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Blog Review – 2023

Posted in Random Reflections

In this final look back at 2023, and penultimate end-of-year/beginning-of-year post, I’m looking at my blog performance again. You almost certainly know that I love data, so this type of post is a lot of fun for me. If, like me, you enjoy data, you may want to look back at last year’s blog review post.

I’m well aware that the stats I have available to me are almost certainly tainted by bots, VPNs, etc. But, they’re still fun to look through. I know there are some other data nerds out there, so this post goes out to you.

All-Time Stats

I’m including all blog years here for comparison; because I’m planning a change to the “Fountain Pen” post category, and have adjusted the count of fountain pen posts accordingly; and to include ink-related posts. Also, a reminder that 2017 only had half a year, as I started my blog on June 15, and originally planned it to be related to books/reading.

Total Views: 137,393 | Total Posts: 664 | Total Words: 376,303

Avg. Views per Day715442543101140
Avg. Words per Post6667283471,1266488731,093
Book Posts41732614101212
Fountain Pen Posts121382476351
Ink Posts043034921

2023 Stats

I ran the below metrics for all of 2023, and only 2023.

Top Countries by Views

As I would expect, the USA still accounts for the vast majority of my total views, beating out the next highest (the UK) by nearly 32,000 views. Interestingly, my top 10 countries from 2022 are still my top 10 countries in 2023, with the only difference being that Spain and India switched ranks.

Map visualization showing all countries with any viewers of my blog from last year except the USA in order to better see the distribution of views.Map visualization showing all countries with any viewers of my blog from last year
The image to the left shows views without the USA to better show distribution. The image to the right shows views with the USA, which blows out the rest of the countries on the map.
  1. United States – 34,064
  2. United Kingdom – 2,886
  3. Canada – 2,304
  4. Germany – 1,055
  5. Australia – 1,019
  6. India – 751
  7. Spain – 705
  8. Netherlands – 605
  9. Singapore – 570
  10. France – 505

Top Referrers by Views

A referrer is a webpage that sends visitors to a site — in this case, mine — using a link. In other words, it’s the webpage that a person was on right before they landed on my site. I can actually do a top ten this year, since 25 referrers hit double digits last year!

  1. Search Engines – 11,649
    • Google – 11,038
    • – 272
    • Bing – 252
    • Yahoo – 67
  2. – 3,860
  3. – 2,248
  4. Facebook – 1,311
  5. Instagram – 1,178
  6. – 683
  7. WordPress Android App – 438
  8. – 190
  9. – 81
  10. – 70

Top Visited Links

These are the top ten links that visitors clicked on from my site (not counting links related to my site, like my newsletter sign-up page). Please note, these are top-level links. That means that the home page of a website is listed as opposed to all of its subpages. As an example, if someone clicks on a link to my Instagram profile and a link to Jim’s Instagram profile, rather than both being listed with 1 click, would show 2 clicks.

  1. Instagram – 2,903
  2. Etsy – 335
  3. – 285
    • (Amazon short links) – 106
  4. – 187
  5. – 125
  6. – 123
  7. – 90
  8. – 82
  9. – 75
  10. Jet Pens – 72

Blog Posts

Top Posts by Views

My top posts are certainly a surprise, not only is the top post not fountain pen related, but of the top 5, 3 aren’t even from this year. In fact, almost half of the top ten posts were from prior years. Very interesting.

  1. I Wish I’d Known This Before FIP Treatment (2023) – 1,108
  2. Vintage Sheaffer Research (2022) – 1,032
  3. Identifying and Dating a Vintage Esterbrook (2019) – 962 (This is at the same rank as last year!)
  4. Review: Lume Deoderant (2019) – 951
  5. Year in Review – 2023 Pens (2023) – 835
  6. StyloSuite XXXF X Wing Harpoon Nib (2023) – 820
  7. My 2023 Brand “Discoveries” (2023) – 817
  8. Plotter Alternatives, Part 1 (2023) – 747
  9. My 2022 Top Tens (2022) – 747
  10. Don’t Pay the Pen Tax (2023) – 715

Bottom Posts by Views

Out of curiosity, I decided to take a look at the least-viewed posts of 2023. I can’t say I’m entirely surprised. 9 of the lowest 10 were book reviews. But, since that’s boring, I looked for the bottom 10 that were not book reviews. I find it interesting that 5 of them were about Athena’s FIP and post-FIP journey, when a FIP post was the most-viewed post. The bottom 10 posts, when grouping the book reviews together as a single entry, were rounded out, ironically, by last year’s blog review post.

Can you tell I don’t do this for the views? *grin*

My Favorite Posts

It was easier this year to pick “favorite” posts, namely because I had more posts that required research and effort that I could really be proud of.

  1. FIP – A Straightforward Compendium – January
    I spent hours researching this post and translating vet-speak into plain, easily understandable, English. I know it’s not what most people are on my blog for, and didn’t do very well in number of views, but I think this is the most important post on my blog to this point. It is, after all, the most detailed post I’ve written about a literal life-or-death health issue.
  2. Plotter Alternatives Series – November – December
    You’ll have to forgive me cheating a bit and grouping these 7 posts together. While there is, of course, a lot more that could be said about Plotter and alternatives to the brand, I’m proud of the research that went into this series.
  3. I Wish I’d Known This Before FIP Treatment – February
    I consider this the second most important post on my blog. This kind of information simply doesn’t seem to be available anywhere yet, and I wanted to help fill the void for other cat parents going through the difficult FIP treatment process.
  4. Perfect Your Wardrobe, Not Your Body – November
    I’ve struggled with my self-esteem for a good portion of my life. One of the things that helped me was learning about how much society’s expectation of how you attain the “perfect” body shape has changed over the centuries. So, I decided to share my perspective on that information.
  5. Dupe The Expensive Vibes – June
    This one was just fun. I enjoyed pairing the more expensive and less expensive options.
  6. Don’t Pay the Pen Tax – July
    If you haven’t heard of the pink tax yet, then you must be living under a rock. While thinking about it one day, it occurred to me we have something similar in the pen world, so I decided to write about it.
  7. Ink Rainbow – June
    This is either the first, or one of the first tags I tried that actually came out of the pen world, and I had a lot of fun with it.
  8. Fountain Pen Tag 5000 – September
    These are always fun to come up with, so seeing a new tag in the makeup world is a joy.
  9. Stationery Marvels Tag – October
    I think this was the first time I tagged other pen content creators, and it was a lot of fun to read others’ responses. I look forward to doing that more this year.
  10. Genetic Testing for Mental Health – June
    To round out my top 10, I had to include this post because many people still don’t know that genetic testing for mental health is a thing. While I, thankfully, didn’t have to go through the horrid process of throwing darts at a wall trying to find the right medication, many people do, and these tests could virtually eliminate that.

Thanks for reading to the end, I hope you enjoyed my post. What’s your favorite type of post I write? Do you have an actual favorite post? Is there anything you’d like to see me write about? Let me know in the comments! I’d love to hear from you.

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