Think Traffic Monthly Report – August 2011

  • September 6, 2011 by Corbett Barr
  • 34 Comments

Welcome to another Think Traffic monthly report. If you’re new here, this is the monthly feature where I summarize how we grew the audience for this site over the past month, and explain what we’ll be doing to grow the audience further next month.

What went on in August?

August can be a tricky month for blogs and online businesses. So many people are out on vacation and enjoying summer that traffic and sales can easily slump temporarily.

In fact, some bloggers decide to take part of the month off themselves, or simply to publish less frequently. I’ve been traveling in the U.S. and now Europe since August 1st myself, but have been keeping a steady posting schedule thanks to the help I’ve gotten recently from our new assistant editor Caleb.

I’m happy to report that this August for Think Traffic was a fantastic month, and that traffic didn’t slump at all.

How’d we keep the site growing during the slowest month of the summer? I’ll explain that in a moment.

But first, some stats for the month…

This Month’s Traffic and Growth Statistics

We saw 28,371 visits this month (vs. 27,700 last month). That’s a slight increase of 2% for the main site, although if you include visits to the Traffic School sub-site, we actually saw a total of 31,210 visits (the second best month on record).

Let’s look at some other stats for last month:

  • New subscribers: 612
  • New comments (including my replies): 665 (+31% month-over-month & 83 per new post)
  • Retweets of new posts: 470 (-2% month-over-month)

Look at those comment numbers! Thanks everyone who has been active here in the comments recently. We ran a very successful “ask the readers” post (about popups) this month that attracted 120+ comments.

And then of course, we announced the Million Dollar Blog Project, which has attracted over 500 comments on the first two posts we published.

I’m really looking forward to the $1MBP (does that acronym work?) and I think it will be a great source of reader engagement over the coming months. We’ll be talking much more about the project later this week.

8 total posts were published last month (vs. 10 in the prior month), including 2 guest posts:

Top Traffic Sources

Traffic sources have remained pretty consistent over the past few months. It’s time to make some noise and get attention from some new sources (as well as reinvigorating existing ones). That’s what we’re hoping the $1MBP will help us achieve.

Sometimes a big ambitious group project is exactly what you need to break through a plateau. Have you thought about what kind of big projects you could take on at your own blog?

If you’re looking for an in-depth example of the kind of breakthrough group project I’m talking about, check out the “B-List Breakthrough” video in the traffic toolbox. That project took my first blog from obscurity to “on the map” and it wasn’t that difficult to put together.

Top Search Terms:

  • think traffic: 692
  • unique selling proposition examples: 495
  • personal introduction: 456
  • unique selling proposition: 365
  • sales pitch: 247
  • thinktraffic: 208
  • unique selling point examples: 128
  • website traffic: 82
  • best sales pitch: 80
  • thinktraffic.net: 54

Search traffic keeps growing at a nice rate, despite the fact I haven’t done much at all to focus on SEO here.

If you keep putting out great content and attracting attention (links) from other sites, Google will reward you over time. For blogs, often the only “link building” you need to do is writing epic shit.

Top Content

Alright, I mentioned earlier that I’d explain how we kept traffic numbers up here during a typically down month. Here’s how it worked.

Notice that the #2, #3, and #4 most popular pieces of content above are posts I wrote months ago.

The first new piece of content on this list was only the 5th most popular content this month. It goes to show you that strong content can continue to be shared and visited for months to come. Not only does it build links and enhance your search rankings, but it also brings in direct traffic month after month.

Think about your own site. Have you written any pieces of “pillar content” that people can keep referring back to?

Have you written anything worthy of being shared by over 1000 people on Twitter and Facebook?

If not, what are you waiting for? Here are 5 extraordinary blog post types that might just lead to a breakthrough for you.

Alright, that’s the monthly report for last month. I’m really looking forward to kicking off the fall season with a bang. We have some incredible articles planned for you here over the next couple of months.

As always, I really want to hear about your projects and love hearing suggestions for how we can better help you at Think Traffic.

