Tuesday, 1 March 2016

How To Measure a Blog's Success Without The Numbers


I've talked about numbers and statistics a few times on Nellie and Co, from how to get more of them, to tracking them, to trading them in for more consistent, loyal human beings, but there was one particular issue that alway seems to creep into view when posts like these are written, and it's this:

There are few other ways to measure success than with numbers, and without them, it's not fun.

For the first time in a long time, I was well and truly stumped, because it's true. There aren't a lot of ways to measure somethings success that aren't with numbers, and those that are tend to look and feel a tad insignificant, which is a shame, because believe it or not, as much as I like them, numbers aren't the special snowflakes we all make them out to be. They're just numbers, and like everything in life, they can get a bit excited and shoot for the stars, and sometimes they have really bad days and binge watch netflix in an electric blanket of shame.

We have to find other way to measure our blogs success, especially when statistics are so unreliable.

So, how do we do that, and what are these 'other ways'?

Are you hitting your blog goals? If so, you're succeeding


I had a pretty surreal moment last month. Out of nowhere, I surpassed one of my quarterly goals of getting a minimum of 3,000 pageviews a month, by a third. In the shortest month of the year, I smashed my goal 133%, and do you want to know how I rewarded myself and celebrated? I treated myself to a yummy order in, a super beautiful chinese takeaway, and enjoyed every moment.


It's important to reward yourself and share your achievements with other people too, and especially so when it's a goal or something you've wanted to do for a while. In terms of measuring success, if you've managed to nail something you've been working hard on, and seen results that make you happy, then you're damn well succeeding, and you should be pretty proud of yourself.

Measuring your own success based on your own achievements will spur you on. Keep going.

Are people sharing your content? If so, you're succeeding


During last months surreal few moments, I saw an increase in the amount of people sharing my content, and that to me was something to celebrate, because not only is this great for me and my blog, but it's great in terms of making contacts, and it means my content is reaching it's intended audience. For somebody who's reason for blogging is to teach and share my knowledge with others, knowing that people are learning and want to spread that knowledge for me, it's awesome.

If people are regularly sharing your content, be it on social media, or through their own content, then trust me, you're doing something right, and you're creating success. You've thrown your content frisbee out into the vast internet world, sharing, promoting, marketing and directing it to it's audience, but it's in that moment that somebody catches it that you deserve to smile and be proud of yourself.

Followers are more than just numbers, they're people, so be human and thank them. Make friends.

Are people interacting with you? If so, you're succeeding


Even now, two and a half years in the blogging business, a comment, at least a genuine comment, still has the power to brighten up a dull day. Somebody has taken 3 minutes out of their busy day to interact with me personally, and let's face, finding time in the day to blog is tough enough, but visiting other people and saying 'hey, this post? I like it!' is on another level of lovely, and it shows you're doing something right. That certainly isn't to say that not getting many comments means people aren't liking your content, it's more a case of, the more interaction you receive, the better you're encouragement was. That's success.


It doesn't just have to blog comments either. Interaction can be anywhere, on social media platforms, via email, even through real-life situations, and you really can measure success on how much people want to talk to you and make conversation. Connections, friendships and relationships are vastly important in the blogging community, no matter what genre or sector you find yourself in, so interaction is super important.

Social media is called that for a reason. Don't forget to actually interact with people.

Are you achieving what you set out to do in the first place?
If so, then trust me, you are succeeding.


Success is so much more than numbers, and it's important that we remember all the other ways we can measure out own success. I set out to teach people how to achieve great things with their blog, how to design a space that matches their values, their aims and their goals, how to become better social media schedulers, how to become better photographers, how to become more positive people, and every time I create content that helps me achieve that, I'm succeeding, and so are you.

Every time you achieve something you're proud of, forget about the numbers and celebrate.

No matter what your reason for blogging, whether it be to teach, to share, to promote, to show off, to make money, if you're achieving that if you're teaching and sharing and promoting and showing off and making money, then your numbers mean nothing, because you're already succeeding, and no amount of numbers are going to make that fact any less true. Well done you.

How do you measure your blogs success?


18 comments:

  1. THIS = IMPORTANT. Typically I measure engagement by the number of blog comments but then the other day about a thousand people (okay, maybe I am exaggerating) shared a post of mine on Pinterest and I was so excited. And also when I put together a bunch of cool extras for my newsletter? I haven't even shared them, but I am ALL THE EXCITE to. I guess I measure my blog's success by how much it inspires -- both myself, as well as my readers?

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    1. That's a lovely way to measure your success, and it's pretty beautiful too Alyssa, and all your posts should be shared, they're awesome! :D

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  2. Great post, especially the one about people interacting. This is the whole reason why I'm blogging and I appreciate every single comment that's left on my blog, and I really enjoy visiting and commenting on other blogs as well! I'm intentionally not tracking my blog's stats, but I definitely pay attention to how many comments I get and I'm so excited to see familiar faces commenting post after post :) This is what makes the book blogging community so awesome!

