The year in review, part three: Randomness

This year – my first full year of blogging! – I established my postings on a general schedule, and as much as possible, I drafted posts in advance and used Blogger’s “scheduled posts” function (thank you for getting that out of draft, Blogger!) to publish. I tried to stick to one post per day, and by the second half of the year, I wasn’t usually posting on Sundays; they became my main writing and catch-up day.

The one-post-per day plan and my preference for preparing posts ahead of time led to the launch of “TBIF – Thank Blog It’s Friday,” in which I combine my responses to several popular book-related weekly memes and the Friday Fill-ins. Not posting a comment on a Tuesday meme until Friday means that the post probably gets less visits from other participants, but it works for me, and a few visitors have told me that they like the omnibus approach.

The amount of time I spend with Google Reader, and the range of blogs I subscribe to there, mean that I frequently find posts I think are worth sharing. I began doing a links round-up on a semi-regular basis early this year – it’s gone by a few names during that time, but I think I’ve finally settled on calling it “The Saturday Review.” I’m by no means the first blogger to do this – I was inspired by others to start doing it in the first place – but I enjoy it from a community-building perspective, and it’s gotten very good feedback. I’ve seen a similar feature crop up on some of the blogs I read since I started doing it, and I’d like to think I’ve helped inspire that, as other bloggers did for me.

The general outline for the posting schedule here has evolved to this, with occasional variations and special exceptions:
Monday – Weekend Assignment
Tuesday – Ten on Tuesday or another meme
Wednesday – varies, but usually a “writing” day
Thursday – Book review or other book-related post
Friday – TBIF
Saturday – Saturday Review

Doesn’t seem very random to have such a structure, does it? But again, it works – now, anyway. We’ll have to see if it stays that way over the next year!

A look at the numbers for 2008 (rounded and somewhat estimated, since I put this post together a few days before the actual end of the year):

Number of posts, total: 330
Guest posts contributed by others: 10

Via Google Analytics

Total visits: 12,000
Total page views: 18,750
Total unique visitors: 6,050

Most popular pages (besides the main page);
Bookworms Carnival #14
Summer Reading Giveaway
December Giveaway
Clothing basics (this one was linked by Susan Wagner on BlogHer, which is probably why it’s gotten so much traffic)

Most popular search keywords:
Some variation on “three R’s,” plus 21 instances of search for “how to be a bookworm” – other blogs have much more interesting search-related visits than I seem to, or else I’m just not gathering that data from the right place. (Then again, the smallest percentage of traffic – 13.75% – ends up here via search at all, so maybe it’s not that surprising that this isn’t an exciting stat for this particular blog.)

Feed analysis/subscriber growth
Subscribers 1/08: 26
Subscribers 12/08: 121
This may be somewhat overstated due to people who have subscribed to the feed in Google Reader and are also using Blogger’s “follow” feature, which leads to double-counting, but even considering that, it’s still nice growth, and it’s probably my favorite blog statistic, since subscribers are the most regular readers (even if they’re not regular commenters).

A couple more numbers to wrap this up: hope you’ve been mostly satisfied with how things have gone in 2008, and let’s all hope for a very fine 2009! Happy New Year!

How much have you already forgotten about the year gone by?

You Remember 90% of 2008

You were paying attention during 2008.

And you remember what happened really well.

You’ll be able to talk about 2008 for years to come…

Even when most people have forgotten what went down.

Unfortunately, like most Blogthings quizzes, this one doesn’t tell you which questions you got wrong – but apparently I was awake for most of the year! How about you?

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