If you have any feedback for us or questions about something you’re working on, please leave a comment below and Caleb or I will respond shortly.

Thanks for reading, and for continuing to make my job so fun and interesting! You all are awesome.

Written by . Corbett is cofounder of Fizzle, a place for creative entrepreneurs, writers, makers, coders and artists, all working to support themselves doing what they love independently on the Internet. Follow Corbett on on Twitter.


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Andy M September 6, 2011 at 5:54 am

Congrats! I exspect they will keep rising like crazy with the million dollar blog project and amazing content.

Andy M September 6, 2011 at 1:49 pm

Just noticed the typo I made above. :(
Crazy iPad typing. Err.

Hear Mum Roar September 6, 2011 at 6:12 am

Awesome results as always. I will point out that in Australia, it’s not summer, in fact we’ve just ended winter and now it’s spring. So maybe next August, Americans should try for more overseas traffic perhaps?

Corbett Barr September 6, 2011 at 7:02 am

There you go, fantastic idea Sharon. Maybe next year I’ll declare August “down under month” on my blogs ;)

Hector Cuevas September 6, 2011 at 6:13 am

Another awesome report.. Thanks for sharing it.

I think that acronym works just fine – I’m excited to see how that project unfolds bro. Wish you the best.

Hector

Wilson Usman September 6, 2011 at 6:29 am

Man I really like reading these. @Hector man I am too, I still don’t know what I want to make a blog about to follow the project. I haven’t even made my own blog successful.

Corbett, do you think that just using our current blog is okay? or should be try new things instead?

Caleb Wojcik September 7, 2011 at 9:14 am

You can use your current blog if it is still in the early stages of development.

Sarah Russell September 6, 2011 at 6:32 am

Can’t say I’ve written anything that’s picked up that many Twitter or Facebook shares yet, but I’ve been picking up a weird amount of StumbleUpon traffic lately, mostly do to a list post I wrote on ways to get paid for writing.

So I guess I’m still working towards developing that pillar content, although it’s always surprising to me to see which of my posts wind up being my top content over time. I definitely need to put some time into analyzing what’s worked for those posts so that I can build on them as I write more content.

Congrats on another great month!

Maarten September 6, 2011 at 7:03 am

Great post! And it’s so lovely to see such transparency from you guys.

I am very curious to the beginning of all of this. I mean, even thinktraffic had to start at 0. So how did it develop over time. I’ll try to search for previous monthly reports. After reading a lot about traffic generation I know that the traffic on thinktraffic is not just a miracle. Thinktraffic exploded because of your expertise and that is nice to see. It sets a “walk your talk” perfectly fine as well.

I’d like to thank you for sharing this. It has great value.

Corbett Barr September 6, 2011 at 7:13 am

Hey Maarten, thanks for the note and kind words!

I have documented everything we’ve done here to grow this site over the past 18 months or so. Here’s a full list of the monthly reports:

http://thinktraffic.net/archives/monthly-traffic-reports

Cathy | Treatment Talk September 6, 2011 at 7:07 am

Wonderful information! I was learning so much as I was reading, but then realized that your monthly report is exactly what I should be doing. I would do a slightly different approach as I don’t have your stats, but sharing some of the latest highlights in my niche, and listing the posts for the last month, so there is another opportunity for readers to catch the posts if they missed them the first time. Always love new ideas!

Also, I have a question – when you mentioned, “Notice that the #2, #3, and #4 most popular pieces of content above are posts I wrote months ago.” Are these earlier posts that you reposted, or did you make changes at all in the posts before reposting? Thanks!

Caleb Wojcik September 7, 2011 at 9:15 am

They were not reposted. They just continue to be shared or get search engine traffic.

Tom Ewer September 6, 2011 at 8:56 am

Hi Corbett,

Another successful month – congratulations! I think $1MBP works, sounds badass ;)

You had a few traffic spikes in there – some quasi-viral post publications?

All the best,

Tom

Caleb September 6, 2011 at 9:31 am

Fantastic posts as usual, Corbett! The other Caleb here. I look forward to posting my own monthly traffic reports applying the ideas you share here.

