Web traffic doesn’t necessarily equal ad revenues

My little blog doesn’t get too much traffic–on average, around 150-200 unique visitors a day. I have some 140 subscribers to my RSS feed, but almost 80% of my traffic comes through search engines. I haven’t implemented item view tracking in my RSS feed yet, so I have no idea what percentage of my subscribers actually read my feed.

Two days ago, I wrote a political rant and submitted it to StumbleUpon to draw some traffic to it, hopefully to get some responses. I knew that SU was good for a bunch of drive-by viewers, but I’m surprised by how many: almost 1,400 more than usual. Check out the graph:

SiteMeter traffic for Dossy's Blog from 9/18 to 9/25

That’s a serious spike. There’s still bits and bobs of traffic dribbling in, even today. However, I noticed a few things:

  • Only 5 out of the 7 comments I actually did get were from people I didn’t already know, which I’m guessing arrived via SU. This is a remarkably low percentage of overall visitors.
  • Someone else eventually submitted a link to my entry to Digg, which brought a lot less traffic than I would have expected.
  • Although my few CPM ads might have gotten a small bump, my CPC ads CTR was zero. The extra traffic did not convert into extra revenue, at all.
  • According to FeedBurner, I may have picked up 9 new subscribers. That’s only 0.5% of the new visitors.

Now, I’m not surprised by this–it actually confirms suspicions I’ve held for a while now. But, as I’m thinking of reworking my blog layout and design, it’s always good to get real data as a baseline before I start making changes.

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