As readers here might remember from my yearly blog review posts, the busiest day for this blog was way back on September 6th, 2007, thanks to the BBC’s tech site link-quoting one of my posts. As with most of these random occurrences, the post quoted was not anything I would consider outstanding or particularly special, and most if not all of that traffic was one-and-done style, rather than actually attracting readers who stuck around.
My joke Rift review, currently the #2 search result in Google for “Rift review”, and one that was #1 for some time, has generated a lot of traffic. To put things in perspective, the second most common search term for the blog all time is the blog’s title, Hardcore Casual, at just over 9000. Rift review, after just a few weeks, sits at 38,000 and counting. Overall site traffic since the Google ranking has also close to doubled, and had tripled around the week of Rift’s release.
Unlike the BBC event years back, I think the Rift post has increased overall readership and participation, though this goes hand and hand with my more recent Rift-related posts. That’s a nice plus, as comments often spark ideas which lead to more content. On the other hand, getting swarmed by people looking to “link share” or pay a tiny amount to place a link is rather annoying. The extra comment spam, although handled well by WordPress for the most part, is also a negative I could do without.
Also interesting is that those who have come here via Google searching for a Rift review click the Darkfall community publishing link a good amount, yet don’t purchase often. Normally, when I post more about Darkfall, the click-to-buy rate is decently high, and when I don’t post, both stats (click and buy) drop. Seems those looking for a Rift review are also open to other MMOs, just not Darkfall. No huge surprise there.
All of this shows how little correlation exists between total traffic and blog community size (as defined by the total number of repeat readers who also occasionally comment). The “one hit wonder” posts make for some cute spikes in your stat page, but really they do little for the things I really enjoy; interacting and sharing amongst like-minded gamers. To achieve that, you truly have to be consistent with your writing quality, its frequency, and how often you bash WoWbies.
Oh, and a good blog war never hurt either.