01 October 2010

Philofaxy - Visitor Statistics

This post was prompted by Nickie's comment:
'The fact that it's [Philofaxy has] not been discovered by enough people (yet)!' 
We use Google Analytics to gather stats on visitors to the blog, we have been collecting stats since about August last year.

The key figures I have been looking at are the number of New Visitors, the number of Returning Visitors and the number of Pageviews. The stats also show us the most frequently visited pages and where people are coming from when they land on the site.

These terms are defined as follows:

New Visitor - Google Analytics records a visitor as 'new' when any page on your site has been accessed for the first time by a web browser. This is accomplished by setting a first-party cookie on that browser. Thus, new visitors are not identified by the personal information they provide on your site, but are rather uniquely identified by the web browser they used.

Returning Visitor  - Google Analytics records a visitor as 'returning' when the _utma cookie for your domain exists on the browser accessing your site.

Visitor - A Visitor is a construct designed to come as close as possible to defining the number of actual, distinct people who visited a website. There is of course no way to know if two people are sharing a computer from the website's perspective, but a good visitor-tracking system can come close to the actual number. The most accurate visitor-tracking systems generally employ cookies to maintain tallies of distinct visitors.

All Visits is therefore the addition of New Visitors and Returning Visitors

Pageviews -  A pageview is an instance of a page being loaded by a browser. Google Analytics logs a pageview each time the tracking code is executed. The tracking code is part of the Blogger website template structure.

Here is a chart of the figures for the last 12 months, click on the picture to see it full size.

As you can see the number of visitors has increased and there is also a step in the figures in June which I think I can explain.

On 21 June Gala Darling did a blog post about her love of Filofax and mentioned Philofaxy in her post as being 'hardcore'. Well that was the day our stats went crazy.  

Starting on the 13th June to give you a typical picture:

Our new visitors out numbered returning visitors by 2:1, but things soon restored to normal after a couple of days. But all of a sudden Philofaxy had been discovered by a lot of new people and our pageviews took a sharp rise. This was during a month when the number of new posts on the site was fairly low (14 posts).

Since June our number of returning visitors has continued a small gradual increase each month and likewise the number of pageviews each month has slightly increased. But if you compare the last three months with 12 months ago our traffic levels show about a three times increase and it also looks as if it's a sustained increase.

So how does this compare to other sites. Well I only have access to data for other sites I run and to ones run by my son.

My other major site in terms of visitors is Pembury.org that site is based on the village I used to live in back in UK, and I created the site over 10-11 years ago.  The site traffic has remained the same for the last few years. It typically gets about 1000 visits per month.

My son's site is Thunderbolt which is a games review site it has about 100,000 visits per month! He's been doing that for 10 years, starting at the tender age of 13, but he now has 30 people contributing reviews dotted around the world.

So Philofaxy is somewhere between the two.

I showed the stats on Google to my son the other day and he was quite impressed considering the niche product we are writing about and also the type of product ie it's not electronic at all. Nope it certainly isn't that.

I put some of our increased traffic down to our increased presence on the web through Twitter, Facebook, Flickr. These are all things that will help people discover Philofaxy and encourage them to return when there are new things to read.

Having new things to read of course is essential for the life of any blog, so a big thank you to everyone who contributes with ideas, articles, comments, suggestions, photos, messages of support and thanks. You all play a part no matter how small in making Philofaxy as successful as it is today... so long may it continue.

OK enough on stats... back to proper Filofax posts again... thank you for your time on reading to the very end of this post.



  1. Steve, the recognition by philofaxy of my new blog had a huge impact on my page views! Thanks :-) I reached my first 1000 on Thursday in less than 3 weeks and to celebrate there will be a free giveaway from Monday. Be sure to enter!
    Philofaxy deserves an award for best blog ever!

  2. I am a new reader, just having discovered your site! I am happily reading my way through the back catalogue of posts.

    I have had a classic personal filofax for several years, but have recently gone up a size to an A5 Finsbury to help me with my new job.

    I am enjoying seeing how others use their filofaxes and getting some new ideas. I am a real book lover, and keep a log of what I read, and what I would like to read. I also blog about the books I read, so, inspired by this site I am going to use my personal filo to help me organise my reading and blogging.

    I really do enjoy visiting this site! Keep up the great work!

  3. Hi Nellie
    Thanks for your comment...

    You might find the Reading List in our Files area of interest then. Print them out and pop them in your Filofax


  4. Thanks! I took a look at the reading list, but the link doesn't appear to be working.

  5. Hi Nellie
    Try again I've fixed the link... you might need to refresh the page, but it should work now

  6. Fantastic, thanks Steve, this is a useful insert, I shall print some out tomorrow and start filling it in!

  7. Interesting stuff. The social networking/engagement side of things will have had a definite impact, also the fact that Filofax IS making a massive return to fashion. It's also great that you are supported by the official Filofax brand too.

    Excellent all round.