RobM September 6, 2011 at 11:00 am

Hi Corbett,
A great month! However, i think with the million dollar blog project your next month will be a bumper one! Hopefully your best yet. Thanks for all your great content. Rob UK.

Julz September 6, 2011 at 1:28 pm

We expected august to be a quiet month for our ecommerce site but it ended up being our 2nd best month ever for sales and we even broke some records!

It’s good to be financially and mentally prepared for slow times of tear but it goes to show you that even in traditionally slow times you can still break records!

I’m going to be launching a Blog soon and loving your work Corbett. Thanks.

Julz

Sunil from The Extra Money Blog September 6, 2011 at 3:27 pm

congratulations on another great month. with the joint project, seems like the better months are yet to come. always enjoy the transparency. i like how you have leveraged referral traffic to the max

marianney September 6, 2011 at 5:01 pm

just wanted to say that i can’t wait for the $1MBP to get started! :) i have been brainstorming ideas and want to get going.

Thanks again for sharing all your insightful information.

Mary September 6, 2011 at 5:33 pm

Just wanted to say that the acronym works!!

Caleb Wojcik September 7, 2011 at 9:15 am

Thanks Mary. :)

Rob Benwell September 8, 2011 at 5:52 am

Congratulations for such a great improvement. May you continue the good work

Paul Salmon September 8, 2011 at 10:49 am

I came here because of the million dollar blog project, so that may help move page #5 up the list.

From the numbers, it looks like you had a great month, and from the sounds of your project, it looks like September will be even better.

Corbett Barr September 8, 2011 at 11:45 am

Cool Paul, thanks for letting us know what brought you here. It’s always fun to find out. Thanks for leaving a comment as well.

Cheers!

Jane | Problogging Success September 10, 2011 at 10:26 am

Thanks for the awesome report Corbett. Having a lot of search engine traffic is good but sometimes it might increase your bounce rate (it might contribute to that).

It is weird that you can’t control the keywords you don’t want to rank for and searches with those irrelavant keywords will cause bounces.

Eden September 11, 2011 at 5:01 am

Hi Corbett & Caleb, You said above to comment ” if you have questions about something you’re working on”. First of all I have to say I’m really excited about $1MBP, awesome idea. I have the blog above and am finding it hard to narrow down my niche or nail down exactly who my TRIBE is. I don’t want to be the usual “blog about my journey in IM” guy because there’s a few and I don’t see how I can stand out. Any ideas? I’m pretty attached to the name of my blog and confident I can build something awesome around that…just not sure what yet :)

Caleb Wojcik September 11, 2011 at 12:16 pm

Hey Eden,
Great question. I would definitely spend some time figuring out your USP. Corbett has two great articles about it that you should read:

http://thinktraffic.net/unique-selling-proposition
http://thinktraffic.net/10-examples-of-killer-unique-selling-propositions-on-the-web

Jayne Georgette September 13, 2011 at 11:33 pm

I’d like to congratulate to the entire group, and specifically to the leader, Corbett for this great report. I guess you must be doing something right.

Unfortunately, my personal situation is still the same, but I did post an update in the forum (I did not think this is the right place for that) where everyone can read it how even in difficult times we should not give up; we should do whatever we can do and the results will demonstrate our efforts.

flymyself September 15, 2011 at 10:05 am

woooowwwwww……gotta learn more from think traffic! Hope my site can have half of the number ;O

flymyself September 16, 2011 at 9:05 am

Hi there, I’d like to ask if it’s normal to have less traffic on Friday ? It seems that every friday analytics records lesser visitors to my site ? is that normal or just me ? thanks

Caleb Wojcik October 4, 2011 at 7:37 am

Friday can have a dip compared to Mon-Thurs, but not always. It depends on if you publish content on Friday too.

Matt August 26, 2013 at 9:22 pm

C’mon – you should know that 2% growth isn’t statistically significant…

Hear Mum Roar September 6, 2011 at 7:25 am

You should!

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