Benchmarking Traffic Trends

Discussion in 'Increasing Traffic' started by andrew2, May 20, 2010.

  1. andrew2

    andrew2 Neophyte

    I am noticing a fall in forum traffic by as much as 20% per month when compared to the same month of the previous year. Our forum is well established (8 years) and quite big (50K post per month). I am interested in doing some benchmarking with forums of similar size to determine how much of the traffic fall is due to new forms of social media. Ideally I would like to swap stats with non-competing forums under NDA. Any takers?
  2. russellw

    russellw Participant

    Hi Andrew

    Happy to help if I can - we've got accurate stats for the last 5 years and have noted some interesting trends over the last 2 years. Some of these have to do with changes we've made but others seem to come from a change in the way people utilise forums - or at least ours.

    Given that our activity based metrics are all up (as per below) while our post statistics remain stable (at about 50k/month), this tells me that we have a lot more readers than we had 12 or even 24 months ago.

    Activity Metrics

    Monthly Hits


    Unique Visits


    My analysis has identified that:

    • We have gained a large repository of information over that period
    • We rank highly in Google searches on topics related to our forum (mostly in the top 5)
    • Most of our member posted content is publicly visible although the technical data isn't
    • Our typical member / guest ratio is around 1.3:1 mostly as a result of the two points above

    We could obviously make some changes to remedy some of that but I am currently of the view that a large number of the guests only come to get an answer to a technical issue and forcing them to register is unlikely to achieve anything except adding most of them to the inactive purge list the following quarter.

    What we probably don't do a good enough job of promoting is the fact that the information they can see only represents about 10% of what is actually available.

    It's one of the things under review now.

    Hope some of that helps.

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