. It’s those little things that make me want to keep going.

    • It’s great to have things like that bring us through the discouraging times. For me, it was the couple who told me I was changing their lives (only a week and 2-3 posts into blogging!). If I can change 2 lives, then I can change 20,000.

  30. I started a site in September 2009. Original commentary on politics, film and rock music. However, i have reduced traffic. As an aside, I want to say I’m a journalist.
    Now, I have a friend – engineer – who started a blog several months ago. While I have four to five subscribers, he already has 50! While it copies content from other websites, and personal posts are poor and full of grammar mistakes, he gets comments and I do not. I tried some SEO techniques. I bought and read a lot of books. I find it impossible to increase traffic. I for one, do not understand anything. Eventually I think it’s only and only chance.
    Anyway, Excellent post! Thanks!

    • That’s the nature of blogging. There is always someone with a lesser quality blog who is getting way more attention. Building traffic is a lot more work than writing posts, and this is coming from a guy who spends hours writing each post. I wish you the best, Mircea.

  31. Mike Power says: 04/30/2011 at 8:50 am

    Going back to the days when blogging had absolutely nothing to do with making money, Meg Hourihan, co-founder of Blogger, famoulsy said that she would rather have 30 good friends visiting her blog because they were genuinly interested in HER rather than 30,0000 who visited because of WHO she was, Sadly, those golden days are long gone.

    • Mike,

      I think with the influx of blog spammers and blogs in general, there is a credibility crisis in the blogosphere. People don’t want to read your blog unless they have proof that you’re legitimate. Caring people and relationships are definitely still possible in the midst of the chaos, however.

  32. Wow, Stephen – what more can I add? As usual, you’ve provided some great insights!

    I’ve often wondered if/how the traffic rules actually apply to new blogs. In the beginning, I used the Ostrich trick (buried my head in the sand) when it came to traffic numbers. I saw the stats, but I stopped focusing on them – and even stopped looking at them for a time. I simply kept writing. I was getting feedback from my immediate circle of influence (COI) and that was more important. Eventually, they started sharing my link with others and I became better at marketing. I think we all start out that way.

    Congratulations for a great guest post! And for everyone else, be sure to visit Stephen’s blog – you’ll find some thought-provoking articles :-)

    • Thanks Angela! I’ve really enjoyed conversing with you on my blog and yours. I like to know everything that is going on at all times, so the ostrich trick wouldn’t work for me. But maybe if I wasn’t inflating my visits by not blocking my IP address, I would have buried my head in the sand early on.

      (She’s right – I am a deep thinker. She is too.)

  33. I agree with the idea that engaged traffic is better than a lot of traffic. However, maybe we should start sharing our traffic with each other to make a good comparison. As beginner bloggers I feel a good post would be an article that asks about our stats. We have nothing to loose. We’re new right? Let’s put it right out there.

    I feel that the established blogs don’t share enough information about their early traffic to give us newbies an example of how it was back then. I know things have changed, but the insight of how this and others like Copyblogger, and Thinktraffic got started would be valuable.

    My dilemma is that I’m getting good traffic (hundreds of organic and direct visits, thousands of page views, 1-5 minutes per visits) but no comments or subscribers. My blog is only a six months old.

    What’s everyone else doing? Maybe a good blog/post would be one where anyone can post a screen shot of their Google Analytics account.

    • Wells,

      I have searched the web countless times for typical early blog traffic stats. I didn’t find much. It would be a great idea to share traffic numbers to get a feel of what is typical. Though this might discourage the late bloomers.

  34. A great post – thanks. I’ve just started a slow launch of my blog this month and with highs of 80 and lows of 2 (yes on a weekend) it’s hard to know if I’m doing the right things! I’m completely new to blogging, facebook and twitter so its all new to me.

    • That sounds better than my early stats. I think your focus is a lot more mainstream than mine (nobody thinks about deep and critical thinking). A huge factor for traffic is what niche your blog is in. I’m trying to create a new niche essentially, so I expected a slow start. My traffic is better today for some reason. :-D

  35. Good post Stephen. Subscribers and Comments does not mean you’re a success. Their are so many loop holes that can make it seem like you have 50k subscribers, so someones subscriber list is not an accurate picture of how successful they are. As for comments, some people are too lazy to comment but that doesn’t mean they don’t like your post.

    Its better to have 200 subscribers that actually read your content, than to have 100,000 subscribers that only wanted that “Free E-book.”

    Traffic is important is you plan on making income with advertisements and/or promoting a product. With a good marketing budget, you shouldn’t have any problems there

    • That’s a great point about subscribers, Kent. Because I haven’t done anything of those things like the e-book, my subscribers are “all-natural” and almost all of them actively read the new posts I write. It is possible to achieve traffic without a huge budget – Steve Pavlina has never spent a dime on marketing, for example.

  36. focusing on readers and developing blog post they will push on their social media sites is key to building success. a small group of readers who adore your writings will lead to a bigger audience. start small learn the ropes to gather a following.

