The state of the #Spruegrey Nation 2017 edition

This year has been very quiet on the hobby front for the #Spruegrey Nation. I have a total of ten blog posts over the last twelve months. This does not make for very compelling reading.

After a strong start with Squaduary and checking out Heresy Miniatures things really dropped off. I started showing you awesome blogs from around the world and apart from selling off a heap of Toy Soldiers to pay some medical bills, that was about it.

Now let’s throw back the curtain and have a look at some of the numbers. I track and obsess about visits and stats using Google Analytics. I really wish I had paid more attention during maths at high school … and university because I find this bit utterly fascinating. The flow of information and how you’re finding the site and what you’re interested in is something that I can sit for hours looking at.

Diving into the numbers

spruegrey toy soldiers site stats

From Google Analytics from January 1 2017 until 24 December 2017 there were just over ten thousand page views and people spent nearly two minutes reading the pages. Eighty-one percent bounce rate is a bit of a worry. The bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who navigate away from the site after viewing only one page. Each post has links to other related content within the blog but, according to the stats, people aren’t using them.

In future, I need to work on writing better content that encourages people to read more. However, for posts like the Obscuring the Astronomican series and also tutorials, you read the page, get what you want and move on. That’s generally the way that I browse.

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Did you know that your attention span is about seven seconds? That means I have a very short period of time to engage your attention otherwise you’re going to leave the site for greener pastures.

Now the contentious issue of advertising. I have banners up for Google Adsense, and various affiliate programs. As you can see, my Adsense revenue is $3.22. I couldn’t buy a coffee with my advertising revenue. The rest of the programs have performed similarly or worse. It would be awesome to use the blog to pay my mortgage and the law of numbers dictates how the banners perform. The more people who see banners, the higher likelihood that someone will click on them. The way to get more eyes on the banners is to publish more posts that people read. More than ten posts, for example.

I have tried to put the banners in places where people see them but they don’t interfere with reading the posts. I believe that if someone writes something that you get value from and the advertising is relevant to you, you’re more likely to click it.

In short, yes, people should get rewarded financially for writing something good.

You just read Page One now onto page two!


  • Blogging stats are interesting. I obsess over them, or go through bouts where I do anyway. I’ve done a ton of work on my blog the past few months, most of which nobody will ever notice, all on account of those stats.

    Anyway, for so few blog posts it seems your stats were decent. The bounce rate will remain a bit high, in my experience, until you get a bit more content. Once there’s a good selection for the “recommended reading” type of stuff then they stick around more.

    Also, why are you doing multiple pages for a single article? I can tell you that Google loves long articles; the longer the better. Articles of 1,300 words or more rank the highest with Google. Not that this is an article that needs to rank, but as a general rule anyway.

    • Like I said. I wish I had spent more time paying attention during maths and stats. Between this and the Golden D6 and the worm farming and Bec’s eCommerce I’m in stat nerd heaven. Thankfully things are settling down at home now as well, so I am actually having properly hobby time.
      I did the split page just to make the reading a bit more interesting. It was a big, long block of text and I thought breaking it up would make it easier to read. I get what you mean though.

  • Turkadactyl

    2017 at the Roost has been sorta similar. I went balls to the wall with posts when GW Inner Circle was happening in winter/spring. I burned out with painting and posting and haven’t done much since. I haven’t been visiting too many sites either. My wife and I bought a new house as well and moving and getting settled in has taken my attention away. It’s been hard getting back into blogging again. I’ve looked back at my posts and there’s not much to them. I too need to work on my substance. I wish you and your family a promising 2018. 2017 was a rough year but It can only get better now.

    • Oh yeah! Moving house will destroy hobby time. On the plus side, anything still in a box is probably due to be re-homed! 😉
      I hope that both our 2018s are significantly less interrupted by that annoying-real-life-thing.