On reaching 200 blog posts… Musings & WordPress stat attack!

First up, pat on the back time – I’m still here after 200 posts and more than four years after starting the blog. In that time there has never been a lull – never a month without a post. I’m still writing at least a post per week with the average sneaking up to 1.5 per month, and have no plans to slow down in 2016.

Board game reviews have kind of taken over of late and while I enjoy writing them I’m going to try and diversify more in 2016. That said, I’d like to get the total up above 100 reviews this year – while perhaps writing some more list/versus posts and expanding the board game event coverage a little. Alongside Essen and UK Games Expo I already have tickets for SorCon and hope to attend more smaller events throughout the year.

Switching to my own URL in April has thrown comparison stats out the window a little, but visitor numbers are still climbing. I’ve got a nasty feeling things may start to plateau, but fingers crossed. Hopefully as the hobby continues to grow, the blog can grow with it.

The most popular posts

There’s 10 pages on-site with 500+ visits in the last nine months – and happily they’re the kind of pages I’d have hoped would be on the list. Here’s the seven with 800 or more:

  • 4,867: Home page/archives
  • 2,295: How to design a board or card game: 10 prototyping tips
  • 1,209: Where to start? 25 gateway card and board games
  • 987: Card and board game podcasts
  • 906: Glory to Rome: The final insult
  • 811: The best places to play board games free online
  • 807: Board game reviews

A steady rise in monthly visits

Since switching to Goplaylisten.com the monthly average has been higher than 2,500 visits through 2015 with the daily average threatening to push above 100 if things keep moving forward.

I still don’t have big days, particularly, with my highest ever only at 288 visits – but honestly I’d prefer consistency to spikes. Sure, who wouldn’t want to get a link in the Guardian or no the BBC? But I’m happier knowing that even my bad weeks see 500 people visiting the site.

As for my best month, last time I did this kind of post it was 1,864 (April 2014) – which is now well below the monthly average. October 2015 saw 3,201 visits in the calendar month, with December almost going over 3,000 visits.

People search for the strangest things…

My claim to get a new URL and my own hosting before I joined Twitter proved to be a lie, but it was close! While I still don’t really get Twitter, or really care, it does seem to have encouraged a few new visitors – and I’m much happier now I have a ‘proper’ URL to show off to potential suitors.

The biggest search terms have been ‘board game design tips’ and ‘best gateway board games’ – plus lots of individual game names I’ve reviewed. But in other news, people searching for the following managed to arrive here too:

  • are u realy happy to have my on bourd .if u are then let my play the game
  • listen to simulated football games
  • how to play a game that has four side and different colours
  • rinse repeat game mayan calendar
  • i wont to know about the football club side how they ard playing their matches noun and woch them out
  • what is a good score for snowdonia game
  • chibify yourself
  • listen to summer holiday game right
  • small trangle borad game were you jump to clear the borad that look like picks with round tops

In terms of referrers, Facebook is still just about outstripping Twitter (about 4 to 3) with Board Game Geek a comfortable third. James Mathe’s fantastic game design blog is a welcome fourth, with Board Game Links fifth. I also do OK from Reddit – something I should really get into a bit more.

And on it goes

The most important thing is I’m still enjoying writing the blog posts. The reviews are generally well received, the more in-depth posts are ranking well and I’m still not having to regurgitate press releases just for the sake of adding content. If I start doing that, could someone please take me to one side and have a quiet word?

Overall the second 100 posts have proved I can still keeping moving this shonky old blog forward – and I thank you very much for giving it the time of day. I guess I’ll do another one of these when I hit 500 posts – so don’t worry, that won’t be for ages. Right, back to the board game stuff…

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