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Google Reader Starts Reporting Subscriber Numbers and Shows How Much Ground They’ve Taken from Bloglines

Posted By Darren Rowse 18th of February 2007 RSS 0 Comments

Many bloggers with Feedburner running their feeds noticed a bump in subscriber numbers over the last couple of days (my own jumped from 11,000 to 18,000 – partly as a result of two posts on Digg’s popular page).

Does this mean we’ve all suddenly been inundated with new subscribers?

Picture 2-3

I’m afraid not.

Feedburner’s blog has the answer to why this has happened. In short – they’ve started reporting how many Google Reader and Google Personalized Homepage subscribers that they have. This is due to some changes in Google Reader – read more about them here – which report subscriber numbers.

From what I can gather – the Google Reader numbers reports numbers of subscribers – not numbers who actively read/click through to your blog. For that type of information you need to look at some of Feedburner’s other stats.

All in all this probably won’t mean much to the average blogger (although it’ll give us all a small ego boost for a few days) – but for those of us who are metrics addicts who love to do some analysis of who is reading our blogs and how they do it – it’ll provide some more accurate information.

Google Reader – Dominating Aggregation Market?

What interests me most about this change is that it gives us a insight into just how much of a grab Google Reader and Personalized Homepages have taken on the aggregation market.

Here at ProBlogger I’d always seen the following graph in my feedburner stats (it shows the last 30 days activity in my feeds and where people came from). As you can see Bloglines made up 30% of my readership.


Today however there’s a different story showing. With the Google figures now being reported we find that 39% of my subscribers are actually using Google Reader of Personalized Homepages and Bloglines only makes up 17%.


Google Reader has certainly taken a chunk of the market away from Bloglines (at least among ProBlogger readers) – it was only 6 months ago that the Bloglines figure was well over 60% for ProBlogger.

I’d be interested to hear other’s experience – is Google Reader dominating your feeds too?

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
  1. dig ur site. i just discovered it.

  2. On all my blogs Google has jumped up to a position where it looks like it will soon be the only feed at all!

    I love what’s happened with the new big numbers though – 18,000 sure looks good when people click onto Problogger don’t you think?

  3. I noticed the same thing today. I jumped from 250 subscribers to 325 with the addition of Google. Thirty-seven percent of my “feeders” are subscribed through Google Reader or Desktop. Six percent through Bloglines.

  4. I honestly couldn’t say because I think the majority of those subscribed to my feed go through the organic feed and not the one generated by FeedBurner. Though I wouldn’t be surprised.

    I used to be an avid user of Bloglines but since the release of the new Firefox, it’s notifier plug-in was null and void because the creator had switched to Google Reader. Now I use Google Reader and it’s so much better. Come to think of it, I think I got that information from here.

  5. +30% was what I gleefully saw this morning. :)

    Perusing other blogs, it seems to be about the same for others. Elise Bauer mentioned in the comments on that FeedBurner post that she went from 25K subscribers to 195,000.

    I think I’m in the wrong niche! ;)

  6. Yeah I’ve seen this mentioned a few places today, guess these sorts of corrections need to be done sometime.

    18000 on your feedburner does look kinda nice.

  7. Darren,

    Yep, Google is the top reader used by my subs too. They now claim 26% of my readership. Beofre Google made this switch Bloglines was #1 for me with a 25% share. They’re now second with a 19% share.

    Benjamin — do you know that you can redirect the subs of your “organic” feed over to your FeedBurner feed?

  8. I was also amazed at my stats and kept wondering which of my posts must have done it, but sadly hearing this quickly brought me down from the clouds…

    But, it’s good that Feedburner is getting more accurate…. I use google reader myself, and I find it an invaluable tool for quick reading and ease of use.

  9. techcrunch’s counter leaped up by 100,000!

  10. I’m one of the 39% that subscribes to Problogger through Google Reader.. :)

    I think most blogs are seeing a 30%+ increase in their readership, my blog saw a 32% increase which is pretty decent.

    Tech Crunch has a huge jump and I think it’s probably because their feed is included into the ‘Technology’ bundle (alongside Engadget, Slashdot, Digg and Wired News) that Google Reader offers.

  11. I’ve had a modest but definitely noticeable and appreciated bump :) google also now accounts for the largest block of subscribers as well (27%) … i expect this to grow as i’ll be shifting to full feeds in the near future :)

  12. Hey Darren. I’m learning about the intracacies of technorati and MyBlogLog myself. I also see on one of your blurbs that you’re looking for writers who cover financial matters. See my blog link and tell me what you think. I have you as a Technorati favorite and hope you’ll favorite me too. Have a great weekend.

  13. From all the feeds I’ve seen mentioning it — 30% is about right.

    It’s very smart to have done things this way… quietly become the most popular, then announce it all at once… get lots of word of mouth to bring even more marketshare.

  14. Thanks for the heads up, Darren. I was thrilled to see my RSS numbers take a leap – until I realized what happened.

    This is off topic and I apologize, but how do you get a mybloglog cube on your site? I can get a single column of 10 people, but would prefer the cube with more faces and no names attached. I just can’t seem to figure out how to get the proper code in mybloglog control panel.