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    1. Aw thank you hunny! I really enjoy visiting people too, but I do seriously struggle to comment,just because I totally forget after I read! *hides in shame* I do have to agree though, the familiar faces feel really good :)

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  3. Such an important post, Amanda!
    Stats, whilst important, should never be more important than interaction, and shared posts, imo - page views can be very static - someone might visit your page, and not even like the post! But interaction and shared posts - those show an engaged audience, and I much prefer an engaged audience than a passive audience!

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    1. Thanks Geraldine! I definitely agree with you there, it's no good JUST working on your stats, and your success comes to more than just numbers, every single time. Engaged audience over big numbers for sure! :)

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  4. This is really important and it is how I feel about success. Sure, it's great when you have a lot of followers and get more of them every day, but that's not always what blogging is about. Getting comments on my posts is by far my greatest achievement, because people took the time to read it and to respond to whatever I have to say :)

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    1. I couldn't agree more Mel, the interaction and physical effort that goes into a comment makes me feel so much more giddy than a view, so it's better to measure your success that way :)

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  5. YES I LOVE AND AGREE WITH ALL OF THIS. And will probably share this post too, tbh. XD So you definitely know Nellie & Co is succeeding more. ;) Hehheh. I don't often make myself goals to achieve? But I feel like maybe I should start doing that, so I have more of an idea of if my blog is growing and achieving. *nods*

    Sooo, btw. HEY I LIKE THIS POST. KEEP UP THIS AWESOMENESS. ;D

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    1. I do find that goals are personal. If you don't want any, good on you, but I totally need them, to see how I measure (get it? ;)) up, you know? It's important for me, but it's personal too. THANK YOU :D

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  6. *pauses to interact and appreciate your post for the wonderfulness that it is*

    This is seventy-three kinds of perfect! And I relate to it all so much (insofar as one can relate to a post about blog success on a personal level). But really, I constitute 50% of my blog and while my co-blogger monitors and pays close attention to numbers and stats, I... don't? You know? So I never even knew this information was needed, but it was SO needed. There's no greater thing that interaction - comments and social media posts, and basically just other humans stopping by to actually let you know how much they appreciate your content. And it isn't so much the NUMBER of humans as that actual sentiment of appreciation that really gets me feeling like I've done something right. I can't agree with your rundown enough.

    There's also random acts of kindness from others. This was never strictly-speaking our set goal, but a schoolteacher informed us at the end of last year that she's directing her high schoolers to one of the lists we compiled on our blog and having them choose the books we featured on said list for their required reading (and it was a list centered around cultural diversity). I sobbed for about an hour, like an emotionally labile lunatic that I am. And now I'm realizing it's because in a way it encompasses EVERYTHING you just listed - interaction AND a goal AND the sharing of the content AND achieving everything we could ever have wanted.

    So this post is incredibly accurate, this post is incredibly needed, and everyone who stresses too much about stats needs this post in their lives. You're basically my favorite human today. <3

    - Lexie

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    1. Aw, thank you Lexie! I definitely agree, the fact that someone bothered to say 'hey, this post is cool' is such a big thing, and means so much, for confidence, for increased motivation, for passion. It's wonderful. So pleased I could really help you relate and that I was your favourite for at least 24 hours ;)

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  7. This post is just perfection - thank you for this! <3 I think a lot of the time we get caught up in the stats, the amount of page views and followers and we forget the true reason behind blogging - sharing our love of reading with others. I completely agree that a blog's success is about your personal goals and what you view as your achievements, it's about interacting with people about your love of books - it's about being happy with the blog you are writing and the content you are producing and your personal goals you are achieving.

    Excellent post! <3

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    1. You're welcome hunny! It is easy to get caught up in the stats, I do it myself, so I'm trying to just look and take note instead of anything else, you know? Success measured is how you measure it, it's all it is :)

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  8. I love this post SO MUCH. I LOOOOOVE that you say that you SHOULD celebrate these things, and share with others, because why not? We DO work hard at this, why not celebrate! I think it's in our nature or something to be humble, or whatever, and obviously you don't want to shove achievements down people's throats every two seconds, but I won't lie, I achieved a "milestone" kind of number, and I just had to share with a few close friends. It's good for us to do that for sure!

    And ultimately, you are SOOOOO right that the connections outweigh numbers every single time. When I look back to two years ago, I think I had maybe ONE follower hahha. No one ever commented, and then I started meeting people, and without a doubt it's the best part- by a landslide. Thanks for the reminder that we really DON'T need to measure success by some arbitrary number!

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    1. I truly believe we should celebrate our milestones, it's one of the best ways to motivate yourself to do more, you know? You're welcome for the reminder though Shannon, if it helps people feel better about what they do and allow them to measure things realistically, then it's a job well done :)

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  9. This made me feel better about my blog stats, thanks!

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