Friday, February 8, 2008

100K and counting

I run Google Analytics on The Chief's Corner, which collects a lot of statistics on the traffic. The number of visits to The Chief's Corner topped 100,000 this week. Yesterday was pretty typical, with 441 visits, bringing the total to 100,651 since I launched in mid-April, 2007. There have been 208,160 pageviews by 23,785 unique visitors. The average visitor stays on site two and a half minutes, and views two pages. Of the total visitors, 40% have returned 15 or more times, 11% more than 100 times.

The hits came from computers using the following operating systems: 95.5% Windows, 4% Mac, and 0.26% Linux. The browsers line up as 84% Internet Explorer, 11% Firefox, and a smattering of Safari, Firefox for Mac, Netscape, Opera, and Camino (whatever that is.)

Just under a third of the total hits came from the City-County domain--so the blog's biggest readership is intimately local. But there are several other domain names that are heavy hitters, including all the major Internet service providers, the University of Nebraska, Lee Enterprises, and Lincoln Public Schools.

Hits have come from all over the place. Canada and the United Kingdom have a some regualr readers, especially in Vancouver, BC and in London. In the United States, seven states topped 1,000 visits. Nebraska contributed the most, naturally, followed by Virginia, Colorado, and New York. Reviewing the new visitor vs. returning visitor stats for each state and the domain names makes it clear that there are loyal readers in unexpected places like Herndon, VA , San Bruno, CA, and New York City .

The ways in which people found The Chief's Corner are interesting. Although the vast majority of hits were direct, search engines produced a dizzying array of unusual results. Here's an example: back on September 25th, 2007, someone in Charlotte, North Carolina Googled the phrase "bob and tom lincoln nebraska", hit this page, then spent 20 minutes visiting a total of 16 pages. Go figure.

Aside from the obvious terms like "lincoln police", "chief's blog" and "casady" (spelled about a dozen different ways), the biggest single search term that brought people to The Chief's Corner was "acudat".

Proving that less is more, the most popular single post, by a long shot, was also the shortest: I wonder who drove (2,205). Second place goes to Gary got his gun permit (858), followed by Not the only one with that thought (782), Third shift wrap up (622), and Prevention wins every time (589).

A hundred thousand hits is probably chump change for a popular blog, but to me that seems like a lot of traffic. It doesn't count the unknown number of readers who follow the Chief's Corner by subscribing to the RSS feed. Never in my wildest dreams did I expect this blog to reach so many people in 10 months.


Anonymous said...

I assume this is counted in the statistics somehow, but there are many of us who subscribe to the RSS/Atom feed and never actually visit your site, unless to post a comment, but yet read every article as you post.

Tom Casady said...

No, I don't have any way of knowing who's subscribing to the RSS feed. I think you're right--they would only occasionally hit the page itself, so would rarely show up in the Google Analytics count.

Anonymous said...

Yes, this blog is a daily guilty pleasure - like watching Cops! I guess I'm trying to get some insight into the criminal mind because I can't wrap my brain around the reasons why people do some of the crap they do. They seem to put a lot of energy into causing trouble for themselves.

Anonymous said...

This blog gets so many hits from so many regular users because it's the best place to get LPD-related news that isn't put through the agenda-driven media "filter".

When I get up in the morning at first sit down at the PC, I check the e-mail, then come to this blog and then hit the LPD site for the incident summaries, then the UNLPD site for their incident summaries.

Only then do I check the LJS fishwrap site and the TV News sites for whatever stale, old, abridged, and second-hand news they have there. If the LPD site posted all the info they give to the press, and before the press gets it, then there would be no reason at all to give the local media a look for local crime news at all.

Anonymous said...

thank you for a great, and informative, blog.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Anon 8:46. This is by far one of my most favorite pages to go to. Keep up the good work Chief and company.

Singer said...

I was told of this by someone who called it their "guilty pleasure".

So am I your furthest "regular"?

Singapore is a long way away!

Tom Casady said...

Singapore Reader:

You would indeed be the most distant regular, with 78 hits (unless there's someone else checking in Singapore). It's a pretty long walk from downtown Lincoln to Fort Canning Park.

Anonymous said...

Your blog tells me more about what is going on in Lincoln police wise than anything else. Plus you bring up some big picture issues that I wouldn't be aware of otherwise. It has been very interesting hearing how the department integrates technology into old fashioned police work. Where else would I hear about that?

Anonymous said...

I found out about the blog during a tech workshop. Many years ago I was in a criminal justice class at UNL taught by the chief, so I check out the blog several times a week.

Nikki said...

Maybe it's naive, but I feel more "connected" to you & it seems that this is a forum in which you can be a bit more candid than usual.

Also, I get to hear about long-term trends & changes - maybe things that aren't "timely" enough to be published in the paper or broadcast on the local stations, that that affect me.

You do a great job of mixing it up!

Anonymous said...

It was extremely interesting for me to read that blog. Thank you for it. I like such topics and everything connected to them. I would like to read more on that blog soon.