  15. My readership doubled with 30% now being attributed to Google Reader.

    Now I’m into double figures ;)

  16. Google Feed Subscriber data, just released, drives up RSS Subscribers for some sites…

    I noticed today that  my Feedburner RSS Feeds Chicklet reported Webmetricsguru.com had 722 subscribers while the day before it showed 534 subscribers.  I figured a lot of people suddenly subscribed due to something I wrote but then I rea…

  17. My feed stats jump about 30% and google now represents about 25% of my feedreaders.

    what was it like to find out you were writing for 7,000 more people than you thought you were?

  18. Mine is too more than any other.Google reader dominates.Its 32$ on mine.I always sued to wonder why feedburner didnt used to report those when they have option on subscription for that.,

    How about the other readers..yahoo.There may be some more people who are there

  19. I just wrote about the same phenomenon a few moments ago on my blog (and ended up using the same charts you did – yikes – I feel like a copycat).


    Google is now beating Bloglines 42% to 14%. 630 total subscribers reported. About 350 before the updated numbers.

  20. […] Update: Looks like Darren Rowse at ProBlogger.net made the same observations today about his subscribers. Well, tomorrow, since he’s in Australia. Nevermind. Anyway, yeah, I wonder if there’ll be a lot of posts like these? […]

  21. So that explains it. I’ve got 325% of increase. But it could be inaccurate, as I got massive stumbleupon wave.

  22. I noticed the same thing, Googlereader is now the dominant RSS reader.

  23. Yes, pretty much. Mine jumped from 485 to 686 with Google taking the lead from Firefox Live Bookmarks.

  24. […] The story that comes out, other than the spike in the numbers, is that Google Reader is really popular. Darren Rowse reports his experience. I think Bloglines has competitive functionality, but Google Reader provides better user experience for some, and the some is quickly heading towards many. […]

  25. […] The story that comes out, other than the spike in the numbers, is that Google Reader is really popular. Darren Rowse reports his experience. I think Bloglines has competitive functionality, but Google Reader provides better user experience for some, and the some is quickly heading towards many. […]

  26. […] Während in deutschen Landen zum Beispiel bei BasicThinking zwar ein signifikanter Zuwachs zu verzeichnen ist, dieser aber noch im Rahmen liegt, sieht es in den USA teilweise aus wie _der_ feuchte Traum eines Bloggers. Die Leserzahlen von Problogger.net wachsen (zum Teil) aufgrund diesen Umstands von 11000 auf 18000. Techcrunch wächst gar von vorher ca. 190.000 auf aktuell 261.000 Abonnenten. Und ein Blog über GoogleEarth kann einen Zuwachs von 1200 auf 90.000(!) Abonnenten verzeichnen. […]

  27. I use both Google reader and Bloglines. Google Reader for reading my subscriptions and bloglines for managing my links page which contains my blogroll. The inclusion of Google reader subscribers into Feedburner stats is quite good.

  28. […] Interestingly, Darren Rowse notes that subscribers from Google Reader/Desktop/IG already heavily outnumber the established and popular Bloglines reader. […]

  29. The bump in subscribers is great for those of us who have numbers below the thresold to be a FAN on Feedburner. One of my blogs made it about a month ago, but the rest haven’t gotten there. I’ll take a the increases anyway I can get them!!!

  30. I’ve noticed a 35% increase in my subscribers stats..that was huge! Google now is the leading aggregator.

  31. […] As shown in the screenshot, you can also notice that the number of subscriber of this blog reached the highest yesterday when Google started reporting subscriber numbers. This number is not very significant in this blog but you can see that Problogger’s subscriber number increased in 6,000 plus while Quick Online Tips’ subscriber number increased in 4,000 plus. […]

  32. […] From most posts on Google Reader now reporting stats, it seems Google indeed has a winner in the market here. ProBlogger, for example, shows more subscribers from Google Reader than from Bloglines. Small Business SEM shows the same. […]

  33. I tried and liked Google Reader for awhile but now switched back to Bloglines. I can’t stand GR’s slow loading time. Bloglines is fast and sync with GreatNews RSS Reader, a desktop app, I currently use.

  34. Wohoo… I am one of the Google Reader user and I think Bloglines lack of “simplicity” and it’s really not for someone with short patience. :

    Just my thought.

  35. I noticed it too this weekend, and the portion of subscribers using Google reader has doubled since Thursday.

  36. […] Why? Just because our friends from Google changed something with Google Reader. Before Google Reader was fixed, Feedburner service was not able to count number of readers who are using that feed reader. Now every Feedburner user has complete stats of his feeds. And yes, everyone noticed a pretty increase on the stats – Darren Rowse’s Problogger counter jumped from 10 000 to 19 000 subscribers, John Chow’s RSS readership went from 2000 to 3000 virtually overnight, and the Techcrunch’s one was increased from 170,000 to 270,000. Well, yes, my stats was increased, too. I had 4 subscribers, and now I’ve got 12. Yep, it’s a great time to start to subscribe my feeds, you know I’m going to hit one thousand of subscribers someday! […]

  37. Google for me: just 4%

  38. […] However recently John Chow and Darren Rowse couple of bloggers that I read reguraly reported there subscriber stats jumping in leaps and bounds. […]

  39. I have been checking my stats and notice a lot more google readers than I used to have. I think it has made a big impact on subscribers.

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