What we have learnt in 75 days of this site – Part 1: Visitors and visitor interaction

Thanks again to everyone reading this and contributing to the success of this website. We have had an amazing first 75 days and would like to share what we have learnt, and we hope you will learn something new from what we learnt.

In part 1 of this series, we cover visitors and visitor interaction.

First, some statistics.

We have had visitors from 101 countries so far. The 10 most popular countries for our readership are:

1. United States of America
2. United Kingdom
3. Germany
4. Canada
5. The Netherlands
6. France
7. Singapore
8. Australia
9. India
10. Sweden

thistimeitisdifferent.com Audience Map
thistimeitisdifferent.com Visitor Map

We have been visited by over 100 bots. Here are some of them,

Search Engines Bots: Google, Bing, Baidu, Yandex, Seznam (Czech Republic), Sogou (China), 360 (China)
Social Media Bots: Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Apple, WhatsApp, LivelapBot, Yahoo! Slurp
Feed Readers: inoreader.com, GoogleFeedFetcher, Moreover
Other notable bots visiting very frequently: Ahrefs, DotBot, spbot, MJ12, Barkrowler

Some things we have learnt,

1. Attention span: People either spend less than 30 seconds reading a post or spend around 3 minutes reading one. Most of our posts have been written in a way that they can be read in around 3 minutes. The ratio on both ends? Around 50:50, which we think is quite good.
2. Facebook is tracking people who have it open: If you have logged on to the Facebook app or have another browser window open with Facebook then it tracks your every action – including reading this site. We don’t think people know this. We aren’t on Facebook nor do we have any Facebook code installed so we tested this to confirm what is exactly happening and have concluded that Facebook is tracking people who have Facebook open. The Facebook bot reads what people have read and this bot is different from the one that Facebook uses when people share something. Creepy, isn’t it?
3. Bounce Rate: In web terms this is the rate at which people visit a particular page on a website and leave without accessing any other pages on the website. Our bounce rate is around 50%.
4. Search engine traffic: We just get 0.03% of visitors to our site from search engines. The way search engines now work is that they look at back links (i.e. links to a page from other websites) to rank web pages. We are just 75 days old and don’t have many back links to our web pages as yet.
5. Social media shares: Some of the most visited pages have been the ones which have been shared the most on social media. And people tend to share links themselves (rather than for example retweeting from our twitter feed). Here are some social media shares that have generated the most traffic,

6. Comments: we have 4 approved comments on the site. We hope to have many more in the future. In terms of spam comments – that number is over 250 so far. The biggest source of spam comments? AWS (Amazon) servers.
7. Security: We have had one brute force (16,000 attempts from 4,000 unique IP addresses in a span of 90 minutes) attack on our login page. We blocked our login page being reached in the first place after that. We can still login in another way.
8. Our most regular visitors: we don’t really have a way of finding this out, but we think there are 4 people who read this site much more than others. One from Belgium, 2 from the UK and 1 from the US.
9. People like maps: Pages with maps are amongst the most read posts.
10. Our Twitter account: only has 13 followers. Apparently, you can “buy” 10,000 followers for $20 but we don’t do fake followers.
11. Desktop vs tablet/mobile versions of the sites: we have different versions of the website for different devices. No one noticed that we had another new section on the desktop version with live data for bond yields and currencies. And a chat bot. We were only testing this and it is no longer available.

Please do share your feedback by commenting on this post using the comments section below.

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