An Important Update

Dear Followers Of This Blog ...

If you did not use a Blogger / Google account when you Followed this blog, years ago, you are probably not Following now . During the past...

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Reading Posts In Main Page View Affects Stats

Some blog owners don't understand why Stats displays show that no one is reading their latest post.
I know that my most recent post is being read - but Stats shows pageviews, for that post, as 0!
This owner does not understand the difference between main page, and post page, access.

If you read this blog, without being interested in any particular post, you can access the main page. On the main page, and other index pages, you'll see anywhere from 10 to 15 carefully summarised, recently published, individual posts.

Clicking on "Read more »", at the end of any of the summaries, you can read any complete article. This complete article, and others in this blog, is published as an individual post page - and summarised on index pages, using Jump Break.

Not every blog owner uses Jump Break, to display the posts. Some blog owners publish complete blog articles, in each index page post. Depending upon how any blog is designed, some readers may click on a link, to read any individual post - and others may read some posts from the main page.

Stats enumerates pageviews for individual post pages, in the "Pages" / "Posts" displays. Since the main page is an "index" page, main page activity is not tracked, in the "Pages" / "Posts" displays - and that causes some confusion.

For any given blog not using Jump Break in the posts, the unconscious decision to read a post from the main page, as opposed to a post page, is affected by various blog design details.
  • Physical size of main page.
  • Number of posts published on main page.
  • How frequently new posts are published.
  • Whether the blog is publicised, using main page links - or individual post page links.
  • Presence - and position - of the Archive index accessory, on the blog face.
  • Presence - and position - of any search accessories, on the blog face.
  • Use of label indexes - at the end of the posts, and / or a Label index on the blog face.
  • Use of links in post content.
  • Choice of comment display style - combined with the blog content which may or may not encourage comments.
All of these details, and more, may cause a reader to read a given blog article on the main page, or on an individual post page.

Physical main page size. Larger main pages require more scrolling. The more scrolling is involved, the greater the chance that the reader may find a link to an individual post page, click on the link, and read the article from the post page.

Number of posts published on the main page. Number of posts affects physical main page size. Thanks to auto pagination, some blogs may be displayed with a few posts on the main page, and other blogs with many posts on the main page. Blogs published with less posts on the main page will have more readers clicking on links to the individual post pages, for older posts that won't appear on the main page.

The most recent post published will appear at the top of the main page, in its entirety. Readers accessing the blog, using the Home (main page) address, are almost certain to read the most recent post as part of the main page. Other posts, further down the page, may or may not be read in the main page, or in individual post pages.

Frequency of publishing. Blogs with posts more frequently published will see older posts pushed from main page view sooner, increasing the chance that older articles will be read from the posts pages.

How the blog is publicised. Blogs that are publicised using the main page URL will see more traffic to the main page, while blogs that are publicised using the individual post page URLs will see more activity to the post pages.

Presence and position of the Archive index. If an archive index is present, and visible at the top of the page, a reader may click on an archive index entry, and read an article from an individual post page.

Presence and position of a search accessory. If a search accessory is present, and visible at the top of the page, a reader is more likely to use the search, and to read an article from an individual post page.

Use of a label index may lead to reading the blog using a label index page. Similar to main page, a label index page is a page which groups posts under the label in question. A label index page may be reached from an end of post label list entry, or from a Labels index accessory.

Pageview counts for label index pages, like main page, are not counted under "Pages" / "Posts", in Stats. Here, too, you can have articles read without clicking to the individual post pages.

Use of links in post content. Posts which contain direct links to other posts - as opposed to use of the end of post label index - lead directly to other individual post pages.

Comment display style, and use of comments in the blog. Blogs which use embedded comments will have activity on the individual post pages, when the reader feels the need to examine previously published comments, and / or publish a new comment. The embedded comment display, and entry form, are at the bottom of the individual post pages. The Comment Count Link - "nn Comments" - goes to the bottom of the individual post page, and will generate activity, as counted by Stats.

Blogs with full page or popup comments - and blogs which don't encourage comments - will have less activity on the individual post pages. The post pages are not loaded, with full page or popup comment forms. The full page and popup forms are published under "blogger.com", not under the blog's URL.

All of these seemingly insignificant details, which are present in every blog, in different combinations, will affect access to individual post pages, as opposed to various index pages (archives, labels, and main page).

This will determine whether access to a given article in the blog is counted (as a page or post) or ignored (as an archive, label, and / or main page). The infinitely variable combinations of these details will determine the relative "accuracy" of the Stats "Pages" / "Posts" display, for different blogs. You'll see similarly variable search engine indexing of the blog, with these combinations of details.

And remember also that in the "Page" / "Post" Stats lists, only the top 10 most active Pages and Posts are displayed, at any time. This will also affect "accuracy".

Dude, hit me with a comment!