  37. Great post.

    I especially enjoyed the data on blogs. Yep, bloggers are quitters. There are no barriers to entry, but there are also no barriers to exit. I’ve found that social media outlets have enabled a higher level of quitting (no data).

    1. Social media is easier than blogging.
    2. Social media has a more immediate response with a more comfortable audience.


    • Thanks Chris,

      You speak the truth! I actually started out writing notes on Facebook for 5 years before I moved to my own website and blog. It was a lot less work to manage and much more casual because I wasn’t worried about quality too much.

  38. Great post! I still believe that content is king, but it must be unique VALUABLE content that hits your target audience. Some people love social media, me not so much. I love writing, whether it is articles, blog posts or web pages for clients. Maybe it’s the challenge, I do love a challenge. Thanks for sharing your perspectives!

    • I like social media primarily for the feedback and it helps with traffic. I know if someone shares my post that they liked it enough to put their name behind it. Blogging for the love of writing is just great. I also love the challenge of writing compelling content consistently. Thanks for your feedback Tess!

  39. I just begin to blogging, it seems difficult to attract initial traffic. To keep the reader stay and come over more often is even harder.

  40. Thanks, I enjoyed your blog. The really great thing about blogging is that you can get, often really immediate, feedback on what you produce. It is important to learn how to use this feedback to improve your blogging which will hopefully result in an increase in the number of people who are interested checking into your site on a regular basis.

  41. This is a wonderful post Stephen. I agree that the readers are the most important thing. I started my blog back on February 8th, and since then I’ve gotten over 58,000 unique visitors (I blog about video games and entertainment), but I don’t consider my site successful. Because I look at my Facebook “likes” and my “retweets” and they’re nothing amazing. While I’m grateful I’ve been so lucky, I’m more interested in gaining more loyal readers, not just a bunch that will visit my site once, then never return.

  42. At first, I never saw the sense of blogging… until it became quite popular. Almost every website I visit is a blog or have a blog. So even though I’m not a writer and I don’t speak great english it seems like thats the way to go if I want traffic to my site. Thanks for your details.

  43. While you are right that “readers are king” it all depends on the purpose of the blog. “Content is king” is mainly used for blogs who’se main purpose is SEO and earning on the blog. Content is king is a term used when by using keyword targetting attracting a higher position on the search motors such as Google. Good contetn with good keywords will give the blog more exposure. While it might not give one single /loyal/ reader, it will give more exposure and thus helping the person earn on the blog.

  44. Thanks for the valuable information..I was believing in these two blogging myths till now. Your post made me think about the analysis of traffic on my site.

  45. Very encouraging for aspiring bloggers like myself. “Success is measured by what readers think of your content”. I love that interpretation. I like what you have to say so I have subscribed to your blog. :)))

  46. Totally agree! I find many people saying how some blogs are bad because their Alexa Rank is above 1 million. I had a blog with only 100 readers daily, but because they were really into the niche and I provided them with lots of great content and products, almost each bought something.

    • That’s an insightful success story, Tarrum. I have no idea what my Alexa rank is. Alexa probably doesn’t even know who I am yet. :-P

  47. TIME…that’s what I tell my clients who are new to blogging.

    The statistics showing the number of blogs started daily is astounding, but you have to remember that many, many of them quit in the first months.

    That just shows that if you are one of the few that stick it out, you will eventually rise.

    Speaking of promoting and getting visitors, ave you checked out The Blogging Buddies Social Network…you can create a profile, and add your blog, Twitter and Facebook links in the appropriate groups.

    We are hosting a week-long blog hop starting tomorrow.

    Why not join in the fun?

    Come on home – mom blog
    Working at home advice

  48. Hi Stephen,
    A great post. As a newbie I struggled (notice the past tense) with determining whether my rate of progress was satisfactory. Also frustration reigned supreme concerning how to identify variables/causes when success was unexpectedly encountered. I’ve finally made peace with the metrics I use to identify progress. My rate of progress meets my criteria for success. So I will continue to happily plod along with my own criteria for success knowing that the driven and the more ambitious would probably be frustrated beyond reason with my mastery of rationalization.

    • It makes me very happy to hear this. This is the type of perspective I believe all new bloggers would have instead of staring at Google analytics all day and dreaming. For me, as long as I’m seeing some evidence of progress weekly or bi-weekly (due to fluctuations), I’m satisfied. Progress might be as diverse as a better looking website layout though or more comment interaction. Blogging growth is not typically explosive, but a process of building something valuable over time.

  49. Thanks for this post, Stephen! As a new blogger, I need these kind of encouragements. I had read early on that we were going to be in a tough niche (Christian fiction blog) so I was (somewhat) prepared for slow going. But I’m NOT a quitter so I’ll keep plugging along. Good luck with your own blog! Now to go find those readers…

    • Dee,

      That does sound like a challenging (but interesting) niche purely based on numbers. With my niche of deep and critical thinking, I’m trying to meet those interested in the broader personal development niche half-way and show them my niche within the niche. Maybe you could employ a similar strategy.

  50. Good idea! I’ll definitely put some thought into that. Thanks Stephen!

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