- Category: Meta
- Published on Wednesday, 25 July 2012 12:58
- Written by Chris
In perhaps his most oft-repeated quote, Mark Twain said that there are lies, damn lies, and then there are web stats. I may be paraphrasing a bit. Regardless, it is a fool's errand to put too much stock into hit counts and bounce rates and mean visit times and triangle graphs. Whenever we sit down inside the state-of-the-art, NASA-esque command center here at the Breadome, we turn a jaundiced eye to our monthly stats and Google analytics reports. They picture they paint is could as easily be a Pollack as a toddler flinging ketchup at a canvas.
Yet we still look at them every month.
One stat that I am particularly obsessed with is the read count in our administrative back-end. I make mental charts of which articles get more reads and how quickly. I refresh every few hours after Tweeting or Facebooking a link to one of our precious writings. And though the read count is perhaps one of the most suspect of stats, it nevertheless has a role in my decision-making process. The read count played a decisive part in choosing to ax the Essential Listening series, for example. The readers just weren't there, drawing in a third the reads as any other series.
As I scan the read counts, I've noticed that we were nearing a completely arbitrary but still cool milestone: five articles passing the 200 read mark. Maybe this sounds like a small victory, and indeed, it is nothing compared to a major, well-established site. Thing is, we aren't a major, well-established site. We are the epitome of a minor, still-finding-its-footing site. So, suck it.
Without further ado, the 5 most popular articles on Two Kilos of Bread.
Almost from the day it went up, this This shot up the charts. Why? No idea. It's not my cleverest writing, it has relatively few links, and none of them a necessarily earth-shattering. Based on the web logs, the best I can figure is that a lot of people are looking for the Zelda 8-bit fireplace screen and Epic Nguyen.
Doug's moving tale of partying with his government-mandated tour guide in Turkmenistan. You know, the story where she tries to push her teenage daughter on Doug's random travel buddy and herself onto him, while rocking out to remixes of 50 Cent's In Da Club.
She's dead now. True story.
Music for Mondays is arguably the most read series on Two Kilos, and the champion of champions is my write-up of Rasputina. Which is terrifying, as it is also one of my poorest in terms of writing acumen. Its popularity speaks more to the dearth of Rasputina coverage on the web more than anything special I've done.
I will absolutely do a re-dux of this in the near future.
This one is a no-brainer. Two Kilos is ostensibly a travel site, and people search for airport info almost as much as they look for French maid bukkake. Maybe even more. Also, it is a well-established fact that numbered lists are catnip for websurfers.
So, get ready for more Top X Things lists.